Agent and client exchange keys

Great agents know that repeat and referral business is the best business you can get. It’s more profitable, it’s heaps more fun and it’s the ultimate competitive weapon.

But after months of appraisals, home opens and late evening negotiations it can be tempting for an agent to relax once finance has been approved and settlement begins in earnest. Don’t give in to temptation.

The best agents know that the period between finance approval and settlement is often the most stressful for a client. As a result they wind up their communication, increase their levels of customer service and go all out to make the last 21 days of settlement a great experience for their clients.

Here are some tips from agents who consistently enjoy a steady stream of repeat and referral business.

  • When finance is approved, notify your client’s settlement agent immediately. Maximise the time available to complete the settlement process. A delay of just one day could lead to your client paying penalty interest.
  • Personally attend all building, timber pest and pre-settlement inspections, even when the house is vacant. Ensure  the property is securely locked. If your client is present confirm that the inspection has been completed.
  • Take an active role in organising when your client can move. Double and triple header deals that involve owner-occupied properties, as they often require some flexibility.
  • Provide your client with a move-in checklist. Simply reminding them to redirect their mail so they get a Christmas card from Aunty Gladys in Queensland will be a big value add.
  • Don’t assume that your client knows what to do. Most people appreciate the extra help, especially in the final few weeks before settlement.
  • Anticipate potential problems. For example, if your client is a fly-in-fly-out worker, it can make a lot of sense to have the Transfer of Land prepared before their next swing. Missing 10 days in a 21 day settlement can make it almost impossible to get a settlement through on time.
  • Wherever possible hand deliver the keys on settlement. Most agents have the client collect the keys from their office. Show you’re on the ball by delivering them in person as soon as possible after settlement has taken place.
  • While your delivering keys drop off a thank you gift  to say thanks for the business.
  • Keep your client’s settlement agent in the loop. Let them know if your client is planning a trip or a stay in hospital.
  • Anticipate delays and ask for extensions early. Asking for an extension of a few days starting in a couple of weeks is nothing compared to asking for a few days starting tomorrow.

These are just a few of the many tips from top performing agents. Add your tip in the comments section below.

Image by Victor1558 via Flickr.

Comments: 2 Replies

  1. You have 10 ideas listed above = I’d be interested to see what scores people adding comments would rate their personal experiences. I’d have to say our most recent property sale was a 9/10 – but agent-attended inspections is rather uncommon.
    I would suggest an extra point for agents …….
    11. Thinks you’ve got it covered? Think again. Nothing better than asking the client if there’s anything within your power that can be done for them to make their sales experience better or easier. ( Record the appropriate ones for later use.
    Going beyond the call can earmark you as “exceptional” and I’ll prove it – our last agent WAS exceptional – Jim Raistrick – Agent in Healesville.

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