|Are You Feeling the Squeeze?|
Here’s the best way I’ve found to deal with closing on commission questions.
Start with pulling a search from your MLS of all the competing actives within the serviceable area (all the homes you would potentially show a buyer that would be interested in the listing). You’ll want to bring this with you to the listing appointment with the CMA.
After you have established the listing price and have found their motivation, take out your print-outs of the “actives” sorted by the percentage being offered to the buyer’s agent. Explain that the buyers’ agent’s commission is a marketing cost and “would you like your house to be placed toward the top of this list or would you like your home to be at the bottom of the list.” Then shut up and wait for an answer. This will be a logical decision based on empirical data which you are giving them. Write the number that they give you at the top of that sheet and set it to the side.
Once the selling side of the commission is established you can start on your side. You have two different tact’s you can take: The first and the one I recommend is to simply say “My listing fee is X%” (X being your ideal negotiable commission for the listing side). When we split the commission it for some reason in psychologically easier to swallow. People aren’t stupid they will add the two numbers together; however, if we can justify how we got the big scary number of a full commission they feel better. Remember the buyer’s agent is a logical decision, you are an emotional one.
The second, if you are feeling uncomfortable with saying you charge Y%, is to say to the seller “You have decided to give X% to a buyer’s agent who’s job it is to negotiate against us and make our lives difficult. How much would you like to give to your advocate?” I have found that that with those which we are coaching, this dialog nets them equal or greater than commission percentages that is being offered to the buyer’s agent every time.
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