Construction & Property
Published: July 28, 2022 | Updated: July 30, 2022
Communication is key says Lloyd after selling £5m worth of property in first nine months
When it comes to stress, moving home is right up there along with death, divorce and losing your job.
But estate agent Lloyd Young is determined to make the process as stress-free as possible – and he believes communication is the key.
The Founder of Lloyd Young Homes said: “As long as I’m not getting into trouble with my girlfriend, I will answer the phone in the cinema at nine o’clock at night.
“We have a WhatsApp group that all buyers and all owners have access to.
“It means that at 11pm when you’re sitting there thinking I didn’t post that letter, or I wonder what’s going on, you can get a response saying: ‘It’s all under control. I’ll ring you at 9am tomorrow’.
“Sometimes those 12 hours overnight can mean the deal falls through or you sit there worrying about it.
“We do professional photography, video tours of the homes, 3D and drone shots and all the other things that clients expect – but I believe the most important thing of all is communication.”
Lloyd, 29, officially launched his estate agency, primarily serving Christchurch, Southbourne and parts of Bournemouth, last November.
To date it’s sold more than £5m worth of property.
He got the taste for selling and leasing property while a student at Loughborough University.
Lloyd said: “I started off as the admin boy in a local residential lettings company.
“It brought in some money but it was more a case of gaining experience.
“When I returned home I worked at an independent local estate agency which has been there for many years.
“It was run by a lovely couple who were very ‘old school’.
“I saw the polarity between what they were doing, and the reason why they’d been there for many years, and the more commercial agents who were all about volume.”
After three years with the agency, Lloyd became the Director of a student letting franchise in Bournemouth before joining another local estate agent and launching its new Christchurch branch.
But, said Lloyd: “I’d reached 28 and thought: ‘I’ve got to do it for myself’.
“I’m at the age I can talk with authority – and I’ve been in it long enough that people can trust me.
“I also felt I’ve had that ‘old school’ background but can apply some ‘new school’ techniques.
“We’re nine months in now.
“It takes time to build rapport and trust with people – and there are a lot of names that have been in town 100 years or more – but we’ve sold a lot already.
“Some are flats, albeit quite expensive, and some are £1m homes.
“I recognise it’s a super stressful process, even in the nicest of sales.
“We have a more personal approach which isn’t volume-based and puts quality over quantity.
“That’s always been my maxim.”
Lloyd Young Homes, which has now branched out into residential lettings and management, is partnered with AM Mortgages, owned by Anna Marrufo, pictured left.
Lloyd said: “It works very well.
“While the mortgage side of our business is completely independent, it means we can qualify people and that less deals fall through.”
Agency fees are bespoke to each client but are normally between 1-1.25%.
“The figure is comparable with the good agents,” said Lloyd.
“You can get others cheaper but at some point you can’t do the same service, especially when you take into account time, effort, photography, video and the like.
“I don’t want to compromise on anything.
“I don’t think people should look at it as a cost, it’s an investment, even in a good market where something should fly off the shelf
“It’s not just about finding a buyer, that’s only 40 per cent of our work.
“60 per cent is staying in contact with everyone, post agreeing the sale, keeping everyone up to date, keeping everyone happy and making sure the person that offers you that money actually pays you that money in the end.
“An unbelievable amount of sales every year will fall through.
“The percentage is higher than it should be, and that’s a little bit down to the way the industry is set up.
“We haven’t had any fall-throughs yet, although I’m sure we will at some point, and no fallings-out.
“We’ve had some tough deals and some renegotiations.
“The market has been strong, and has helped, but nothing has sold under asking price.
“It’s been on, or over, the asking price, sometimes quite considerably.
“But those buyers don’t feel they’re being forced into anything.
“It’s their choice and, therefore, they’ve been super excited to get it through.”
Although the business is less than a year old, Lloyd is planning future growth, including taking on an extra team member to handle admin and calls.
He said: “The plan is to eventually go right across the South Coast.
“But I’m under no illusion that I’m going to take over the world, and I don’t particularly want to be the next Countrywide.
“We’re certainly not going to push the growth until we deliver the exact same service.
“I know it sounds a bit corny but we’re not reinventing the wheel. We’re just polishing it.”
“We don’t have contracts.
“As soon as someone instructs us then, as far as I’m concerned, their home is genuinely my home.
“I want to sell that for the most amount of money, not because my fee will change, but because I’m doing a good job for them.
“I really enjoy what I do.
“We all know it’s one of the most stressful things people go through – death, divorce and moving home.
“It sounds weird saying it but I just like being part of that process and watching people actually enjoy it.
“I get to interact with loads of different people in all walks of life and I believe we’re good at it.
“Bumping into people in the street and knowing their whole family is doing a lot better and they just love where they live, is very satisfying rather than just making money.