Four Tips for Setting Client Expectations

Client expectations are incredibly important. If you don't set out and manage them correctly you may end up with a dissatisfied customer - even if you did everything you could to please them. Within the primary stages of a client relationship, it's crucial to discuss the whole process with them and help them to understand your role and what they can expect from you. Many make the mistake of over-promising and exaggerating to impress and clinch a sale - but this often spells trouble further down the line. In today's blog, we set out four ways you can firmly set client expectations. This ensures that they feel confident and trusting in your abilities, whilst also being aware of the elements that are out of your control.

Establish and separate needs and desires:

Part of your role as a real estate agent is understanding what buyers really want and helping them to clarify their own criteria ? as often the waters can become muddied between what they want, and what they actually need. Establishing the difference between the two then realising which aspects of their checklist are negotiable and which are must-haves will help you to satisfy their expectations both during the viewing stages and when it comes to the final sale.

Go a couple of steps further / delve deeper:

Consider the information they have provided you with, then go a couple of steps further. Think about inspirational and influential factors that may tie in with their current lifestyle, needs and desires. This enables you to really pinpoint what they are asking for when they express a vision of their "perfect home." For example, if they tell you they need a huge outdoor space it may transpire that they simply want a safe garden area for their children to play in. If they want an open plan kitchen/dining space it may mean they just want to spend more time as a family - so other options may be just as suitable. Read between the lines and don't be afraid to suggest options that they may not have considered themselves.

Ask the right questions:

Asking the right questions is crucial. After all, if you don't have all the information you need how can you possibly do your job well and present properties that really attract your client and make them want to buy? This stage is critical, so it's worth setting out specific questions for your client to answer to help you to build an accurate picture of them and their needs. Be clear, transparent and direct whilst also helping them to feel listened to and at ease. Some questions may be difficult - but you're on hand to help. It's also worth talking to them about their past experiences with real estate agents to see whether there are certain behaviours and approaches they liked or disliked.

Inform and advise:

There are many misconceptions surrounding the real estate industry and the process of selling a home itself - it is your responsibility to educate and inform clients so that they don't become confused or frustrated thanks to misinformation. Talk to them directly and in simple terms about the market itself, their prospects (how soon are they likely to buy or sell their home in the current climate) and whether their desired timeframe is sensible. Nobody likes to overpromise and under deliver - this way you are being as frank as possible and in turn often appear more compelling and efficient. As a result, you'll find buyers have legitimate and realistic expectations. This also establishes and reaffirms your credibility, authority and expertise.






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