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As real estate professionals, you know the moment you acquire a new client that there will be many obstacles before closing. Here are some successful problem-solving tips to help navigate huge hurdles for both buyers and sellers.

Explain the Process
Even if the buyer or seller tells you they’ve “done this before,” it’s best to put your company’s process in writing to eliminate a lot of the problems and confusion that might arise. This step also helps build trust. A great example of this is a booklet covering a few key areas: What’s the best way to communicate – phone? text? email? What are the obligations of the client and those of the agent? Build a process timeline — what should the clients expect, and when? For buyers, outline the costs involved, how option and earnest money works and a snapshot of expected PITI and closing costs.

What Is This Home Worth?
In most instances, the comps don’t lie. Agents should always explore comparable homes that have sold in the last three to six months.  Look at the quality of the homes, any upgrades or maintenance they’ve received (or not received) and their location. This requires driving the neighborhood, talking to neighbors, and looking at the details of the interior pictures on MLS. Only then can you fairly assess a property’s true market value.

Just the Facts
After the inspections, sometimes the house needs repairs. A great negotiation tool when asking for repairs is to attach actual costs. Either get licensed companies to estimate the cost of repairs during the option period, or compare the cost of the needed repairs to estimates collected from other home sales. Then itemize the repair request and submit it with the estimates. Sure, the seller can still say no, but most of the time, when actual costs are submitted, the seller will take care of the repairs.

We all know that eliminating issues before they arise and (navigating them calmly and professionally when they do) is the only way to be a trusted, successful and less stressed agent!

For more information and tips for home buyers and sellers, visit