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Donna Kerwick

Client Liaison Manager at Gnomen Ltd

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How should estate and letting agents react to Brexit?

After a long and drawn out campaign, the British public last week decided to leave the European Union.

Gnomen, Property Software, Software for Estate Agents, Property Market, Brexit, EU

The vote was won by a narrow majority of 52% to 48%. So far, it's been well-documented that the pound and the financial markets have taken a hit since the news of a 'Brexit' broke.

Other than that, it's all still very much up in the air until the fast-becoming infamous Article 50 is triggered.

Since the result became known, a number of reports have surfaced suggesting the property market could suffer due to the uncertainty surrounding the UK's future.

For example, a study by property consultancy Plentific found that 12% of over 1000 homeowners surveyed said they are now less likely to sell their home in the next three years.

That's not to say it's all doom and gloom, however. Many estate agents have indicated they are still completing transactions and have not had any deals fall-through as a result of the referendum result. With all this going on, we've put together five steps for estate and letting agents to help maximise opportunities and continue to be successful in this changing landscape.

1. It's business as usual

As indicated above, it's been business as usual for most estate and letting agents. Some of the problems currently being faced in the market are long-term and not necessarily anything to do with the referendum outcome.

Right now, nothing has changed – the UK is still part of the EU for the foreseeable future. If agents carry on as they were this time last week, last month or even last year, the chances are there'll still be many prospective clients looking to sell or let property.

2. Reassure your clients

One of the biggest problems to come out of last week's referendum is uncertainty. Political and financial doubts and instability have a very strong effect on the general public.

Many homeowners or landlords may now be assessing their options or waiting before making their next move. This is your opportunity to reassure them and let them know that you'll look after them and aim to get the best out of their assets.

3. Keep up to date with that's going on

Not much may have happened yet – but that's not always going to be the case. Over the next six months, things should start to change, despite there being a two-year negotiation period for the UK to work out its exit deal.

It will be extremely important, therefore, for agents to stay on top of what is happening. It will be beneficial for agents to keep clients updated with how the UK's EU departure is affecting the property market. What’s more, some legislation could change in the future, too, so it's important agents remain vigilant for this.

4. Be proactive

There may be some downsides to the UK leaving the EU – demand might dip and the supply shortage may continue, house prices may even drop-off. Rather than letting this affect business, agents can be creative and proactive in order to make the best of the situation.

For example, if house prices do fall, then agents can tailor their marketing to attract first-time buyers – a group who may find it easier to get on the property ladder in a post-Brexit UK – to their clients' properties.

5. Be accessible

At a time when it's difficult for people to get straight answers about the country's future, it's vital that estate and letting agents are there to help.

Good agents with strong market knowledge should work hard to advise the public about property and answer any queries they may have. If agents offer advice and guidance to people with doubts, they are increasing their chances of taking on new instructions.

So there you have it. It could pay to bear these steps and ideas in mind over the next few weeks as we await a more definite outcome and further details of the UK's departure from the European Union.

Here at Gnomen we provide property software for estate and letting agents. To find out we can help your agency, please get in touch with us on 0208 123 9019.

You can book a free demonstration of our estate and letting agency software here.

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