People see how fast an agent can put a home pending (into escrow) in Sacramento and they often make the mistake of thinking that selling Sacramento real estate must be a piece of cake, when little is further from the truth. I’ve been working on this listing for the past 6 1/2 weeks. There were a lot of moving parts, many circumstances and unforeseen situations, some out-of-state, some in the city, and it all had to come together. On top of this, I revised my comparative market analysis almost daily to arrive at the perfect listing price.
Just because a real estate commission is negotiable doesn’t mean I am willing to cut a deal for a stranger. Heck, I don’t even make deals for friends because I don’t have any friends selling real estate in Sacramento. But even if I did, they would still pay me for my services. Real estate commissions must be negotiable in order to comply with the Sherman Act, but it doesn’t mean a real estate agent needs to offer a discounted commission. Yes, you can negotiate with this Sacramento real estate agent, and I’ll cut right to the chase here, my answer is no.
The movie studios don’t really make slapstick comedies anymore and I miss that kind of humor, unless you count the world of Sacramento real estate — in which one can almost always find a highly amusing moment as there are so many to choose from. I kinda like slapstick because I grew up with it, not to mention, it gave me a good excuse to whack my brother’s face for no reason. I laugh at pie in the face from the old Soupy Sales skits. Don’t get me started on the Marx Brothers or the Three Stooges. But today so much is PC you don’t get that kind of humor from Hollywood or media.
It’s not unusual for sellers to ask a Sacramento real estate agent to please tell buyers that they they are motivated sellers. They think that the term “motivated seller” is a code phrase for something important and immensely material to their marketing. I suppose they get this idea because they see the words “motivated seller” in other agent’s listings and think we speak some kind of silent language to each other.
They’re not completely wrong. Agents do engage in conversations with other agents that sound completely foreign to the public. We burn sage and dance naked under full moons, too, but I’m not telling you where. However, the truth is most sellers have no idea what “motivated seller” really means. It doesn’t mean what they think.
Are listing agents prone to sabotaging their own real estate transactions? It’s easy to do. I almost did it. And I certainly know better. I almost forgot the seller always has the final word. Nobody is infallible in this business, you know. I’ve been in real estate in some form or another since the 1970s. Yet, I almost put my big, fat foot directly into my mouth last month and am sharing this story in hopes of preventing this mishap from happening to somebody else.
First, let me say that this listing was not a short sale.