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How to Build Rapport with Real Estate Agents

Discussion in 'General Property Chat' started by MsAli, 14th Dec, 2015.

  1. MsAli

    MsAli Well-Known Member Premium Member

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    Hi guys,

    Thought it might be worth sharing how @monalisa and I build rapport with real estate agents to facilitate property finding & negotiation process. Suggest:
    1. Being clear about what you are looking for. The more clarity you have, the more they would help find what you want and trust you to complete the deal
    2. Being direct about what you like and not like about the properties being presented and what attributes you want (cashflow / location / block etc). Shows you won't just buy any property but you will buy the right one for you
    3. Presenting yourself confidently. No umming and ahing about your decision making abilities
    4. Them knowing that Finance is not an issue. When buying properties at opens, we've gone prepared with documents including cheque books / deposit
    5. Telling them a bit about ourselves and genuinely finding out who they are. Earlier on I used to think real estate agents were out there to get buyers (and some really do play games), but if you connect with them at a human level, they are normal people
    6. Telling them we have experience with real estate and that we are proven buyers. They will time and time again choose you over someone with no experience (I know it's a tricky one with first time buyers)
    7. Knowing the area like the back of our hand. Shows the agents you are serious about purchasing and know what you are talking about
    8. I like to save real estate agent numbers for every agent I ever speak with. Good reference...and someone you can reach out to for input
    How do you connect / build rapport with real estate agents?

    Cheers,
    MsAli
     
    Last edited: 14th Dec, 2015
  2. Xenia

    Xenia Adelaide Property Manager Business Member

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    Chocolates work too MsAli
    My office address is below :D
     
  3. MsAli

    MsAli Well-Known Member Premium Member

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    :) Will bring them along September, next year

    Also to add:

    9. In late 2013 we gave two local agents a list of 20 blocks we liked. We said we'd buy any of those. Went through price finder, did all the homework for the agents to go door knocking for us. This was in a heating and rising Sydney market. Although we couldn't get any of those blocks, when the block closest to our requirements came along, the agent called us before it went on RE website and the contracts were all done and dusted on a Tuesday night at 10pm by us and by 11pm by the vendors who wanted to sell as soon as possible. I had only known about the property at 3pm that afternoon :). Inspected at 8pm...
     
    Last edited: 15th Dec, 2015
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  4. Xenia

    Xenia Adelaide Property Manager Business Member

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    But seriously
    very quick decisions make a huge difference. We have a list of people who we present pre-sales to based on certain criteria.
    The ability to analyse and say yes or no very quickly is what works.

    We work with experienced investors and developers, we know they are cashed up or have finance and those guys can very quickly look at something and say - offer coming in this afternoon or No due to this reason....

    You can always rely and go back to people that are able to make decisions quickly.

    We don't like chasing or playing games, a yes or a no is an excellent answer. A maybe I will think about it and get back to you is frustrating.
     
  5. Xenia

    Xenia Adelaide Property Manager Business Member

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    Love this, clarity and decisiveness - wins every time.
     
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  6. datto

    datto Well-Known Member

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    I never build rapport with the sales person. When you sit down for a game of cards you don't tell other players what cards you are holding. Hold the cards close to you to keep others guessing.

    Also, consider the market. Buyers or sellers? If a buyers market you smash them down to the lowest price. If that fails, just move on to the next. Take no prisoners.

    Once you get your bargained priced property, that's GOLD.
     
  7. WattleIdo

    WattleIdo renovating Premium Member

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    ^^^^^That's my preferred style too.
    Though will definitely take some of those pointers from the girls. Clarity is a good one.
     
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  8. allisterlm

    allisterlm Member

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    I really like this point and it's something we've been learning in our last few negotiations. I personally think building rapport is important, and can be done without revealing too many of your cards. If done well it can even help you to seal the bargain deal you are after.

    With our first deal, we spent some time getting to know the agent and chatting to her - this all served to build her trust. Next thing we know, she is accidentally revealing crucial information about the vendor's situation without us telling her much more than what we did that morning. She then took us around to other inspections where she knew vendors were desperate!

    On our last deal, I took the time to ask the agent his investment journey. He told us a great story of how he had invested and how it worked for him. All I needed to tell him was that I'd love to be able to have a similar story to him, and all of a sudden he was working for me. Done deal.

    I think it depends on the agent - everyone is different - sometimes building trust will work, other times playing hardball is the best option. Getting to know the human behind the agent helps you work out which way to play it.

    Plus I've enjoyed getting to know new people - it's all part of the journey and experience!
     
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  9. neK

    neK Well-Known Member

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    I struggle to do the above points without offending the agent :p
     
  10. Steven Ryan

    Steven Ryan Mortgage Broker Business Plus Member

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    Great tips, though I think you have only scratched the surface when it comes to building rapport. #5 is where the gold is and is worth elaborating into a dozen points itself.

    This is what it's all about.

    Connecting as deeply as you can with agents is a powerful skill that can reap rewards–particularly if you will see them more than once while hunting for property. If you are able to engage them in conversation that goes beyond the level of buyer/agent and really connect, you're likely to be treated differently, open a channel of communication not available to a typical buyer and have a very different experience.

