“Flexibility: the range of different appropriate behavioural responses a person can make in situations that he faces.”
We’ve been showing a LOT of houses lately.
In our journeys, we work with all types of sellers, most get it. Most will drop everything to allow an agent to show their house to a qualified buyer. I’ve seen dinner left on the oven (oven turned off of course), clothes half washed, movies paused — whatever it takes.
On the other hand, we find “sellers” (I use quotations because their behavior is not that of a traditional seller who is motivated to sell their home), it is more that of a child struggling with control issues.
A little background.
We set up our showings in hour windows, staggered by fifteen minutes. We find this allows us enough time to travel from property to property while giving our buyers plenty of time to look and feel the home. We almost always provide a day’s notice, and usually only operate during reasonable hours (9:00 AM through 7:00 PM).
The last few days, we’ve been trying to set up an appointment on a house in particular. This home fits our client’s criteria pretty well, and is an obvious selection for our tour. After working with the listing agent on multiple occasions to try and pin down one of three date/time combinations — we’ve yet to come to an agreed time to show the house.
THREE… Different… Days…. THREE… Different…. Times… ugh.
When pressed, the listing agent sighed, he’s a difficult seller.
How about he’s not a seller at all? I’m sorry listing agent, you’re wasting your time…. and mine.
As a seller, flexibility isn’t only KEY it’s extremely essential. Whether it be a buyer’s market or seller’s market, you cannot sell something a buyer cannot touch and feel. The number one rule of selling a commodity such as a home, car, collectible is that the buyer has to take ownership mentally before they buy. For a home seller, they need to get inside your house and look around comfortably.
This means, accommodate (within reason), and unless otherwise requested by the buyer…. be gone when they are there.
Allowing would-be buyers to look at their convenience without scheduling hassles allows for them to focus on the positives of your home rather than immediately creating tension and a reputation as a “difficult” seller.
A few tips for being a flexible seller:
- Create a “showing checklist” things that you do before each showing (blinds, clean sink, toilet lids down etc.) – do this every morning before you leave to work. Your home will be in show-ready condition all day. You will no longer have the anxiety of an impromptu showing and wondering if you picked your underwear up off the floor. I see more sellers refuse a showing because they did not clean up their house before they left to work. This costs people sales.
- If you have “no show” times let your agent know. I’ve worked with many scenarios, religions and lifestyles – there are time when it just doesn’t work, but if your agent knows, he can better communicate your needs to would-be buyers and buyer’s agents.
- Stick a book in the car. You don’t have to go far, you just have to go. About ten minutes before a showing arrives, leave drive around the block or to a local coffee store, read a book.
In all seriousness, you can’t sell it if you don’t show it. As a seller be flexible, the more flexible you are the less time you’ll be worrying about when your house will be sold, and the more time you’ll worry about what to get your ROCK STAR agent for selling your house so quick.