What next for Letting Agents in a post tenant fee ban world?

The industry is almost unrecognised from where we were just 4 years ago, each of us working in our own businesses, non existent industry sharing of strategies, and as a result, very little change for two decades resulting in diminishing profits from excruciating workloads and an industry under attack, but now, I see a different world and a rights future, including a community working together, so what’s next, and how did we get here?

In 2017 I was ARLA vice president, traveling the country speaking to agents in England and what I saw was a look of Terror in their faces worried about the future of their businesses, their jobs and also their customers as landlords were under attack too, in short total confusion.

We needed to come together as an industry, to talk to each other and to compare what was working and what wasn’t, as time to make mistakes was NOT on our side…

But there was nowhere… ARLA was fighting the cause with the government, but was not in a position to discuss and share ways to grow or work through these challenges within our businesses, we needed a voice, a platform somewhere safe.

In January 2017 I launched the Agent Rainmaker Facebook group, and we started talking, agents started to share their ideas, their pains, their challenges and much more, so that we could all benefit…

I took it one step further and started running one day workgroups, so that we could collectively in groups of around 30 agents work through the “at the time” solutions, and we started to create a plan for beating the ban.

We needed to go deeper, so I launched a 4 day boot camp with all the knowledge and strategies we had collected to that point, but again we needed more, we needed even MORE.

I started to research, new ways we could grow, by looking at other industries, other countries, and my research has taken me to the USA many times, Denmark and even Australia to find out how “they” do things over there.

What was missing hen was a testing platform for these strategies.

I had my own letting agencies, but I needed real live working “in the business” letting agents to test these strategies In different locations, sizes of businesses and markets, so I created an Inner Circle strategy board, of agents that are on a mission, action takers, people I knew would thorough test and implement these ideas to see if they work and feedback.

Hey presto, we had the full picture (well almost)

With this set up we created over 60 income increasing strategies and over two years have transformed literally hundreds of letting agents businesses and lives.

Most have added around £100,000 in revenue to their business, some £300k or more and 3 have now topped the £1,000,000 mark which is phenomenal.

I never expected that just by bringing agents together, and sharing strategies we could achieve so much, and together completely change an industry.

Then last year we launched Agent Rainmaker LIVE, I wanted an antidote to the depressive language we hear and see everywhere in this market.

Things like, there isn’t enough landlords, landlord won’t pay for fully managed, we have to do too much to make any money, we can’t charge enough to make ends meet, marketing isn’t working… The list goes on.

I set about disproving these myths, and Agent Rainmaker Live last year was to be a celebration of the successes, agents were having by making small changes.

And what a celebration it was…

We coached no less than 8 successful letting agents, that had made major changes to heir business, to stand on stage and speak… And boy did I they.

Every agent in the audience could relate to their stories, of pain, hard work and he feeling of being trapped.

But then also all felt so inspired, as to what you CAN achieve too, as they shared how they had now, “doubled their turnover”, got their lives back, made over £500k in additional revenue, saved their businesses or created one to be proud of for the next generation and spent most of the year on holiday!

Inspired and motivated over 200 agents left the event, ready to take on the world and explode their businesses…

So where are we now.

As I write this the tenant fee ban is in in England and coming soon in Wales, we have 3000 members in our Agent Rainmaker Group, to out that in perspective, that is 1/3 of the ARLA membership.

We are sharing together, we are improving and growing, we have a community at wants each other to succeed, we are no longer alone.

Now our focus, is more business growth, and it should be…

We have survived the tenant fee ban, and many agents are reporting some of the BEST months they have ever had, even without those tenant fees, as a community, we at starting to act, look and sound like business people.

We are business owners first, letting agents second, which is how it should be.

Is year I have been creating many brand NEW growth strategies, that will take all of our businesses to the next level.

Automatic Lead Generation

I have created 4 fully automated lead generating funnels, that just drive leads into your inbox for your listers to calls and convert.

Hands Off Social media plan

We are now coaching a completely hands free social media system, that requires just one day per quarter of your time, with everything else system isles, complete with outsourced team roles, instructions and objectives mapped out.

Staff Accountability System

We have formulated and built a complete staff management online platform, with everything from job adverts, interview questions, the RSS system to mean recruiting now takes a fraction of the time, team management tools, feedback 1-2-1 reviews, manager 360’s the lot in fact EVERYTHING to ensure your team is fully accountable, his is currently being tested by my inner circle board members.

CEO toolkit

Being the boss is hard, but with the right tools it can be a lot easier, we have devised the CEO dashboard, toolkit and skill set checklist. This means you can be sure you have all that you need to run your business remotely, and still have your finger on the pulse… But remember the skills that got you her, won’t get you here, so you will so need to regularly improve YOUR skills too, which is why I have created my CEO skills checker and the CEO review process.

Productisation

People will pay more for products than they will for services, all this year my strategy board have been working on creating more and more products from what they do, and testing price point, this is very exciting and reduces the amount of charging points on your terms too.

Own your supply chain

Owning multiple businesses has many benefits, and Zooplankton, do this very well, but here we have been implementing the multiple business strategy, to save costs, tax and give agents more control, some very exciting developments here.

Outsourcing

Nowadays, there are much more effective and cost effective ways to get a job done, and we are working with many agents that are outsourcing tasks overseas, we use outside labour a lot and this works exceptionally well, and is is an emerging strategy for agents uk wide (the big corporations have been doing this for years).

Remote working

Technology has moved on so much, we really can work from anywhere, and if you remember when you set up your business, the eras on you did this was for freedom, but have you got it? Well now you can, technology, outsourcing, dashboards and tool kits, online meeting software, virtual meeting rooms, task tracking software and automated lead generation, really all together, sets you free… An exciting time ahead.

Lead conversion and prospecting

We have had some VERY exciting developments in the prospecting space, with a whole raft of new developments, that we have taken from USA, the estate agency world, and even the car sales industry! The results at phenomenal, 24 valuations booked in 15 minutes at our last prospecting day… Not bad at all.

Over all we now currently have over 80 income generation strategies, with over 25 that have been added in just the last 6 months, and the results are pretty scary already.

I don’t know about you, but I’m excited, these are exciting times, and we can achieve so much together, so let’s keep working it and changing and evolving so that we can all be the success we set out to be in the beginning.

But we have lots to do, the industry is still changing, I am so happy we have been part of that change, but there is still so much left to do… Until we are all running £1,000,000 businesses with a 40% profit margin I’m still looking for more.

Sally Lawson