Estate agents facilitate the selling or leasing of properties such as homes or offices.
They act as the “middleman” between buyers and sellers, providing property valuations, marketing of properties, and overseeing the transaction process.
The overall purpose their role is to ensure a good deal for both parties and oversee a smooth transaction process.
Estate agents also have a responsibility to generate consistent fees for their employer, which are charged to clients when a property is let or sold.
This guide will tell you everything you need to know about the role of estate agent.
- Estate agent job description
- How much do estate agents earn?
- What does an estate agent do?
- Requirements, skills and qualifications
- Who employs estate agents?
- Which junior jobs progress to estate agent roles?
Estate agent job description
Estate Agent |Tulip Estate Agency
About Tulip Estate Agency
Tulip Estate Agency is one of Sheffield’s largest, independent estate agents, established for over 40 years. Our name is synonymous with residential property sales across the city, and we are dedicated to serving our clients.
About the role
We are looking for a confident, established estate agent to manage our south-east residential sales area and deliver consistent fees for the company. You will be the first point-of-call for our property sales customers; both buyers and sellers; and will be responsible for driving residential property sales across the city.
- Registering new buyers and gathering their property requirements
- Sourcing and matching potential buyers with suitable and available properties
- Onboarding new vendors including completing property valuations and securing sales instructions
- Marketing properties via property sales websites and networking with active buyers
- Completing property viewings, answering queries regarding the property and the surrounding area
- Negotiating sale prices, liaising with buyers and vendors to close sales
- Overseeing sales processes and driving completions, facilitating handovers
- Keeping a close eye on the local property market, while recognising and acting upon all potential opportunities
Location & commitments
- Permanent, full time position with hours over Monday – Saturday (exact hours negotiable), with regular evening work when required
- Based in our city centre office which benefits from free parking and is within walking distance of the train station
- Previous residential property sales experience, preferably as an established estate agent
- Proven experience negotiating high value property sales worth over £750,000 is preferred
- Proven track record of generating new property sales business
- Locally based with extensive knowledge of the local area and property market, specifically the S1, S2 and S3 postcodes
- Must hold a full, UK driving licence and own car
Contact us to apply
If you live locally and have a significant number of years working within the local property market, this role could be the perfect match for you! Please contact our HR Manager, Susan, at Susan@TulipEstateAgents.com, to apply for the position.
How much do estate agents earn?
Estate agents earn an average basic salary of £24,200 – however it is sales role where commission is paid based on performance. With this factored in, well-performing estate agents can earn in excess of £60,000 per year.
Estate agent salaries in the UK
- Low: £12,000
- Average: £24,200
- High: £35,000
Estate agent earnings will vary depending on;
- Performance – estate agents earn a commission based on a percentage of the revenue they generate for their employers
- Property types – estate agents may be responsible for marketing commercial properties such as offices, or residential properties such as houses or flats, and they may cover properties above or below a certain monetary value. For example, an estate agent may be responsible for residential flat sales up to £250k per property
- Sales or lettings – estate agents will either facilitate the sale or lettings (rental agreements) of properties and this will affect the commission they earn from fees
- General salary factors – such as level of candidate experience, qualifications, whether the employer is an independent agent or a large company with many branches, and location
For example, an established estate agent successfully meeting their targets to sell residential homes worth over £500k each is likely to meet their OTE (On Target Earnings) and earn a higher basic salary and commission than an estate agent struggling to meet their target selling flats worth under £100k each.
Bear in mind that these are average figures taken from job advert samples, and they do not include extra benefits such as bonuses, overtime and non-financial benefits such as healthcare.
What does an estate agent do?
Looking at the job description, here are the typical tasks and responsibilities that estate agents will be responsible for;
- Gathering client information – Meeting with buyers and sellers to gather information regarding price range, target area, or desired asking price.
- Locating properties – Sourcing potential properties for sale or letting to expand their branch’s portfolio of properties on offer.
- Marketing properties – Placing adverts in national and local property websites and writing attractive descriptions.
- Matching people to properties – Using client and property info to introduce suitable buyers or tenants to properties that match their criteria.
- Arranging and attending property viewings – Accompanying buyers on property viewings, including answering questions about the property and discussing any key features and potential issues.
- Negotiating prices – Negotiating sale prices and rental agreements on behalf of buyers, sellers, landlords and tenants.
- Branch marketing – Working to expand the estate agency client base include sending out mailers, attending networking events, following up on referrals, and keeping in touch with previous clients who may be interested in selling their home, relocating, or buying another property.
- Meeting targets – Making consistent sales or lease agreements to generate client fees for the employer (e.g. a minimum of 3 sales per month or £100k worth of fees per year).
What do estate agents need?
Estate agents need a range of skills, experience, and knowledge to carry out their job effectively.
