Etiquette for agents: Behavior matters — even if you don’t make an offer

by Collette McDonald

If you want to be a true success as a Realtor, you must understand that how you present, react and treat others is the foundation of your business. During 2022, the goal will be to highlight Realtor missteps and coach you on how to make sure your words, actions and subconscious behavior are not negatively affecting your pocketbook. If you are old enough to remember Anne Landers or Miss Manners, we are going to go old school and resurrect their legacy and remind us all of what it takes to be respected and revered in this business now and when we are long gone from the daily trenches.

Here we go!

The reality is that as a new agent, you may have to navigate more buyers than sellers initially. They can be demanding, but as the professional Realtor, you need to set expectations on the process NOW while the market is heated and can be categorized as a sellers’ market. One of my mantras is “Urgency = Abundance,” and while you want to be the first agent to show that hot listing, you need to understand how your behavior will affect the possible offer process.

Set yourself up for success by reading and following the showing request that the listing agent has supplied for you. It’s as easy as that! Read the listing in its entirety. If the agent is asking for a proof of funds or preapproval letter before showing, supply that and then go to the next request. Are they also using an automatic showing service? If they are, use it! Do not call or text the agent asking for a showing if you have not read the remarks. I guarantee that the agent will remember your level of professionalism when the multiple offers come in. They will want to work with the agents who from the start respected the listing directions by following the correct steps and being the professional they would like to work with from contract to close.

In addition to the request process, give feedback when requested by the listing agent. Be positive, especially if your client loves the property. Compliment the sellers’ choices in decor or whatever you would like to get across to the seller directly. Remember, even if you are not going to write an offer, your professionalism will come through. While the agent may not remember your good behavior on a future deal, I guarantee they will remember your bad behavior.

As the listing agent, elevate your showing instructions! Help the buyer’s agent out by asking them to provide you a preapproval letter or a proof of funds. Yes, this helps your buyer’s agent set expectations for our industry that you must be qualified to see property. This is not the business model for classic iBuyer platforms, but this is a major part of the process, is it not? Explain to your sellers that it’s a key component of ensuring that they are serious buyers. Anyone can look at your property online, but only qualified buyers can access your precious property, and it allows you as the listing agent to follow up more aggressively. This also is a safety element for your sellers’ and your buyers’ agents.

By understanding the nuisances of the showing request process, you will be safer, more efficient and the professional, ethical, successful agent we all strive to be.

Have a topic you want me to cover? Let me know by commenting or reaching out to me directly at collette@collettemcdonald.com, or on Instagram or Facebook

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