Nick shares some tips on what sellers should look for in a real estate agent - one may surprise you! Plus, he outlines some suggestions on how agents can better serve their clients and some of the many tools BHHS Warren Residential offers that you may not find at other companies.
As people start preparing their home for sale and looking for a real estate agent, what 3 tips would you give a seller in making their choice of agent?
Don’t work with someone just because they are a friend or relative or were referred by someone you know. Many sellers hire an agent through a referral of some sort or by picking someone they already know. This is a great way to find an agent but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t do your homework. You should still take the time to look them up online and have them come in and give you a full presentation on how they would sell your home. I would suggest interviewing at least 2-3 agents before choosing one.
Personality Matters! Just because an agent is the top selling agent in your neighborhood doesn’t mean they are the best choice to sell your home. You are going to be spending a lot of time working with them throughout the process so it is important to pick someone that is on the same page as you. Some agents are very driven and aggressive which can be effective but tough to work with while others are less “salesy” but take the time to understand what your specific goals are and will work together with you to achieve them. Make sure you hire someone you are comfortable with.
Ask for a marketing plan. While it is great to connect with someone based on their personality, they still have to show you how they are going to get the job done. Ask the agent’s whom you are interviewing for a detailed marketing plan. Any professional agent should be able to give you clear details on deliverables such as professional photography, 3D tours, property websites, etc. as well as how they plan to expose your property to the potential buyer pool. If their plan only consists of listing it on MLS which automatically posts it on Zillow then I’d keep looking for someone else!
As an agent, what do you think are the most important things to consider as they work on better serving their clients this year?
Simply put, better and more effective communication is what I recommend focusing on. Generally, the biggest issues that clients have with their real estate agents stem from poor communication. There are some simple tools and techniques that agents can use to improve their communication.
Figure out which method of communication your client is most comfortable with and use it. Everyone communicates differently. Some clients prefer to always talk on the phone while others are extremely busy and prefer text or email. Agents should make this one of the first things they ask their clients when starting to work with them.
Create a structured plan for following up and updating your clients. An agent’s CRM is their communication hub. Most of the top platforms out there allow an agent to create systematic updates for clients throughout a transaction. An agent can save a lot of time while improving their customer service by creating a series of email templates that go out to their clients and vendors automatically at different stages of a transaction. These help keep the client informed and lets them know that the agent is on top of what is happening.
Get back to people right away. By creating a system of automatic updates, agents will eliminate a lot of the frantic calls from clients during a transaction. However, there are always going to be curveballs thrown which cause a client to reach out to an agent for an answer. The most important thing an agent can do is to respond right away, even if they don’t have an answer for them.
How does BHHS Warren Residential support agents?
The way I think about the relationship between the brokerage and its agents is one of a business partnership. Partnerships only work if both parties feel like they are getting value from one another. I know that every single one of our agents has the choice to work for us or go somewhere else so my #1 priority as the broker/owner of BHHS Warren Residential is to continually find more ways to add value to our agent's individual businesses. We do that through services such as individual agent coaching/consulting, business planning, and group strategy sessions as well as by providing the right tools and technology for their specific businesses.
I also prioritize an environment of support, creativity, positive energy. and open communication. I make sure my agents know that I have an open door policy and that I value the ideas and feedback they share with me, whether it is positive or negative.