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Do you make a good first impression?

By
Real Estate Broker/Owner with CENTURY 21 Professional Group, Inc.

Picture this...I get an offer from an agent via email.  The offer is 20MB and in pieces so it's virtually impossible to open on a mobile device.  Once I get to a computer to view it, I see the agent has hand written the offer, written "Owner of Record" as the seller and left out numerous spots on the offer.  When I try to email them back, their email is full as is their voice mail.  Extreme, yes, but not totally uncommon is it?

The phrase "you only get one chance to make a first impression" is pretty true and can have a huge impact on a consumer when buying or selling a home.  Often times a buyer does not know what goes on behind the scenes of the offer and how it effects their chances of getting the home they want.  So the question is, does your agent make a good first impression?  The scenario above does happen, and in some cases, right out of the chute the buyers agent sets the wrong tone.  When a listing agent gets a call from a buyers agent that does not know what they are doing, it's frustrating.  Many times that agent will call to set an appointment, when they have no idea when the buyer can see it.  They use random times like "sometime tomorrow" or "the afternoon".  Now I know they don't intend on being vague in requesting an appointment, but they fail to realize that as the listing agent, we need accurate times so the seller can prepare. This too sets the tone for how the potential transaction may go.  

If you are in the market to buy a home, you need to make sure your agent is on top of things and properly representing you, not just legally, but in appearance.  A good agent will take the time to draw up an offer properly with all of the required forms and information.  In some circumstances, it may be hand written, but in all cases, it should be filled out completely.  Let me share a story that explains.

A year or so ago, I listed a home in a competitive area.  We received multiple offers above the asking price.  The top 2 were presented side by side and were apart by $500.00.  Both agents were hoping to get the deal and were great as far as communication went.  Here was the issue.   One offer, the higher one, looked different from the other.  The lower offer was typed, and on the current contract.  The other was hand written, with changes scratched out and on the older version of the contract that was from the year prior.  When the seller asked about the two different appearances of the offers, I explained that one was on the current contract and the other was on the outdated one.  The seller chose the offer that was better presented because she felt that the agent on the other end was going to be better at getting the deal properly closed.  That offer was lower than the other offer.  When I informed the other agent that his deal was not accepted and why, I got an earful.  I explained to him that the seller, not me, made the decision.  She went with her gut.  You see, what this other agent didn't know, was that the seller was a high end administrative assistant with Walt Disney World and probably one of the most detail oriented people he would never meet.  His lack of attention to detail was a great concern to the seller and with a difference of $500.00, she still felt more confident with the other agent.  First impressions matter.

 

Holleay Parcker - Spinnaker Realty - Serving Clients From Corolla to Hatteras
SPINNAKER REALTY LLC - Kitty Hawk, NC
With 14 Yrs Experience in Outer Banks Real Estate

Hi David;

I would have done the same thing, if I had been that seller...

First impressions matter so much that I make sure my offer is completely and correctly filled out; I do not present it until I have a prequal letter from the lender to accompany it; and if property we are offering on is priced higher than the market, I submit comparable recent sales to support our offer price.

I typically use Docusign, so the offer comes in crisp and clear, as it has not been faxed back and forth.

My email signature is professional, with logos bearing a few of my credentials with the rest of them listed underneath. My email address goes through my own domain name, instead of a generic yahoo or gmail account.

I also text the listing agent to alert them that I have just emailed them an offer, in the event they are out showing property with clients and aren't planning on checking their email for a few hours. 

It is unfortunate for the buyer who missed out on the property because their agent did not bother to present their offer in a professional manner.  

Consumers often approach real estate in a backwards  manner - they attempt to thoroughly research available properties, and pay scant attention to the qualifications of the agent they hire.  When in reality, they should thoroughly research the AGENT instead, because the right agent will assist them in finding the right property...and at the right price.  

 

 

Mar 24, 2015 12:45 AM
Robert Enslen
Orlando, FL

Absolutely, your first impression is the most important.  People's perception of you and how you carry yourself will determine how they interact with you (whether positive or negative!).

Mar 26, 2015 03:11 AM
Nitza Hernandez Geiger
Century 21 Professional Group, Inc. - Orlando, FL

First impressions are extremely important. I was fortunate to have an offer accepted, in a multiple offer situation, because, as the agent stated, my offer was presented clearly and complete.

How we present an offer is indicative of the quality of service we offer and how we will represent our clients.

Mar 26, 2015 07:28 AM