SIGNUP TO RECEIVE LISTING UPDATES
Agents must deliver on what they promised they would at the initial listing presentation. Their credibility is at stake and must do what they say they will do.
Take the time to make honest recommendations to you about getting your home ready to show. Provide the names of reputable vendors who can do quality work if needed. Go shopping with you if you need any warm touches that give a house that extra home-like feeling. If you want top dollar for your home and it’s not feasible to remodel if outdated, buying new hardware, light switch plates or vent covers/registers for a couple hundred dollars can made a big difference. This can improve the overall look the home enormously and help sell the home for the asking price.
Communicate, communicate, communicate. Agents should set expectations about what you can anticipate from them. Will they contact you after each showing or once a week? What is your communication preference? E-mail can be best because it can be sent anytime of the day or night, but you might prefer a phone call. Whatever your mode of communication, let them know. It sounds like a cliché, but a person’s home is their most valuable asset. It’s important to treat it as such.
Often time, real estate agents do not want to hurt their clients’ feelings, so they spare them from the truth. This can end up backfiring if you are not receiving offers on your home. Honest and considerate communication up-front can limit agents dropping a big bomb on you. If necessary, work together to adjust to the feedback from the market and be willing to relist with you at a reduced price.
Sometimes Realtors are so desperate for a listing, any listing, that they take the listing at the price the seller wants but not the price the house should be listed. What is important is that this process is done honestly. Agents should guide you through the rationale for why $XXX,XXX is a great price for your home but you want to list it for $100,000 more than that. If, in 30 days, you have not received an offer and can document all of the showings you’ve had, then it’s time to revisit the price because you do not want your home to get stale on the market.
Agents should be providing clients (at least once a month) with a written marketing report documenting your showings, marketing, feedback and any other information that would support you looking at the overall picture of your home. These reports require a lot of work on the agent’s part, but this is a document the seller deserves.
Hopefully, before you have ever received a single offer on your house, your agent will share what a sample contract would look like. You should understand the various pitfalls in the way the contract is written. To provide excellent real estate acumen, they should give you the very best information so you can easily navigate the contract—looking out for your best interests.
Take the contract and extrapolate all of the important dates into one document and e-mail it to you, enabling you to follow along sequentially with what is going to happen next and know that they are on top of the transaction. Some agents will even provide the same list to the buyer’s agent as well to ensure everyone is on the same page. There are programs online that can assist with tracking these details as well.
Once the home is inspected and the report delivered, your agent must be the voice of reason and be actively involved. Wise agents remind their clients, “What is the mission? To get your house sold? We will work through any inspection issues that are presented to us.”
When it comes to communicating with the buyers’ realtor, your agent must ensure they are dotting the I’s and crossing any T’s. Transactions close smoothly when agents are thorough, noticing any problems immediately and addressing the issues at hand. This will lead you to a happy, efficient and quick close.
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