LEW GEFFEN SOTHEBY’S INTERNATIONAL REALTY CONSTANTIA
What are your top three secrets to success?
Persistence is the first. The majority of people fall at the first hurdle, so if you have staying power, you will often find yourself a winner. The second is to always treat buyers and sellers as you would wish to be treated, to stay calm and reasonable and avoid conflict; and the third is to network all the time since every friend, colleague, acquaintance and relative holds a potential opportunity.
What is the one thing you wish someone had taught you or told you when you first started out in property and why?
Not to force it. That desperation that you feel when trying to make sales happen is all too obvious to your buyers and sellers. It makes you seem unprofessional and them feel nervous. Take a deep breath and a step back. If your sales are going to happen, they will.
What is the most vital business tool that estate agents should have at their disposal in today’s market and why?
A good phone. I use an iPhone 5 and it enables me to stay in constant contact across multiple forms of communication. Not only that, it streamlines everything so that I can manage my time and communications more effectively and efficiently. Sometimes a simple unanswered call can lead a potential buyer to call somebody else.
Do you remember the first property you sold? Please tell us about it.
It was a filthy, barely habitable wreck of a place, but it was beautiful to somebody and they just happened to stroll in, 200 viewings and four months after I had first listed it!
What advice would you give to new kids on the block about making a success of a career in property?
Not to expect a smooth ride. They have to live, sleep and breathe property. Every aspect of your life becomes connected to selling property, from the people you meet at school to the places you travel to, it all comes together. Also you have to really listen to your buyers and sellers. Without them it doesn’t matter how much you know.