This past week I had two closings – a Probate sale requiring a NOPA in Lancaster, and a Trust sale requiring a NOPA in Lomita.
The administrator of the Lancaster sale is located in Northern California, and requested “full service”. I had my vendor clear out the property, do a sales clean and carpet shampoo within a few days, and we got the property on the market.
The PPF, acting as trustee for the Lomita property requested the same level of service. My vendor completed a trashout, sales clean, and did some yard cleanup and landscaping to increase the curb appeal.
Both properties sold above market value. These properties were both outdated, and both sold to owner-occupants, at values equivalent to renovated properties in the immediate neighborhood. They were clean and they smelled pleasant, so the buyers could envision themselves making the renovations slowly, based on their vision and preferences.
Both of these buyers did not request any repairs, credit, or price reductions from the seller.
It was smooth sailing. The beneficiaries of both sales all consented to the NOPA. Everyone was happy.
Why didn’t the buyers speak up after the inspection, and use their strategy to request a repair, and then, agree to a price reduction in lieu of that repair?
That’s because before I had the sellers accept their offer, I requested to have a call with the buyer’s agent and the buyer, and I anchored that discussion. I told them both that I need to set the seller’s expectations at this stage, and ensure we’re all on the same page. If there are any requests for repairs, or credits, or price reductions, the seller will simply move on to the next buyer, and there are many other buyers interested in the property. Both buyers confirmed they understand, and from that moment on… they both performed beautifully!
This strategy is just one strategy I’ve developed over the years to ensure I deliver a seamless and easy sales process for my clients while obtaining the highest possible purchase prices for the properties I’m selling.
Some clients believe agents need to specialize in a localized geographic market, because they have their finger on “the pulse” of that market, or they “own that market”. Other clients believe agents specialize in a particular style of property, say mid-century modern, and only hire agents with that specialization when they have a property to sell. Don’t buy into this! It’s just a marketing gimmick an agent uses for personal branding.
As a real estate broker who has been doing this up and down California for almost two decades, first representing financial institutions, and later representing fiduciaries exclusively, I can tell you that the most important attributes of the agent you hire are their negotiations skills and their contract knowledge, and that, an agent obtains with lots of transactional experience. Doesn’t matter where they’re located, and whether they have their pulse on the local market. If the agent has transactional experience, the agent knows how to market real property, and how to evaluate any given market with the tools at hand.
Just some tips on what to consider next time you need to hire a real estate agent to sell your property. Ask the agent you’re considering how many properties they’ve sold in the past year, and, how many they’ve sold since they became licensed. That will tell you how experienced the agent is. You should also ask what the agent’s role is in the sale. Some agents are hands-off and are not as involved in the sales process – they have a team that handles every step of the process, and the listing agent is busy seeking the next listing. Sure, the transaction will close, but had your agent been more engaged and utilized strategies to act in your best interest, perhaps you would have avoided issuing a price reduction to a demanding buyer, and, perhaps you would have been able to obtain a higher purchase price if your agent was proactive and pushed the buyers to offer more, and more.
Food for thought.