Feedback; Why won't you leave any?

By
Title Insurance with Old Republic Title 126029

OK my AR brethren; this is a subject that has been a thorn in my side for the past 11 years.  You set up the appointment; you meet with your clients and show them numerous homes.  You make notes on your copy of the MLS sheet as do your buyers.  I don't hound you or call 5 minutes after you show it (although maybe I should start) and I give you time to get some R&R in before asking the all important question; what do you and/or your clients think about my listing and what can we do to improve it?

 

I have even made it very simple for you.  I have a basic 4 question form that I email or fax or both to you and even have a 24 hour toll free fax to send it back to me at.  I have taken extraordinary steps to make this as easy as possible yet I still only get maybe half of my requests back and only half of those have useful information.

 

Am I expecting too much for you to provide honest feedback on my listing?  I know when I give feedback, and I do, I give as much info & detail as possible because I know this will assist the Listing Agent in communicating with the seller about things that should be changed or even price adjustments if the price is too high.  Telling a seller the home stinks or is messy or is outdated or is next door to Sanford & Son is a lot easier when it comes from someone else.  Am I right?  I would rather say; Agent Bob & his clients really liked the home but the shower has tile falling down and the garage door is bent and the back yard is littered with trash so they're going to find something that doesn't need as much work.  I actually like blaming someone else and for whatever reason, sellers seem to really listen to what others have to say rather than their own agent who really knows best and has told them all of the above but they just did not take it to heart, until Agent Bob said it.

 

Well, am I beating a dead horse or is there a better way to build a mouse trap?  Inquiring minds want to know.

Posted by

Russell Benson, Realtor®
Prudential Alliance Realty
Oklahoma City, OK
Serving Oklahoman's since 1998
www.RealEstateOKC.com

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Rainer
68,585
Russell Benson
Old Republic Title - Norman, OK
We'd love to close your deal at Old Republic!

Loreena,

What I find best that works for me is emailing agents late at night when things are quiet at home.  Most of the MLS listings have live email links so usually just a quick click and comment to leave feedback.  For me personally, I do believe that this is part of our duties though one that many people may not like.  And if you don't get it within 24 hours, then most agents will not recall anything helpful about the home.  That is why I try to get it in that time frame.

Thanks for your comment!

Jul 20, 2009 03:33 AM #4
Rainmaker
33,740
Bob Wilson
Access San Diego - San Diego, CA

The only feedback that matters is an offer. If the listing agent cant figure out why a house isnt selling, then they shouldnt take listings.

Jul 20, 2009 03:37 AM #5
Rainer
68,585
Russell Benson
Old Republic Title - Norman, OK
We'd love to close your deal at Old Republic!

Stuart:  I figured it was but I guess it doesn't hurt to open an old wound, lol!

Erik:  I agree about the automated stuff.  I try to be as personable as possible in all aspects of my business but I know that our lives are becoming more automated all the time.  On 2nd showings I will usually call and visit with the agent personally.  Our lock box system emails me when one of my listing boxes are open and normally within a few minutes of the box being opened.  Some of the agents will have an email address on Supra's website but most don't.  To me email is the easiest method since the really good agents (us) use and check email a hundred times per day (or more).

Thanks for your comments................

Jul 20, 2009 03:37 AM #6
Rainer
68,585
Russell Benson
Old Republic Title - Norman, OK
We'd love to close your deal at Old Republic!

San Diego Short Sales:  That is exactly the kind of attitude that holds us back.  Please don't take this as a personal attack but feedback is something that MOST of us find helpful and useful as do the sellers.  In fact the sellers are the ones that are quick to ask for it.  Since nobody's perfect, I find feedback from other professionals often brings to light something we might have missed and often it is something obvious yet missed.

I hope to find your comment to be the minority here on AR.............

Jul 20, 2009 03:41 AM #7
Rainmaker
849,708
Candice A. Donofrio
Next Wave RE Investments LLC Bullhead City AZ Commercial RE Broker - Fort Mohave, AZ
928-201-4BHC (4242) call/text

Hi Russell!

I generally don't ask for feedback unless the seller desperately wants it.*

  • The home already should be priced per market and its value to a buyer.
  • The home should already be market ready to compete with others like it.
  • The home should already be easy to show.
  • The sellers should already be cooperative. 

The home is either of interest to the buyer (they further communicate and/or make an offer) or it is not.

The only feedback I really want is an offer . . . :)

*In this case a quick email note to the agent. Call if they are 'email challenged' but most aren't. I use tracking. If they pick up the note and don't reply, I let seller know they are not interested in leaving feedback and I tell them just what I wrote (above).

It's a 'different strokes' type of thing of course--I know feedback is valuable. But I don't focus on obtaining it. Just on selling the house by my efforts and let the buyer's agents do their job with their clients . . .

