There’s no doubt that the 2021 real estate market is extremely challenging. Demand for housing is through the roof, interest rates are historically low and inventory is still very restricted. Meanwhile, it feels like COVID-19 has turned the entire world upside down.
As an agent, trying to serve your buyers in these conditions is very difficult. Homes are selling fast—often for more than the asking price—and buyers trying to enter the market face stiff competition.
In this kind of hot market, it’s vital that you set and manage expectations with buyers ahead of time. If they’re not prepared for what the process may entail, they could expect smooth sailing and instead be faced with shock, frustration and disappointment. If that happens, your relationship with them could be irretrievably damaged and future referrals could be lost. Here are four ways you can help manage buyer expectations in today’s competitive market:
Set Up a Consultation
Before you begin the home search process, meet with your buyers to introduce yourself and set expectations. If you can’t meet in person, you could schedule a phone call or a video chat. The important thing is to touch base before the process begins so that you can make your buyers aware of the challenges that might lie ahead.
As a buyer’s agent, it’s your responsibility to communicate the realities of the current market clearly and effectively to your clients.
– Buyers will pay more for a home
– They will have to remove contingencies
– Earnest money may not be returned
You need to be straight and to the point. Ask your clients if they’re prepared to deal with these challenges. If they’re not, they might want to consider waiting before buying. Being direct with your buyers like this is tough, but it’s better to be honest with them straight off the bat rather than disappoint them later.
Explain the Realities
If a buyer is aware of the challenges and still wants to proceed, take the time to spell out what the market realities really mean. Go through in detail what the buyer will experience throughout the transaction and how you plan to mitigate any of these effects, if possible. It’s vital that everyone is on the same page so that expectations are clear.
Hold Your Ground
If a frustrated buyer tells you that they’re going to work with someone else, hold your ground. It’s tempting to tell someone what they want to hear, but agents who make empty promises will only disappoint their clients in the end—and permanently damage the relationship. By being upfront and honest, you’re showing integrity and a commitment to the truth.
Today’s market can be extremely difficult for unprepared buyers. If you want to succeed, you need to be proactive about setting and managing clear expectations. You may work with less buyers but, in the end, you’ll win homes, earn higher commissions and close deals!
For more guidance and strategies on how to handle today’s real estate market, sign up for my free broadcast: Bold Predictions: 2021 Mid-Year Update on June 28 at 9 a.m. PDT. Claim your seat today!
Brian Buffini immigrated to San Diego from Ireland in 1986 and became a top-performing REALTOR®. He then founded Buffini & Company to share his powerful lead-generation system. Buffini & Company has trained more than 3 million people in 37 countries and coaches more than 25,000 business pros. Today, Brian’s a New York Times best-selling author and reaches over 7 million listeners a year through “The Brian Buffini Show” podcast. For more, visit buffiniandcompany.com.