It’s Good to be the Queen - If I ruled the (real estate) world, Part II

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Education & Training with Sell with Soul

I wrote two unrelated blogs yesterday - one about how I would rule the (real estate) world and another about how we real estate-types are put in an awkward position when negotiating our commission with sellers.

After a day and night to ponder my blogs and the commentary, I realize that these two blogs are indeed, very closely related!

To summarize blog #1 - I am currently negotiating a contract for a book deal. The person I’m negotiating with will also be my editor, if we come to agreement. So, this guy has to first wine me and dine me (cyberly-speaking) to pique my interest, then he has to put on his a&&-hole hat and negotiate against me – but after that, we have to work closely together over the next year to produce a killer product (my book). So, he has to build my trust, then shatter it, then build it again.

queenBlog #2 was a little ditty about how if I were Queen (that is, a managing broker), I would require my agents to convince me that their listings are worthy of my sign in the yard. Thus, any seller who wants to be honored with my sign has to sell US on HIM! Instead of the other way around.

So here’s my point.

We real estate agents are in the exact same position as my potential editor. We have to build the rapport that encourages our prospects to like us and trust us. Then we have to risk trashing that rapport and trust while we negotiate our commission and list price. If the seller hires us, we have to somehow rebuild the trust and rapport so that we can work together to get the home sold. It’s a tough job description.

What might be really cool would be to apply the car dealership technique of requiring management approval on any deal struck between buyer and seller, that is, listing agent and seller prospect. Here’s how it would work...

Agent meets with seller and builds rapport. Once rapport and trust are established, the financial discussions begin (commission and list price). Agent and seller work TOGETHER to come up with a proposal for the Queen to approve. The agent cannot accept a listing without that approval. Together, the agent and his new best friend, the seller, create a marketing plan which includes the list price, the agents’s commitments to the seller, the seller’s commitments to the agent, along with a proposed commission to be paid upon success. Both parties know that they have to present a reasonable proposal to the Queen or it will be rejected.

Let the Queen be the bad guy! It lets the agent off the hook, while bringing the seller more into the process of selling the home. Best of all, the agent never has to switch hats!!!

Under this scenario, I, as Queen, would be tickled to market the hell out of any listings that are deemed worthy.

I love it. Do you?

 

http://www.sellwithsoul.com/

Copyright Jennifer Allan 2007

 

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Rainmaker
241,951
Brad Snyder
Sierra Vista Realty - Sierra Vista, AZ

Another great post......  I read your post yesterday and enjoyed it, though this one is missing your crown!!

Have a great day!!

Sep 15, 2007 12:39 AM #1
Ambassador
2,738,698
Lenn Harley
Lenn Harley, Homefinders.com, MD & VA Homes and Real Estate - Leesburg, VA
Real Estate Broker - Virginia & Maryland

This is genius.  The agents better be confident that what they're bringing to the broker is the best that they can do. 

Since fees are negotiable, I'm wondering if the agents have the authority to negotiate the fee with the sellers based on the price agreed, condition, duties agreed, etc.  Then, when the listing is presented to the broker, does the broker intercede when homes are overpriced or not in condition to sell???

This is so complicated.  Glad I usually work with buyers.

Sep 15, 2007 12:44 AM #2
Rainmaker
223,010
John MacArthur
Century 21 Redwood - Washington, DC
Licensed Maryland/DC Realtor, Metro DC Homes

No. I don't love it. I don't want to "wine and dine" the client regarding commission and list price. One of those items is my value to the client and the other is what the client perceives the value of their home to be.

Before I walk into the door of a home, I have a reasonably good idea of what the list price should be. I also have a very good idea as to what it will take to market that home in relation to the other homes I am currently marketing.

I won't work for less than I believe I am worth and I won't bother attempting to sell a home that is off the mark a great deal on the high side as far as price is concerned.

I would refuse to work with any broker that had to sign off on every deal. There are acceptable limits regarding commissions charged already. The broker already determines how much of the commission earned they will share with the agent.

I am a self employed contractor and if it is my business, I prefer to run it as such. Your plan would have agents become somewhat emotionally invested in the approval process and too much emotion may prevent selling with soul. The clients best interest must come first and sometimes that is at odds with the agent or the queen.

