Seven Things Real Estate Agents Can Do To Better Serve Sellers

Written by Posted On Wednesday, 12 December 2018 15:08

As a real estate agent, your role includes not only helping clients find and secure the property of their dreams, but you’re also responsible for aiding in the home selling process, as well. While it can be exciting and rewarding to hand over the keys to a new property, the process can be a little less thrilling and a bit more labor-intensive on the reverse side. Still, as your seller’s agent, you’re responsible for acting as their advocate and mentor throughout the journey.


That said, you might understand the basics around what your role entails, but do you know the full spectrum of services you’re expected to provide? Today, we’re taking a look at seven things that agents should do for their sellers, from the very beginning of the journey until after the home changes out of their hands. Are you ready to learn more? Let’s get into it.


1. Make sure the home is accurately priced.

In the industry, there are what’s known as “post and pray” agents that do just that. They assign a price tag to a home, make the listing live, and then sit back and hope that someone bites. While this might work in some instances, your sellers will be far more likely to see a top return on their investment if you’re willing to put in the time it takes to research the property and its surrounding areas in order to price it as accurately as possible.


Factoring in considerations such as surrounding properties, comparable sales, the value of the home and any upgrades that have been made, agents can get a clear picture of what it’s worth. While it might be tempting to over-promise in this regard just to receive a listing assignment, it’s wiser to be as direct and honest as possible. Overpricing a home can lead to it being left alone and ultimately stigmatized by the community. While you can drop the price later, the damage to the home’s reputation might have already been done. Quote a price you can confidently deliver on and your client relationship will be based on integrity from the onset.


2. Use top-notch technology to market the property.

Today, it’s not enough to have a listing with grainy pictures and a short write-up. Rather, there are myriad tools that agents can use to make their marketing efforts as dynamic and effective as possible. From drone photography to Virtual Reality (VR), modern technology has made it possible to give as thorough and immersive of a digital home tour as possible. Even if such innovation isn’t utilized, great photographs are a necessary requirement. This might mean an agent will need to partner with a local professional to get the shots they need.


In addition, it’s important that an agent goes beyond the standard Multiple Listing Service (MLS) listing. There are other online marketing channels, including social media platform, that can be used to get the word out about a hot new property. From Facebook posts to tweets and even Instagram updates, today’s top real estate agents are social media savvy, with a bevy of followers who look forward to their regular updates. This can be a great way to get your listing in front of a larger audience, who can then share it with their friends and so forth. Taking advantage of online tools and the communities they cultivate is a trademark of a modern, forward-thinking real estate agent.


3. Be available with clear communication.

Some agents simply list a property then contact the seller when they’ve generated some interest around it. While this is the simplest way to communicate with your clients, it can leave them in the dark for far too long, especially if their home takes longer than anticipated to sell. Conversely, clear and constant communication is key. Of course, this doesn’t mean pestering clients on an hourly basis, but if they have questions or concerns throughout the process, their agent should be available to talk them through it.


Even if all you have to offer is a little feedback from a recent showing, it’s helpful to be as encouraging and straightforward with clients as possible. Make sure they understand where the property stands and what the expected next steps are. Remember, this is one of the most important financial decisions of their life, and they’ll need to be kept in the loop about it at all times.


4. Ensure interested buyers can move forward.

Bringing your seller information about an interested buyer who can pay the asking price will undoubtedly bring enthusiasm and relief. Yet, this excitement can quickly wane when an agent discovers that the buyers, as ready to buy as he or she might be, is unqualified to move forward in the process.


The reality is that not everyone who wants to buy a home is financially ready to do so. Most of the pushback will come in the form of not being qualified for a mortgage loan. While pre-qualification is a great first step, a reputable agent will make sure that the buyer is not only pre-qualified but also pre-approved as well. There are various reasons why someone may not be in a position to buy a home based on current finances.


From credit card debt to navigating through a stock loss recovery, they may be working to build back their savings and as such, aren’t approved by a lending agency to receive the funds they need. Before coming to your buyers with a lead, it’s important to vet them first to ensure next steps can be taken.


5. Be present at the home inspection.

This is one of the gray areas of real estate that isn’t always cut and dry. Many agents wonder whether or not they need to be at their seller’s home inspection, though the answer is usually “yes.” This is because hearing feedback on any issues found within the home is helpful information on the seller’s part.


This knowledge will come in handy down the road, especially if any interested buyers are asking to negotiate the price based on any concerns about the house. For instance, they may ask for money to be taken off to account for a new roof. Yet, if the agent is at the inspection, he or she might learn that rather than a full roof replacement, only a few shingles need to be repaired. As such, that level of bargaining does not need to occur.


6. Exercise great negotiation skills.

Ultimately, a real estate agent wants to make sure that his or her client receives the best deal possible. Those who are only in the industry to earn a hefty paycheck or make a set number of sales every year are usually unwilling to go the extra mile when it comes to counteroffers.


Sellers should look for agents that will work to get them the best terms and figures possible on their sale. From closing dates and contingency timelines to financial concessions, a qualified agent will think more about the client than their need to close a deal, making sure that both the buyer and seller are as satisfied as possible with the transaction and its associated terms.


7. Take care of the details at closing time.

As agents and their clients round the bases and are about to close on a property, it can be tempting to breeze through those final steps and get the process over with. Yet, this can be an overwhelming and complex time for everyone involved, and it’s up to the agent to be as detail-oriented as possible.


From making sure the carbon monoxide detector is in place (and getting the certificate) to securing the water meter reading, there are steps required that not everyone will know about. As the expert in this regard, this is where the agent can shine and demonstrate a commitment to the client.


A Reputable Agent is a Seller’s Top Resource

Working with a real estate agent who is knowledgeable, available and most of all, ethical is the best step a seller can take. Though there are many in the field to select from, working closely with an agent who demonstrates professionalism, great communication skills, a commitment to top-notch marketing and a willingness to negotiate is the way to go.


As the agent, your chief concern is to make sure the seller feels supported and advocated for at every turn. Then, when the deal is closed and the property is sold, there will truly be cause to celebrate.

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