Real estate agents are viewed by most as untrustworthy and dishonest, and yet seldom recognised for the unseen hard work and meticulous execution behind the scenes.
They sell a person's single most important asset, and yet still don't fair as a service provider that most would trust - regardless of our relationship with them.
This lack of trust, combined with a changing market where sellers aren’t getting the sales prices they’d come to expect, has meant agents are under increasing pressure to defend their expertise to sellers looking for cost-cutting opportunities.
Skimping on an agent’s fee may save a vendor a few dollars in the short-term but can be very costly in the long-term if it means achieving a sub-optimal sale price.
Getting vendors to understand this can be an uphill challenge with the number of agencies and new organisations that are currently engaged in price discounting.
The key to demonstrating to vendors the benefits they stand to gain by using an agent’s skills and experience comes down to one simple thing — transparency.
In the past, this has been hard. But technology is putting this back in the agent’s hands.
Openn Negotiation is an online platform and selling system that allows qualified buyers to openly negotiate on price, with the advantage of knowing exactly how many competing buyers there are.
It gives agents the ability to unlock a level of transparency and trust that isn’t possible in current models. There are three ways Openn Negotiation does this.
When it comes to private treaty negotiations, vendors can often set their expectations too high, resulting in the agent struggling to find genuine offers. This leaves the vendor wondering if the agent is competent and doing everything possible to secure buyers.
Using the Openn Negotiation platform, vendors know exactly how many legally committed buyers are competing for their property, from as early as day one of the campaign.
This provides vendors with invaluable information into how much market-demand exists for their property and insight into how their property is performing.
It’s certainly an advantage compared to a traditional auction, in which the seller and agent can’t have 100 per cent certainty into how many buyers will compete until auction day.
Openn Negotiation allows all parties (buyers, seller and agent) to see all bids on the property, which means that everyone gains real-time information about the market and how it’s pricing the property.
Throughout the Openn Negotiation campaign, the agent can update and reveal the current bid on portals like realestate.com.au and domain.com — even if the bid is well below what the vendor would accept.
This is possible as all potential buyers are pre-qualified through a unique contracting process. Naturally, if bidding starts out low, substantial interest in the property will be generated among many potential buyers. This has the effect of motivating them to engage with the agent, so they don't miss out on the property.
Once the bidding starts to climb, and prices start to get close to market value, interest may begin to slow down. This gives vendors confidence and certainty if they need to adjust their price expectations accordingly to meet market demand.
With Openn, agents don’t have to rely on their word to educate sellers on what their property is worth, the market does it for them — and within a structured campaign period of less than 30 days.
Agents sometimes struggle to demonstrate their skills and efforts to vendors, as so much of their work goes on behind the scenes.
Throughout an Openn Negotiation campaign, the agent works hard to secure qualified buyers and the vendor is notified every time a new bidder joins the negotiation.
Once the time comes for the Final Bidding Stage the seller is typically present with the agent and auctioneer – so they can see first-hand how hard they are working to get the best price.
This gives vendors assurance that everything is being done on the part of the agent to negotiate strongly on their behalf.
Ultimately experienced and highly-skilled agents are an integral part of the selling process. Openn Negotiation simply makes it easier for agents to demonstrate their value to vendors, through complete transparency.
Sign up for Openn Negotiation today and become an Observer to see the process in action for yourself. Or if you’d like to become a certified Openn Negotiation agent, register for one of our training sessions.