Normally I don't work a lot with strangers. But in the last month, I've had 2 people email me out of the blue and want me to list their house. Their claim is that they have found me online (duh) and they think I'm probably the best agent out there... (obviously) and they want to know if I will tell them what I will sell their house for, and what's the discount I will give them for allowing me this opportunity.
Photo by Daniel Cheung on Unsplash
Let me see if I can explain this.... First of all, I can't see your house from my house, so to tell you how much it's truly worth would be a little more than a guess out of thin air... and is as valuable as a used piece of gum or a z-estimate. Next, let me touch on that discounted fee topic, because I get it a lot. I understand it... you want to make the most bang for your buck. It's understandable and you're no different than every other person in every other situation in every aspect of life. It's what we all want, more value, less cost. However, you have sought out a professional negotiator, whom I assume you need because you realize that there may be one or two aspects of this transaction that are not within your scope of expertise, and you have started by negotiating their worth....down. (that's the wrong way)
Again... to a professional negotiator... first question, "I want you to negotiate YOUR worth, DOWN for me, so that I know you'll get me the MOST money for ME"... That's basically what you just asked. Read that again so I don't have to retype it... I'll wait while you realize the flaw in your plan.
Can you get a REALTOR® to discount their fee? Sure! If I have sold you several homes, I would as well, because of my loyalty appreciation policy. But outside of you buying and selling, repeatedly, with an agent you know.. lets take a look at the 3 types of agents that will discount their livelihood and let the kids eat ramen in the dark this month, so you can save a buck, shall we?
- The new agent - The new agent is hungry.. there's nothing wrong with a new agent, we've all been there and I encourage people to give new agents a shot! They need to prove their worth and skill to someone... why shouldn't it be you, the risk taker? Tip: Make sure that new agent is guided by an experienced agent unless your side hobby is litigation, or professional real estate sales. New agents are great, but there is still so much to know, and the blind leading the blind, although fun and adventure packed.. is probably safer if accompanied by someone with clear vision, in order to avoid hazards and law suits.
- The desperate agent - Some agents are desperate for work and will sell anything for anyone for any amount. If that doesn't sound like a skilled negotiator, I don't know what does. This agent will obviously work harder than anyone to get you top dollar... or any amount of dollars, so they can get paid. But you can count on it selling fast! Because, they typically want their discounted check as quick as possible.
- Your mom - If your mom is a REALTOR ® you've got it made! (Unless you spent your child hood breaking her antiques. In which case, she may also see this as pay back time)
Before you ask your agent to negotiate their value, consider why they would do so. Would you trust that person to protect you? WORK for you? Would you go in and give your boss 110% if he asked you to give up a 1/3 of your pay check?
Real estate is a beautiful and complicated beast. We go in thinking it will be easy... "I can open a door, I love looking at homes. I have full tank of gas and nothing to do today". Then after a few transactions, we start to realize that we're not lock smiths at all, opening doors is for those guys... We are fire walkers! We take 10-110 pages of legal pit falls and we lead our clients safely through hazards, potential law suits, new agents etc .,to get them through the largest investment of their life, safely and yes... for the most money we possibly can get you... is our general goal. So, if you really want to negotiate with me, in the way that the cross agent will negotiate with me... lets play.