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January 2016 Article

Can I Trust You?
By Jim Luger, CDEI
Certified Distance Education Instructor 
You don’t have to convince me, but you do have to convince your prospective clients. According to a National Association of REALTORS® study, both first-time and repeat buyers listed “honesty and integrity” as the number one quality they look for in an agent.
 
People have learned to not take honesty and integrity for granted. Politicians lie to us, investment managers steal clients’ money, and CEOs get rich while running their corporations (and stock values) into the ground. Who can we trust anymore? The answer should be: YOU. And here are some easy ways to prove it…
 
Be on time
And do what you say you will do. Being dependable and reliable in small matters reassures clients that they can depend and rely on you in large matters.
 
Prove that you care
Focus on your clients instead of yourself. Ask about their needs, wants, and concerns, and concentrate on what they tell you. Prove that you understand by summarizing what they just said—and acknowledge their feelings. Remember the axiom: “They will care about what you know when they know you care about them.”
 
Stay in close touch
Exceed your clients’ expectations by contacting them a little more frequently than necessary, to prove you are thinking about them. They will appreciate your attention, and they won’t have to wonder if you are concerned about them.
 
Respond Quickly
NAR studies have shown the most frequent consumer complaint about real estate professionals is for “poor communications.” That usually means their agent was slow to respond to phone calls, texts, or emails; or, worse, didn’t respond at all. When you respond to a client’s contact ASAP, you make your client feel important. Making your clients feel important tightens their loyalty to you.
 
 Dress for respect
We all react positively to someone who is well-groomed and dresses professionally. I’ve heard agents theorize that wearing casual attire makes their clients feel more comfortable. Your greater challenge is to win your client’s respect.
 
Offer testimonials
Ask past clients for testimonials, and ask permission to use their name. In this new world of mistrust, consumers increasingly rely on identified peer reviews before making decisions. Post testimonials on your website or social media pages, and include them on your personal promotion materials.

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