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How To Counter Common Scripted Responses From Greedy Agents
Nothing puts a target on your back more than showing your intention to buy or sell real estate. It is like removing the cloth covering a running money tap. People just cannot stop themselves from getting a piece of the actions themselves. Because properties are big ticket items, service providers are able to get paid hefty sums while making their fees look like a pesky bug when compared to the overall cost of the house.
The “professionals” looking to get a slice of your pie include lawyers, bankers, builders, insurers, etc. But the one that we usually feel will take the biggest cut above everyone else is your property agent. It does make a little bit of sense when you factor in the amount of time you spend with him is probably much more than any other professional.
I have no doubt about the value that agents bring to the table. But are you being seduced into paying more than you have to? Usually yes.
Thousands of books are published on the subject of training for real estate agents. And 1 particular topic that often gets the most pages is the one on tactics to handle objections and how to get clients to agree to a high commission. Reading those sections on their strategies, I find it hard to stomach as a consumer.
For example, writers talk about how agents should charge 2% (just a random number) commissions because their work is fully worth that 2%. But then contradict that statement by promoting co-broking because it is easy money. So in effect, a seller would be paying the commissions for both sides of the deal. Ridiculous.
I don’t know how the industry came to this. It has become a marketplace where agents attempt to squeeze out the most out of buyers and sellers by doing as little work as possible. Shouldn’t the practice be providing as much value as possible so that they can easily justify high commissions? And in my opinion, even 1% is a high price to pay.
More disturbing chapters talk about how get clients to sell low and how to get buyers to buy high.
And the parts that I find the most amusing are the sections that provide scripted cheat sheets to handle client objections who refuse to hire them or pay a high commission. Here are just some of them and how you can counter these objection-handling techniques.
Agent: If I can show you how you will gain more by paying 2% instead of 1%, would you go ahead with us?
Counter: That sounds reasonable. But if you are really that good, you should be able to provide double the value at 0.5%.
Agent: An agent who is charging less cannot do more than me. Let me show you how little a 1% agent does compared to what I will do for you at 2%.
Counter: Are you seriously taking a cheap shot at someone else in your profession? If you really believe you will offer more, let’s call him and have a group meeting then the 1% agent can have a fair chance to defend himself.
Agent: 1% agents will avoid co-broking as this will eat away part of their commission. This will greatly shrink down the reach of your listing.
Counter: So if you co-broke, you will pay half of my commissions to someone else? And that other agent will get both my money and his client’s money? Something is not right here. Alright, if that’s the case, this means that you will only charge 1% if my deal closes without co-broke correct?
Agent: If an agent cannot validate why he is worth 2%, how can he validate your high price to buyers?
Counter: If you keep asking for more money, how can I trust you to keep my interest as top priority? Because you clearly have your own targets.
Agent: Is the commission more important? Or the price I will get for you? I’m confident of delivering a great outcome.
Counter: Well it seems that to you, the commission is the more important outcome.
Agent: If there is no exclusivity, it will be a free-for-all. You might end up having to sell at a low price as buyers continually look for an agent who can get the lowest price.
Counter: You are sounding ridiculous. Nobody can force me to sell at a price I don’t like. I hope you are not one of those agents that prey on desperate sellers.
Agent: If I can show you how much more you stand to gain by giving me an exclusive instead of leaving it an open listing, can you give me the project?
Counter: You are getting off-track here. My concern is a good price. If you can get a good price, you don’t need any exclusivity.