Expectations are the Keys to Success

Jacob Chapman
Designated Broker
Desert North Realty


Setting the appropriate expectations with your clients will overwhelmingly increase your chances of a successful closing and save you an incredible amount of headache during the process. It is not uncommon for a seller to have a skewed perception of what the listing process looks like; perhaps they previously had a less than stellar listing experience or, my favorite, they watch one of those real estate shows on TV. Regardless of the situation, when you set the right expectations up front, your client is much less likely to have anything other than a fantastic experience.

The best way to ensure you are setting the proper expectation is to explain your entire listing practice and let them know what they should expect from you and the listing experience. Personally, once I have a client committed to my services, I walk them through the entire process from start to finish. While doing this, I like to get granular with details which almost always causes an overwhelming feeling for the sellers. When I sense this, I reassure them with something along the lines of, “I know this might seem like a lot but that is why you have me, and we will dive into each part of the process when we get there.” I close out this portion of expectation setting by covering parts of the transaction that may happen throughout the process that I cannot control. If you don’t talk about things such as agents being late for showings, agents showing up unannounced or potential buyers making unwanted comments, you might find your seller in an unhappy state. By covering these types of issues in the beginning, it helps your seller mentally prepare for them happening and it is easier for them to handle.

Expectations have never been more critical in the COVID and super low-inventory world we are currently experiencing. As most of you know, when a new listing comes on the market the activity can be tremendous over a short period of time. To give an example, a recent listing of mine had 51 showings over a three-day period with two showings on Christmas day! For the average homeowner, amidst a global pandemic, the idea of a parade of people coming through their home can be unnerving. Again, set the proper expectation so your client is ready. When I find myself with a seller that will feel uncomfortable with this type of activity, I suggest that, if possible, they take a weekend getaway. If they are agreeable, I set the listing to go live on Thursday afternoon with showings to be Saturday and Sunday while reviewing offers on Monday. Not only does this alleviate a lot of the typical seller stress points but when showings are condensed to two days, in this market, you will have buyers seeing other buyers and it will create FOMO (Fear of Missing Out) which typically pushes offers that are more favorable for your seller.

In life, when expectations are not met, disappointment typically follows. Always remember, the best way to serve your seller is to set the proper expectations and doing it the right way will create a client for life.