Every great relationship is built on trust.
If you want to be a top real estate agent, one that’s ahead of the pack, you need to treat your vendors with the respect and dedication they deserve. They need to trust you and you them, in order to build a great relationship where the end goal is a strong sale. As the property market gears up for its end of year crescendo it’s critically important to focus on managing your owners’ expectations and generating the referrals that come from satisfied clients.
Here are some tips on great vendor management.
List it well, then it sells
The listing presentation is where you set your vendor’s expectations on everything from the sale method to price and marketing. Too often agents rush the property on to the market before it is ready. Buyers purchase with their heart and their gut as much as their head so you need to make sure your vendor’s property stands out. The presentation is critical as people buy the perceived lifestyle on offer rather than the property itself. Consumers will pay more for a property where all the hard work has been done for them and they can just move in and relax. In terms of your pricing strategy, it pays to be accurate. Consider asking some buyers from your hit list to view the property before it goes on the market. These are buyers that have missed out on other homes and are able to offer the best feedback regarding price.
Buyers will tell you there’s nothing worse than an agent who never calls them or answers their phone. Remember, you’re most likely selling a vendor’s most important financial asset so you need to treat it as such. Add your vendors to your favourites list on your phone and start calling. Make it a habit to call your vendors every business day. Let them know where negotiations are up to with potential buyers, discuss new properties that have hit the market in their suburb and fill them in on the latest sales. Keeping your clients informed every step of the way lets them know you really are working for them.
Become a trusted advisor
At the beginning of the campaign hold, a ‘set up to sell’ meeting. This is where you explain to your vendor what they should expect throughout the entire selling process. Discuss the level of interest in their home you expect to receive, including the number of enquiries. Decide how inspections, both open home and private viewings, will work as well as details on second appointments, contracts and offers. It’s also the perfect time to finalise the marketing plan. For the duration of the campaign hold a weekly, 15-minute meeting at your office to run through the key information about their property that week and give your recommendations for moving forward. You should also call an extra meeting when anything significant occurs, such as when an offer is received. They key is to become a trusted advisor so you can keep the sale moving forward and work towards the very best result.
Don’t get shaky in negotiations
Too many agents don’t know what to do in the negotiation process, particularly when things get tricky. Make sure you have your vendor’s instructions clear and your plans in place before the property goes to market. That way you’ll know exactly what to do, even in tough conditions such as multiple offers or one-buyer situations. When negotiating an important question to ask is not how long the property has been on the market but how long the buyer has been searching for a home. A buyer who has missed out on other properties is more emotional and emotional buyers tend to lead with their heart, not their head. It can pay well to target emotional buyers. Keep a list of buyers that have shown signs, such as attending more than one open home or bidding at auction, they are ready to purchase. When an offer comes in work to make it as unconditional as possible. That way you’re set up for a smooth sales process.
Beware of becoming the second vendor
The property market changes rapidly and top agents know how to change with it. While vendors may have a fixed price in their head, agents need to be more fluid. Beware of becoming a second vendor and defending the original price sought for a property without listening to the reasoned market commentary. Learn to read the market and help your client understand what’s happening so that you can achieve the best sale price possible.