My Home Isn't Selling, Should I Offer an Agent Bonus?
My Home Isn't Selling, Should I offer an Agent Bonus? - This past Spring the Richmond VA real estate
market was on FIRE! Sellers were finding themselves with the luxury of multiple bid situations thus garnering top dollar for their property. Buyers were pouncing on listings as they hit the market, snatching up the limited inventory that was available. It was a frenzy for a skilled Richmond VA Realtor
Times are a changing. June and July tend to be slower months in the real estate market with school letting out and families taking those much needed vacations to the beach. I have noticed a decrease in the amount of showings for my listings and, although I have sellers preparing their property for sale, they are waiting until August to list. So what happens to the current inventory? It starts to go stale and agents try to find marketing tactics that will freshen up the listing. One tactic is offering an Agent Bonus to a Buyer's Realtor.
Buyer's Agent Bonus
Recently, I have noticed many listing agents offering a bonus, authorized by their sellers, to the buyer's agent who brings in an acceptable offer that goes under contract and successfully closes. This bonus, whether it be a $500 Visa gift card, $5,000 in cash, or even a car, has never made sense to me.
First of all, as a buyer's agent it is my JOB to take clients to properties that fit their needs. I don't care if the commission is $100 or $10,000, if my clients want to tour a particular home then so be it. I am not swayed, AT ALL, by a bonus.
Secondly, it is unethical and illegal to steer clients towards a specific home.I am not going to sneak a property into our showing schedule in the hopes of convincing my clients to purchase a home with a bonus so I can line my pockets with a little extra something. This goes against everything my business is built upon. At the RVA Home Team
we believe no transaction is more important than a client, even if that means we don't make a dime. Now, I am not saying all agents will purposely steer their clients, but it could be tempting and it is just best if you don't muddy any waters.
Finally, I simply don't see an agent bonus as an effective, or creative, way of brining a stale listing back to life. A buyer really only wants to know: What's In It For Me
? They don't care if I receive a bonus. If anything, it will likely have them questioning my motives.
How Do You Bring a Stale Listing Back to Life?
Here is the truth: I don't have all of the answers. Every property will have its unique set of challenges and I can only promise you I will think strategically about how to over-come obstacles. There are a host of things a seller or an agent can do to make the property more desirable, such as: analyze the feedback from previous showings and see what improvements can be made to cast the home in a better light. Have dirty carpets? Let's call in Stanley Steemer. Do your pictures have snow in them and it is now Summer? Let me come over for 30 minutes and take new, fresh photos. Another thing I like to do is look up similar properties that have recently went under contract or sold and reach out to the listing agents as MAYBE they had multiple buyers lined up, many who still may need a home.
If you get creative and are still coming up short, there is always the dreaded, yet often needed, price reduction. If you have been on the market with a competant real estate agent who is diligently working for you, the market may be telling you your list price is too much to bear. One thing I know for sure: My buyers sure as heck would rather have $5,000 off the list price than $5,000 going into my pockets as their agent.
Just some food for thought!
Richmond VA Real Estate Agent
Searching for a Richmond VA real estate agent who will look out for your best interest as a seller or buyer? Then contact Shannon Milligan at the RVA Home Team
with Keller Williams Realty today! Winning with Integrity.