In last week’s Knowledge Brokers panel on the NAR settlement, Byron Lazine, Lisa Chinatti, and Tom Toole discussed not only the terms of that proposed settlement but also the opportunities agents will have in a post-settlement world. 

And of all those opportunities, the biggest one had to do with buyer agents. Because taking cooperative compensation off the MLS does not mean buyer agents won’t get paid. 

That’s one thing NAR president Kevin Sears pointed out in his interview with Jared James: continuing to allow sellers to pay the buyer agent if they choose is a victory, considering the DOJ would like to see an end to seller-paid buy-side commissions. 

But that’s not the only silver lining. In fact, for skilled and committed agents, these industry settlements have several upsides. 

Read on for a quick overview of the four immediate opportunities for real estate agents, or start watching at 46:37

#1—Transaction Abundance

Transaction abundance has been around for a long time—as long as the data has been collected. 

MND-Existing-home-sales-chart

Since the 1990s, there have been 3.9 million or more transactions every year—and that’s just existing home sales. Yes, last year’s numbers were lower than previous years, but this year, the number of transactions is already increasing. 

As Byron stated, “The opportunities are right in front of you.”  

Whether your goal is to close 30, 40, or 50+ deals, that is just a very small percentage of the number of transactions that take place every year. 

Having an abundance mindset around transactions means knowing you have an abundance of opportunities for agents to serve and grow their businesses. 

Buyers and sellers alike benefit from the services of a skilled and knowledgeable real estate agent. And sellers who choose to pay the buyer agent commission have a strategic advantage not shared by sellers who leave that up to the buyer. 

If anything, that makes it all the more important for agents specializing in buyer agency to show how their services benefit both the buyer and the seller. 

Those who can do this well—and over-deliver on their promises—are more likely to benefit from the changes that come from (approved) industry settlements than to suffer from them.

Because they’re the ones best positioned to benefit from an increase in home sale transactions. 

#2—Open Houses

Open houses are not a new opportunity. Just ask Katie Kenny: she made $75,000 from hosting other agents’ open houses as a new agent last year. 

So if you haven’t been hosting open houses on a regular basis, now is the time to start doing them weekly. 

With the new rules being implemented in July, open houses will be the only place where you can meet with buyers without having a signed buyer agreement. This is a huge opportunity to meet people face-to-face who are interested in buying (not to mention neighbors who are thinking about selling). 

At your open house be sure to think about creative ways to gather contact information and take the next step:

  • Sign up for a full list of the weekend’s open houses
  • Provide educational material
  • Invite them to an event

From there, ensure you follow up with every person who signed up at each open house with valuable information that buyers in your market need to know. 

Be creative in the ways you provide value and information, so that when buyers are ready to transact, they think of you first. 

#3—Build a Service Model

We’ve seen so many comments from agents saying things like, Why would buyers want to pay their agent?

If you don’t know your value as a buyer’s agent—or you don’t articulate the services you provide—nobody will want to pay you. 

Now is the time to ensure you have built a service model that goes beyond opening doors for buyers. 

List out everything you currently do for all your buyers. Then, start a second list with what you can add to your service model:

  • Can you add a moving truck?
  • Can you add access to vendors quickly and easily?
  • Are you helping buyers act on everything they need to do as homeowners?

In addition, be thinking about how you can continue to service your clients after they move into their new home:

Beyond the transaction of buying a home, agents should be thinking about what it look(s) like to offer that buyer service for 6-12 months after the transaction is completed. Are there resources and tools and expertise agents can offer post closing?

Lisa Chinatti

#4—Create a Buyer Presentation

If you don’t have one already, now is the time to create a buyer presentation and buyer net sheet. They are a must in the new landscape. 

Your buyer presentation must be as good as—or better than—your listing presentation. Just as sellers may interview multiple listing agents before signing with one, more buyers will be interviewing buyer agents before signing a buyer representation agreement. And you must have skills that set you apart from the rest:

Once you have a buyer presentation and net sheet in place: 

Practice this as if you are Kobe Bryant. Go Mamba style on your training and your practice.

Byron Lazine

#5—Huge opportunity for agents specializing in buyers

In last week’s Knowledge Brokers Podcast, Lisa Chinatti spelled out exactly why she’s so bullish about the opportunities presented by the NAR settlement for agents who choose to specialize in buyers, especially as they learn how to both articulate and demonstrate their value to both the buyer and the seller. 

Just as some consumers opt to work with a discount broker, some buyers will look for discount buyer agents. But plenty of consumers want the guidance and expertise that a skilled professional brings to the table. 

Your job now is to articulate your value like never before. 

Watch the full panel to get the most value from this special edition Knowledge Brokers Podcast. And share it with your fellow real estate professionals.