How often should your agent be communicating with you when selling your home?
Q. How often should your agent be communicating with you when selling your home?
A. When you are selling your home, no question is too simple or small. Here’s one. “Will your agent call you or should you call your agent?” and the answer is always YES to both.
Most agents welcome calls from their clients, regardless of the frequency. When selling a home or condo in Vancouver, the number one complaint home owners have is the lack of communication & follow-up from their real estate agent - after the agent has listed the home for sale. In fact, the biggest complaint and frustration coming from sellers that the agent does not return theirs calls and doesn’t give them updates about the changes in the market place as the listing sits on the market longer and longer.
Of course, calling your agent 10 times a day is not recommended and maybe construed as annoying and probably not needed. But things often move fast in this business. If you're in the middle of extreme negotiations or an emergency has risen, for instance when you are closing the deal or there is an issue with the paper work but you are not really sure of what it is, you should be able to call your agent.
Thus, it is very essential for you to stay updated with your agent about the process of buying and selling during the sale of your home.
What can you ask your agent?
If it bothers you, no question is unreasonable. Here are a few topics that a home buyers or home sellers might have questions about, but any type of real-estate-related question, even if it doesn't fall into one of the following categories, is important to address with your real estate agent:
- Property information: the first thing that is needed to know about the property such as what kind of house you want, how can you really know if it’s a good deal, best area to live, and best schools for the kids, etc.
- Home prices: they can always help you in knowing the prices that are reasonable and best area and complexes that can be the most profitable in the market and how much you should invest.
- Home selling steps: we all know that a lot of us don’t really know what the requirements to sell a house are? for example, legal paperwork, staging, deposits, etc. are important.
- Home inspections
- Purchase offer presentation
- Counteroffer preparation
- Offer negotiation
- Comparable sales
- Repair requests
- Seller disclosures
- Closing process
How you should ask for help?
- Work with one agent
Be direct and ask your agent about terms of exclusivity if you are unsure. Often if you sign a contract with an agent, it is expected that you will only work with him or her. If your agent expects exclusivity, do not communicate with or call other agents. If you find a home that you want to see, contact your agent, not the realtor on the listing. The listing agent works for the sellers, not you the buyer. You hired your agent to find you the right home. Going behind your agent’s back could potentially put you in risk. Also could ruin your client-agent relationship and affect your communication.
- Don’t worry about the lingo
No one expects you to know all the ins and outs of real estate vocabulary! Agents want you to feel comfortable, trust them and know just how knowledgeable they are in their field. If you are unsure of something, just ask.
- Make your expectations clear:
Your needs should be a list of what you absolutely cannot live without in a house. Your wants should include perks but not deal breakers. Be upfront about your wants and needs so your realtor can easily find exactly what you are looking for in a home. If you aren’t clear with your agent from the beginning, you will waste your time looking at houses that you’ll never purchase.
- Don’t be shy!
If you have a question? Ask. None of us are perfect. If you don’t understand anything, you NEED to ask. It’s your time and money you are investing, and you need to clear your doubts.
- Trust your realtor
We know it’s not easy. But, if you have taken a step to go out and trust someone to sell your home, might as well trust them to do it well.
When you ask?
I usually call my clients every Monday to let them know what happened in the market the week before and on the weekend’s open houses. You and your agent can decide on one or all of the following methods:
- Daily or weekly telephone updates and conference calls with your realtors and contractors. Daily wouldn’t be that required but weekly calls can really help you know the progress.
- Email is the most used way of communication in such a professional setting. There are so many realtors who provide email services regarding cases or attractive articles such as tips or references to help you explore your options and help you with the procedure. You can always ask for regular updates or just email on an as-needed basis.
- Text messages—best for confirming an appointment or short conversations. I mean everyone is available via text messages. It’s the best way to communicate if you want to convey something short such as dates or any meetings or requirements to be met.
- Voicemail messages: When you can’t get a hold of your agent or they can’t get a hold of you, always leave a message and give your agent permission to do the same.
- Face-to-face meetings: This is the most preferred way of communication for most people. All doubts can be solved and understood better in person plus handling complex situations in person is often easier.
Some agents don't answer their cell phones, but they return calls once or twice a day at certain times. If that behavior is unacceptable to you, either work out a different schedule with your agent or find another one.
Of course, an extended relationship with your agent through the life of a transaction dictates all modes of communication. The important thing to remember is to set expectations and boundaries such as how late at night do you want to be contacted, how early in the morning is too early, what type of news would you like to hear on the phone or what thing has how much intensity for you. Making clear of when is a text or email appropriate and maintaining your professional boundaries with your real estate agent. And of critical importance, never share financial or personal identification information with anyone electronically unless you verify the receiver first.
The important thing is that you establish the preferred methods your agent likes to use for communication and you find a way to work together that satisfies you both.
Want to have a chat about the property or about your buying or selling needs?
Book an appointment today with me and I’d love to help you with your selling.
You can call me anytime.
778 881 6781