Did you know that the biggest complaint about Realtors has nothing to do with competency? The biggest complaint is poor communication!
It never ceases to amaze me when our broker says the number one reason clients call him is they can't get in touch with their agent…or when clients tell me the reason they chose me was because I answered the phone…or text…or email!
As you narrow your search for an agent to represent you, communicate with your preferred agent in the way you like to communicate…whether it be by phone, email, text, fax, mail. Does the agent respond in a timely manner? You will be working closely together, do your communication styles and expectations match?
Keep in mind that agents do have lives in addition to selling real estate, and also usually do not respond to calls, etc when they are with other clients (the same courtesy which would be extended to you). If you don't get an immediate answer, leave a message…and if you leave a message during the business day you should expect a response of some kind sometime that day. Occasionally a message can get lost so don't give up too quickly, but if you try a couple times and still don't get a response it could be a sign of frustrating times to come.
Communication is not only important with clients, communication with other agents is also vital. I have a client who saw a property he is interested in around noon yesterday…I left both voice and email messages for the listing agent…still no word by the next morning. The listing said sellers were motivated…I wonder if the sellers know they have an interested potential buyer!
I had another case recently where it took multiple attempts over several days, including a couple calls to the broker, before making contact with the listing agent of a property my buyer liked. My client liked the property, but chose another one partly because the poor communication raised questions about whether we would make it to closing! Whether buying or selling a home, communication on all sides is key to successful negotiation and closing…and don't forget that as a buyer or seller you are also part of that equation!
Check out what clients say about their experience with an agent. To quote some frustrated buyers and sellers, you don't want to feel like your agent "treats you like a mushroom…kept in the dark and fed crap!"
Sharlene Hensrud, RE/MAX Results - Email – HomesMSP.com
I know a business attorney that has said many times that the biggest complaint against attorneys is the exact same thing.
I’ve had MANY inspections where I call the agent to schedule the inspection, and I don’t get a call back or I get a call back more than a day later.
I just had one this week where I called the agent again for the third time while we were actually at the house to do the inspection, and I just needed the lockbox combination. She said she had been meaning to call me… gee, thanks.