usually relies on an analysis of comparable properties which have recently sold in the same neighborhood. Bymaking adjustments for the differences between the subject property and the comparables, the agent arrives at ageneral price range. Agents must be careful to caution sellers that they are not appraisers, and that the suggested price range is not anexpert opinion of market value. If a more precise estimate of market value is desired, the seller should hire alicensed appraiser.Listing Presentations and Agreement NegotiationA listing presentation is an agent's opportunity to meet with a seller and present the merits of the agent's marketingplan, personal expertise, and company strengths. At the same time, an agent can explain the many phases and detailsof a real estate transaction and point out how the provisions of the listing agreement and the agent-principalrelationship work to ensure a smooth transaction.
Ultimately, the agent's aim in a presentation meeting is to have the principal execute a listing agreement. The agentmust then submit the listing to the broker for approval and signing. This result will set in motion the process ofmarketing the property. In practice, it may take an agent many meetings with a prospect before the prospect signs anagreement.Marketing ListingsThe process of marketing a listed property occurs in three broad steps leading to the desired end of a completed salecontract: initiating a marketing plan, selling the prospect, and performing pre-closing activities. At each of thesesteps, there are critical skills an agent must master. Initiating theMarketing PlanAfter the broker formalizes the listing agreement, the sales agent initiates a marketing plan for the property. An idealmarketing plan is a cohesive combination of promotional and selling activities directed at potential customers. Thebest combination is one that aims to have maximum impact on the marketplace in relation to the time and moneyexpended.Selling the ProspectWhen marketing activities produce prospects, the agent's marketing role becomes more interpersonal. An agentmust now:Qualify prospects' plans, preferences, and financial capabilitiesShow properties that meet the customer's needsElicit the buyer's reactions to propertiesReport material results to the seller or listing agentAt the earliest appropriate time, an agent must make certain disclosures to a prospective customer. Depending onstate laws, an agent may have to disclose the relevant agency relationship, the property's physical condition, and thepossible presence of hazardous materials.Obtaining OffersIf a buyer is interested in purchasing a property, an agent obtains the buyer's offer of transaction terms, includingprice, down payment, desired closing date, and financing requirements.An agent must be extremely careful at this point to abide by fiduciary obligations to the client, whoever that partymay be. Discussions of price are particularly delicate; whether the client is buyer or seller, the agent's duty is touphold the client's best interests. Thus it is not acceptable to suggest to a customer what price the client will or willnot accept. With pricing and other issues, it is always a good practice to understand what role the client wants the