1. Client Benefit
A System which is based on client benefits is the only type of system which ensures long-term success and pride in one’s profession. Members will at all times place the interests of clients above their own.
2. Duty to Homesellers
Homesellers employ an agent to find a buyer and obtain the highest selling price for their property. Members must never compromise the selling price of a home by using any system or method or saying anything which may damage the value of the client’s home. Most homesellers are entrusting their greatest asset to the agent. This places a grave responsibility upon the Member who shall, at all times, be worthy of this trust.
3. Duty to Homebuyers
A Member must be fair and honest with all homebuyers. A Member must focus on the needs of homebuyers and find them a home within their budget. The most important point to sellers is the selling price, while the most important point to buyers is finding the home they like, provided they can comfortably afford it.
It is a Member’s responsibility to ensure that the skill levels of all staff are of a high professional standard which enables the agency to provide the best service to all clients and customers. Education is to be an on-going process with the goal of continuous improvement. A Member will ensure that staff have high knowledge in the subjects of ethics and communication skills.
Members will make sure that every person who contacts the agency will receive a wonderful welcome. The office receptionist will make everyone feel special and important – because they are. There will be bright, fresh flowers at reception, together with a bowl of crisp apples. The office will be well-lit and clean, conveying an atmosphere of genuine warmth and professionalism. Visitors will be offered tea or coffee or soft-drinks which will be presented in fine china or quality glasses. Rest-rooms will be immaculate with clean fresh hand-towels, with toiletries comparable to a five-star hotel.
6. Personal Presentation
A Member must ensure all staff take pride in their personal grooming and appearance as this affects the judgement clients and customers make of the entire agency. The dress code shall be conservative and professional. All vehicles will be conservative with four doors and be kept immaculate at all times. Flashy cars are not recommended.
Members will make consumers aware that their agency is an APPROVED agency. The APPROVED logo should be displayed as close to the entrance as possible. Products and materials available under APPROVED should be visible and may form part of the office window display. However, the office must always trade under its own name. APPROVED is an accreditation denoting that the agency is committed to consumer protection, ethics and client service. It is not a trading name. For more details, see the APPROVED Members Agreement.
All incoming enquiries should be handled speedily, politely and efficiently.
9. Seller Presentations
Prior to a listing presentation, members will ensure that sales staff explain the APPROVED Presentation to homesellers.
10. Client Feedback
Members will ensure that all clients receive regular feedback on the progress of their sale.
11. Heart Buyers Search
A Member will ensure that a search is conducted for a ‘Heart-Buyer’ for every home listed with the agency. Such search should commence within 48 hours of listing the home and will include a minimum of 500 residents being contacted around the listed home. Heart-buyer cards will be used for this purpose in addition to the personal contact of the agency’s Sales Creator or ‘rookie’ in the ‘trial’ stage of a sales career.
12. Sales Assistant
It is recommended that one Assistant be employed for every two senior salespeople. The Sales Assistants are to offer assistance to the homeseller for any minor maintenance on their home or anything special that can be done for the client. At the time of moving, the Sales Assistant will offer to help sellers and buyers move by packing or lifting boxes or do anything to ease the stress of the move.
13. Special Impressions
A Member will do everything possible to make the experience of dealing with the agency special and unforgettable. The aim is to win consumers for life and this requires a Member to offer extraordinary service. Clients and customers should all be surprised and delighted at the care and attention shown to them.
14. Senior Citizen
Members must take extra care when dealing with elderly people who should be treated with the utmost respect and consideration and offered ‘special’ benefits. For those with limited financial resources, consideration should be given to paying the cost of their removal. Anything extra that can be done to help senior citizens is what a Member must consider doing.
15. Survival Kits
Members will ensure that a quality and well-stocked ‘Survival-Basket’ is given to all sellers and buyers. Such kit will be delivered to the homesellers on the day before they are due to move and to the homebuyers on the day they move in.
16. Lifetime Warranty
All homebuyers are to receive the APPROVED Lifetime Warranty which is to be delivered personally by a senior member of the agency after the buyers have been in the home for at least one month but no longer than three months.
17. Service Hours
Members should open their offices from 9am until 7pm seven days per week. On week-ends there should be ample sales staff available to attend to the needs of buyers and sellers. The office should be available 24 hours by paging service. The office should be closed on Christmas Day, Good Friday, Easter Sunday, Australia Day and Anzac Day. It is also recommended that the office be closed on Boxing Day and New Year’s Day.
18. Control Logs
Members must have a central Enquiry Log to record all incoming seller and buyer enquiry. The agency will also have a Changes Log to note any changes to listings or any special requests of clients.
19. Client Care Bonuses
Members should ensure that sales staff receive regular bonuses for client-care as per the guidelines in the APPROVED System.
20. Client Feedback
Members should receive a feedback report on every sale made by the agency. It will be the responsibility of the salesperson to ensure that buyers and sellers complete the brief feedback card. Completion of this report is mandatory for any sale to carry a credit toward bonuses. Salespeople should receive in excess of 90 percent positive feedback from clients and customers to remain employed at the agency. APPROVED requires a Member’s agency to have a minimum client enthusiasm rating of 98 percent.
21. Quality Monitoring
Members accept and agree that APPROVED may monitor the quality of service provided by the agency. Members also agree that APPROVED will be entitled to make recommendations to maintain and increase levels of client care from time to time.
22. Client Complaints
Members should notify APPROVED of any complaint made by a homeseller or buyer, no matter how trivial. In the event of a dispute which is not resolved to the complete satisfaction of the client or customer, a Member agrees that APPROVED will arbitrate in the dispute and the decision made will be accepted by the Member. The welfare of honest consumers and the integrity and good name of APPROVED will always take precedence over the interests of any Member. In the rare event of mischievous or unethical complaints from buyers and sellers, the Member will still agree to the decision made by APPROVED.
This Code of Client Care is to be followed in addition to the Code of Ethics both of which may vary from time to time. The Member agrees to accept any variances and to strictly follow both codes for the benefit and well-being of honest consumers and the community as a whole. APPROVED is committed to ethics and client care. Members are also expected to be committed.