Is the realtor responsible to get showings on the home or is this out of their control altogether? I

Asked by Krishna, Oviedo, FL Thu Nov 22, 2007

had 1 showing through the agent in 40 days, and 2 coming in during 3 open houses so far. Is something wrong?. The home is in excellent school district, a very quiet cul - de sac, 4b/2ba with solar heated pool, granite countertops in kitchen, new appliances, new fixtures in bathrooms, newly painted int and ext (neutral color) etc All features of a good home to sell and priced under the value of homes in the neighborhood without pool or backyard. Located close to amenties etc The realtor initially priced it higher and I had to bring it down (earlier in one of my trulia question some one even commented the realtor is top notch because they brought the price down !! Well, I had to tell them to bring the price down to make it competitive. I have it $40,000 below realtor's advised price after CMA. I think even the realtor commission we have offered is relatively high (7%, 3.5 % for buyer's and 3.5% for realltor rep me). Should I just sit tight and wait?

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Krishna, Both Buyer And Seller, Oviedo, FL
Fri Nov 23, 2007
Yes, I agree with Lorie. This market downturn is a test for realtors and the ones left standing after the dust settles will be those who were innovative and took their challenge. This market is going to weed out "average" realtors.
4 votes
William, Home Seller, 18951
Fri Nov 23, 2007
Krishna - it's your realtors job to do all these things - think about how much money you are paying for their service! Your realtor should be spending time and real money on advertising and marketing - and you have a right to know exactly what they're doing - in detail - to sell your home. The fact that you have to spend your time posting your own Craigslist and internet ads when you're paying 3.5% to your realtor is terrible.

Many realtors will do a great job for you and spend the time and $ to market your home. Unfortunately some will do little more than post it on the MLS. The worst part - if you signed a 6 month listing agreement, you may be stuck with a bad realtor for that long ... and you may have to spend *your* time and money to get the house sold ... and still be obligated to pay your realtor the 3.5%!

I'd probably be making alot of noise to this realtor and their broker at this point!
3 votes
Krishna, Both Buyer And Seller, Oviedo, FL
Fri Nov 23, 2007
Hi Ruth, Yes, I am gone during open house. This is my first home and we are now moving to Fort Worth, TX. My realtor initially said she did not believe in any of these internet posting etc. We bought it. We thought she knew her business and did not want to tell her how to do her job. Then slowly as I realised that I have not been getting any showings. I think heard about trulia, postlets etc and then started reading more about it. I am a scientist by profession and did not have a wildest dream of getting to know about real estate. Now, I think I am learning a lot and clearly see that our realtors did not do a good job at all. I had post it on craigslist coz' my realtors could not get pictures uploaded :( I then posted it on postlets, then insisted on a virtual tour - take a look please
Had a realtor caravan and everyone thought the house will sell in weeks and all that. Nothing happened, I dropped the prices, dropped the prices but no showings. Now I am aggressively working on advices from trulia, put it on craigslist, lease to own, lease to corporate etc and going all out hoping to move my family before christmas to Texas. Hope this happens. Thanks
3 votes
Ginger R., Home Seller, Massachusetts
Thu Nov 29, 2007
Krishna - I followed your question with interest since I too have not had a lot of showings. I asked my realtor how many showings a comparable house has had, (it was substantially more)and how they were getting the showings. It lead me to realize that in my case, our house is not visible at all from the road and it is a more specialized style, which will appeal to fewer buyers. I also had them prepare a new market analysis for me. I felt better once I understood it.
Have your agent compare the number of showings of your home to the "running rate" of showings on comparable homes. Then ask them for specific reasons why you have fewer. Also discuss the suggestions given below. This will tell you what you need to do to get more showings.
Please come back and tell us how it goes.
2 votes
Ruthless, , 60558
Fri Nov 23, 2007
Oh, I hope that 40% drop out is right.

Internet marketing is vital. But so is agent networking. Has your agent had a Realtor's Open house? You need to get feedback from other Realtors so that they will tell their buyers that your home is priced right and beautiful.

Make your agent accountable. Ask what exactly the agent IS doing, especially for the extra commission. You are already doing some of your agent's work by posting online. Your agent needs to do that because of liability of Fair Housing Laws and misrepresentation (over selling). Instead of you doing the work, start assigning homework.

