Zillow Advice: Buying Process - Buyers and Sellers - What are the top 5 traits you want in your real estate agent? http://www.zillow.com/advice-thread/Buyers-and-Sellers-What-are-the-top-5-traits-you-want-in-your-real-estate-agent/402351/ Zillow Advice | Zillow Real Estate Great stuff Realtors! Thanks ... http://www.zillow.com/advice-thread/Buyers-and-Sellers-What-are-the-top-5-traits-you-want-in-your-real-estate-agent/402351/ Great stuff Realtors! Thanks for taking the time to share your thoughts. Would love to hear from actual buyers and sellers - What do you want? Fri, 10 Jun 2011 16:21:00 GMT http://www.zillow.com/advice-thread/Buyers-and-Sellers-What-are-the-top-5-traits-you-want-in-your-real-estate-agent/402351/ 2011-06-10T16:21:00Z Dan, "the_country_hick" provided ... http://www.zillow.com/advice-thread/Buyers-and-Sellers-What-are-the-top-5-traits-you-want-in-your-real-estate-agent/402351/ Dan, "the_country_hick" provided the best and most well thought out response...and I think the question posted in this forum was an excellent one.<br/><br/>Something simple that I do with my clients and that I would suggest other agents use is a calendar.&nbsp; Whether working with a buyer or seller, understanding average DOM and showing that on a calendar is very powerful.&nbsp; If you work in a large area, you really should understand these numbers for each community - and clients should be asking us if we know.&nbsp; Shame on us if we don't.&nbsp; Believe it or not, this becomes a value-add and how you communicate this to your clients will either win or lose a potential client.<br/><br/>Taking this a step further, I believe there are 10 vital stats you should know about your market and be prepared to share with clients:<br/><br/>1. Total Active Listings<br/>2. Median List Price (I prefer to average price as it eliminates the very low or very high priced homes skewing the data)<br/>3. Number of Pending Sales (are homes moving?)<br/>4. Median Sales Price<br/>5. SP/LP Ratio (I prefer to use the original list price)<br/>6. DOM<br/>7. Number of Sales YTD<br/>8. Number of Expired Listings<br/>9. Overall Appreciation (are prices up or down)<br/>10. # Months Inventory<br/><br/>If you work with distressed properties, you should know this data as well and you should be prepared to explain the data.&nbsp; As with any of this data, don't just spew the data.&nbsp; Many people can look this type of data up online.&nbsp; Explain what it really means, and if you can tie it to something specific in your community, even better.&nbsp; Demonstrate knowledge.<br/><br/>Another tool that I started using early last year was an expectations agreement that I put together myself.&nbsp; All it lays out, once we decided to work together, is what each of us should expect from each other.&nbsp; Communication methods and frequency (remember, the #1 complaint from clients is lack of communication...and that could simply be because how often you'd communicate was never defined), what my job is, etc, etc.&nbsp; It's easy reading and nothing heavy.&nbsp; I'd be happy to share it...just drop me an email.&nbsp; As a very wise person once told me, "The root cause of all conflict is the violation of expectation."&nbsp; Be the professional and define the expectations so everything is very clear for both sides.&nbsp; If you don't define them, the client will insert his/her own and will hold you to a standard you're not aware of.<br/><br/>Economics - Dan and I have discussed this in a separate thread.&nbsp; Just consider - it's a great tool to get buyers off the fence.&nbsp; He makes a solid point in this regard and it shows you're a professional.&nbsp; If the client still doesn't get it, then using Dan's example, show them a $200k home and a $153k home and they'll get it quickly.<br/><br/>Working for free.&nbsp; Funny.&nbsp; As with anything, don't make grandiose claims unless you can prove what you say.&nbsp; People want to work with somebody honest above almost all else.&nbsp; This goes in line with agents working distressed properties and taking on distressed listings with no experience in doing so.&nbsp; If you can't provide true value to the client, be a pro and put them in touch with somebody who can and take the referral fee (or ask for the more experienced agent to work with you so you can gain the experience).