How to be a Good Client
So you want to be a good client? That task isn’t always the easiest to achieve, but it’s also not impossible. Being a good client means understanding your responsibility in the relationship between yourself and your real estate agent. We understand you’re not a mind reader so we’re speaking up about how you can be a good client in return for your agent’s time and expertise.
The most important rule of thumb to remember throughout your experience as a client is to communicate. You’re not capable of knowing what’s on your agent’s mind without them telling you just as they cannot know what you’re thinking without hearing it from you first. Agents are normal people just like you. Being an effective communicator in this process means voicing all of you questions, concerns and criteria. However, don’t just outline your home criteria. You also need to make your agent aware of those stipulations you're absolutely not flexible about. Hint: it’s probably for the best if this list is short. Your agent hears you and they will deliver expert services based on the preferences you have expressed. Just as teammates effectively communicate to reach success, clients and agents do too.
That leads us to our next point; you’re a team. You and your real estate agent are a package deal when approaching the seller and making an offer. Stick by your agent’s side so they can provide their knowledge and advice when it comes time to secure that dream home you’ve been looking for. If you communicate effectively your relationship will build the amount of trust needed to trust the professional. This team mentality will guide you seamlessly through the process with fewer hiccups in your expectations versus reality.
Real estate agents are licensed professionals. They know the ins and the outs of the market at the time of purchase and no one else has access to the knowledge they have. Your agent is evolving as a professional alongside the market that is constantly fluctuating. Even if you’re an efficient buyer and read up on current industry news about the market, agents have experienced significant changes to the market first-hand when finalizing transactions. That is experience which no one else can possibly achieve without being in the industry for many years. It's important that you trust your agent.
Be open to change during the buying process. Whether it’s your criteria that changes or financial obligations, let your agent know. By checking in with your agent to make them aware of these changes as soon as possible, you are setting yourself up for greater success. The agent can alter your search based on the new preferences you propose. Even the slightest change can fuel the fire when the agent knows how to put it out immediately with the perfect home they know is on the market. Your agent is there to help you no matter what situation you find yourself in halfway through the search.
Rely on your agent for advice. Their advice is valuable to you and by showing you care what they think, you can further establish your relationship. Don’t be afraid to ask for advice if they don’t already offer it to you in a particular situation. Many times they will put themselves in your shoes to work out the difficulties you’re facing as the buyer. You're doing yourself a big favor by asking for clarification and advice.
With trust comes respect for your agent. A major way to break trust is by showing up late or canceling appointments shortly before they are scheduled. By being prompt and showing up to every appointment ready to further the process, your agent will take you more seriously and put more time and effort into your search out of general contentment with the relationship you have built with them. Your agent most often works off of commission. By showing up late you are indirectly telling them that your time is more important than the time and energy they are putting into your home search. Of course there are extreme cases to this situation when a client may have to reschedule, but your agent is always just a phone call away!
Be realistic in your expectations. Walking into each house, you will find features you like and dislike. No matter the circumstance or condition of the house during the walk through, try to visualize each room without the clutter and chaos. By being close-minded when you step foot in the home you're touring, you're wasting the agent's time. Take into consideration that criteria you have outlined for your agent that you absolutely cannot be flexible with. No matter the color of the carpet or how outdated the appliances, it can be fixed. And for those features that cannot be easily fixed, tell your agent about your discontentment of that feature so they can filter your search further.
The second most important advice we have for a real estate agent's ideal client is to have fun. Yes, the process can become grueling, but if you keep an open-mind you will find your experience to be somewhat pleasant. After all, it’s not everyday you get to walk into other people’s homes with the potential of calling it your own. Take advantage of this experience as an opportunity that only comes a few times in your life.
The final note we will leave you on is to continue your relationship after the process ends. Real estate agents are huge networkers and more often than not your agent will be a people-person. They love to do business with clients who fit all the criteria mentioned above, but who also show loyalty to their services. By continuing your relationship, you will have a future agent to recommend to your son, daughter, niece or cousin the next time they mention moving out of the neighborhood. Relationships matter to your agent and they love gaining reassurance about the clients they help in finding the perfect place to call home.