Are you Just Making Small Talk?
Or is it Building a Relationship to Help Your Buyers
Sometimes making small talk is a good thing, and not a waste of time. At least depending on what you are chatting about, and with whom.
In our competitive market many properties are getting multiple offers, and to compete effectively you must put your best offer forward.
Obviously terms and conditions, price, financial qualifications, a complete and well-constructed offer, and other matters are important in order to have a good shot at being the winning offer.
But developing a positive relationship with the listing agent early on is essential, too, in my book. Why not get to know the other person a bit while you are finding out what the seller is looking for (e.g., closing time, need for a potential rent back, what appliances are conveying and what’s not) and anything else that might be important for crafting a strong offer for your buyer.
A good relationship can work wonders when your offer is being presented and the listing agent has good things to say about you, knowing you, or having met you over the phone or in person.
Oh, it won’t make up for a low offer or one where the buyer’s terms, conditions and price are not as favorable as other offers.
But my belief is a positive relationship from the beginning, and a demonstration of good communication and follow-up (text, phone, email), and a spirit of cooperation, as you are preparing for the offer, and afterwards, can make a world of difference to the other agent.
I’ve had the same experience on the listing side and I know how it makes me feel.
Of course the opposite is true, too!
If you give the listing agent a bad impression from the start, with your attitude, rudeness, or poor communication skills, that could be difficult for them to overcome. In any case they are NOT likely to look forward to the possibility of having to work with you!
The relationship-building starts when you make that first phone call to show the house (or text, or email) – depending on the showing instructions. A polite exchange, even if not live conversation, leaves a positive first impression, especially with an agent you do not know. Even if the instructions are to call the seller directly, which is common here, I like to contact the agent personally to ask a couple of clarifying questions if it makes sense to do so.
And it’s a good idea, if you have to leave a message or get an email or text, to respond promptly as this conveys a good, and responsive, communication style. Another way to leave a good impression!
I particularly like making small talk (and by small I don’t necessarily mean unimportant blather) with the other agent as we get to know each other at the start of what will hopefully become an important business relationship with our clients.
It’s even better when I can meet the agent face-to-face and eye-to-eye, at an open house as I did today, whether my clients are present or not. I’m always careful to only have a conversation when it can be done privately, and of course am careful about what I share and what I ask.
But by engaging in a conversation you often learn all kinds of things that can be useful…like what the process or timing for reviewing offers might be, or the hot buttons for the seller. And a friendly, cooperative interaction can set the tone for the future.
This is just part of doing the right thing for my buyer clients!!