Photo by diylibrarian

A few weeks ago, I attended a required continuing education class. Oh what fun!!! The class was on agency relationships. The instructor asked "By a show of hands, who here signs their buyer clients to buyer broker agreements?"

I couldn’t believe it. I was the only one with my hand up.

I was literally shocked. I thought all agents signed their buyers to some type of buyer agreement. I’m doing a little poll to see how many agents really do sign their clients to buyer broker agreements. Vote now:

When the teacher asked why these agents weren’t signing their buyer prospects to some form of agreement, they all said…

"We feel awkward asking our buyers to work exclusively with us."

The agents in my class were simply unconfortable asking their clients for commitment. These agents were willing to risk their most valuable asset – their time – in hopes that their buyers would be loyal to them. Let me ask you a very important question:

What is more uncomfortable, showing a buyer 20 homes, sacrificing hours of your time, and not getting paid or asking a buyer to sign a buyer broker agreement?

The question is almost funny when you stop and think about it. Obviously, it is more uncomfortable showing homes and not getting paid than it is to ask your buyer to commit to using you exclusivively. However, agents seem to consistently make the wrong choice when faced with this in their businesses.

Let’s dig a little further…

Why is it uncomfortable or awkward to ask buyers to sign a buyer broker agreement? Are you afriad they’ll say no? Wouldn’t it be better to have them say no upfront and save yourself hours of wasted time? This is almost like having some disease and not wanting to know you have it. Sooner or later, it’s going to hurt you. Same thing with unloyal buyer clients. I would rather find immediately if I had an unloyal client. My time is way to valuable to waste on unloyal clients.

Or maybe you have tried to have your buyers sign a buyer broker agreement and haven’t had much luck. If this is the case, you probably have a "positioning" problem with your prospects. Your prospects don’t view you as the best agent. They want to leave their options open. You need to think hard about how your prospects view you. Little things you do or say have a major impact on your positioning. I’ll write more about this in an upcoming post.

The teacher of our agency class began asking me questions because I was the only one with my hand in the air. She asked me if we signed all of our buyers to contract? My answer was "yes." Her next question was – So you won’t work with a buyer who doesn’t sign a buyer broker agreement? My answer – "correct!" To work with us, you have to sign a buyer broker agreement. There is no other option. Hint – this is one of the ways we get buyers to sign contracts. Next, she asked if our buyers hesitated or complained about having to sign a buyer broker agreement? I said "no." She was amazed. She asked how many buyers do you have signed to contract? I said "around 400." She almost freaked out. Next she asked me how long our buyer broker agreements lasted. I replied "12 months." She was speechless. Her questions finally stopped!

I didn’t realize I was going to be on trial during this class. Just because other agents don’t sign their buyers to buyer broker agreements doesn’t mean you shouldn’t. In fact, if you read my post on martial arts, you’ll see that the best fighters did the oppositte of what everyone else was doing. Same thing applies here. If one agent can sign their buyers to contract, you can too.

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Rob Minton

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