Wednesday, September 19, 2007

What Some Agents Will Tell You To Get Your Business

Over the past few years I've had the opportunity to earn the business of quite a few sellers.  Some of them have been referred to me from my past clients, friends, family, etc.  Others have found us through the internet, or have witnessed us sell their neighbor's home, or are taking advantage of our FSBO Assistance Program that we offer.  I have to admit, we don't get every listing.  Even though, if you asked me we certainly should because we're just better. :)  But that's okay, I understand that the seller's may have had a personal connection with the other agent or maybe they were referred to them by a friend.  However, I get a little frustrated when I hear of the things that these other agents are promising to the sellers to try and convince them to list the home with them because I know the truth behind the claims.  Here are a few of the most popular tales that are told by some real estate agents:






1.  "I have buyers ready to buy that would be interested in your home." - There are a couple of things that just don't make sense about this claim.  First of all, if they have a buyer that is truly ready and able to buy a home, why wouldn't they be out with that buyer showing them one of the 55,000+ listings that are available in the Arizona Regional Multiple Listing Service (ARMLS).  However, let's give them the benefit of the doubt and say that they do have a buyer.  If they are holding off showing this individual a home until they secure a listing that suits the buyer's needs, they are doing this buyer a huge disservice.  For one, an agent can't truly represent both parties to a transaction when they are the only agent involved.  This is what is called dual agency, and technically it's legal, but with a single agent attempting to represent both sides of a transaction they then have to step back and remove themselves from the negotiation process and become a liaison between the two parties.  There are instances where this is almost unavoidable, but for an agent to make an effort to put themselves and their clients into this type of situation simply to collect both sides of the commission is dishonest.  And so is this the type of person that you want to hire to sell your home.  Secondly, again, let's just say that they do have a buyer that might be interested in your home, regardless of who you've hired to represent you, this agent will have access to show your home to their client through the ARMLS.  And in this instance you, the seller, will have representation and the buyer will have representation, just as it should be.


Bottom line, you want to hire the agent that you feel is going to provide you with the highest level of customer service and market your home at the absolute highest level possible, PERIOD!  If somebody tells you that they have buyers for your home, it's most likely a hook to get your business.


2.  "I can get your home sold for 'X' amount..." - ...even though your neighbor's house (assuming it's similar in square footage, upgrades, lot size, etc.) sold for less than 'X'.  I'd love to ask these agents just how they plan on selling a house for more than the market value.  To price your home higher than what the market will support is not helping a seller's situation at all.  In fact, it's a detriment.  When you put a house on the market, the first 2-3 weeks are critical.  A home will always have its most traffic during those first few weeks.  And if it's priced too high the buyers will simply move on.  You may think that if a buyer is interested in your home, then they will make an offer.  But that's not the case most of the time.  With 56,000+ homes available in the ARMLS, they will most likely move on to one of the other homes in the area that they see as more of a value.  And so for a real estate agent to tell you that they can sell your house for a higher price than what the market will support turns my stomach.  Because all this agent is going to do is tell you a higher price to get your business, and then when it doesn't sell 30-60 days down the road, they will ask the seller to lower the price.  I've seen it happen over and over again.  I am in the business of selling homes not just listing them.  And my goal is to get your home sold for the highest amount possible in the shortest period of time possible.  We're certainly not going to lie to you just to get your business.  That's not how we work.


Bottom line, you want to hire the agent that you feel is going to provide you with the highest level of customer service and market your home at the absolute highest level possible, PERIOD!  Just because an agent says they can get more for your home, doesn't mean that's the case.  Your home will sell for its market value and not a penny higher, no matter what somebody tells you.


3.  "Our national company has buyers coming from all over the country" - Well that's great, but just because the buyer is working with a particular real estate company elsewhere doesn't mean that they will only have access to the inventory of that particular company here in Phoenix.  This ties in with Tall Tale #1.  The beauty about our industry is the Multiple Listing Service.  This allows any agent to show your home to their clients regardless of the real estate company.  In fact you are better off not listing with the national company with buyer's coming from all over the country, because if they are representing you and the buyer, then they are actually not representing either of you.  As a seller you want your agent only representing you in the negotiations.�


Bottom line, you want to hire the agent that you feel is going to provide you with the highest level of customer service and market your home at the absolute highest level possible, PERIOD!  As long your home is given the absolute most exposure possible then the buyers will find it.  Whether that's through the services of a buyer's agent, or whether it's through their own home-hunting efforts from across the country.


4.  "I run full color print ads for all my listings" - Don't be fooled by this one.  It might sound great, but over 90% of buyers are looking for homes on the internet, not in magazines or the newspaper.  Print advertising doesn't allow your home to be showcased in a manner that is going to attract the most potential buyers.  One picture and a very small paragraph attempting to describe everything great about your home is not going to get the job done.  We provide a level of marketing that you simply cannot achieve in print advertising.  Click Here to read about just one aspect of our marketing that you just don't find with most other agents.


Bottom line, you want to hire the agent that you feel is going to provide you with the highest level of customer service and market your home at the absolute highest level possible, PERIOD!  The marketing plan an agent puts together for you and your home should reach the biggest pool of potential buyers.  Our marketing plan does that.  Give me a call and I'd be happy to provide you with all of the details.


5.  "I'll put your home on the Broker/Agent Tour so that we can get a bunch of agents through the home" - Again, don't be fooled by this.  On the surface it makes perfect sense.  Why wouldn't you want to put the house on the local tour so that 10-15 agents are able to see your home and relay the information to all of their buyers?  And if that was, in fact, why all of the agents were attending the tour, you'd be in good shape.  But that's not the case. The catch with Broker/Agent Tours is this....in order for an agent's listing to be part of the tour, the listing agent must be present at all homes on the rest of the tour.  So, with that being the case all of the agents taking part in a Broker/Agent Tour are there solely for the purpose of having their listing on the tour.  I've never been a part of a tour where there were agents present that didn't have a listing on tour.  So typically Broker/Agent Tours are just a charade and accomplish nothing.


Bottom line, you want to hire the agent that you feel is going to provide you with the highest level of customer service and market your home at the absolute highest level possible, PERIOD!  You don't need to be told things that you think you want to hear.  You need to know the truth about how to get your home sold for the most money possible in the least amount of time possible.


I am continuously hearing of new claims told to potential sellers by other real estate agents in an attempt to steal their business.  As I hear of new ones I'll add them to the blog in follow-up posts so that all of our current and potential clients can be as educated as possible.


-Steve Nicks


[tags] Phoenix real estate, FSBO, Desert Ridge real estate [/tags]