Got a call today from a lady, looking to list her property, wanting to know what we are all about. Love those - gave her the story, some great dialogue, awesome questions, a clued up seller. She seemed excited and interested.
Then came the qualifier "What you are doing makes real sense to me and I can see how it would really work for us, but....".
Ok, why the hesitation I asked? "I have had an appraisal done by a traditional agent and they have a buyer all ready to go. I just need to sign their exclusive agency agreement and they will have the buyer in immediately. I don't know whether its true or not and I don't like their commission fees - but what should I do?"
Oh dear, real estate sales technique #247. And not from the 'best practice' section either.
She persisted "What should I do?"
My advice? Call them on it.
If they do have someone genuinely wanting to buy your property at a price you are comfortable with then have the agent get that person engaged immediately. They should not do that without an agency agreement - but you don't have to sign a 90 day exclusive. You as the seller have control. Have them draw up an agency agreement for a short period of time that specifically identifies the interested party. Thats right, name them on the agreement. I can assure you in a tight market if the agent genuinely has a buyer that desparately wants your property they will agree to that. Give them a few days, a week even, to show results. You can always extend the agreement if you are satisfied and happy.
The devil is in the detail - get them to specify exactly the name of the interested person, and schedule a viewing time when you can be present. Of course you don't need to spend money on marketing either, right? Every agent should have several people that potentially could be interested in your property given a range of ever lengthening assumptions. Forget those generalisations, they're probably fluff.
If the agent won't be specific, or be tied down, or gets vague, or won't sign the restricted agreement then simply take that into consideration when choosing who your agent should be.