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Make-or-Break Characteristics And Actions of a Seller:



“When you go to work for a client selling a home, what characteristics do you hope to find? What are some behaviors that may create difficulty in the sales process?”

–A long-time local homeowner

That’s a great question, and calls for a straight-forward answer. Honesty, fair-mindedness, good intent, accessibility, and candor are characteristics that are greatly appreciated. Actions by a seller that indicate such qualities might include:

• Letting me know, as their real estate professional, what issues, concerns, priorities, and personal challenges may be important for me to be aware of.

• A quick willingness to agree to provide full property disclosures.

• A willingness to be flexible in negotiations in a spirit of give-and-take.

• A generous attitude toward the buyer with the understanding that the best agreement reached will be a “win-win” for both sides.

• Being available to discuss marketing strategy.

• A willingness to take the time to keep the home in showing condition.

• A willingness to make the time to review serious purchase offers promptly.

We all benefit greatly when the seller has a team-attitude, with a willingness to do their part in preparation of the property, a respect for the other members of my team and their expertise, and an appreciation for efforts made on their behalf.

I applaud a home seller who is responsive to market feedback and willing to quickly address any property conditions that are detrimental to the sale process, and if necessary, to adjust the asking price after several weeks of little activity and no offers.

The process of selling a home can be more difficult when a prospective seller engages in behaviors, such as:

• A desire to hide some property drawback from me or a prospective buyer.

• Pressuring a buyer to remove all contingencies in an unreasonably short time.

• Being secretive about important personal issues that can have a serious impact in the selling process such as a pending divorce, serious illness, scheduled surgery, or financial crisis .

• An expectation that we have 100 percent of the sale responsibility and an unwillingness to do their own part.

• Being personally attached to their home which unintentionally may undermine the positive energy that is so helpful to a smooth and successful sale process.

• An unwillingness to be flexible when appropriate, such as considering a closing date that may not be quite as convenient or a price a bit lower than wanted.

I encourage sellers, in their own best interest, to be willing to do the following:

• Have pre-inspections done before beginning marketing.

• Deal with any issues ahead of time that may involve children or pets, such as odors, unfriendly behavior or loud music.

• Take the time and invest the energy to get the home ready to show at its best, before anyone sees it,

• Enable us to have all property disclosures completed and signed before an offer is written,

• Allow at least a few days of active marketing before receiving an offer.

• Give a fair and equal chance to all prospective buyers, especially in case of multiple offers.

Good will and feelings can be significantly enhanced or damaged during the escrow depending on the seller’s attitude toward the buyers. The buyer may ask for access to share their new home with relatives or friends, or to take measurements for furnishing plans. Reasonably accommodating these requests can go a long way in maintaining a good rapport. It is also considerate to take the time or hire someone else to at least “broom-clean” the home before the buyers take possession.

In 95 percent of our sales, my team and I have been blessed to have had mostly positive and favorable experiences. Although nearly every escrow has its own unexpected surprises, we are most often able to deal with them in a manner that minimizes hassles or any ill feelings. When there is a generous spirit, kind attitude, and healthy sense of humor, we find that the escrow process is far more enjoyable for all parties.

Michael Edlen has been a top agent nationwide for over 15 years and provides a broad range of real estate counseling and marketing services. He and his team of specialists can be reached at 310.230.7373 or at Michael@MichaelEdlen.com. Other valuable information is at MichaelEdlen.com.

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