Have you found ‘the one’? The perfect agent – well-dressed, punctual, knowledgeable – to sell your property?
Once you appoint said agent, the honeymoon period begins.
But what can you do to keep your new business relationship super sweet?
As listing agents are integral to a good home sale (or buy) experience, what keeps your agent hook-up working right up to that final settlement payment?
We spoke to three agents around Australia to get their tips and tricks on making your agent/vendor relationship work.
Here are their 8 tips to make sure you stay sweet with your agent.
1. Never break trust
It’s easy to fixate on agents’ trustworthiness and forget trust runs both ways.
Gold Coast agent Michael Levonis of Elliott Michaels Realtor says trust must exist at the start of every agent/client relationship and remain rock solid throughout.
2. Show some respect
Craig Williamson of Buxton Bentleigh in Melbourne stresses mutual respect goes a long way to creating “win/win” relationships.
Clients usually do best when buying and selling if they view their agent as “a trusted advisor”, he says.
“They keep us on side with an attitude of mutual respect, referring us business and running with our advice on selling strategy,” Williamson says.
“It stands to reason that we would favour our loyal advocates.”
Read more: How to choose the right agent for you
3. Stop being a control freak
“A good agent is open to suggestions and happy to incorporate the seller’s ideas into the marketing strategy, but please allow the agent to do what he/she does best,” Levonis says.
He cites a recent client who insisted on absolute control of advertising copy and photographs.
“The resultant advertising didn’t reflect the true condition of the property and oversold the benefits,” he reports.
“When after 14 days there was no positive feedback from prospective buyers, the seller became upset and blamed the agent.”
4. Pick up the phone
Justin O’Brien, manager of Elders Alice Springs, loves it when a client rings him, particularly when the campaign hits tough times.
“We live in an age of emailing and that is usually fine for simple matters but they (emails) can easily be taken the wrong way as you can’t hear tone,” O’Brien says.
“Face-to-face or a call are far more effective in some circumstances.”
5. Don’t be a scrooge
If you insist on agents discounting their commissions, don’t be surprised if your agent loses interest and/or feels unloved.
Less commission can result in rushing sales and more pressure on sellers to take unacceptable offers, instead of working on a seller’s behalf, Levonis says.
“Until the property is sold, your agent is working for you for free.
“So if the agent is professional and does a good job marketing and selling your property, he/she deserves to be paid and not have to discount commission.”
6. Be punctual
It is a common courtesy to be on time at all appointments with your busy agent and if you can’t be there, never pull a no-show. Not cool.
7. Don’t cover your ears
Relationships can be tested and that’s when really good listening skills can save the day.
“Listen to what the agent is saying,” suggests O’Brien.
“When an agent tells you, ‘we are getting feedback that the price is too high’ don’t automatically shut down or get defensive because that is very counter to what your agent, hopefully chosen based on trust, is trying to achieve – hear them out.”
8. Be honest
If you are looking to buy, Levonis says give sales agents “all your parameters” so he/she can assist without wasting time.
“There is a tendency for buyers not to tell the truth about how much they want to spend or the area they wish to buy in,” Levonis says.
“The agent then takes time to find a property in the price range only to find out the buyer has bought elsewhere in a higher price bracket and a different area.”
If you are guilty of this one, don’t expect a second date with ‘the one’.