Selling a home is an important financial transaction, probably the largest one that most people will ever make. Competition among agents is as fierce as ever and sellers are becoming more and more selective.
So how do you differentiate yourself in a crowded marketplace? There are actually several things you can do to start attracting more clients and get more referrals.
It’s important to understand what sellers are looking for in order to effectively meet their needs.
The following is a list of the top 10 things sellers are looking for in a real estate agent.
- Honest Pricing.Never tell a seller you can sell their home for a higher price than is really possible just to attract their business. It will cause a lot of disappointment down the road, and is not a great way to build a solid reputation.
- Have Expertise in Your Area. Sellers want an agent who is active in their area and specializes in properties similar to theirs.
- Great Marketing Plan.These days, sellers want to see a comprehensive marketing plan that includes online listing methods. Make sure you are up to date with the latest techniques.
- Be Responsive.Always answer your phone when you can and make sure to reply to missed calls and email messages promptly, in 24 hours or less.
- Have Great References. Sellers will often ask for references, so make sure you have some past clients lined up who are willing to give you a great recommendation.
- Certifications. Sellers like to see certifications that let them know that you have gone above and beyond in your field. If you have certifications make sure to emphasize that.
- Honesty and Integrity. No one likes a snake oil salesman. Even if you can land a new client or make a quick sale using deceptive practices, being honest with your sellers is the way to get recommendations and create future business.
- A Comprehensive Website. Sellers will typically look for an agent online first, so it’s important to have a strong online presence.
- Negotiating Skills. A large part of the process is coming to an agreement on price, repairs, etc. You have to be able to close the deal to sell the home.
- Fair and Upfront Fees. Disclose your fees upfront and don’t try to sneak in hidden costs.
You can use this information to market yourself to sellers and build a great reputation. The most successful agents are the ones who put their client’s needs ahead of making a sale.