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One of the most discussed concerns agents have about across the industry is finding and converting leads. This makes the idea of actually firing a client once you have one seem completely inconsistent. But sometimes firing a client is not only the best option, it is absolutely necessary.

The following are 4 types of clients you need to cut ties with, and tips on how to break the partnership off in the most professional and graceful manner.

 

1. Abusive Clients. As a realtor, the amount of people you interact with day in and day out is bound to bring you across all sorts of personality types.

Sure, some clients will be more difficult than others; but don’t mistake acclimating yourself to a client’s personality with putting up with abuse. If a client is verbally abusive or consistently rude, that is a sure sign that it’s time for you to politely tell them that the professional relationship should end.

 

2. Dishonest Clients. Clients who are dishonest can jeopardize your credibility in the industry and even cost you your license. Lying about flaws with the home you’re helping them sell is one of the most common ways clients have been known to be dishonest.

Sellers will stretch the truth or just downright lie in order to get a property sold. If the issue is noticed by the buyer post-purchase, you and your brokerage could take the fall for it.

If you suspect a client is failing to disclose information about the property, it’s best to inform them of the possible consequences.. If they continue to exaggerate about the home, it’s best to let them go than to threaten your reputation as a realtor.

 

3. Time Wasting Clients. When it comes down to it, you’re in the real estate business to do one thing – make a living. Time wasters are clients who beat around the bush for an exhausting amount of time with no clear closing in sight.

These clients will make you take them to more than 15 showings over the course of several months and never make a decision. If they’re selling a home, the client will have you overprice their listing and work double as hard to sell a house that simply won’t sell at their asking price. They will bring 5 different relatives to the showings and each will have a different idea of what the buyers should look for in a house. They will have a relative send you Zillow or Trulia listings, that are either not in the market, incorrectly valued, or in contract already.

In all these scenarios, your time, energy and resources are being depleted on a client whose business may never come to fruition. If your time with this client has exceeded the 15-week mark, it may be time to cut your losses with this client.

 

4. Unrealistic Clients. This type of client goes hand-in-hand with the time-wasting client. As a realtor, your responsibility is to aid the client with your expertise and knowledge of the housing market.

Unfortunately, no matter how much advice you give a client, you can only steer them so much. The ultimate pricing or offer decision is theirs to make.

If your client is expecting you to sell their home at a price that is completely unreasonable and won’t budge no matter how much you or an appraisal expert advise them to, it may be time to tell them another realtor may be a better fit.

 

After all, you are the expert.

 

How to Gracefully End the Relationship

You know the old saying – breaking up is hard to do. It’s especially hard if you’re breaking up with someone who would be paying you for a service.

If you deem the client relationship to be taxing, first assess if this behavior can be corrected. Can you talk to the client transparently? Will they take your advice if you do talk to them? If you’ve tried this approach, it’s time to speak with your broker about what can be done. Would it be better if they worked with another agent? If not, what would be the best option to fire them; check Listing Agreement terminology to make sure you are not in breach of contract.

If firing them is the best option, then the best way to do so is by having them come in for a face-to-face meeting where you politely lay out the reasons why finding another realtor for them may be a better course of action. Use facts from your ongoing working relationship to explain why you think the client may be more successful with another agent.

 

In the short-term, cutting ties with a client may seem like a missed opportunity for a commission check, but the reality is, all of the time you were wasting on this client can be allocated towards clients who will actually be profitable in the end.

 

 

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In the digital age, potential home buyers and sellers no longer turn to newspapers and magazines when looking for real estate services. Social media platforms have become the go-to source for potential clients to find everything from listings to realtors.

If your social media brand isn’t up to par, you run the risk of missing out on tons of potential clients; specifically, younger, social media-savvy clients looking to buy their first home.

Although social media brand management may seem complicated there are plenty of ways for you to take charge of your online brand management on your own.

Follow these simple steps to get started building your social brand today.

 

1. Choose the Right Tools.  Facebook. Instagram. LinkedIn. Twitter. There’s no doubt that in this day and age there’s an overwhelming wealth of social media outlets to choose from to showcase your business.

Choosing the right social media mix to establish your brand as a realtor is not as cut and dried as it may seem. The media platform that you choose has to match your business strategy to effectively resonate with the audiences you’re trying to reach.

For example, if your goal is to showcase luxury homes for potential clients to view whenever, then sites like LinkedIn and Twitter are not your best option.

