Dealing with difficult clients is something real estate agents have to do on a regular basis, it’s a fundamental part of the role. No matter how good of a real estate agent you are, you will eventually come across a client who is difficult to work with-it’s a scientific fact! However, there are ways to handle them that will help you keep your sanity (and maybe even your commission). In this blog post, we’re sharing how real estate agents can deal with difficult clients. By following these best practices, you’ll be on your way to more successful closings!
Establish Boundaries with Your Real Estate Clients
As a real estate professional, it’s important that you establish boundaries with your clients from the onset. This ensures that you have a healthy and productive working relationship. It’s important to be clear about what you are and are not willing to do for your clients - they will appreciate the transparency.
For example, you may want to set a limit on the number of properties you’re willing to show them without submitting any offers. It’s important to remind them that until you close a transaction, you don’t get paid, and you’re not willing to show them a thousand properties without any offers being submitted.
You should also be clear about the level of communication you’re willing to provide. Some clients may want constant updates, while others may be happy with more sporadic contact. Be sure to also ask how they prefer you communicate with them.
Another boundary you’ll want to set up front is letting your clients know when you are and are not available. While it’s important to be available for your clients when they need you, that doesn’t mean that you have to be available 24/7. Letting your clients know when you won’t be answering calls, texts, and emails can help to set expectations and avoid misunderstandings. If you know that you won’t be available for a period of time, let your clients know in advance. You can also let them know how they can reach you in case of an emergency. Leaning on a peer or partner for assistance with your business also allows your clients to always have a professional to reach out to, allowing you to have your well-deserved downtime.
By setting clear boundaries, you can help to create a healthy working relationship with your clients.
Don’t Take Their Behavior Personally
Buying or selling a home is one of the primary life changes a person can go through, and it can be tough to keep your cool in the face of emotions and upheaval, so it’s important to remember that your clients are likely to be under a lot of stress. When your clients are snapping at you or venting their frustrations, their anger is not usually directed at you. Rather, they’re taking out their frustration with the situation on the closest target, which just happens to be you.
When this starts to happen, you need to know how to handle difficult clients in a way that is both professional and respectful. The first step is to stay calm and avoid reacting in an emotional way. It’s also important to be understanding and sympathetic to the client’s situation. After all, they’re probably unhappy for a reason. Once you’ve established a rapport with the client, you can start to address their concerns.
Acknowledge Their Feelings, Even If You Don’t Agree With Them
Real estate transactions are often emotional experiences for buyers and sellers. After all, a home is usually the most expensive purchase a person will ever make. It’s not uncommon for clients to feel attached to the home they’re selling or to instantly fall in love with a house they just put in after in on.
Because of this, as a real estate professional, you will inevitably have to deal with clients who are experiencing an array of emotions, such as feeling angry, frustrated, or needy. In essence, they’re just plain hard to deal with. It can be tempting in these situations to try to downplay their feelings or to simply tell them what they want to hear. However, this is usually not the best approach.
It’s important to be aware of your client’s feelings and to take steps to acknowledge them while still maintaining healthy boundaries. You might tell your client that you understand how hard it is to sell a beloved home, but you can’t allow emotions to get in the way of negotiating a fair price. Or you might express empathy for your client’s situation when they lose out on an offer, but remind them that you can’t disclose confidential information about other offers.
In many cases, simply taking the time to listen to your client’s concerns can make all the difference.
Keep Communication Open And Be Honest With Them
Good communication is critical in real estate dealing between agents and clients. In real estate, both buyers and sellers have different objectives, which can sometimes conflict with each other. It is the real estate agent’s job to help bridge this gap and bring the two parties together to come to an agreeable resolution. This can only be done through open and honest communication.
During the home selling process, real estate agents should keep their sellers updated on any changes or developments that occur. For example, if there are any delays in the process or if a potential buyer has backed out, the seller should be immediately informed. This way, they can avoid getting their hopes up unnecessarily or being caught off guard at the last-minute when a buyer backs out. Similarly, buyers should also be kept in the loop and given regular updates on the status of their home purchase.
Try To Find A Solution That Works For Everyone Involved
Anyone who has been in the real estate industry for a while has probably had at least one difficult seller or worked with unreasonable home buyers. They can be over-the-top in their demands, constantly changing their minds, or are just generally unpleasant to work with. While it can be tempting to just try to get through the transaction as quickly as possible and move on, it’s important to remember that this is not always in the best interests of everyone involved.
Instead, take a step back and try to find a solution that will work for you, your client, and any other parties involved. Maybe there’s a different property that would better suit their needs, or perhaps you can negotiate different terms that will make the transaction more palatable for everyone. Whatever the case may be, try to find a resolution that will work for everyone and avoid just trying to push through a difficult situation.
If All Else Fails, Refer Them To Another Agent
It’s important to build relationships with your real estate clients. After all, they are entrusting you with one of the biggest financial decisions of their lives.
However, you have to remember that you aren’t meant to work with everyone who comes your way. Eventually, you will inevitably encounter clients who are far too difficult to work with based upon your personality and values. Maybe they’re indecisive, demanding, have different expectations, or your personalities just don’t match.
Whatever the case may be, it’s important to remember that you’re not obligated to stress yourself out just to make a dollar. If you find yourself in a situation where you’re not clicking with a client, it may be best to refer them to another real estate agent. That way, everyone can be happy with the outcome. It may not be easy to let go of a potential sale, but even the most successful real estate agents know when it’s time to delegate. Plus, you can always negotiate a referral fee.
By following the real estate tips shared, you’ll always be prepared to deal with difficult clients. Remember, no matter how well you know your stuff, there will eventually be that one client who is just impossible to please. By having a clear understanding of how to react in these situations, you’ll be able to diffuse the situation and prevent it from getting out of hand. In some cases, you may need to get your real estate broker involved or walk away from the deal altogether, and that’s okay! As long as you’re prepared for the worst, you’ll be able to handle anything that comes your way.