In today’s age of dazzling digital technology, real estate professionals would be wise to take a page out of the e-commerce playbook and meet homebuyers and sellers where they live. Retailers can’t rely on brick-and-mortar stores alone anymore.
Instead, they’ve harnessed digital tools that seem to understand what users do and don’t want before delivering on these expectations. What are the key pain points real estate professionals need to help clients navigate safely?
Please read on to learn more.
1. Lack of Transparency
Anytime someone makes a purchase, they don’t want to be left in the dark about pertinent information. This is even truer when the transaction is the largest one, you’ll ever make!
Historically, real estate has not always been a fully transparent place. Realtors have had one set of data points, buyers another. There are also laws governing whether agents need to disclose the offers a home they represented received during a bidding war, and if so, how long they need to store it.
Regan McGee built Nobul, the first open, digital real estate marketplace, to provide homebuyers and sellers with the transparency they have so long sought out. Anyone is free to download the app and compare the profiles of all the available agents, which will list their experience levels, prices, services, and whether they offer additional free services or cash back.
Nobul doesn’t accept payments from the agents to get listed or ranked on their platform, so users can trust that the data is reliable. As McGee explained in a Toronto Life interview, “People think buying and selling real estate is complicated, but that’s a way for agents to justify their fees.”
2. Hidden Fees
There’s no reason to hide fees that a homebuyer can’t avoid paying — not only is it aggravating to find out about a fee after you’ve already done some calculating, but if a fee is inevitable and unavoidable, why hide it?
Trying to rope along a homebuyer by baiting them with a false lower price, only to reveal additional charges as you go along, is a misguided short-term strategy that can backfire. Be upfront with homebuyers about all the various fees, such as land transfer taxes, agent fees, and other things.
3. Smoke and Mirrors
Sometimes the property itself has something to hide! Beware of older units that recently received superficial cosmetic touch-ups that may have deeper underlying problems you’ll have to pay for later.
Most sellers are savvy enough to put their home’s best foot forward during a showing. Maybe they’ll hire a professional stager or put on a fresh coat of paint.
Ensure you have an in-depth understanding of the property you’re considering buying. Speak to your agent to confirm you’ve gotten all the reports. You don’t want to be wooed by a nice backsplash in the kitchen only to have water pouring in, telling you the home needs a new roof.
Buying a home can be extremely exciting but also nerve-wracking. If real estate professionals make a point of easing buyers’ and sellers’ pain points, the process will be much smoother for everyone.