What do homebuyers want? Recently they told us! Trulia Staff sat down with a user group and had a discussion on what they look for when hiring a real estate agent. Here’s what they had to say (in order of importance):
1. Honesty and Credibility
Win them over with the truth!
When these buyers talked about honesty and credibility, it often came with stories about past negative experiences with agents. The stories were about agents trying to push them towards a more expensive purchase and a strong dislike for the false sense of urgency they feel agents create when it comes to placing an offer on a house. Buyers have expressed how hard it is to trust anyone in today’s real estate market so it’s even more important for agents to help them feel comfortable.
2. Area Familiarity
Do your neighborhood homework!
These buyers place a high importance on finding an agent who not only sells homes in a specific neighborhood, but also knows that neighborhood well. They want an agent who knows all about the schools, local parks, safety, restaurants and even the secret gems the neighborhood has to offer.
3. Good Follow Through
You say it, you do it.
During the conversation our buyers constantly verbalized their frustration with agents who didn’t do what they said. Email me, call me and send me the things you say you will. It seems like such a small thing to ask for. Do what you say, combine it with some honesty, and you’ll be an agent buyers feel comfortable working with.
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Keep it in order.
You’re honest, you know the area like the back of your hand, and you try your hardest to follow through but it’s just so hard to keep track of your to-do lists and return every phone call. Buyers are expecting agents to be organized and put together. There are a ton of tools out there to help with this. (We love Evernote!)
5. Good Listener
Everyone is unique. Treat them like it!
Users want an agent to listen to them with a blank mind. I heard phrases such as “pigeon hole”, “judge”, “they aren’t listening”, “tell me what I want”…etc. come up in our discussion. Users don’t want an agent to assume they need A just because they hear B. They want an agent who listens to what they want and will ask as many questions as required to really understand who they are and what they are looking for.
Make sure you get those references too- recommendations and testimonials followed closely in the 6th position.
These characteristics come straight from prospective home buyers searching on Trulia. We hope these tips help you communicate what matters most to homebuyers to further your relationships and connect with more prospects.