When you are thinking about selling, you are the most wanted person in real estate. Every agent wants to be the chosen agent who ‘lists’ your home. Homes for sale are called ‘listings’ – and, to any agent, many listings mean many sales.
The Quote Trap
If you choose an agent purely on quoted price, you could make a huge mistake. Thousands of sellers have learned, from bitter experience, that the price the agents quote and the price they get are different prices.
But it is very hard to ignore some agents. When an agent, who is supposed to be a professional, says your home is worth a huge amount, it is very tempting. However, most sellers forget one vital fact: the agents are biased. If they quote you a price and their competitor quotes a higher price, they risk losing your business.
And if they lose, they don’t get paid.
Agents who tell the truth often lose business to agents who tell lies. This puts the honest agents in a terrible situation. If they tell the truth, they risk rejection. This is why they avoid the price and say: “It’s hard to judge exactly. It depends on the market. Let’s not put a price on it. Let’s auction and see what happens.”
Agents are terrified of homesellers who say, “Tell me what my home is worth”, and that is why they will do all they can to avoid what is known as “The Price Issue”.
The Price Issue
Agents often say they do not know how much a home is worth. But, no matter what they say, they do know. They just do not want to tell sellers and risk losing the business.
If you demand a quick quote on your home’s selling price, many agents will either avoid the price or inflate the price. This is not like getting a painting quote. Remember, the agent is not the buyer of your home, he or she is the person who finds and negotiates with the buyer. You are looking for the best agent to sell your home.
It is similar to a job interview. The job description is: an agent you like who will get you the highest price possible and who will be honest with you.
The best question to ask an agent is: “What will you do to get the best price for my home?”
Allow the agent time to answer this question. If you demand instant answers to “How much is my home worth?” and “How much is your commission?”, instead of “What will you do?”, you will probably be told lies. Or, even worse, you will miss the best agent.
The above is an extract from the book Real Estate Mistakes.