Trying to find your dream home? Then go back to basics!

Amy Nicholson, Sales Negotiator at Harrison James & Hardie, on why relying just on the internet to find a property won't necessarily serve you well

“We are desperate to find and we’re signed up to the new instruction updates on Rightmove, PrimeLocation, Zoopla and all the other property platforms we can think of but we still keep missing out!”

I have worked for Harrison James & Hardie since 2003 as a sales negotiator but six years ago I had a career break to bring up my little boy. When he started school I came back thinking it would be the same job. I couldn’t believe things were so different and couldn’t understand why purchasers, once so eager to hear from me, were now so resistant to the thought of engaging with an actual person!

Of course I agree all these platforms are valuable search tools. However, we have so many disappointed buyers calling or emailing us immediately after a property goes online only to find out that it has already gone under offer, or driving by one of our Sold boards and wondering why they haven’t seen their dream house online.

The answer is very simple - that even in this day and age you cannot rely solely on the internet to do all the work for you. There is no substitute for good old-fashioned conversation. Go back to basics and actually make proper contact with the agents in the places you are looking - after all who else knows the local area, properties and marketplace like we do?

Most of our sales come from being proactive, contacting buyers daily, keeping them up to date with what is about to come on the market. Many people assume an estate agent’s job is easy, imagining we just list a property on Rightmove then sit back and wait for the phone to ring. Far from it - we work extremely hard to help our clients and customers achieve their dream home.

We even have a selection of ‘under the radar’ or ‘bottom drawer’ properties, vendors who do not want to go online or come to the open market, without any details to hand out or email, without a board, without the internet, selling as we always have done simply by talking to the perfect buyers.

The best way to contact us is face to face, so we can sit down with you and take time to have a detailed discussion about what you are looking for. Show us you are a motivated buyer and how serious you are about your intent and ability to move. If you are local then keep calling into the office on a regular basis, make us remember you, so that when that perfect property comes up you will be the first person we call. Make us your new best friend!

If you are desperate to find, instead of dismissing a property online as if Rightmove were Tinder, swiping on the strength of an online photo, why not trust us by registering properly and giving us an hour or two of your time to arrange a run of viewings? It’s the only way to really help you. The thing is, you may think you know what you’re looking for but countless times it’s the curve ball that will actually excite you to buy.

We will put forward propositions that don’t always adhere to your wish list but meet all your needs. That’s the difference between a computer and a person when matching the right purchaser to the property - we understand the difference between needs and wants and how a location, a view or even ‘the right vibe’ will make you feel differently about something you would have otherwise dismissed.

If you are a motivated buyer in a great position, if we know your exact requirements and if we believe our new instruction fits the bill, then we will call you even before we have sent out the photographer or uploaded a new instruction to the internet. Just trust us. There’s every chance it might be The One.

Remember too, even if it isn’t right, to give us your detailed feedback. Not only do we need to provide vendors with detailed honest updates, to secure price changes for example, but it also helps to understand and adjust your search criteria to precisely what you need, and your responses will also give us confidence that you are fully committed to the search, worth all our efforts and energy.

If we don’t have the right house on our books, don’t despair - we can find it. We will happily approach potential vendors whose properties we have been out to in the last couple of years but who haven’t yet made a decision to move, to see if we can tempt your dream home onto the market for you!

Amy Nicholson MNAEA can be found at the Moreton in Marsh offices of Harrison James & Hardie, Fine & Country North Cotswolds. To discuss your search requirements / register your details simply telephone 01608 651000 or 01451 822977 or e-mail Amy directly: