Real Estate and most other sales positions are driven by finding a buyer and seller and bringing them to agreeable terms. This is the most basic principle but Real Estate can be a lot different when a Realtor is trying to make her mark. We all want the clients to be committed to us and look to us as experts but what are we doing before and after the transaction that makes us just that? Is our customer service about being nice to them and sending them a card or is it about an education process that makes the Realtor their advisor that they and their friends should not live without? Here are a few pieces of advice that go beyond the typical services a Realtor offers thru closing.
1. Financing-Realtors should be watching interest rates and advising their recent buyers when to look into a refinance. Obviously doing this too frequently is pointless but if you sold a house to a buyer in a down market and they have equity now, they may be able to move out of a PMI payment or afford a large repair.
2. Market knowledge-It is easy to move from client to client and not get bogged down staying connected to previous markets, but staying on top of the current activity is a must. Could a buyer from 3 years ago call you and get an estimated comp quickly? If not your doing it wrong. Realtors should be a quick access to numbers that are pertinent to each client, especially since someone else or another website will gladly offer that info up with ease. Be accurate and ready to continue feeding data to past clients.
3. Trends-How many times do Realtors get asked “where will I get the most bang for my buck on home improvements?” Well this is not an answer that should require additional research. Realtors that are expert advisors know this and can relate a dollar amount to a clients property, quickly. Its tough to say a dollar of work will equal two dollars on a sale but they can tell you what is overkill and what is the minimum market expectation.
4. Full-Time-Did you, the expert Realtor go get another job? That is not the end of the world but should be considered when you look to advise a client. A market that is moving and continually changing can not be studied part-time. Be sure to let clients know that what your goals are and how you will continue to service them even if you have taken on additional work. It does not mean you are not in Real Estate sales but a clear plan on how you will stay relevant is most important.
The obviously overwhelming message to being an Expert Real Estate Advisor is current knowledge. Whether you are new to the industry or a veteran agent, each Realtor must do their work to stay at the top of their game and work hard to earn a clients first phone call when considering a move.