With so many individuals and businesses being affected directly or indirectly by the COVID-19, letting agents, like any other business, are forced to adapt to ever changing situations and keep their heads high above stormy waters at the same time.
Utilising video technology
Edinburgh based residential property investment and lettings specialist, Cullen Property, are doing just that by introducing virtual viewings for their student properties. This adaptive and sensible approach arising from the new social distancing requirements during the Coronavirus outbreak, enables students to take a tour of their future home for the next academic year without compromising current tenants.
Steve Coyle, Managing Director of Cullen Property, said: “Every aspect of our daily lives has been affected by the adjustments required to adapt to this new Coronavirus and it’s important that we all play our part. Last week we quickly moved our business to a work-from-home model to protect our team members but ensure continuity of service to our clients. This week we are launching a new system to help meet our client’s rental demands as we are still handling many property viewing requests despite the current climate. This is where the concept of virtual viewings comes from.”
Fast adapting to new reality
Whilst virtual viewings have been used in the lettings and sales industry for some time now, they have rarely been the only way of showcasing properties to prospective tenants.
Scott Binnie, Cullen’s Marketing Manager, who is behind the idea of introducing virtual viewings to their daily practice, said: “Our virtual viewings take things a step further by trying to give the prospective tenants the feeling of actually being in the flat. They can be conducted by one of Cullen Property’s staff or by the current tenants themselves, if they prefer.
“This way, we can minimise contact between people who are not already living in close proximity. If tenants choose to conduct the virtual viewing themselves, our staff will work with them – by email or over the phone – to ensure we showcase the property favourably.”
Prospective tenants who book a virtual viewing will receive a WeTransfer link allowing them to view the property at a convenient time for them and as many times as they like. They will also be able to share the link with others, including potential flatmates.
The lettings process that follows will remain similar to how it’s previously been whilst avoiding unnecessary meetings where possible.