How to tell if your agent is a good negotiator

Getting the best price for your property will, in large part, depend on your real estate agent’s negotiation skills. Here are some key signs to look out for that show you’re in good hands.

Auction clearance rates are currently hovering around 70 per cent across Sydney, down from their peaks of 80 per cent during the property boom. While many properties passed in at auction still sell within a few weeks, lower clearance rates indicate that vendor expectations are higher than what buyers are currently willing to pay. This means that having a real estate agent with strong negotiation skills – who can sniff out when buyers are able to increase their offer – is more important than ever.

Here’s some ways to tell if your agent has good negotiation skills.

They made a great first impression

It’s a good idea to interview a few agents to get a sense of their experience, expertise in your local area, and their general demeanor and enthusiasm. Ask them some tough questions and see how they respond to pressure. Also pay attention to how well they outline their plan for marketing your property. You want an agent who is highly organised, communicative and engaged. A great agent will be on the ball from your very first contact.

They negotiate well with you

Here’s a great clue: How well did they negotiate with you to get your business? A strong negotiator should be able to demonstrate to you the value of the services they’re offering and leave you feeling confident in their abilities. If they can negotiate well for themselves then they can probably negotiate the best price for your property.

They go the extra mile

Most agents are goal driven and motivated by achieving sales. The most motivated demonstrate it by going the extra distance right from the start in their dealings with you. If they always respond to your calls promptly and professionally, in and out of office hours, this indicates they are willing to go above and beyond to get results, which bodes well for how they will run your marketing campaign and interact with buyers.

You’ve seen them in action

Their attitude when appraising your home is a great starting point but ideally you also want to see them marketing other similar properties and witness how they perform in the thick of an auction. When you find an agent you like the look of, see if you can attend a few of their open homes and auctions before you commit.

They have a proven track record

Don’t be afraid to ask hard questions, including what results they have gotten for clients recently and if they can provide references for satisfied vendors. A good agent should be eager to showcase their successes to you. When speaking to their references, ask how the sale came about – did the buyer offer the price straight up or did the agent use their negotiation skills to achieve a better price for their client?

They have excellent people skills

Most savvy buyers keep their cards close to their chest. A great real estate agent must have strong people skills in order to be able to read prospective buyers and determine when they’re actually low-balling and would be willing to pay a higher price. Look for an agent who is personable, friendly, professional and inspires confidence both in you and in buyers.

If you need more advice on buying or selling in the Upper North Shore contact our team today.

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