Do You Really Need a Receptionist in Your Real Estate Business?

Right, this may be a topical subject. If we look back in time and we’re going to start a Real Estate Business, there are positions that would be normal and what you would call essential.  One of those is the receptionist. As going back 20 years ago, people would shop for their next home, whether that be a rental or a property to buy, very differently. The first point of call was to walk into a real estate agency and talk to the friendly receptionist.  However, times have changed, but why does this position still exist?

The buyers’ or tenants’ actions have changed and also the way that they search property. All tenants and buyers will go online and do their research and typically if they like a property, they would book an inspection online. So basically, the foot traffic into an office has dramatically decreased, but we still have this position for $50k a year, sitting at the front desk. Do we really need it? My thoughts are no, and here is why.

real estate receptionist

Human to human contact will never disappear, as people like to talk to people. They want to confirm minor details and so on. So, managing the phones is essential, however, this can easily be distributed throughout the business using VOIP.  VOIP can allow you to take calls anywhere, anytime, not just at the front desk. You can also use a CloudPBX system to make sure the calls get routed to the correct person. This is not that easy to set up and takes time. However, to remove a redundant position and throw $50k back on the bottom line makes sense.

I took this to extremes.   As I usually do,  I  get fixated on it and get it done. That is exactly what I did. I set up extensions for all of my agents, property managers, and my real estate VA’s so that the phone would never get missed and the customer can get to the right person that they want, at one press of their dial pad. It made it easier and saved money. It has got to be a no brainer.

I mentioned there that our VA’s answered the phones. They were actually the first round unless it was a new seller or management. This allowed us to answer only the calls that made us money and deflect the crap that took up too much of our producing staff’s time. This is not to be taken lightly, as you really need to be committed to training VA’s to take the calls in a professional way and they must be knowledgeable about the product. It took 3 months, but we got it to work and it had some very positive feedback.

real estate receptionist

I must say though. the public has very little patience for incompetence. This reduces if you have a Filipino on the phone. So, what I am trying to say here is your execution must be 100% or you will get burnt.  I am not saying here this is the way to do it. This worked for me, but every business is different.  You must consider your audience. We were in an area where you would have accents of all types ring in, so it was no big issue.

If you would like to chat about this more, I am always open to a chat and happy to spend some time and advise you on the easiest way to set it up. Thanks so much for your time. If you have got some value out of this article, show us by sharing it. Signing out, stay safe.


Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

11 + 1 =

    Fight Fomo! Subscribe Now!

    We are addicted to all things Real Estate! In our newsletter you will receive FREE tips on how to generate more leads, cut costs and automate your business.

    Guest Experts

    CIPS, TRC, Founder and Managing Director of property management business solutions company ireviloution is an international real estate identity who has coached, mentored and trained over a thousand of property management teams and business to success and thousands of individual property management business owners and property managers worldwide.

    Jo-Anne Oliveri

    A co-founder of LockedOn – a powerful, easy-to-use real estate CRM platform that makes listing and selling simple. With over 15 years in software development experience in the real estate industry, Iain has helped create software solutions that have enabled thousands of agents create lasting relationships with their customers.

    Iain French

    He is the Founder of the hugely successful Offer Management Platform, Market Buy, and a career real estate agent spanning 22 years. He has worked in all facets of real estate and has won many awards over the years for Innovation, Sales volume, and office performance. Dave is dedicated to improving the real estate industry and providing agents with the tools they need to survive and thrive in an ever-evolving business environment.

    Dave Stewart

    She is the founder of Rent Roll Starter and specialises in helping independent real estate agents to start and build their own Rent Rolls, using affordable (and sometimes free) marketing and growth strategies.

    Ellen Bathgate

    He is the Co-Founder and CEO of the Melbourne-based proptech start-up Rental Heroes. He is passionate about applying innovative digital solutions to help people connect better. Like many Australians, Ben and his co-founder Dom, have been both tenants and landlords. They founded Rental Heroes because they saw an opportunity to speed up issue resolution and automatically handle common tenant requests 24/7 (everything from a broken dishwasher a to pet requests!). Rental Heroes have launched their AI-chatbot “Alex” - who helps property managers by liaising directly with tenants to handle everyday requests and issues.

    Ben Burton

    With more than 15 years experience as a professional real estate photographer, Brad has a deep understanding of what it takes to showcase a home in its best light. After photographing homes all day and editing them all night, Brad decided to create, which has become the ultimate photo editing portal for everyone from professional photographers, real estate agents, to property managers.

    Brad Filliponi

    With extensive digital experience spanning over 30 years, He is a full-service mobile marketing business specialist and chatbot ninja. Mike helps empower small business owners and real estate agents to achieve marketing success on Facebook by generating leads through conversation.

    Mike has built the marketing platform and designed the Facebook strategy using old school systems so that Real Estate Agency owners can build the most effective marketing lists as well as own the data from advertising and marketing. Following Mike’s vendor paid 12-point strategy over 12 weeks will build a list of over 1,000 prospects segmented into Buyers and Sellers that teaches Facebook who should see your ads in the future.

    Mike Hillsdon

    Sarah has emerged as a highly sought after speaker and panelist on the intersection of artificial intelligence and human systems in real estate. Sarah is passionate about helping agents and organisations to understand this new technology, simply, so they can make confident and informed decisions about how to adapt to a future of work where human and digital resources collaborate.

    Sarah Bell

    Joel is the founder of Property TV and has worked with some of the most innovative companies in Australia, USA and Europe. He is the former CEO of Californian PropTech entity Transmit Data and former CIO for a Silicon Valley technology incubator, Joel has been at the forefront of property marketing and technology for the past 15 years. Joel is also the former CIO of the Australian Property Institute and former Head of Technology for real estate franchise group, Raine & Horne.

    Joel Leslie

    He is a mental skills & mindset coach, and founder of  Jet Xavier Consulting Agency. Jet Xavier has conducted over 4000 elite human performance coaching and training sessions with various real estate agents and major agencies across Australia and overseasHe is a pioneer in the Real Estate industry as his training and coaching techniques bring the latest neuroscience, positive psychology, and elite human performance models to agents and principals helping them to create success at every level.


    Jet Xavier

    He is the founder & CEO of Craig has spent the last 25 years at the forefront of technology, marketing, and business building in Australia and around the world. He has built and sold 2 technology companies to NYSE listed US companies.
    Having worked with Google, Amazon, Telstra as a technology provider to some of the largest Industry brands including REA, Corelogic, LJ Hooker, REIQ, and many others in the Real Estate industry.
    What separates him from most is a rare mix of technology innovation that can be applied to business growth and marketing strategies.


    Craig Deveson

    He is a dynamic and seasoned leader and expert in the world of both technology and property. For over 20 years, Josh has been using his expertise in strategy, product, technology, and marketing to make significant notable transformations in Fintech, PropTech, and the interplay of technology and humans. Josh now leads PropTech start-up company Little Hinges, a world leader in digitising space.


    Josh Callaghan

    He enjoys using construction principles to help businesses grow. He studied Civil Engineering and worked in construction for over a decade. Jarren founded Harvey PM Services to help business owners discover their foundations and turn their blueprints into reality. He is currently working with partners in Australia to shake up the property management world.


    Jarren Harvey

    He is the Chief Digital Strategist at Market Buy – Online Offer Management, he’s a Facebook Certified Professional and has spent the last 30 years working in tech, the last 10 specifically in prop tech. While John spends most of his time building out Market Buy’s digital strategy, he’s also responsible for Check My House Price and has generated over $1.6billion worth of commission leads for agents throughout Australia and New Zealand.


    John Hellaby

    Still want to know more about our services?