All industries have certain, etiquette, and real estate is no exception. Here are some of the unspoken “rules” of working with a real estate agent. Keep these things in mind when buying or selling a home to help establish a great working relationship with your agent and to get the best possible outcome from your partnership.
Many agents are paid a percent of the sale, after the fact. Realize that agents spend hours working for you (showing homes, staging homes, hosting open houses, marketing, etc.) before they are ever paid. What this means is if a sale doesn’t occur, they may never be paid for their time. Imagine going to work one day, two weeks, maybe even three months without ever getting paid!
This is one reason why it’s “real estate etiquette” to work with just one agent at a time. (Don’t call a listing agent if you’re already working with a buying agent and don’t try to list your home with multiple agents.) If you double up on agents, it’s likely someone is going to end up working for free and no one wants that, everyone deserves to be compensated for the time, knowledge and skill.
Value your time, and your agents as well. Try to keep appointments and be on time. If you need to cancel a meeting or showing, try to give your agent as much notice as possible. If you are running late, call or message your agent so they can plan accordingly.
Be honest. Tell your agent if you aren’t ready to buy, if don’t have pre-approval and/or don’t intend on getting pre-approved. You can look at houses online and attend open houses on your own without using up an agent’s time.
It’s a two-way street, it’s the agent’s job to be honest with you. So, try not to take offense. Hopefully you can partner with an agent who you trust will be honest with you. If the agent tells you to clean, stage, or lower the price on your home, remember they are doing it to benefit you, not insult you.
Understand what you are signing. A Broker’s Agreement is a legally binding contract between you and your agent that outlines his/her duties. There are several different types of agreements so be sure to ask questions or get clarification on anything in the contract that you are not familiar with. If for any reason, you are unhappy with your agent or the services they’ve provided you can ask to be released from your contract. This is also a standard industry practice. Beware of an agent that won’t provide you with this level of customer service.
If you’re looking for a real estate agent to partner with that respects the industry and their clients, contact us! But remember, if you’re already working with an agent, don’t contact us!