    Rather than waffle on about rapport building, I'll just suggest hitting google. There's more great, free, resources out there than you could digest in 100 lifetimes.

    And on the topic... more generally, the ability to build rapport is a critical life skill. One I recommend everyone invest heavily in. :)
     
  11. MTR

    MTR Well-Known Member Premium Member

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    that is niaive of course you play with those who have better cards, why not, it can be a win/win, they are not your enemy, the point is to work it so you get results

    I love working with the right re agents, who would not.. no brainer
     
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  12. LifesGood

    LifesGood Home Building & Development Consultant Business Member

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    It's a business transaction, not a game. I've seen too many people fail trying to play the "game".

    I definitely see merit in your point but if you decide to play a game, you better be damn good at it! :)
     
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  13. MsAli

    MsAli Well-Known Member Premium Member

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    Looking for real experiences.
     
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  14. Leo2413

    Leo2413 Well-Known Member Premium Member

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    @datto i agree with your strategy. However building rapport doesn't necessarily mean you have to give anything away. On the contrary, you implant the agent/vendor with what you want them to know/think about you. You take control of the interactions, syphoning as much info as possible. People more often than not like to do business with other people they like. So while your intentions should be 'hostile takeover', let them underestimate you as you 'build rapport'.

    That's my personal approach.

    Cheers
     
  15. Steven Ryan

    Steven Ryan Mortgage Broker Business Plus Member

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    My apologies. I was distracted with the replies and conversation and overlooked the question in your original post :)

    From my own experience, and in addition to what you suggested (some work much better over time/repeat encounters):
    • If you're going to be looking for a while, turn up at every open for weeks or months prior to purchasing–be highly visible to the agent
    • Demonstrate knowledge of the market
    • Ask intelligent questions
    • Don't waste their time and be absolutely honest–if you're not keen on a place, tell them and tell them why. Feedback is valuable. "Zero interest in this one–unless you sell it too me for far less than someone else will buy it for because x reason, x reason, x reason".
    • Learn a lot about them, their interests, plans, goals, give genuine compliments (recent sales results, professionalism, manner etc)
    • Listen well
    • If they invest, find out about their portfolio, where they're buying, why they're buying
    Aside from personally nabbing great deals as a result of the above, I've been taken through a property that wasn't even signed up, had the first look at others soon to hit the market, been given first peek at photos and had the opportunity to offer on places pre-market, been called by an agent to tip me off after he had a clown trying to shop him to get an idea of the value of his price then list it "for sale by owner" (for the record, I helped a friend negotiate a great deal on that one – the agent didn't give him a clear indication on price so I it was there for the taking), had agents ring me for advice etc.

    I also got a few congratulatory phone calls from agents who found out I was the one who bought this place under value in its first week on the market... Sold Price for 5/38C Ewart Street Marrickville NSW 2204 - when it get to that point you know you've connected pretty well.
     
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  16. bob shovel

    bob shovel Well-Known Member

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    I like to play dum.... yep.

    It all depends on the agent and how they treat you. You need to play the game to a degree,but at the end of the day its a business transaction. It's all happy families until the sugar hits the fan,then it goes into business mode.
    Seen it happen plenty of times being "friends" with contractors, it's good to be able to communicate as humans and friendly when work together definitely make things easy and plesent and has it has advantages.but you still need to treat it as a working relationship, both parties have vested interests.
     
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  17. BigKahuna

    BigKahuna Well-Known Member

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    Interesting thread. Ms Ali, they are great tips. I like a superficial friendship. I have met some real estate agents that I really like as people. But I always remember that they are working for the seller, not me as the buyer. While I'm being friendly, I'm trying to read them and get a feeling for what's going on eg. how much wiggle room, etc. I am pretty upfront and clear about some things, but other things not so much. I like dealing with a real estate agent who's not familiar with the surrounding house prices, so that I know more about them than he/she does. If you do all your homework, then you don't get taken in by some of their tricks.
     
  18. seanbrissy

    seanbrissy Well-Known Member

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    Great post @MsAli

    I think building rapport with agents is absolutely critical and essential when purchasing property. It's a high stakes exercise , but remember most agents know all the tricks in the book and don't like to play games.

    1. Turn up to open homes if you say you'll be there, and be on time
    2. Always call an agent back, even if it's to say " thanks but no thanks" this quite often re-opens the door for negotiation on your terms.
    3. I like to have golf days with some agents, loosens them up a bit ;)

    Cheers
     
    Last edited: 16th Dec, 2015
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  19. MsAli

    MsAli Well-Known Member Premium Member

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    Agreed, building credibility is key. Do as you say you would. It builds trust. Also agreed, feedback to the agent also helps them help you get what you are really after.

    Interesting. Never really tried that much. But then I don't play golf :)
     
  20. jpcashflow

    jpcashflow Well-Known Member Business Member

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    The easiest way to develop a relationship is to simply communicate. I have agents who are now friends.....
    Never use people!!!!!
     
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