Not every real estate agent has their clients’ best interests in mind. There are some bad apples in the industry that come across as a vocal minority much of the time.
Luckily, consumers today have the internet: a wealth of information, knowledge, and resources. It is easier than ever to see through slimy and dishonest sales tactics.
Today, honest agents are rewarded for putting their clients first. Here are five slimy sales tactics you should avoid, and some recommended alternatives:
A perfect sales pitch in real estate often involves more listening than talking
Respect your clients’ boundaries; don’t push their budget or insult their tastes
Communicate honestly when answering questions and making commitments
1) Pushing them to make an offer before they’re ready.
In a competitive real estate market, you have to move fast if you’re serious about a listing. This is where some agents might be tempted to push their clients to make an offer they aren’t ready to make.
Do this instead: Inform your clients that this listing won’t last long, but also stress the importance of only making an offer on a home they LOVE.
2) Talking more than listening.
We’ve all experienced the dreaded Sales Pitch—a sales rep yammering on and on about why we need THIS product NOW! In real estate, this translates to the agent telling the buyer what they want…instead of listening.
Don’t do all the talking.
Do this instead: Learn about your client’s wants and needs so you can connect them with the perfect home. It’s not about you, and what you want them to buy. It’s about helping them find their dream home.Here’s a great blog post that might help!
3) Disregarding their budget.
When my husband was apartment hunting (way back in the day, before we were married), he asked the leasing agent for the cheapest unit they had.
The leasing agent’s reply: “Oh, you don’t want the one-bedroom. The layout is weird. You walk through the door, and the living room is RIGHT THERE.” Um, okay.
It was annoying, and even though my husband did end up living there (he was a recent college grad with no money, so he didn’t have many options), he did stay in the one-bedroom, and he did tell everyone what a crappy experience it was.
Don’t try to stretch your buyer’s budget just so you can get more commission.
Do this instead: Focus on saving them money. They’ll love you for it, and they’ll reward you with repeat and referral business.
4) Insulting them.
If they have their heart set on a galley kitchen, don’t try to push a different property on them by laughing and saying, “Really? A galley kitchen? When you could have this gorgeous open plan?” Don’t act like they’re stupid for wanting something that doesn’t have as high a resale value or isn’t as “stylish.” Don’t insult prospects’ tastes, opinions, or budgets.
Do this instead: Ask them WHY they want the galley kitchen, and LISTEN to their reasons. Then, if you feel they truly might like an open plan, tell them about the benefits of that layout, but remain objective and informative. Let them make their own decision.
5) Dodging their questions.
Let’s say your buyer client asks, “Has this house ever had water damage?” The deceptive agent will answer, “Look at these beautiful baseboards! Absolutely no evidence of water damage!”
But that’s clearly dodging the question.
Say this instead:“That’s a good question. I can understand why you might be worried about that since this is in a flood zone. I’ll find out and let you know.”