Networking in real estate is a total pitch when it comes to agents interviewing with you about you choosing them in the sale of your home. Networking is indeed important, but you, the home seller, is going to have the final word as to whom you will sell your home to.
I can be a networking genius and have every single top agent as my networking friends. If they all write offers on your home that I'm selling, but we get an offer from an agent whom I don't know, who may be out of the area, but is approved and offering cash at $20,000 more than those agent whom 'I'm networking with', who are you going to choose.
Of course, we will do our best to get all offers as high as possible and with the best terms which give you as the home seller the most advantage, but at the end of the day, all things being equal and the one offer cash at 20k more, who will you choose?
All the networking in the world, masters included, will get any seller to discount their bottom line because of a gimmicky sales pitch by an agent.
However, the agent that the home seller will eventually hire does need to know how the agent they hired interacts with the other agents concerning their listing.
Absent Listing "sellers" agent
When agents, some of them, take a listing, they inform their sellers that they are going to take the automated road when it comes to having their home scheduled to be shown.
There is a free offering, at this time, by the board of realtors. They bought into this "showing time" technology and the agents can have that "human driven" system schedule the showings of your home.
The agents will explain to you that technology will sell your home and that this system will save them time. And that agent can use that time to have their resources re-routed to target a qualified buyer for your home.
Hogwash. First, do you really want the agent you hired to represent the buyer? What about being on your side 100% with the home buyer having their own agent? Most will agree, as do several states and counties, that dual agency - the act of a home seller's agent also representing the home buyer is a bad idea.
Scalping companies are hiding in the Multiple Listing Service
There are other ways and probably better titles than "scalping companies". However, this refers to a company who is in the multiple listing services or has access to the MLS. They scrape the MLS data, the confidential remarks and obtain the home seller's phone and contact number that will be used to schedule showings.
The workaround is to have your agent run the interference. Put their number in the MLS, not yours. Then they will be contacted, your agent will then forward the message and you will be able to have the showing scheduled.
This works great and keeps your phone number off of the MLS listing, even from being in the private and confidential remarks.
Unfortunately, the internet lives forever and if you have ever given up any personal or private information online, it may not matter that your agent sets up showing through you and have your number in the MLS.
If you have ever searched on a non-SSL website, you may have had your personal and private information already taken, connected with your address and cross-reference in a multitude of ways, including what type of toilet paper you like.
The internet is HUGE, this works for my clients and I try to keep their exposure to a minimum, so hence articles like this one.
Agents not willing to speak to other agents
Here is the point of this article. When you are hiring a real estate agent to list and sell your home, know that there are some who will be "hands off" when it comes to communicating with the agents who have the buyers to show your home to.
When I show a Santa Clarita home buyer, that buyer has been vetted. They are approved for a home loan, all of their documentation - paystubs, verification of employment - FICO - Credit Profile - Debt to Income Ratios have all been entered into a Lender's computer and they have been given some type of approval - most are Automated Underwriting Approvals. Which are the strongest form of loan approvals? They are qualified for "at least" the amount of the seller's home and the seller's home and my showing is not a test. It's something that they have expressed interest in viewing and potentially have viewed many other real estate listings with me in the past. My home buyer knows what they want and I send them properties that fit their criteria, besides just the basic bedrooms and bathroom configurations.
However, in order for me to show your home to my clients in good conscious, I need to know several things before I schedule them to view it in person.
That requires me to be able to speak with your real estate agent. They need to pick up the phone and not only return my phone call between the hours of 12 pm and 1 pm and again between 5 pm and 5:30 pm.
They need to answer the phone and or return my phone call, text message or email within short order. I usually don't schedule showing on the same day, if it can be helped. However, in some circumstances, a new listing hits the real estate market for sale and I need to get my clients in asap. This is the one exception and most of the answers that I will have for your agent with a home that just entered the market will not be answered to the detriment of my home buyer.
Do you have any offers?
This is a very important question and some of those agents who are not representing their home sellers to their fullest capacity state in the MLS, "Don't call for status, if a home is showing active on the MLS then it's active, etc." - Bad form agent, here is why.
Agents have a certain amount of time to change the status of a home with an accepted offer on it. The time frame if there is an accepted offer is 2 business days to report that change in status to the Multiple Listing Service.
See the problem? I cannot speak with the sellers real estate agent to verify status. They have in the multiple listing Service to not call for status. It's Friday at 5 pm and I have clients that want to view the seller's listing on Saturday at 10 am. The agent won't return my calls, emails and text messages. The agent is not in violation if their seller accepted an offer at 4 pm Friday. They have two business days to report the sale and change the status in the MLS. I show my home buyers on Saturday at 10 am and they love the home, we work hard to scour comps, get all of the necessary documentation together to write and submit a strong/solid offer, we submit the same and I call to ensure receipt.