Social outlets like Instagram and Pinterest have interfaces that are much more equipped for displaying the homes you want potential leads to have easy viewing access to.

 

2. Develop a Brand. Your brand isn’t just who you are as a realtor. It’s who you want your viewers to perceive you as too. If your specialty is Luxury Real Estate, think about highlighting that in your brand.

In order to establish your brand as a realtor who is an expert in your specialized field, the content you post should be a reflection of your expertise.

Your brand should also be cohesive throughout all platforms. Use the same colors, logos and tone of voice across all platforms to ensure you’re portraying a consistent brand message.

 

3. Automate Your Posts. Keeping up with posting to social media is hard even for personal social media use. However, the key to building and maintaining a following and effectively getting your brand out into the digital realm is with a constant stream of information being posted to your social accounts.

As a professional with a mountain of things to worry about, automating your social media is the best way for you to keep your stream of information consistent.

Create a calendar of the information you want to post. This will help you strategize and keep the information cohesive, relevant and consistent to your brand.

You can use social media managers like Hootsuite and Buffer to schedule pre-queued posts to be published days or weeks in  In the future.

 

4. Add Links Back to Your Website. Think of social media as the seasoning in your content mix, it is there to bring attention to your services as a realtor and enhance your business.

If the core hub of your brand is your website, then add links to your social outlets to bring potential clients back to your website. This is the first step in turning those viewers into potential leads.

 

5. Participate in Social Groups. Chances are, you’re most likely a part of one or two communities already. And if you’re not, joining some online communities on sites like Facebook, LinkedIn and Reddit is a great way to network and build relationships outside of your immediate sphere of influence.

If you are already involved in some online communities, don’t just be a passive member! Ask and answer questions, participate in discussions, and find the opportunities to promote your brand or subtly let others know you are a realtor.

Engaging with others in these communities is one of the best ways to boost your brand recognition.

 

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They say organization is the key to efficiency; easy enough to say if you’ve never worked in the real estate industry. It seems like clutter and massive paper trails are as much a part of the job description as house showings are. Being disorganized with your forms, receipts, business cards and other documents can not only cause you more stress, it can also make you significantly less productive.

A 2010 study polled 800 U.S. employees on the correlation between productivity and organization. It found that over $89 billion dollars are lost throughout U.S. businesses every year because of the time that employees waste searching for misplaced paperwork.

It clearly pays to invest in your organizational methods. Not being able to find a specific page in a client’s paperwork or forgetting to reply to an important email is detrimental to the speed at which you conduct business. And in the real estate industry, time is of the essence. Before you lose valuable time or even lose a valuable client, check out these tips to help you avoid stress and stay on top of your growing business.

 

  1. Digitally Organize Documents. Piles of documents on your desk don’t turn into the Eiffel Tower overnight. They start off as one or two papers and gradually grow, and before you know it you’re having to dig tunnels to reach your printer. With a cloud-based digital document organizer like Form Simplicity you can organize your documents by transaction name, file name, date or folder. Going paperless takes the hassle out of having physical bulky file cabinets. And because it’s cloud based, with the Ultimate Edition you never have to worry about running out of storage on your computer.
  2. Email or Fax Documents directly to the client’s Transaction. With Form Simplicity’s Professional and Ultimate Edition, your clients can Email or Fax their documents directly to the active transaction you have created for them. This serves two purposes: First, it keeps all transaction documents and correspondence neatly stored together in one location, so they are easy for you to find, and Second, the emails are saved for broker review and compliance.
  3. Manage your tasks. As your client base grows, so does your daily to-do list. With Form Simplicity, you can create tasks for your transactions, and you’ll receive emails reminding you of the tasks when their date is due.  For on the go management, try digital calendars like Google Calendar, or Folio, a Chrome extension. It can help you keep track of all the different tasks that come up while conducting business with all your clients. Manage your schedule digitally and never miss a task, appointment or call again.

 

For a real estate agent, paperwork, dates and emails build up quickly and can become astoundingly cluttered if you neglect to organize them. Start the decluttering process today and get peace of mind with Form Simplicity.

 

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Whether you’re helping someone buy or sell a home, the closing period of the real estate journey can be the most agonizing part of the entire process. It seems all the right stars have to align in order to have a smooth closing period, and after weeks of searching for the perfect home, the last thing you or your client want to hear is that there is a hiccup in the closing process.