I want to see:
1) Craigslist
2) Postlets
3) Virtual Tour
4) Comparable Solds and Under Contract twice per month (you should be getting New automatically)
5) How many agents your agent has spoken with? Do they have buyers, are their listings getting showings? How many people showed up at their open houses?
6) Let's role play. I'd like to hear you (listing agent) describe my home to another agent.
7) What additional information is the agent getting out there to both the public and other agents?

7a) The MLS only allows limited information. For example, I'm in Chicago. The information from the MLS automatically feeds to the Chicago Tribune and online listings. But with a little extra effort, the agent can change the description in the Trib to make it longer and more detailed. The same is true for if the agent subscribes to the extras there. I have a banner ad and long description. Open Houses can be listed in both, but you have to tell them to do this in advance.

7b) Does your home have it's own website? Your For Sale sign should say, and so should your brochure for Open Houses and Showings. When someone looks at 50 different homes and sits down to compare afterwards, they can't remember half of them. The website will help.

8) Is your home memorable? What also will help is something to make your home stand out that the others didn't have - or do have but go unmentioned. Mine is "Pickled Pecky Paneling." Other homes might have Pecky Cypress Paneling. If the agent tells the buyers this is "Pickled Pecky Paneling, can you say that 3 times in a row?" And the buyers try, they are going to remember your home was the one with Pickled Pecky Paneling. But will that sell your home? No. If the agent then tells them that PPP has natural anti-mold properties and is so durable that the oldest living thing on earth is a Cypress tree estimated to be over 5000 years old AND that the Queen of Sheba called it the Tree of Life AND used the sap for cough drops AND that Noah's Arch was built of Cypress, that will sell your home compared to the home with 1960s cedar paneling.

That's a lot of homework. The squeaky wheel gets the grease. Now, on to YOUR homework.

When you leave, will the home be staged? You sound very involved, are you GONE for the showings? Ask your agent what homework she has for YOU.

Good luck,
Web Reference:
2 votes
Lorie Gould, Agent, Duluth, GA
Fri Nov 23, 2007
Kirshna... I tell my sellers upfront that IT IS my responsibilty to get activity through their door. If there is no activity or limited activity through their door it is my responsibility to find out why and communicate back to my seller what changes are necessary to make more showings happen. Most of the country is experiencing a strong buyers market which means a home selling needs to look great and be priced the best to capture the limited buyers in the marketplace. How does your home stack up? How do you compare to homes that are listed? More importantly how do you compare to the homes that have recently sold in your area? These are the homes that the buyers have chosen so you want to know how your homes shows compare to those homes and how they compare in condition and price.

With markets changing so fast meaning prices are changing your agent needs to be monitoring the market closely so they can communicate to you what changes are needed to keep you ahead of the competition. You do want to know how the commission offered to a buyers agent for showing and selling your home compares also.

Unless there are 0 homes selling in your area you can sell your home!

At the end of the day you have to feel that your agent is doing everything possible to sell your home. From your question, it sounds like you do not have that confidence for your agent. Whether it be accurate or not, it is how you feel. If that is the case it may be time for a change! As a professional, I understand that not everyone is going to be the right personality fit for me and I will not be the right personality fit for everyone. There are a lot of great agents and there are a lot of bad agents. I referred a client to an agent in Alabama last year who is a great top producing agent. My client was not happy because they did not feel they were doing everything possible to sell their home in Alabama. After speaking to both sides, I realized the agent was doing a fabulous job on marketing the home etc she was just not communicating all of her efforts to the client so the clients perception was that she was not working hard for her. The relationship soon improved.

One final note: Just as the mortgage industry experienced a major cleaning this year the real estate industry will have a major cleaning. The National Association of Realtors predicts that 40% of agents will not renew their licenses next year. This is no doubt because many agents do not know how to adjust their businesses to this market or know how to help sellers in this market; therefore, they will go out of business. I have seen it here in Georgia with the abundance of expired listings. So many agents just do not know how to position their listings to sell in this market. You need to find one that does!
2 votes
Krishna, Both Buyer And Seller, Oviedo, FL
Thu Nov 22, 2007
Hi, I am relocating and therefore want to sell the house asap. With regard to virtual tour etc, our realtor played those down and we had to insist on having them (3 weeks after listing were gone then). I am sitting and puttting it up on craigslist, postlets etc., My realtor says she does not believe in internet postings, virtual tours etc ...We have the interior in very good shape and nice (my wife is an interior designer herself). May be it is the marketing which is definitely not aggressive...
2 votes
Voices Member, , Orlando
Thu Nov 22, 2007
Happy Thanksgiving Krishna!
I work in Seminole County and can tell you the market is rather slow. With that being the are still selling. There are over 26,000 homes on the market in Central Florida right now and about 1000 are selling each month. These homes that are selling tend to be those that are both priced well and marketed heavily.

