A day in the life of a (busy) Negotiator!Posted by: Pippa John | Post date: 03.10.19
My name’s Pippa Newton-John and I work at Lawton and Dawe Properties.
I’ve been here 3 years now and can honestly say that I look forward to coming into to work at Lawton & Dawe. You know that feeling of dread on a Sunday evening? Well, none of that for me.
I really enjoy working within this sector, but more importantly, for this company.
It’s a busy role. Actually, it’s seriously busy. As Senior Negotiator, there’s a lot to do and all of it involves careful attention to detail, understanding how people tick and being ahead of the curve; being pro-active, in other words. You need to have excellent communication skills (you have to be able to “read” people) and a really strong understanding of how the property sector works. How it really works.
What do I do all day?
I’m often asked this.
I don’t just make a few phone calls and show people round houses, believe me. So, I thought you’d like to have the low-down on a typical working day in the life of an industrious Negotiator at Lawton & Dawe.
I like to get into the office before the phones start ringing. Kettle on, and having written my daily Things to Do list, I check my emails (there are always emails) and decide how best to prioritise, or how to problem-solve if there are any issues that need sorting out.
Time to log on to the various property portals that Lawton & Dawe use. We’ve found that Zoopla, Onthemarket and Facebook Marketplace are the best ones for our vendors, landlords, buyers and tenants.
I use these tools for research, too. I can easily see which properties are new online, which have been sold (and their sale value), as well as those now reflecting a lower price and therefore perhaps not selling as fast as the agent would like.
Property legislation is, quite rightly, becoming increasingly stringent, so there’s always a lot of administration to complete. Today, there are several new tenancies pending, so I’ll be checking on their referencing, booking in an inventory and drawing up their tenancy agreements. Occasionally, there are addendums and special clauses but today I’ve got a clear run on them, which is good.
Again, there are now strict rules about tenancy deposits so I’m working on administering the deposit protection details, too.
And…the kettle’s on again. We drink a lot of tea here.
Off I go for some viewings. At Lawton & Dawe, we do things properly. It demonstrates that we’re professional and that we’re serious about what we do.
For example, this morning I have to make sure that tenants have been registered on our system correctly for staff safety, and that they’re suitable for the property in question.
Today, I’m showing people a lovely house in Poet’s Corner. I know this area really well so I’m looking forward to telling the applicant not only all about the house (this one is particularly appealing) but also all those essential details that other agents may miss out on – transport, shops, schools, nice places to go, and more boring stuff – like council tax!
Off to compile a valuation for a landlord thinking of selling. Yesterday I put together a report on valuations of similar properties in the area, some local knowledge and I’ve started gather information on potential applicants.
There’s no need for the tenant to worry, though. The landlord is just considering some options at this stage.
I pick up an email from ARLA with some important legislation updates. We’re registered with ARLA Propertymark and pride ourselves on keeping up to speed with all the latest rules and guidelines. Not just a “nice to have” – this is essential in such a crowded market.
Hove is full of amazing places to eat and it’s time for lunch! Just a quick scoot round to the Flour Pot bakery for me today, though.
Some long-standing tenants are moving out next month, so inventory in hand, I take them through their soon-to-be-vacated home to check that there are no issues with their deposit. I’m impressed. These good people have maintained the property to a very high standard, as do the majority of our tenants.
Another meeting, this time with some property managers to check some ongoing maintenance issues to feedback quotes to landlords, and to make sure that the local contractors we work with have the correct insurance. Did I mention about attention to detail in this role?
Back in the office. Time to update Facebook, Twitter and Instagram with our blogs, new properties to rent, local information and all those fiddly yet important tasks associated with social media.
I like to catch up with Lucy (our Managing Director) on a daily basis. Lucy offers sound advice on everything property related. She’s taken the deliberate decision for Lawton & Dawe to focus on quality, professionalism and transparency every step of the way. Which I heartily endorse; we’re truly on the same page.
Today we’re talking about some potential community projects with local schools and discussing our advertising strategy – something which is really important to us here.
Time to leave the office for some R and R at home and a nice bath. It’s important to relax and recharge ready for another busy day!
I wonder what tomorrow will bring?