Every potential homebuyer has a set of unique needs. Maybe they’re looking for a particular neighborhood, style of home, or number of bathrooms. Most important, though, is a client’s unique financial situation. What can they afford?

Personal preferences and financial considerations play key roles in the house hunting process. That said, what are those bottom line things your clients really want and expect from you?

  1. Honesty. When people put their trust in you they expect honesty in return. When you’re showing a property, your client expects you to give them room to explore, but not waste their time. Sure, it’s okay to view a few properties to get a feel for what they like or don’t. But when you haven’t taken the time to really understand their preferences and needs, or simply take then to whatever listings you currently have, you’re not being honest. If there’s nothing available currently, or nothing in their price range, you need to let them know. Trust is earned and earning it takes time. Honesty is the key.
  2. Rapport. Your clients are counting on you to listen carefully to what they’re looking for. They expect you to ask questions and to develop a comfortable working relationship with them. Make your clients comfortable by being transparent, taking the time to walk them through the buying process, and giving them a realistic assessment of current market conditions.
  3. Sound advice. Buying a home isn’t something people do everyday. Your clients are counting on your experience to guide them through what can be a stressful process. They want you to direct them to a lender they can count on. The same is true for other professionals involved in the process — title company, appraisers, home inspectors, and so on. They’re trusting in your expertise and experience to guide them.
  4. Reliability. Your clients expect you to be reliable. That means calling them back in a timely fashion when they call you. When you agree to meet somewhere, you show up on time and prepared. When you negotiate price with the seller’s agent, they rely on you to have their back. They expect that you have their best interest in mind — not your commission.

These not-so unique needs may be obvious, but a good real estate agent knows and does these things intuitively. Still, they bear repeating.

Many people simply don’t trust salespeople. Maybe they’ve had a bad experience and they worry that you’re hiding something from them — that you’re more interested in what you’ll get out of the deal, than what they will. Honesty, rapport, sound advice, and reliability will go a long way to winning them over and building a lasting relationship you can count on for future referrals.