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Real Estate Agents Find FOR SALE Signs Don’t Pay the Bills

04-14-2008 01:17 PM CET | Industry, Real Estate & Construction

Press release from: Sell with Soul

Jennifer Allan, Author of Sell with Soul

Jennifer Allan, Author of Sell with Soul

Denver, Colorado. Most real estate agents are familiar with the mantra that “You have to list to last” which simply means that agents who want to survive in this competitive business should focus on procuring listings instead of seeking buyers. The rationale for this philosophy centers around the idea that it takes much less time to service an active listing than it does to find just the right house for a buyer; therefore, the agent who specializes in listing homes can handle much more business than one who works primarily with buyers. Proponents of this philosophy also claim that a large inventory of homes for sale will generate buyer leads which the listing agent can distribute to his or her buyer specialist or refer out for a fee.

Fair enough, says real estate author and trainer Jennifer Allan. “But the problem in today’s market is that having a For Sale sign in a yard is no longer a guarantee of an eventual paycheck. In fact, in many parts of the country, listings can actually be a liability for an agent.”

Allan explains, “Most agents pay for the marketing of their listings out of their own pocket with the expectation of being rewarded for their investment when the house sells and closes. But in markets where only one in five homes will sell, or worse, having a large inventory of unsold listings can be financially devastating.”

So, should today’s real estate agent switch his focus to the buyer side of the business? “Not necessarily,” says Allan. “If a listing agent is willing to go above and beyond what has traditionally been required of him to sell his listings, he can still thrive in this more difficult market. But if he’s still relying on the 3P’s (Put a sign in the yard, Put it in the MLS and Pray), then yes, he may want to reconsider his business model. We need to work a lot harder than that, and to have the guts to tell our sellers what’s what.”

According to Allan, here are the three main items that can mean the difference between a listing that sits, and a listing that sells:

1. Price is King. Properties must be priced more aggressively than their competition to even be shown, much less result in an offer. It’s not enough to simply be “fairly priced.”

2. Condition is Queen. A home that evokes a negative or even a neutral first impression has little chance of selling. It’s the agent’s job to make this clear to the seller and do whatever he or she can to help the seller get the home in showing-ready condition.

3. Accessibility rounds out the top three. If a listing is hard to show, regardless of the reason, it will be passed over. The seller needs to understand that once he’s on the market, his life is no longer his own. He must be willing to accept showings on short-notice and to vacate the home during showings. The key to the front door must work easily in the lock and there can’t be barking dogs locked up in the laundry room.

Allan concludes, “We real estate professionals have a golden opportunity in front of us to be the heroes in today’s challenging real estate market. Let’s focus on doing our job, which is to SELL houses, and I believe we can turn this mess around.”

As a gesture of her commitment to the real estate industry, Allan will co-host a free teleconference workshop entitled “How to Go From Listed to SOLD” with fellow author and trainer Borino on May 3rd, 2008. Borino is a former top producing real estate agent in Southern California and is now a real estate consultant and the founder of Expired Plus, a program created to teach agents how to successfully find and list more listings. For details and registration information for the workshop, click this link:

Jennifer Allan's Sell with Soul
4616 West 31st Avenue
Denver, CO 80212
Contact: Jennifer Allan 720-536-5908

Jennifer Allan is a top producing real estate broker, a published author, a speaker and a trainer. She has written five books about the business of selling real estate, including her flagship book: Sell with Soul: The New Agent’s Guide to an Extraordinary Career in Real Estate. She is a regular columnist at Realty Times and RE/MAX Times, and one of the industry’s most popular bloggers. Jennifer shows agents how to build a wildly successful career by following the Golden Rule … and without sacrificing their souls to do so. You can read more about her books and philosophies at

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