I’m a strong negotiator. I know how to read whatever situation I’m in and how to then devise the right strategy that is going to deliver the best possible result for my client, whether buying or selling. I’ve successfully negotiated a thousand successful Real Estate transactions, and more times than not, my clients are thrilled with the results. Even when they’re less than thrilled, I know in my heart that I’ve negotiated the best possible result given the set of circumstances I’m working with.
What I mean by that last statement is that my client may have initially had unrealistic expectations. But part of being a good negotiator is first educating your own clients about the market, and then working with them to navigate that market. We REALTORS® negotiate deals all the time, but we have to remember that our clients don’t. They hired us to help them get the best possible deal.
If you allow your client to hold on to their unrealistic expectations, and you try to negotiate from that perspective, guess what? You’re failing your own clients, because you’re too much of a wimp to tell them the truth – based on your experience and expertise. I see this all the time. In my opinion, a failed negotiation is never the fault of the buyers or sellers on the other side; it’s always their REALTOR®’s fault.
I have had significant successes – buying and selling properties – and some people think I must have some tricks up my REALTOR® sleeves. So, you want to learn all my “tricks”? Here’s the first one:
There are no “tricks”. Whenever I have another agent playing games with me, I figure they must have just taken a “negotiating course” that teaches them all the “tricks”. This is good sport for me to get them all flustered on their own tricky-tricks. Hooo boy! What fun!
Tricks don’t work, but a well-considered strategy designed to address very specific and unique circumstances does. This is learned from hard-fought experience and the desire to continuously increase your skill level. And I’m still learning. As soon as I stop learning, I should retire because I’ll have lost the drive to get better. I still have the burning desire to get my clients the best deal possible. Signed and on the table. Yes, I’ve always had a competitive streak.
Here’s the thing. Every single negotiation is different. You’re dealing with entirely different people in entirely different circumstances, every time. Applying the same strategy to every situation isn’t going to work! That’s for amateurs.
Hey, fellow REALTORS® reading this right now, you want to learn all my strategies? Follow me around for about 15 years and pay close attention. Or, maybe I’ll write a book one day. You can buy it.
Meanwhile, I’ll tell you what doesn’t work. Being belligerent. You think being combative about every detail and trying to grind every last nickel out of the other side is going to work? Maybe it will work for one or two deals (and make everyone miserable), but these types don’t last long in an industry where it’s tough to survive as it is.
When I run up against one of these types, I can usually still make the deal fly. This is just another example of a unique set of circumstances. I will accept the challenge and I’ll do my best to get the deal done for my client. Sometimes this means I’m delivering some education to the other REALTOR® (without them realizing it – they usually think they’re the smart one!). Whatever it takes.
In most cases, I’m a strong believer in trying to negotiate good Karma into every deal. It’s entirely possible to be tough and fair at the same time, and I truly believe this goes a long way towards achieving a smooth closing. Remember that all this negotiation occurs well before you take possession of your new house, or give up possession of your old house. Having the buyer and seller and their REALTORS® respect each other during this period of time usually bodes well for everyone.
I rarely ever have an issue with another skilled and experienced REALTOR® in a negotiation. We know we’re working on opposite sides and independently representing our clients to the best of our abilities. But we also know we’re both working towards a common goal which is ultimately to make EVERYONE happy; the buyers and the sellers. There is usually no reason this can’t happen.
You think I’m soft for saying that? Well then, you’ve never been on the other side of a negotiation with me, have you? Like I said, it’s possible to be tough and fair and respectful, and to always have your clients’ best interests at heart, all at the same time. It’s just good Karma.
Until next month…