How to close more deals with fewer viewings

26 February 2024

Ever wondered how to close more deals without hiring more salespeople? Goodlord’s Sales Consultant, Mouna Patel, gives five tips for letting agents save time and boost revenue.

Have you ever wondered how you can win more landlords without hiring more salespeople? Creating more time in the day will always be a priority for letting agents. With the pressures of hitting monthly sales targets, processing tenancy applications, and finding new landlords and properties, a letting agent’s day will always be full. 

One area that is always time-consuming, that can’t be avoided, is viewings. It takes roughly 45 minutes on average to complete a viewing. This includes tasks such as gaining access, preparing viewing packs, organising the keys, and travelling to the property.

If you complete three viewings each day, that’s more than 11 hours a week when you’re not at your desk replying to inbound leads or prospecting for more landlords.

If your conversion rate is a healthy 35%, then you’re going to sign up around five new tenancies per week, which is all well and good. But this also means that more than nine viewings are unsuccessful and you have effectively wasted seven hours that week that could have been spent on other tasks.

So with all that said, in what ways CAN a letting agent boost their profit margins while still hosting viewings? Here are five tips, from one letting professional to another.

  1. Ask prospective tenants the right questions
  2. Take a requirement-to-requirement approach
  3. Make use of technology
  4. Know what's out there
  5. Adapt your approach

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Ask prospective tenants the right questions

How many times have you completed a viewing where the applicants have said ‘It’s a lovely flat but there’s no garden’ or ‘The bedrooms are of equal size but it doesn’t have the open-plan living area we want’?

To avoid wasting your time chasing applicants, have open communication throughout the process. Keep in mind the below questions to avoid stalling a decision:

  • Ask when the best time to contact them is, and which method is most convenient for them. Phone? Email? Whatsapp?
  • When they can view properties. Lunchtime? Evening?
  • How many properties they’ve seen, and if they have other viewings booked, Have they served notice yet? If so how many weeks ( this used to catch me out when I first started)
  • Tell them that if they view properties with other agents, they are free to call you to get your advice. This will continue to build trust and get you a great review. It also means you can keep on top of the competition and continue to effectively manage your applicant pipeline.

Having a clear understanding of what tenants need before viewings is key to stopping unnecessary viewings. Asking the following questions will help manage your time and viewings more effectively in the future:

  • Budget and move date 
  • Notice served 
  • Basic property details, including number of beds, location, and property style
  • Employment status, with earnings over 2.5x the rent

Take a requirement-to-requirement approach

Finding out what each tenant needs for their prospective property, whether they want a garden, a studio or a large bedroom flat, will always be key to avoiding time wasters. Letting agents need to take on a requirement-to-requirement approach will help to avoid you wasting your time. 

A requirement-to-requirement approach will also help you build a relationship with prospective tenants, increasing their trust in you and your ability to find them a property that will suit their requirements.

To achieve this approach, you need to investigate what prospective tenants need and having open communication will only benefit you in the future. To do this, follow the below steps:

  • Complete a mini-consultation with every applicant
  • Fully understand their requirements and what they will and won’t compromise on
  • Identify available properties

For letting agents, increasing conversion rates and reducing the amount of time out of the office will always be a priority. Most agents think their sales team are already doing it, but there’s power in understanding your tenants. 

Technology is your friend

Using dedicated platforms can benefit organising time and properties all in one place. For prospective tenants with ongoing contracts, that time spent away from your desk doesn’t mean you can’t be productive.

Incorporating technology into your day-to-day working schedule means you can have all your information, deadlines and more in one space freeing your much-needed time.

By using a RentTech platform, you can manage the lettings journey all in one place, giving more time for landlords and even possibly generating more revenue. A RentTech platform can manage categories such as eSignatures, bills, utilities and insurance and compliance.

Find out more about RentTech platforms here.

Know what's out there

After having these proactive conversations with prospective tenants, you need to deliver on your requirements. Delivering all will ultimately minimise the amount of viewings you will need to conduct.

However, we can’t always provide the world. Knowing what are the main requirements, and what are just added benefits for prospective tenants will stop the back-and-forth letting agents are used to.

Putting the extra time before organising viewings to find the properties with those deal-breaking requirements, will prevent time wasted during the letting process. Researching for an hour will stop the days wasted during prospective housing visits. 

Adopting your approach

By incorporating requirement-to-requirement and RentTech approaches, letting agents can start building solid relationships and trust with applicants, as you’ve taken the time to understand their needs.

Having the requirement-to-requirement conversations earlier on in the tenant process, tenants shouldn’t need to ask for property details before committing to viewings, as you already know what they want. Ultimately you can influence their decision if they were caught between one of our properties or one of a competitor down the road.

If you adopt this approach, you can predict 80-90% of the time whether a tenant will make an offer when they view your property. This means you can proactively call your landlords ahead of the viewing to verbally agree on an acceptable offer should one be made during the viewing. You will then be in a position to take a holding deposit and provide an offer letter at the property. 

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