If asked for feedback I am always happy to provide it . . . because I know to some agents and their clients it is important.

Jul 20, 2009 03:47 AM #8
Anonymous
Linda Zuffa

- Pesonal phone calls will increase responses.  I get about 80% response rate.  Sometimes it takes a 2nd phone call.

- I HATE automated e-mails that send follow-ups too freqently.  I always respond when feedback is requested, but it may take me up to a week, depending on how busy I am.

- Agree that you get better (more detailed and more honest) feedback by phone vs. e-mail.  1) It takes more time to write something than to speak it.  2) People will be a lot more honest/blunt on the phone vs. what they might say in writing.

Jul 20, 2009 03:48 AM #9
Rainmaker
1,403,064
Vickie Nagy
Coldwell Banker Residential Real Estate - Palm Springs, CA
Vickie Jean the Palm Springs Condo Queen

You are the standout in the crowd. I provide feedback only on request because many agents today don't seem to want it. They want an offer, or nothing!

Jul 20, 2009 04:01 AM #10
Rainer
68,585
Russell Benson
Old Republic Title - Norman, OK
We'd love to close your deal at Old Republic!

Candice:  I agree that if you cannot get it you move on but sellers really get flustered when you tell them you were unable to get feedback from a showing agent.  In their minds not getting feedback is unacceptable and I have to agree to a point.  I mean feedback is a way of life now.  Almost every time I purchase something on-line I get a product feedback request and to be honest, I buy or pass based on consumer reviews about a certain product so we know how important this information can be in the business world.

Linda:  I always thought agents tend to be more honest when writing -vs- calling but you really never know until you get it I guess.  A month ago at a little office get together I ran into an agent from another company whose listing I had shown.  The homes kitchen had an enormous crack from one end to the other and the floor plan was choppy among other things and I told her exactly this information and she got very snippy with me and ended by saying that she hopes to sell that listing herself anyway.  Are you kidding me?  Talk about showing your true colors.  I really was more concerned about the crack (the kitchen had stained concrete floors) but she totally blew me off about it, like it was normal settling.  I think a crack a mouse could go through it more than normal settling but hey, not my future lawsuit to worry about.  Well, maybe not that big of a deal but still troubling for my clients.

Thanks again to all for the great commentary.............

Jul 20, 2009 04:06 AM #11
Rainer
68,585
Russell Benson
Old Republic Title - Norman, OK
We'd love to close your deal at Old Republic!

Vickie:  My preference would always be an offer but feedback in lieu of one is also appreciated!

Thanks!

Jul 20, 2009 04:07 AM #12
Rainmaker
849,708
Candice A. Donofrio
Next Wave RE Investments LLC Bullhead City AZ Commercial RE Broker - Fort Mohave, AZ
928-201-4BHC (4242) call/text

[Russell sez: sellers really get flustered when you tell them you were unable to get feedback from a showing agent]

I've never had a flustered seller (for that reason) ;) really.

Then again, mine are prepared at time of listing that WE (ME/THEY) control how the home shows and WE control those variables that make it easy/hard to sell and that other agents may or may not leave feedback.

Consider also that IF THE AGENT'S CLIENT IS CONSIDERING AN OFFER, that offering glowing feedback could be 'tipping their hand' ("hey, they said they loved the home- let's counter at full price!") . . .

 . . . or if not so complimentary ("they suck, they said the home was dated-it's not dated, let's not respond to the offer at all, those creeps!"), create a level of discomfort on part of seller that would not serve [future] negotiations.

ESPECIALLY if the agent is showing that house again to OTHER clients. If the seller was mad enough, could they even get a showing then?

There are many sides to this issue.

Namaste. :)

Jul 20, 2009 04:23 AM #13
Rainer
68,585
Russell Benson
Old Republic Title - Norman, OK
We'd love to close your deal at Old Republic!

Candice:  You make some excellent points and I appreciate it very much!

Jul 20, 2009 04:28 AM #14
Rainmaker
649,684
Sun City Grand Homes Surprise AZ Real Estate Leolinda Bowers Designated Broker Leolinda Realty
Leolinda Realty - Surprise, AZ
Sun City Grand in Surprise Arizona

I show property from early in the morning until late afternoon, in over 100 degree weather.  I don't have the time nor energy to provide feedback.  Besides that, after 24 hours I've completely forgotten the property.

If the buyer is leaning to purchase a specific listing, I will contact the listing agent for additional information.  There are some showings that I will immediately contact the listing agent if there was something wrong with the property. This weekend for example, I found a dead animal in the entrance of the property that was producing a fowl odor.  I will also immediately contact the listing agent if I find a door(s) unlocked.

You know when you list the property if it shows well or if it is priced well.  The seller should be relying on your recommendations as the professional to guide them.

Recognizing that we are having more shophisticated buyers, some specifically ask that I do not discuss my showings with the listing agent.

