The NAEA Propertymark National Conference took place yesterday (27 February), focusing on the changes facing the property industry over the next year.
During the Conference, NAEA Propertymark launched a new Sales Protocol Toolkit, created alongside the Property Transaction Reform working group, to help improve the home buying and selling process.
The aim of the Toolkit is to encourage agents and vendors to work together from the start to gather relevant and useful documentation (including a Property Information Questionnaire (PIQ), Memorandum of Understanding (MoU), written Declaration of Offer and Land Registry records) in order to create a speedier and easier process, consequently reducing the fall through rate of property sales.
The Toolkit has been distributed to all NAEA Propertymark members today and will require agents to train each other on best practice to ensure they’re investing time in implementing the processes and supporting vendors.
Lauren Scott, president, NAEA Propertymark said: “This is a long overdue change to the home buying and selling process. The new Sales Protocol will provide greater certainty and confidence to buyers and sellers, and ultimately provide them with a better consumer experience.”
Matt Prior, MHCLG’s Home Buying and Selling Policy lead focused his session on the three R’s: regulation, reservation agreements and referral fees. He stressed the importance of transparency on referral fees and explained how reservation agreements will help to democratise the house buying and selling process. Matt also spoke about the Regulation of Property Agents and that it’s still firmly on the agenda, but it won’t happen immediately as it’s important they get it right.
James Munro from National Trading Standards stated how important it is for agents to disclose Material Information – existing and future issues – to buyers at the earliest opportunity to help them make an informed transactional decision. This includes being transparent on referral fees and sharing information on them at the earliest opportunity – otherwise they face being penalised.
Additionally, Teresa Heath-Wareing, a social media and marketing strategist, spoke about using social media to engage customers through three pillars – educate, entertain and convert.
Separately, Paul Tennant from The Law Society spoke about how he supports the future regulation of property agents and expects to see improvements to the industry as a result, and Linda Moir, an expert in HR and customer service, shared top tips on how agents can deliver amazing customer service.
Lauren Scott concludes: “As we look ahead to the next year, regulation is coming. This year’s Conference was jam packed and delegates have benefited from hearing about regulation and the future changes facing the industry and what this could mean for them in practice.”