A First Time Panel
November 29, 2016
P.R. Randy Cooney
President, Success Institute
Educator, Arizona School of Real Estate & Business
As a part of our recent annual seminar on “Selling Luxury Homes,” The Arizona School of Real Estate & Business featured an exclusive panel of high net-worth consumers. Collectively, this panel has been involved in over 1,000 transactions of luxury properties using multiple agents in various states. This elite group of consumers shared what they expect, require and most appreciate in the agents they hire to assist them in buying and selling multi-million dollar homes. Below are some answers to the questions posed to them. For privacy, we have elected to use only the consumers’ first names. However, we want to extend a huge thank you to each of them as well as the luxury agents listed below who invited and encouraged their clients to participate:
ANITA & ROBERT clients of DEBBIE BEARDSLEY
MARK client of KEITH MISHKIN
BRENDA client of LISA WADEY
LARISSA client of ROBIN ORSCHLEN
QUESTION: How do you go about selecting an agent to list your properties?
Brenda: We ask around to find who is very successful in that specific area. For that reason, we have never used the same agent twice because we want the local, market expert. Once we locate the experts, we then interview them. My husband often meets with them first to see if they meet his high standards of extremely knowledgeable, precise and thorough. Then, I meet with them to determine if they are honest, ethical and personable.
Anita & Robert: Our vetting process may start on the internet seeking out market experts. Who has closed multiple transactions? Then we sit down and discuss strategies to see if we are a match. It is critical that we bond. Once chosen we will use the same agent again and again, as a matter of fact, some of our agent relationships go back thirty years.
Larissa: Market presence and penetration is certainly a big consideration, however the relationship is paramount. We want to enjoy the company of our agent so we can celebrate that “JUST SOLD” bottle of wine together. We must see them as an accomplished agent who is or may become a genuine friend.
Curt: Expertise is Critical! In addition my agent’s ability to roll with the punches and when necessary their willingness to charge out of the fox hole, pick up a bayonet and fight for me.
Keith: to Curt’s point, I agree that our client needs to know we will stand with them and if necessary will fight for them. However, a very important skill set of the agent is to actually get everyone to put their bayonets down.
QUESTION: By what means and how often do you want to hear from your listing agent?
All Panelists: Email or texts, if it is data, such as amount of views, number of showings, market update etc. If it is about strategy or discussing direction we prefer to talk it out by phone or in person. We like to hear from our agents about once a week via a text or email. In our experience with multiple agents it is not likely they will over communicate – more likely they will under communicate.
QUESTION: What is one of the most important things your agent does to market your home?
Curt: Spend the money to do the right job to display the property in the manner it needs to be seen. Do not skimp on this. Provide multiple outstanding photos of various features of the property, however, I do not need to see the sink in bathroom nor the toilet. My agent’s responsibility is to show the home in a manner that generates great interest and raises value.
Brenda: Hire the very best professional photographer and choose a limited number of photos that truly highlight the property.
Larissa: Availability! Working with Robin and her sensational team, there is always someone available for scheduling appointments, showings, and follow-up.
Anita & Robert: One of the things we admire about Debbie is she is so highly respected and well known. She leverages those relationships to network and promote the property within the community.
QUESTION: Given you all have purchased multiple properties, what do you most want from the agent you select to assist in buying real estate?
Brenda: We research the market and also reach out to others to see who they would recommend. My husband conducts the initial meeting for he has certain things he is looking for and then I will meet with that person, sometimes over a glass of wine to see if we are in alignment and we can work well together. Lisa truly listens and has an uncanny ability to ascertain what it is that we really want.
Curt: As an agent you have to able to create a relationship which means truly knowing what the other person wants. I am not an easy client, working with me is not a trip to Disneyland, as many of my former agents will attest. Because Keith was able to drill down and really dig for what I specifically wanted to achieve, we have developed a great working relationship that will likely last for years to come.
Anita & Robert: There are way too many turnstile type agents out there. We are looking for a dedicated career professional that we can count on their expertise to guide and counsel us through the process. Our agent Debbie possesses so many qualities that we look for in an agent; She has local market expertise, she is collaborative, she builds relationships with everyone in the transaction and those relationships get us to the finish line to the satisfaction of all parties. She makes the buying experience positive and pleasurable.
QUESTION: What has a an agent done for you that was really special and memorable?
Brenda: My husband and I will never forget the time we were uncertain about whether a house Lisa had shown was going to be are next home. Lisa went and got permission from the builder/owner to have us go over on our own for a private viewing of the house at sunset. This property had a spectacular backyard, so well before our arrival Lisa took the time to have all the fire features and waterfalls going, along with a nice bottle of wine, glasses, cheese and crackers waiting for us on the back patio. My husband and I sat there in the quiet of an amazing Arizona sunset. He looked at me and said “this is so it” and I said back him, “Yes it is”. Lisa took the time to coordinate all this and it was her extraordinary effort that gave us a special moment and a lasting memory of how we choose the best home for us.
Curt: Sometimes the devil is in the details. On a recent transaction, Keith did something for me. After everything was literally done, Keith said “by the way I am going to pick up the tab on this item, for it should not have ever happened on my watch”. It was only $250.00 dollars, it was really a nothing thing that I was not even thinking about. I was so impressed that he came back and offered that up. It was just a little thing, however, it meant everything to me.
Question: If there was one thing you would suggest to all of us in serving you what would that be?
All Panelists: Keep your promises – Know Your Market – Expertise – Honesty – Integrity – Bring Wine.
Again, many thanks to all the above participants who provided much perspective and insights to what the consumer expects from the agents they select to assist them in the selling or buying of real estate.