We all know the power that agents have during the home buying process. According to NAR, 89% of all home buyers ultimately use an agent. And 63% of new home buyers are represented by an agent.
It’s obvious that new home buyers see value in working with agents. They feel like their agent will be an advocate and help them find communities and homes faster using their inside knowledge and MLS access. They look to them as a credible resource to double check information given to them by sales reps in the model. Home buyers also turn to their agent to help them navigate the new home buying process.
But agents are unfamiliar with new home sales and have a fear of the unknown. This often pushes agents to recommend resale homes over new homes even though more than half of all buyers would consider new construction.
When BDX interviewed agents as part of a recent research study, we found the following are the top agent pain points about selling new homes:
- New home builders do not offer useful training for agents and brokers about how to sell new homes.
- Builders do not make it easy to learn about new properties and inventory.
- Agents lose control of the sales process when working with new home builders.
- New home builders do not properly educate about their properties.
- New home builders do not help agents educate and inform prospective buyers about the advantages of new homes.
So how do we solve this and increase agent comfort with new homes? We’ve come up with 5 ideas to get you started:
- Work with brokers, Realtor® associations and your HBA to provide training courses to local agents. There are several training courses that exist today that can provide educational material. Take a look at http://newhomesniche.com.
- Provide information about your procedures at the outset and set expectations for the process from start to finish. It’s important to outline for both the agent and home buyer exactly what they should expect from the process at each stage.
- Include information for agents on your website (including policy documents!). Agents want to see that you are willing to work with them. Don’t have a policy document? We’ve created a template you can use to get started. Insert doc link.
- Be available to answer agent questions. This seems so basic and can make a big impression but is often overlooked.
- Develop personal relationships. This can be accomplished in a variety of ways: Host regular agent-only events; attend broker; association or MLS events when possible; or look for agent meetups where builder attendance is acceptable.
Clearly there is room for improvement in most builder-agent interactions. And at BDX we’re also trying to help foster these relationships. Today, New Home Source Professional offers 50+ articles from third-party experts, teaching agents how to sell new homes.