Sep 15, 2007 01:03 AM #3
Rainmaker
484,157
Jennifer Allan-Hagedorn
Sell with Soul - Pensacola Beach, FL
Author of Sell with Soul

Well, I wouldn't expect seasoned agents to love the idea, but I think it would be a wonderful solution for the newer agents among us who don't have their listing skills perfected. Perhaps the system could be finetuned to where once an agent has 20 Queen-approved listings, they are on their own. I'm sure there are lots of logistical details to be worked out, but I like the overall concept of creating a joint partnership between the Seller and Listing Agent that isn't muddied by all the hard-core negotiating nonsense associated with price and commission negotiation.

What I didn't say in my blogs because I didn't feel like being adversarial is that most of the training agents get from the Old School Masters on how to negotiate commission and list price is so patronizing and condescending. Scripts and graphs and pre-printed propaganda that turn my stomach -- and would immediately turn me off if a salesperson pulled on me. I"d have trouble trusting that person afterwards. 

I hate the adversarial nature and wasted time of commission negotiation. All that time and energy would be so much better spent learning about the seller's needs, educating him on market realities and showing him how he can help. 

I think I'm off-topic now...  

Sep 15, 2007 01:30 AM #4
Rainmaker
150,060
Janie Coffey
First Coast Sotheby’s International Realty - Ponte Vedra, FL
Uniting Extraordinary Homes w/ Extraordinary Lives
my partner and I use the "good cop bad cop" thing often.  usually not intentionally, it just comes out that way, but it works.  It let's you deliver the "dirty stuff" (ie commission, concessions, list price, etc.) without having to be the total bad guy yet stand up for yourself.  Great analogy!
Sep 15, 2007 01:50 AM #5
Rainmaker
592,907
William J. Archambault, Jr.
The Real Estate Investment Institute - Houston, TX

Jennifer,

If professional means more than being paid, the "Professional" must recognize his own worth. Respecting your self is as important as respecting others.

Bill

William J Archambault Jr

The Real Estate Investment Institute

First National Mortgage Sources

Sep 15, 2007 02:27 AM #6
Ambassador
890,780
Lane Bailey
Century 21 Results Realty - Suwanee, GA
Realtor & Car Guy
I keep thinking about opening up a brokerage where the agents are employees.  There would be generous pay, as well as bonuses... and now there is this "General Sales Manager" thing you mentioned creeping into the background...
Sep 15, 2007 02:42 AM #7
Rainmaker
484,157
Jennifer Allan-Hagedorn
Sell with Soul - Pensacola Beach, FL
Author of Sell with Soul

Janie - Yes, Good Cop, Bad Cop - that's exactly the concept! But not to manipulate - rather to build an honest-to-goodness relationship between the two most important parties.

Bill - I think when you respect yourself, you tend to respect others more! Good point.

Lane - Well,,, let's brainstorm!

Sep 15, 2007 09:21 AM #8
Rainer
178,223
Birmingham Alabama Real Estate, Stephen Wolfe
LivingInBirmingham.com - Birmingham, AL
All hail Queen Jennifer. Another great idea. True, they are related to the other posts, but still make so much sense. It is just easy to get behind something that is right.
Sep 15, 2007 09:38 AM #9
Rainmaker
65,014
Crystal Pina
774.289.5521 - Worcester, MA
Remax Professional Associates
Jennifer, I'm always amazed at the way your mind works. You're always thinking outside the box.
Sep 19, 2007 01:07 PM #10
Rainmaker
91,326
Sue Gabriel
Cleveland, OH

As a new agent, I LOVE the idea!!  Actually, my manager is already the "big bad Queen" in most instances.  "Blame ME!", she often tells me.  I love my manager, by the way!  : )

This week is my official training, and we were told yesterday that when a seller asks, "Will you lower your commission?" we're to say "Sorry, I can't do that, but thanks for asking!  Now, let's get started marketing your home!!"  Or something to that affect.

We'll see how it goes when I get my first listing appointment.

And I also LOVE the crown from your earlier post.  : )

 

 

 

Sep 20, 2007 11:32 PM #11
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Rainmaker
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Jennifer Allan-Hagedorn

Author of Sell with Soul
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