Jul 20, 2009 04:40 AM #15
Rainer
11,406
Phil Anderson
Principal Broker & Owner of New Portland Home - Portland, OR

I always greatly appreciate feedback, (I use the personal email approach, also) which I forward weekly to my clients (the Sellers) to give them some idea the overall reception of the presentation and to help show my commitment and ongoing involvement in moving the property.

Jul 20, 2009 06:08 AM #16
Rainer
68,585
Russell Benson
Old Republic Title - Norman, OK
We'd love to close your deal at Old Republic!

Leolinda: I agree with calling agents when you encounter a problem.  I think we owe them that much.  Unlocked doors seem to be an issue as do alarms that are off when we were told they would be on.  Like I said earlier, I save feedback for late at night when it's calm & quiet.  I tend to make short notes on the MLS sheet so I can remember that home in case my buyer has a question about it & also so I can give some feedback.  A few minutes ago I received an I/M from an agent asking about feedback, a request I will gladly fulfill.  I still think this is something the sellers want more than we do and since we work for the sellers, it is only reasonable to try and get it and it is equally reasonable to expect to get it.

Phil:  You hit the nail on the head my friend and you win the door prize.  I'm not sure what it is so I will have to get back with you on that one =)  I will say that we want it out of the committement we make to our sellers to sell thier home.  While it is a small part of what we try to do it's still a part.

Thanks to all for sharing.  This is great information that will only help me to better serve my clients now and in the future!

Jul 20, 2009 07:37 AM #17
Rainer
179,781
Erik Hitzelberger
RE/MAX Alliance - Louisville REALTOR-Luxury Homes - Louisville, KY
Louisville - Middletown Real Estate

Russell - Nice conversation you have going here.  I had one other thought just to stir the pot.  When it comes to asking for feedback, I think it is ridiculous to ask about the price.  Is there really any answer to the 'how do you think the home is priced' question other than "too high?"  As a buyer's agent, I would never tell you I thought the house was priced fairly let alone too low. 

Jul 20, 2009 09:13 AM #18
Rainmaker
1,707,191
Joe Pryor
The Virtual Real Estate Team - Oklahoma City, OK
REALTOR® - Oklahoma Investment Properties

Russell, if called I will give feedback, and I make sure it is honest about what the customer thought. If they want mine I will chime in on that too.

Jul 21, 2009 09:24 AM #19
Rainer
68,585
Russell Benson
Old Republic Title - Norman, OK
We'd love to close your deal at Old Republic!

Joe:  I think that is about the best one can do and the best one could hope for.  One thing's for sure, this was a very thought provoking topic and I'm glad I made it.  Ideas vary on this but most I think would like to get feedback.

Jul 21, 2009 09:37 AM #20
Rainmaker
33,740
Bob Wilson
Access San Diego - San Diego, CA

Russell, no offense taken, but I dont see how it holds anyone back.

As the listing agent, my job is to get it listed correctly at the onset. I dont really need feedback to get it sold if I'm doing my job.

As a buyer's agent, I'll echo what Leolinda said. Beyond that, if I have a buyer who is interested, you'll likely get an offer. I certainly wont tip my hand before that. If they are not interested, then their feedback is likely negative. If it's not their taste, then their feedback is subjective anyways.

17 years ago we listed a tract home in a nice neighborhood. The sellers loved green and yellow. IMO, way too much. The carpeting was lime green throughout. It was comparably priced. All the feedback given (unsolicited) at the broker open house and subsequent open houses was that the carpet had to go, or offer a credit. The seller didnt care. It was a year old and top quality.

We did sell it at market value within the average market time. The agent feedback was worthless.

A few months later we took a listing a stone's throw from the polluted Tijuana River. One room had a dirt floor (dont ask). You can imagine the feedback we had after that broker open.

We sold within a week.

Price it right and it will sell. No feedback required.

Jul 26, 2009 07:58 AM #21
Rainer
53,362
Darryl Brasseur
Brasseur Realty - Prairieville, LA

Its a pet peave of mine. They schedule showings through Centralized Showing then CSS sends an email with only a few questions. When I feel that they had enough time to respond, I send them an email requesting it and I am sure they can tell by the tone I am not very happy.  

Aug 23, 2009 03:58 PM #22
Rainer
68,585
Russell Benson
Old Republic Title - Norman, OK
We'd love to close your deal at Old Republic!

Darryl,

By reading the comments here it is very obvious that opinions vary greatly, however I think feedback is a very important part of the whole process and when I give feedback on my own, you can tell how ecstatic the agents are to hear from me.  It's a very simple gesture and one that pays dividends, IMHO.

Thanks!

Aug 24, 2009 03:56 AM #23
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Rainer
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Russell Benson

We'd love to close your deal at Old Republic!
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