It is crucial that the home be priced right from the start as the majority of your traffic will come during the first 3 weeks. Don't look at the price of homes currently on the market, as you can be priced $40,000 below those, and still be above the market value. The most important thing to consider when pricing a home is the prices of the homes that have sold in your area during the past 3 months. In our market currently, only the homes in the best possible condition, with the lowest prices and most aggressive marketing are selling.

As far as condition goes, consult a home stager. One will give you advice on how to improve your homes appeal for only a couple hundred dollars in most cases. I recommend Cassandra Branson with Mango Tree Interior Design.

Where your marketing is concerned, make sure it has a good presence on the internet, and that your Realtor has invested in the tools that matter, like call capture systems and a showcased position on Over 90 percent of home buyers are looking online, and they want to see photos and virtual tours, so make sure your photos are top notch! Your Realtor should have presented their marketing plan to you when you met.

Your commission seems good. Just make sure the marketing is strong, then the pricing is in your hands. You should be getting about 1 showing per week on average. We typically like to get more showings, but in this market, 1 per week is pretty good. Adjust your price according to your showing traffic and your goals. If you can hold on longer, you don't necessarily have to be quite so aggressive with price, but if you have to sell in the next month or two, you'll have to be more flexible.
2 votes
T.E. & Naima…, Agent, Dallas, TX
Thu Nov 22, 2007
When you hired your Realtor, they would have shared with you the marketing plan that they are doing to get maximum exposure. Pricing the house right from the moment it goes on the market is crucial, the first 3-5 showings depending on your market are the most serious. However, even if one them liked it and thought the price was too high then, they saw that you dropped the price and may be waiting for you to drop it down even further.

You need to see what kind of web presence you are getting, put it on Craigslist too, with virtual tour and on Trulia. Historically this is a time when Real Estate slows down. A lot of people don't want to move over the holidays.

If you feel it is priced right, that it shows well, then you should trust your Realtor and sit tight for a while.
Web Reference:
2 votes
David Rivera…, Agent, San Francisco, CA
Thu Nov 22, 2007
Happy Thanksgiving Krishna,
We can only speculate, as we do not have all the details. Perhaps the market in your area is just completely dead, and nothing much is selling. Perhaps your home is still overpriced. That is the most common reason for lack of showings. Are other homes around yours selling? Are they getting showings? The commission you are offering sounds good, but is it competetive to what are others offering the buyers agent? If, in your market, 4% is more common, than 3.5% could be part of the problem.
Good luck!
2 votes
ian cockburn, Agent, New Orleans, LA
Mon Dec 10, 2007
Get your Realtor to run a report off the MLS showing all the SOLDS in your area/subdivision in the past 60 days.

Then run a report showing all the SOLDS in the past 120 days that most closely were like yours in terms of square footage, condition, style, etc.

Then after you look at these, and how long they were on the market, take a deep breath, and drop your price to 5 - 10% below the average of the 2nd report.

Understand, it is not what you have in the house, it is what people are willing to pay.
Web Reference:
1 vote
Senior Homeo…, Both Buyer And Seller, 32792
Thu Dec 6, 2007
Wow, as a consumer, I check the prices, availability, local services, for everything we purchase, and especially the big ticket items, on the Internet!

First stop in any search is Google! Is your house listed so Google shows it when the address is entered in the search bar?

Right now, I am seeking a new home, in the $200,000+ price range.

If yours wasn't where I could see it, on the Internet, then we both lost out!

I have 'seen' a home in photos, before spending the gas to go in person! Found one, in Oviedo, that I like, and that was on the Internet! But, it probably is NOT yours, as the agents listing this one offered up lots of photos and info about the history of the home, and something about the area around it! They have my offer and earnest deposit.

This is too bad that I didn't get to see your home, and possibly make an offer. I hope you can resolve the situation! I did just now look at your tour, and all I can say is that we both lost a great opportunity!

Don't believe all the media madness about the number of homes on the market, 'buyers' market, as I have seen a ton of opportunistic sellers, with rundown homes priced too high, that are NOT like the treasure of a home you offer! I know some potential buyers who would like an opportunity to 'see' your house, and they will get your tour URL, from me.

