What if you were unknowingly lying by omission to your clients every time you went on a listing appointment? Well, if your not paying Zillow, Trulia, Realtor.com, and others to be the ONLY agent being offered on your listings, then you may be lying by omission. I realize this could come off a little harsh, but it’s true, when you list a sellers home, it’s reasonable to believe that THEY believe and assume that when they sign a listing contract with you that YOU will be fielding all incoming buyer inquiries from the most common and trafficked websites like Zillow, Trulia, and Realtor.com, among others. My point of contention is that any agent who is not ensuring that they are the ONLY agent being offered on the major websites for THEIR OWN LISTINGS, has a responsibility to TELL their perspective listing client that up to 4 different agents will be offered on their listing and that there is a 1 in 4 chance that they will get the call/inquiry from a buyer searching these sites.
Think of it this way…allowing up to 3-4 agents names and contact information to be offered on your listing is almost as absurd as allowing 3-4 different agents/company’s For Sale Signs to be placed in front of your listing. With nearly 90% of buyers beginning their search online, these calls are the modern day sign call.
While some sellers may not care, and some won’t realize the impact, it’s more likely that they do and will. Let’s deal with reality here. So it begs the question; Would they still list with you if they were told this information before signing? Maybe, or maybe not… But I believe they should be able to make an informed choice.
The reasoning is pretty simple and based in undeniable logic… Who’s the best person to field the incoming inquiries on a listing? A randomly selected agent who purchased some geographic area to get buyer leads or THE LISTING AGENT? Some would argue that a buyer shouldn’t work with the listing agent and should seek out individual buyer representation. And that’s not a bad argument or point in some cases and worthy of a healthy debate. But to make that argument the assumption/accusation must me made that the listing agent (who is legally allowed to represent both buyer and seller in California) won’t provide adequate representation. I’ve found that the vast majority of Realtors are good and honest people who work to create a win win scenario when representing both buyer and seller. So this leaves us to acknowledge the undeniable logic that the LISTING AGENT is generally the single best person and most interested person in ensuring that every buyer inquiry is responded to quickly and with solid information about the details and availability of the property.
So now one more question has to be asked…. Why wouldn’t EVERY listing agent pay the
fees to ensure they are the ONLY agent being offered on THEIR listings on ALL of the major websites? Here’s the answer: IT’S EXPENSIVE. For an agent listing between 25-50 homes per year, the cost could exceed $12,000! For agents doing less, the cost still is significant. So what we see is very many agents and companies just don’t do it.
FINALLY, I can’t go without mentioning this of course. At Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage, our sales associates ALL have the ability to accomplish this for only $175 per year! Because of our size and belief in this program, we have made every effort to make this affordable for the benefit of both our Realtors and their clients. When one of our great agents are on a listing presentation it simply goes without saying that the seller can be assured that online buyer inquiries will be handled quickly and professionally.
In closing, I want to commend you if you are one of those agents with Coldwell Banker or any other firm, who have made the decision make the investment in ensuring that your sellers expectations are met and that the buyers are only being presented with ONE choice and in my opinion the BEST choice of who to call for information on your listings.
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If you are a Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage sales associate, then thank you for being part of our amazing customer focused company! If you are not and are interested in learning more about possibly affiliating with us, then send me and email at email@example.com or call me at 949-552-2000
Manager Coldwell Banker Irvine