How do you react when a Seller or Buyer asks you to give them a portion of your commission? Do you immediately get defensive? Do you start explaining how your commission is split and how many expenses you have as a licensed Real Estate agent?
I recently read an article on ActiveRain about a Seller asking their agent to make up the difference between the contract price and a low appraisal. The article had over 350 comments and all but a very small handful were blasting the Seller for having the nerve to ask such a thing. The comments went from just saying “No” to outlining exactly how we get paid and what we spend the money on.
Why not offer solutions to their problem instead? "Problem? What the heck are you talking about Broker Bryant? The only problem they have is that they are cheap and they expect me to work for nothing. They don’t value what I do!!"
Do you believe that? I don’t.
I believe they DO have a problem and they are looking to their agent for a solution.
The Seller, in the article I linked to, had a problem. Her problem was that the appraisal came in too low and she was getting ready to lose the sale over it. Her gut reaction was to use a portion of the commission to bridge the gap. Her agent, instead of offering her solutions, immediately became defensive. Fortunately she slept on it and didn’t send the nasty email she wrote to her client.
My suggestion was to offer the Seller solutions. There are actually several available when an appraisal comes in too low.
The Buyer can just move forward at the agreed upon price. Unless the contract is contingent upon a satisfactory appraisal the appraisal is really nothing more than an “FYI” event.
The appraisal can be disputed.
The Seller can come down on price.
The Buyer and Seller can split the difference.
The Seller can just place the property back on the market.
So....instead of getting defensive about your commission why not just let the Seller know of the possible solutions? My guess is that if you handled it this way the Seller would completely get off your commission and get on to solving the problem. Don’t you think?
Earn your commission. Don’t defend it.