It might be 'news' in the media that the housing market has a glut, but, there are at least half of us buyers who have been looking all along, during the rise of the 'Seller's' market, and the fall of same, who are pre-qualified, and have been looking on the Internet for at least three years.

To us, this is a market glitch, and might bring a slight reduction in purchase cost, but, we want what we want, and will buy it when, and if, it becomes available.

Make yours 'available' to the more educated, better financed, pre-qualified buyers, who shop on the Internet.

BTW, our 28 yo daughter just purchased (October 2007), 3.57 Acres with a 2,000 Square Foot home, on a lake, the home for her family that she saw on the Internet. The seller happily agreed to $292,000, almost tripling what it cost him ten years ago. None of us are doctors, lawyers, or chiefs. Simply, we are computer technicians and technical writers, military retirees, and billboard contractors, with good credit based upon wise choices.
1 vote
Deborah Madey, Agent, Brick, NJ
Fri Nov 23, 2007
HI Krishna,

First off, sorry to hear that his has been a struggle and so much work for you.

In answser to your Q about who is responsible.......It really comes down to a partnership of cooperation between the seller and the marekter (the listing agent) to generate activty. A balance of price and exposure will produce showings, and a contract at the highest price/best terms.

The Realtor has the responsbility for exposing the property directly to buyers (who may or may not be working w/ another agent) as well as other agents in the area (who may or may not currently be working w/ buyers that match your property.) Since most buyers are actively searching on the internet, an aggressive internet presence is something that is very important. It is the Realtor's responsbility to communicate to you what the market reception (or lack thereof) and feedback is for your property. It is ulitmately up to the seller to make the fnal decision to act on the feedback and advice provided.

You can ask your Realtor for an updated CMA, an updated pricing opinion, and to provide you feedback on what the market response has been thus far. You can ask for a written report of what marketing has been done on your behalf. These are things to which you are well within reason to request. Let your Realtor know of your concerns. If a client of mine had concerns, I would certaintly want to know.

Even w/ extensive marketing and aggressive pricing, slow markets still produce few buyers. It is important to look at how the market is doing and gage whether you are moving at the same tide. If others are getthng showing and getting contracts, but you are not, you are moving slowing than the market.

The more aggressive your price, the faster you will move. All the advertising in the world will not sell an overpriced property. Even w/ a great price, you still need marketing to expose your property to buyer agents and buyers.
1 vote
Myke Atwater, Agent, Santa Rosa Beach, FL
Fri Nov 23, 2007
The most successful sale of property in a timely manner takes place when the price is right at the time it is placed on the market--interest is high with a new listing, and most of the traffic will be generated right away while the realtor tour and open houses keep it front and center of people's attention. Unfortunately, this apparently didn't happen in your case. Your price should always be set according to an accurate Comparison Analysis, as that is what bank appraisers and other realtors are looking at--not asking price. The listing realtor is usually not the selling realtor, so basing their services on how many times they themselves bring people through the house should not be a determining factor of the job he/she is doing--but if you go to other websites, is your house there? About 85% of all buyers searching for a home are starting their search on the internet--so presence there is of the utmost importance!! Good luck to you, and do some comparison shopping for a realtor in your area!!
Web Reference:
1 vote
Katrina Made…, Agent, Tampa, FL
Mon Dec 10, 2007

there are only 3 reasons a home does not sell (IN ANY MARKET)
* Price
* Condition of the home
* Availability for showings

All 3 of these must be congruent.

The longer you 'wait it out' in this market, you are only chasing the market starting with and over priced listing, small price reductions, etc.

If you MUST sell now, price it accordingly, otherwise take it off the market right now, rent it out, or just sit tight (without the for sale sign in your front yard).

Happy Holidays
0 votes
Lorie Gould, Agent, Duluth, GA
Fri Nov 23, 2007
Krishna... your agent should be giving you maximum exposure on the internet. You said earlier in a response that she did not believe in these websites. That tells me she is not staying up with the times or with her training. National Association of Realtors states that more than 85% of buyers search the internet first before ever contacting an agent. Additionally, those buyers looking on the internet have a higher household income than those who do not so that tells you they are more qualified to purchase your home.

In this market, an agent should be updating the market analysis a minimum of every two weeks for the client. She needs to know what is happening with every buyer that has come through your door.

I would run from anyone that told me they did not believe in the internet. The internet is a very powerful too for consumers and Realtors alike.
0 votes
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