It is important to recognise that the level of preparation
which you undertake prior to valuations will have a direct bearing on your
success on the day.
I remember somebody saying to me some time ago when I was a
full time valuer that I treated every valuation appointment as if it was a
military operation. I took this as a compliment – although I am not certain it
was meant as one! In today’s highly competitive market, carrying out valuations
is a battle and you must be equipped for that battle. Nobody would go into the
trenches to fight in a war and suddenly think to themselves “Damn I forgot my
There are a number of items you need on your person, in your
briefcase or maybe in your glove compartment or boot. An exceptional plumber
will go to every job with everything they could possibly ever need – it is no
different if you want to be an exceptional valuer.
Obviously you will need pens, business cards, promotional
material, agency agreements, comparable evidence, your IPad maybe if you use
one and so on. But there are some less obvious things to consider taking…
SHOESHINE – clean shoes are always important – an early
morning appointment in the rain could leave your shoes looking less than
COMPASS – you may have one on your phone but either way you
will need to check the aspect of the garden
BOARD TOP AND BULLDOG CLIPS – if you list a property that is
on with another agent, you can simply pop this over the top of their board for
UMBRELLA – nothing worse than turning up like a drowned rat
at your next appointment because you had to look round an acre of gardens at
your previous one in the rain
LINT ROLLER AND BABY WIPES – if you are covered in dog hair
or smelling of one because of the overfriendly pooch at your first valuation of
the day, these will help keep your personal hygiene and appearance up to
Having said all that, the most important thing to take with
you on every appointment is a positive mental attitude – the best valuers treat
every appointment as if it is an instruction and therefore prepare themselves
mentally for that, as well as preparing themselves physically with everything
they need to close the instruction there and then – i.e. measure, camera and so
Other less successful valuers go to valuations and then are
sometimes surprised that they turn out to be potential instructions. Sadly at
this point those valuers are unable to close the business because they do not
have the right equipment with them.
Ensuring you are fully prepared for your appointments is one
element of preparation, but there are several more to bear in mind. Best
practice principles in preparation include:
A PRE-APPOINTMENT EMAIL
This can be sent immediately after the valuation has been
booked to confirm all the key information to the clients – time and date, who
is coming out, the likely duration of the appointment and so on. You may choose
to put a link in there to your website inviting the client to visit it to find
out more about your company.
You could include a sentence about how moving home can be a
stressful experience and that if the client has any particular concerns they
could drop you an email so we can ensure we deal with those on the day.
You might also drop a letter and pre-appointment marketing
information through the door ahead of the appointment, although an email is
cheaper and quicker.
A PRE-APPOINTMENT PHONE CALL
Agents that have embraced this idea have reported back a
range of advantages to a call to the client beforehand.
Firstly, it gives a chance to build some early rapport with
the client and break down any barriers.
Secondly, the valuer can pick up extra information about the
client or property prior to the appointment.
Thirdly, it makes you different from the agents that don’t
Valuers who try it do stick with it as they benefit from
doing so. Some call on the morning of the appointment, some the evening before.
Whatever suits you – we strongly recommend you do it!
FOCUS ON EARLY SOLUTIONS TO THE PROBLEM
A high proportion of people move house to solve a problem –
for example, to move closer to work, to get the children into a better school
or because of financial or relationship problems.
If we identify any of these when the appointment was booked,
we can illustrate our awareness and helpfulness by trying to help come up with
solutions to those issues early on in the process.
For example, if they are moving into rented due to financial
challenges, we could discuss the whys and wherefores of renting a property and
perhaps email or hand deliver a guide on how to go about doing so. If
Perfect preparation creates the right foundation for the
appointment. It is then up to the valuer to ensure he or she reinforces the
client’s opinion that your firm is the right choice by conducting themselves at
the appointment in an exceptional manner.