&nbsp; Do no harm! Fri, 10 Jun 2011 01:18:00 GMT http://www.zillow.com/advice-thread/Buyers-and-Sellers-What-are-the-top-5-traits-you-want-in-your-real-estate-agent/402351/ 2011-06-10T01:18:00Z Michael,Thanks so much for ... http://www.zillow.com/advice-thread/Buyers-and-Sellers-What-are-the-top-5-traits-you-want-in-your-real-estate-agent/402351/ Michael,<br/><br/>Thanks so much for your very detailed and precise answer! Very helpful. Thu, 09 Jun 2011 02:34:00 GMT http://www.zillow.com/advice-thread/Buyers-and-Sellers-What-are-the-top-5-traits-you-want-in-your-real-estate-agent/402351/ 2011-06-09T02:34:00Z Cari, this is easy to state ... http://www.zillow.com/advice-thread/Buyers-and-Sellers-What-are-the-top-5-traits-you-want-in-your-real-estate-agent/402351/ Cari, this is easy to state 5. But could include a lot more than 5 things<br/><br/>1 NEVER repeat a NAR backed anything. They have zero credibility and accuracy based on the past several years.<br/><br/>2 Know the real situation in your area. <br/>What is the average DOM<br/>How many months of inventory are there?<br/>Is sales volume increasing or decreasing as an overall trend?<br/>What percentage of sales are distressed properties?<br/><br/>3 Understand and explain basic economics. Show how low interest rates only create higher house prices. Do the math and show how interest rates rising from 5% to 7% will remove 23.7% of buying power. Explain how that one factor alone will turn the same monthly payment from a 5% $200k mortgage into a 7% $153k mortgage.<br/><br/>4 Do not say you work for free. Explain your value but be able to prove what you say. If you say buying with you as an agent gets a buyer a lower price show several instances where that really happened it could not have without your assistance.<br/><br/>5 Have a talk with your buyers about expectations up front. Once you agree to work with each other define the relationship. Will you only send them emails once a week showing new listings? Will you answer the phone any time of the day or night? Will you not bother them at all unless they phone you first?<br/><br/>Both the buyer (or seller) and real estate agent will have expectations up front. If you do not sit down and explain to each other what both expect and require things will go badly. Once each knows what to expect it should be much smoother. After working together for a week or 2 call or email (whichever they prefer) them and see if they want something you did not give them. Then every month (say the first week) again ask how they like your service and what else they want to make this better for them. Thu, 09 Jun 2011 02:23:00 GMT http://www.zillow.com/advice-thread/Buyers-and-Sellers-What-are-the-top-5-traits-you-want-in-your-real-estate-agent/402351/ 2011-06-09T02:23:00Z My clients feedback most ... http://www.zillow.com/advice-thread/Buyers-and-Sellers-What-are-the-top-5-traits-you-want-in-your-real-estate-agent/402351/ My clients feedback most always mentions timley response to calls and emails. Thu, 09 Jun 2011 01:57:00 GMT http://www.zillow.com/advice-thread/Buyers-and-Sellers-What-are-the-top-5-traits-you-want-in-your-real-estate-agent/402351/ 2011-06-09T01:57:00Z In tune with today's "real" ... http://www.zillow.com/advice-thread/Buyers-and-Sellers-What-are-the-top-5-traits-you-want-in-your-real-estate-agent/402351/ In tune with today's "real" market. Thu, 09 Jun 2011 01:20:00 GMT http://www.zillow.com/advice-thread/Buyers-and-Sellers-What-are-the-top-5-traits-you-want-in-your-real-estate-agent/402351/ 2011-06-09T01:20:00Z Thanks Joseph! Wealthy? What ... http://www.zillow.com/advice-thread/Buyers-and-Sellers-What-are-the-top-5-traits-you-want-in-your-real-estate-agent/402351/ Thanks Joseph! Wealthy? What about new agents? Thu, 09 Jun 2011 00:35:00 GMT http://www.zillow.com/advice-thread/Buyers-and-Sellers-What-are-the-top-5-traits-you-want-in-your-real-estate-agent/402351/ 2011-06-09T00:35:00Z Attractive, Wealthy, Intelligent, ... http://www.zillow.com/advice-thread/Buyers-and-Sellers-What-are-the-top-5-traits-you-want-in-your-real-estate-agent/402351/ Attractive, Wealthy, Intelligent, Honest, Understanding.<br/><br/>Oh, wait that is a spouse.&nbsp; Eh, probably works works for an agent too. Thu, 09 Jun 2011 00:11:00 GMT http://www.zillow.com/advice-thread/Buyers-and-Sellers-What-are-the-top-5-traits-you-want-in-your-real-estate-agent/402351/ 2011-06-09T00:11:00Z