Why should a buyer or seller work with you?
What do you bring to the table?
These are fairly basic questions, yet when you ask this to a real estate agent you’ll either get silence or a lot of mumbling and stumbling.
The worst and most frequent response I hear is, “I’ve been in the business for “x” years.” To that I have this to say. Just because you’ve been in the business for a long time doesn’t mean you’re good, it just means that you’re a survivor.
Depending on your marketplace, there are hundreds or thousands of agents competing for the same buyers and sellers. With so much competition, it’s important for you to differentiate yourself from the pack.
When a consumer selects you as an agent, you become a reflection of them. It’s important for you to possess the attributes that instill confidence, intelligence and respect.
The residential real estate market and the way business is conducted is changing rapidly. Our clients expect us to be knowledgeable on jurisdictional laws, standards of practice and current methods of marketing properties.
Regardless of the number of times the consumer has bought or sold property, practices change. Winning strategies change. Make sure your potential client understands how the process works in today’s housing market. Chances are they have changed since the last time they bought or sold their last property.
Know the required forms inside and out. When you are in front of a potential client, you should be able to explain all of the forms with ease. You should be able to answer most of the questions they may have about them. If you don’t know the answer to their questions, let them know you will find out and get back to them.
Highlight Your Skills
Regardless of the number of years or minutes you’ve been a real estate agent, you have a skill set you can highlight when meeting with prospective clients.
If you have a sales background, this is a no-brainer. You can highlight your negotiating skills which is a huge plus for real estate agents. We negotiate all types of items in contracts and home inspection items.
Maybe you were a trauma nurse. That means you are detail-oriented, make adjustments quickly and can work easily in a stressful environment. Real estate transactions can get a little crazy to say the least. It’s always good to have a cool head to keep emotions under control.
Think about your past occupations and see what skills you can utilize as a real estate agent and highlight those to your prospects.
Present a Polished Product
Presenting a polished product is all about attention to details in everything you do.
Both your listing and buyer presentation should be well written and presented in a professional manner. For a written presentation or an electronic presentation, your content needs to be well thought out, organized, and presented in a fashion that the buyer or seller can clearly understand.
Make sure you pay attention to your grooming. When meeting with a client you need to dress in clean, pressed business attire. Even if you work in a casual market, your attire should be business casual, at least for the first time you meet the client. Although you may not like it, you will be judged by your appearance and you only have one opportunity to make a first impression.
If you plan on driving your client around, make sure your car is clean, inside and out.
Technology was supposed to make our lives easier, but in some respects it has made our jobs and our lives more stressful. Our cell phones have us feeling we have to have constant contact at all times.
Multi-tasking our way through each day results in us rarely being present and in the moment. We are constantly thinking about the next activity or the next appointment, constantly looking at our phones for the next new thing.
But the most important “thing” is the person right in front of you. The person in front of you should feel important. Important enough to have your undivided attention.
Listen carefully to what they have to say. Ask questions that show you were listening. Stay in the moment until they have finished.
Active listening is not easy, but it’s an extremely important skill. Far too often we are formulating our next thought instead of listening to what client is actually saying. As a result, we miss out on cues and important information. Don’t worry about what you have to say, you will have plenty of time to get it in.
Buyer and Seller Follow Up
We often do a disservice to our clients and leave money on the table because we don’t follow up or follow through. It’s important for us to follow up:
- When we get a voice mail
- When we get an email
- Communicate with the seller after the open house
- Email or call all of the open house visitors
- Give the seller feedback after showings
- Notify the buyer of new listings or listings where the price has been reduced
Follow up is one of the easiest tasks we have, but the most overlooked. In the absence of information, people will make things up and they are usually extreme. Even when you don’t have anything new to tell the client, that’s still news. Keep your clients abreast of everything that is happening in their transaction and their housing search.
What Type of Service Do You Like?
When thinking about how to run your business and how to stand out from the competition, think about the type of real estate experience you would like. Then deliver that type of service to your customers and clients. Knowledge, attention to detail and great customer service go a long way and never get old.
Enjoy less stress by having smoother transactions by implementing these simple strategies today!
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Candy, “The Real-Life Realtor”, coaches, mentors and trains new and experienced real estate agents to transform their business by mastering her proven systems for success.
In 2016, Inman News named Candy Miles-Crocker as one of the Top 25 Real Estate coaches in the United States.
She is a firm believer in managing expectations.
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As an active Realtor licensed in three jurisdictions, I approach real estate training from a different perspective. With over 18 years in the real estate business, I teach agents what it’s really like to be a real estate agent.