What's the #1 thing to give clients to justify your commission?

Real Estate Broker/Owner with Catarra Real Estate, Inc CA BRE #01191946

Broker Bryant wrote a great article this morning on the issue of justifying your commission.  I get this question a lot because in my area and with the listings I engage in, sellers nearly always question what I'm paid.  As the commissions rise, sellers are increasingly savvy and want to know that my efforts go well beyond just a little online marketing and a broker tour.  For me, the #1 thing I give my clients is...experience.  Not just any experience, the kind they need.

There are different kinds of experience.  Some good, some a waste of time, some bad.  The value of what I bring depends on the experience I bring to the table, for a specific client.  How do you define one over the other?

Waste of Time Experience:  Just "being" in the market and not actively buying or selling.  Often the domain of newbies, this can be overcome by working with a mentor.  Learn the nuances of the market including how buyers and sellers behave, local standards, zoning laws, top builders, top remodelers, etc.  If it has to do with housing, learn it.

Bad Experience:  This is just as valuable as good experience.  Learn from every deal that falls through and why (that's the key).  Learn about how many offers were made on properties and which one succeeded.  Learn about what keeps a property on the market for months or years and why.  Knowing what causes failure makes it possible for you to point those things out to a client and help them get around it, if possible.

Good Experience:  This can include everything from slick marketing to just knowing the right people.  Can you engage the local media to cover a home sale?  If so, that experience gives you an edge.  Do you network with relocation companies to get an incoming executive to buy "that special home"?  Do you know the fault lines that make some homes unappealing for out-of-state buyers?  Can you create a marketing event that makes a home memorable and talked about?  Do you know which homes, similar to the clients, haven't sold and why?  Nobody can know it all but knowing as much as possible makes it possbile to make selling your clients home a "win".

We all have some of these experiences but it's what we do with them that engenders two things in our clients; trust and confidence.  Once we have those, we have no problems justifying our commissions.


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Bruce Hicks
Best Homes Hawaii - Honolulu, HI
Your Lifetime Friend/Helper!

Bryan, sometimes the hard part is a seller tells you "this is an easy listing for you" and "another broker is offering me lower".  My motto has been, I will match any commission you show me in writing from another broker, so the other day, I listed a property for X percentage and me getting only ONE PERCENT.  One YEAR later, I regret that I did it!  It has not sold yet!

Dec 04, 2011 10:41 AM #1
John McCormack
Albuquerque Homes Realty * www.AlbuquerqueHomes.com - Albuquerque, NM
AlbuquerqueHomes.com, Albuquerque Homes Realty

Yes Bryan you're right in stating>>We all have some of these experiences but it's what we do with them that engenders two things in our clients; trust and confidence.  Once we have those, we have no problems justifying our commissions.  It still get's under my skin when I'm questioned so why should I pay you this much or why won't you give me a discount?  RRRRRRR.........

Dec 04, 2011 10:56 AM #2
Eric Michael
Remerica Integrity, Realtors®, Northville, MI - Livonia, MI
Metro Detroit Real Estate Professional 734.564.1519

and then it sells quickly and they think you "didn't do Anything" for that much money. Silly rabbits.           

Dec 04, 2011 11:50 AM #3
Anita Clark
ColdwellBanker SSK Realtors ~ 478.960.8055 - Warner Robins, GA
Realtor - Homes for Sale in Warner Robins GA

Bryan: I must have shaken my head in agreement 5 times while reading this post...well done!  Suggested.

Dec 04, 2011 12:49 PM #4
Chris Ann Cleland
Long and Foster REALTORS®, Manassas, VA - Bristow, VA
Associate Broker, Northern VA

Experienced agents can definitely use their practical knowledge of the market to justify their pay.

Dec 04, 2011 01:23 PM #5
Kristal Wilson
Strategic Sales and Marketing - Riverside, CA
~Your New Construction Specialist~

Bryan ~ this year I have experienced some difficult transactions - each was a great learning experience!

Dec 04, 2011 01:51 PM #6
Anna Banana Kruchten
Phoenix Property Shoppe - Phoenix, AZ
Arizona's Top Banana of Real Estate!

Bryan oh so true.....learning from experiences is the fastest way to successs.


 it's what we do with them that engenders two things in our clients; trust and confidence.  

Featured in BananaTude

Dec 04, 2011 05:26 PM #7
Brian Madigan
RE/MAX West Realty Inc., Brokerage (Toronto) - Toronto, ON
LL.B., Broker


There are all kinds of people who want tyo have some sort of justification for the amount of money paid out.

Others realize that it's just a cost of doing business.


Dec 04, 2011 06:13 PM #8
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