AMEN!! The first few months of this year, I chose to work with buyers for the "quick buck". After hauling buyers around for several months and letting my listing inventory dwindle, I realized that buyers don't have to be faithful no matter what kind of an agreement they sign. Putting the same effort in marketing listings is a much better return on time and money.
Ever since the market started tumbling I've heard agents complain about the expense and problems of working with sellers. Not work with sellers! Are you crazy?
Their reasoning: In a market where home sales for typical sellers are virtually non-existent, one good qualified buyer is worth two sellers (excluding reo's of course). Well I'm here to tell ya--- that type of business approach is doomed for failure. Ever hear that Ole' adage 'list to last"? If you haven't, you are probably headed out the proverbial real estate door and if you have---you're probably sitting on a couple listings that have been collecting dust. What a dilemma.
So---how does one "list to last" in a market where homes are sitting for hundreds of days? Why have a listing that isn't selling? Here are a few reasons.
1) Having listings on the market ensures that your phone will ring. Maybe not as regularly as years past but it will ring and having the opportunity to speak to and possibly procure buyers is what it's all about right?
2) Having listings on the market shows buyers and sellers that you are a motivated go-getter with area expertise and are willing to take on market challenges.
3) Having listings on the market shows the neighboring property owners that you have been selected to represent that owner. This, in and of itself gives you a huge advantage over other agents who may be considered to list homes in that neighborhood in the future. Don't squander it
Now---The only thing you must do is educate the sellers about proper pricing so the home sells. Easy right? Keep the sellers happy and informed about the current market so they are prepared to remain competitive with value adjustments and subsequent extensions. Another easy task. Keep the neighborhood informed so they do not think you just listed the home and vanished. Again---simple. Right?
The "list to last" principle is not one that focuses all marketing and sales efforts on the listing aspect of the real estate market, but it is the most important tool we have at our disposal for advertising our services to both buyers, sellers and the general public. As we progress, especially through these tough times, it's my opinion that agents should use every tool available and not simply focus on one area of expertise. Work with buyers. Work with sellers. Work with everyone who needs the services of a professional real estate agent. Only then will you capitalize on every available possibility. To do otherwise is placing limitations on your potential.
If you do not have listings---you are missing a very fundamental element of the "list to last" priniple....."List". Without it--- you can not--"Last"...