To be honest, I’m really surprised how busy the market is when this time of year is normally a little quieter.
What are the reasons behind this? I’m not entirely sure but I’m not going to argue with it!
Today, I’ll complete my final installment on “Top 10 Seller Myths & Misconceptions”…
- “I’ll list with the agent who can offer me the lowest commission” – Following on from Misconception Number 7 (“I’ll list with the agent who can get me the highest price”), this one is just as dangerous. What some sellers may not realize is that the agent who can achieve the highest price actually works out the cheapest. I shared a situation in a previous blurb around 6 months ago where I listed a home that had previously been on the market for more than 2 years with 3 different agents. These owners were careful to choose agents who offered the lowest commissions with the intention of keeping as much money as they could on their bottom line. The outcome was not looking good and after 2 years on the market, the owners received an offer of $450,000 which the agent advised them was the highest they would achieve so they “Should accept it immediately”…according to the agent. I had just sold the home of their best friend who recommended that they speak with me to gain another opinion prior to accepting. After viewing it for a few minutes, it was obvious that they were about to drastically undersell it by a long way. I spent some time recommending that they spend a few dollars (around $1800 in total) on some quality marketing initiatives and a few hundred dollars on some soft furnishings that brightened the home…but as they wanted to avoid this cost and were concerned that my commission was around $3000 higher than their current agent, they were reluctant to proceed. After deliberating for a few days, they made the decision to reject the offer and run with my ideas and 2 weeks later, we had their property sold for $500,000. The net result was that I was almost $45,000 cheaper than their previous agent after taking into consideration the extra commission and the $2500 they spent on marketing and a few items designed to enhance the presentation
- “Agent X offers free marketing including free internet coverage and free professional photography. I don’t want to pay for these things” – In a world that’s ideal for sellers, an agent would pay for every conceivable marketing initiative that offers no risk whatsoever. The fact is that most agents who do pay for a client’s marketing, often significantly compromise on the quality. In the previous example above, all 3 agents provided photography that was completely free (two of them took their own photos whilst one did engage a ‘professional’ photographer) and all provided ‘free’ internet coverage. Now there’s no question that I could have offered the exact same service but to achieve the highest possible price, it was vital to engage the best possible photographer and display the property so that it would be placed in a prominent position to achieve the right buyer. Interestingly, the buyer who purchased this home had been looking for 3 months and either hadn’t seen it or hadn’t taken any notice of it if they did see it online. Here’s another example – let’s say you took your car to two different mechanics and the first one told you that he could fix it for $1000 but the appropriate parts would cost around $800 to fix the problem properly and the second mechanic told you that he could fix your car for the same price and he would throw the parts in for free. Would it not make sense to question the quality of the parts he would use? The vast majority of the time, the quick fix of installing cheaper parts would result in the requirement for more required work on the car and ultimately, a more expensive proposition.
- “All agents are a bunch of lying, cheating vermin who couldn’t care one bit about anything other than being paid a commission” – The sad fact is that there are elements of truth to this statement for a large number of agents (perhaps they’re not vermin but the rest of this statement may not be altogether inappropriate.) To be honest, I hear many stories about the conduct of agents and I’m appalled at some of the things I hear. Agents who have been charged with serious conduct breaches have often been handed very small penalties and still been allowed to continue working in the industry. More than 80% of our business comes from referrals – many from past clients and lately I’ve received a number of referrals from sellers who have properties listed with me that I haven’t yet sold. I’ve based my entire operation upon the philosophy that “If we forget about the commission and hold people’s best interests at heart, you’ll have more business than you can imagine” This might sound a little soppy but any reputable business owner in any industry will agree. So the truth is that many agents do act out of sheer desperation to feed their families but the few agents that have solid continual success are more likely to offer you a solution with no associated agenda, irrespective of what’s in it for them.
So that completes this three part series on a “Seller’s Top 10 Myths & Misconceptions”.
Over the next few weeks, I’ll share with you what I believe to be the “Top 10 Myths About Real Estate Agents” …and some of these may surprise you!
Until next week, Happy Listing & Happy Selling!