Real estate is a competitive business and it can be tempting for an agent to tell you what you want to hear, rather than what you need to hear, to try and win your business.

Here are ten ways to tell if a real estate agent might be lying to you.

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  1. They tell you that your home looks great as it is and there’s nothing you need to do to get it ready for sale.

    There’s always something that can be improved, be that painting out that blue feature wall, packing away personal items or whipper snipping the weeds on a knock down job.
  2. They agree that your home is worth what you need to sell it for to buy the home in the better suburb that you love PLUS have money for a new car and holiday.

    This is called buying the listing.
  3. They tell you that property staging and styling won’t make a difference to your sale price.

    Sometimes that can be true, but in most instances improving how a property presents is one of the best ways to influence the sale price of your home.
  4. They agree with you that it’s ok not to have home opens and to only open by appointment.

    Buyers don’t like agents acting as the gatekeeper and you’ll be missing out on a large chunk of potential buyers pool by only appealing to those motivated enough to call. Most buyers won’t bother. Why make it harder to sell your home? And if you’re worried about sticky beak neighbours, you’re moving anyway!
  5. They tell you that they’ll cover the cost of the marketing

    This is a basic conflict of interest. If an agent is carrying the financial risk of the marketing campaign they are either going to want to minimise their exposure and underspend, which will directly affect your buyer pool, or be hell bent on trying to get that investment back.
  6. They tell you that selling with a tenant won’t affect your sale price

    Of course it does. Access for viewings is harder and your property will be presented in living rather than selling condition. Plus your buyer will have to honour the existing tenancy whereas most want to move in straight away. Unless you have to sell with a tenant, don’t.
  7. They tell you that it’s ok to price your property at the very top end of the possible selling range.

    If you want the smallest pool of potential buyers, sure. If you want to create some competition, no. Ironically, the surest way not to achieve your hope price is to try and sell for one.
  8. They don’t disagree when you say that you’re not in a rush and can wait until you get your price.

    Time is not your friend when you’re selling. Unless you have a very unique property that appeals to a very niche market the statistics show that the longer you’re on the market the more heavily discounted your price is likely to be.
  9. They don’t support their market opinion with demonstrable sales evidence.

    And it’s no coincidence that their opinion is the same as yours. This is another example of over quoting and buying a listing. Where’s the evidence?!
  10. They tell you have they have a buyer for you.

    This could in fact be true, but it could also be a fake appointment that they set up for show to win your business.  Whilst selling off market can very occasionally yield a result, the only way you’ll truly know you’re getting the best possible price is to take the property to market.

Natalie Hoye is the Founder and Licensee of Red Fox Property Group – a boutique agency doing things differently in the suburbs surrounding Beaufort Street. We call it ‘real estate alchemy’: a genuine blend of science and intuition, marketing and magic, head and heart. The Red Fox Way. And we’d love to chat with you about your local real estate needs. Call us now on 0405 812 273.