I showed a handful of houses the other day. Today I received two calls from two owners/sellers of those homes. The startling fact: Neither home is my listing. The sellers were calling me to ask for showing feedback as well as tips to sell their home. I was a bit taken aback--I asked if they had a limited service listing with their agent. The answer was no. I politely asked why their agent wasn't calling me. They told me that they can never get a hold of him and that it takes too long to get information. I'm sure that these sellers aren't the only two feeling this way. But I have to ask myself, why do they put up with it?
Selling a home usually the largest financial transaction that the average person does in his/her lifetime. I would think a homeowner would want someone that is truly working on their behalf, working for their money and working at it full time.
In my opinion a great Realtor would have the following characteristics:
1. Communication skills. At the very least a Realtor should have the courtesy and respect for the client to return a phone call. Promptly. However, a Realtor needs also to be skilled in communicating respectfully with all parties whether it be asking for feedback, presenting offers and counter offers, diffusing difficult situations (vs. adding to them) and giving sometimes bad news.
2. Pride in their Listing to present them professionally. This means three things:
- Staging the home to put its best foot forward. It doesn't have to even be done professionally! A Realtor who fails to educate their seller about how to prepare their home for sale, isn't marketing the home.
- QUALITY PICTURES. A buyer is not going to buy what they can't see--worse--they won't even get in the door.
- Professional flyers and advertisements.
3. Strong Internet Marketing skills. According to the National Association of Realtors, over 80% of buyers start their home search on-line. What websites is your Realtor on? Do they even have a website? Do they know about Craigslist or v-flyers?
4. Knowledge of the Market. I have lost a few listings in my time. Why? Because I will not lie to a seller and tell them they can get $X just so I can have my sign in the yard. In my opinion, a Realtor who takes an overpriced listing is one that hasn't researched the market or lacks the communication skills to effectively educate the seller about why overpricing the house is a great disservice to them.
Thanks for tuning in...
Kara Thomas, Realtor, Accredited Staging Professional, Photography Enthusiast, Internet Advertiser and Real Estate Junky!