Receiving an offer acceptance may seem like the end of the road; however, as real estate professionals know, the hard work and waiting has just begun. It takes an average of 50 days to close a home, and this period can become 60 days or longer if you neglect to actively keep track of all the moving parts.

 

The following are tips to help you effectively shorten the escrow period and seamlessly get your client into their dream home faster.

  1. Have the paperwork ready. With Form Simplicity you can group blank forms into packages, which can serve as templates for particular types of transactions. Residential Sale, for example. Create your packages ahead of time, so when your client is ready, all the forms you need are preselected and you can easily and quickly prepare their transactions.
  2. Ensure clients get pre-approved for loans. If you know the home-purchasing plan includes a mortgage from the start, make sure your client has their pre-approval letter before they begin their home search. This allows you and the home buyer to know how much the lender is willing to give, and can also uncover any issues that could potentially delay the escrow process down the line. In addition to giving home buyers a realistic target price, getting pre-approved for a loan can shave off as much as 7 days off the escrow period.
  3. Remind your clients to not jeopardize their credit. Remind them to steer clear of anything that will put their credit on the line if they want their closing process to be as smooth as possible. This includes quitting their job, applying for credit cards of any amount and acquiring other equally large purchases. Jeopardizing their credit could cause them to no longer qualify for their mortgage, leaving them scrambling to find another way to finance the home.
  4. Make the signing ceremony stress-free.  A frequent problem home buyers run into when they’re nearing their closing date is not having signed or initialed their documents in all the locations needed. The home closing process is riddled with dotted lines and missing just one can cause a setback in the already-lengthy closing time. Using eSignature services like Form Simplicity’s eSign can save you or your client a last-minute trip to get a missing signature or initial, helping you save as much as 25 percent on closing time. Form Simplicity’s eSign leads the clients field-by-field to ensure all fields are completed. The session won’t complete until the client has properly filled out the forms, so you don’t need to worry about incomplete documents. And with pre-templated forms, you won’t need to spend time dragging and dropping signature fields — they’ll be ready to be signed.

 

The escrow period is long enough without overlooked details sneaking up on you. Make sure you are ahead by digitally managing the documents.

 

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There are few things more stressful than the process of buying or selling a home. For most people, it’s the largest financial transaction they’ll ever make. And despite the rise of real estate sites like Zillow and Trulia, homebuyers and sellers are showing no signs of abandoning the practice of using agents to simplify the process.

In fact, the number of homebuyers and sellers who utilized a real estate agent maintained their historic highs in 2017, with 87 percent of homebuyers purchasing their homes through a real estate agent or broker, and 89 percent of home sellers working with an agent, according to an annual survey conducted by the National Association of Realtors.

While this is obviously great news for agents and brokers, you still have competition when it comes to securing clients and closing sales. The following are three of the best ways you can improve the client experience and increase your closing rate in 2018.

  • Anticipate your clients’ needs. From your initial contact all the way through to the end of the sale, your clients want to feel like they’re your only client. The most effective way to convey that they are your top priority is by ensuring that you are not only responsive to all of their communications, but that you are also anticipating their needs. This includes — especially for first-time homebuyers or sellers — thoroughly explaining every step of the process so they know what to expect. Keep in mind that providing a superior experience to your current clients can help you land even more clients in the future, as word-of-mouth recommendations are the most effective way to generate more business.

 

  • Offer value-added, time-saving benefits. Your clients want nothing more than for the home buying or selling process to be as seamless as possible. One of the ways to accomplish this is by going paperless with Form Simplicity. By utilizing Form Simplicity’s online forms and eSignatures, you can reduce the closing time by as much as 25 percent. And as more people increasingly relying on the ease of mobile technology, your clients will appreciate the ability to complete required paperwork on their own terms.

 

  • Advocate for your clients every step of the way. Your clients want to feel like they’re getting the best deal possible — and they’re relying on you to deliver. So, in addition to openly communicating, make sure that you’re explaining what you’re able to provide throughout every step of process — from negotiating the price and terms of the sale, to attending the inspection and negotiating any home inspection repair requests on their behalf.

 

While the home buying and selling process can be trying at times, there’s nothing better than the moment you’re able to hand over the keys to your client’s new home. And if you’ve built the right relationship throughout the process, odds are, you’ll have secured a client for life.

 

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