Nothing from the listing agent because they are busy finding other "buyers" for their seller's real estate listing. My Buyers - they now have to wait. I have had some buyers say they would never do business with the particular listing agent again and that is no good for home sellers who hire the wrong agent.
A home buyer's agent needs to speak with the home seller's listing agent. It's necessary and if those agents are telling you it's not, then you have something to show them and have them answer to.
Besides an "accepted" offer that is waiting for the two business day time frame to report to the MLS, there are other events that would be very helpful for a home buyer's agent to know.
Such as if any offers have been received. This is something that any home buyer would want to know about. Having said that, there is no way for a home buyer to know for sure if the other agent is telling their agent the truth.
It could be the story of having an offer or multiple offers is being used so the buyer agent will report back to their home buyers this and that will motivate their buyers into wanting to follow suit.
I always have a "disclaimer" for my home buyers related to what can be proven and what cannot within the real estate happenings. "Verbal" is meaningless. Trust your source and they will serve you well. When information is being taken from those other than your agent, weigh it appropriately and critically.
Besides having an offer, having multiple offers, and an offer that has been executed - meaning escrow will open post haste and the status in the MLS has to be changed within two business days, there is another condition that I would want to know about before wasting my home buyers time.
Are there any counters that have been issued?
Another concern that I need to know for my buyers is not only if any offers have been received, that is important, but if any of those received offers have been countered.
That means if one of those offers is signed off on, and if those buyers get confirmation of acceptance from the home seller, it's a done deal and it would be a further waste of time for my home buyers to view the property if that has happened.
In order to find this out, I need to be able to get the agent on the phone. I need the real estate agent representing the home seller on the horn to discuss in which state their seller's home is in.
Sometimes, we need to speak with the seller's agent. As a home buyers representative in the Santa Clarita Valley, almost all times it is imperative that we connect with a basic line of communication.
Unfortunately, those agents, most who are new, are scared to speak with other agents because they are afraid of the question they don't know the answer to.
Most of the time, I'm not asking those questions. My questions are being asked because they are in the best interests of my Santa Clarita real estate home buyers.
Lots of showings and multiple offers promised
Real Estate 101 - do not believe that an offer is being sent when you have received a phone call saying that "someone is sending you an offer".
This is pillow talk. This is something that has happened to us many times. I get the call about my sellers home that we are selling for them. I am told that by the home buyers agent that their home buyers loved the property. They are ready to write an offer. They want to know where to send it, who to choose for escrow and who the seller wants for the title and the home warranty.
I know and have learned since 1998, never to think this is something that will happen. I don't know what it is, but some real estate agents call the shot before the trigger is pressed. Can you tell I was a cop for over 23 years?
I have almost made this mistake. I get the call, I'm excited about my Santa Clarita home seller and I make the call to my seller informing them that an offer is coming in. I know better than this and it does not always play out.
The only offer that I can be sure of is the one that I have received in writing. If it appears in my inbox, and if it has all the supportive information and documentation I need, then its' good and worth calling my home seller.
If it's a phone call, it's nothing that is real and should be discounted as such.
Home sellers best real estate choice
Make certain that your agent is available for those calls from agents like me. Those agents that want to know if there are any offers that have been received. What is the status of those offers and if I have time to show the property and submit an offer to be competitive with the offer(s) that have been received?
You can check if your agent is really being "helpful" to those agents who are representing home buyers that may have your home in their sights. Just call them on your friend's phone. Ask if the home is available and if there are any offers that have been received. You may be surprised to find out that you cannot get your agent on the phone. Unable to get an answer, unable to get contacted back, you may have hired the wrong real estate agent.
I know what other agents think, some view themselves as being too busy than to answer every single simple question that a buyers agent may have.
I view this as being my job. It's my job to best represent the home sellers to the best of my capability. That includes answering the phone calls from buyers representatives and helping them to best represent their home buyers for the real estate I'm working on selling.
I'm Connor MacIvor and I am the lead agent at REMAX of Santa Clarita - The Paris911 Team and SCVnest and associates.
I have been representing home buyers and Santa Clarita home sellers since 1998. I was an LAPD cop and had overlapping careers. I will always represent my home buyers and home sellers to the best of my ability. When you are ready just reach out to me or find us online under Santa Clarita real estate news at the top Google Result as of 11/04/2018.
Talk soon and be safe.