Exact requirements will depend on whether the estate agent is focusing on sales, lettings, or a specific area of property management, but generally the requirements are:
Junior estate agent roles will usually require the candidate to have had some transferable experience in a customer facing, sales role. Although some large companies will sometimes hire candidates with no prior experience in trainee positions.
Intermediate to senior estate agent roles will usually require candidates to have a successful history of negotiating and closing property sales and/or lettings deals, and if specialising in a particular area of property (such as commercial lettings) a proven history in that area is often required.
Estate agent skills
Estate agents need a variety of skills to be able to successfully secure and finalise property sales and lettings, including:
- Communication: Written and verbal communication with clients and colleagues including preparing documents, explaining difficult or complex information, and liaising with clients, conveyancers, and financial professionals
- Customer service: Understanding what each client is looking for in a property, their price range, and ensuring their needs are met throughout the sales and closing process
- Organisation: Working several buyers and sellers at one time, including keeping track of sales processes and appointments
- Motivation: Estate agents must work hard to meet challenging targets and earn commission
And the more industry specific skills include:
- Sales and marketing: Attracting buyers through referrals and advertising, alongside highlighting the benefits of a property while minimising any potential flaws
- Negotiation: Working with clients and other estate agents to set prices and terms and arrive at various agreement during several elements of the sales process
- Property market knowledge: Maintaining an up to date knowledge of the property market, including current trends, home prices etc, and property law
Estate agent qualifications
There are no essential qualifications required to embark on a career as an estate agent, however there are a number of recognised professional qualifications that can be of benefit to individuals wanting to move into the role or develop their existing skills.
Many estate agents choose to complete qualifications through Propertymark Qualifications, who offer industry recognised qualifications in property related subjects, such as:
- Residential letting and property management
- Sale of residential property
- Commercial property
- Property auctioneering
- Residential inventory management
- Residential tenancy deposit
These courses are designed to teach all aspects of property sales and lettings, and are available from Level 2 (for someone just starting out in their career as an estate agent) through to Level 6 (for someone working in a senior estate agent position and looking to expand their knowledge).
Degree, foundation degree or HND
Although completing a degree is not essential to begin a career as an estate agent, increasing competition for employment means that completing a degree in a relevant subject could be beneficial. Relevant degree subjects include:
- Business studies
- Civil and structural engineering
- Estate management
- Property development/management
- Urban and land studies
What is expected of estate agents?
Typically, an estate agent will be expected to commit the following;
- Full time hours – 35-40 hours per week typically completed between 9am-5:30pm, Monday-Saturday
- Evening and weekend work – most estate agents open during weekends and many also expect some late evening work to meet clients and buyers outside of their normal working hours
- Location – normally based at the employer’s office
- Regular travel – to complete valuations and to show potential buyers/renters around properties
- Full, clean driving license – as travel is a daily part of the role, estate agents are expected to maintain a full, clean driving license
- Target achievement – estate agents will be required to make a minimum amount of sales or lease agreements, to generate consistent revenue for their employer
Estate agent benefits
Estate agents tend to receive basic benefits made up of the following:
- Commission – based on a percentage of sales or lettings fees generated
- Bonus – for exceptional sales performance
- Car allowance or company car – to allow for travel between properties and the office
Who employs estate agents?
Estate agents are typically employed by housing builders or by estate agencies.
Housing builders employ estate agents to market the properties that they are building, for example they may work in the show home of a newly built housing estate to secure purchases of the new properties.
Estate agencies are companies who exist solely to market and sell/lease properties for clients, so they are the biggest employer of estate agents. They will often specialise in a particular type od property such as commercial, corporate, or residential.
Which junior jobs progress to estate agent roles?
Beginning a career as an estate agent is relatively straightforward. Junior positions where no prior experience is required and full training is given are common, however there are two junior positions that lend themselves well to moving into the role of estate agent.
Junior estate agent staff member, responsible for managing administrative tasks including booking property viewings, creating brochures and window cards, answering calls, and dealing with customer enquiries.
Junior sales negotiator
This position lends itself well to that of an estate agent, as the responsibilities include booking valuations, completing property viewings, negotiating low level offers and progressing sales through to completion.
Which senior jobs do estate agents progress to?
The property market offers several progression routes for those wanting to move up the estate agent career ladder, such as:
It is common for estate agents to move into a branch manager positions. The branch manager manages all staff within that branch, carries out senior-level sales or lettings negotiations, and train junior estate agents.
The next step after the role of branch manager is often to move into being a partner or director of an estate agency. The partner is responsible for running the estate agency including strategic planning, people management, brand management and sales performance.
Estate agent job description – conclusion
Working as an estate agent is a varied, fast-paced, client-facing and relationship-focused position, making it ideal for those with a passion for working with people.
The property sector offers great professional and financial opportunities, however professional growth in the industry does go together with delivering results and successfully closing deals.
As there are estate agencies throughout the country job vacancies are common. However, these opportunities tend to fluctuate in line with the housing market and this can be volatile.