It is unfortunate that in today’s high tech, low touch environment we find real estate agents doing the old “drop and run” or “fax and forget” approach to delivering an offer to the other party. With low commissions comes low service and face to face communications upfront can off set problems down the road.
Meeting the seller and listing agent face to face improves communication and leads to more successful negotiations. Most communication is non-verbal. Body language, tone of voice and nuances of the negotiating process cannot be faxed. Presenting an offer personally to the seller improves the opportunity to provide important supporting details such as flexibility in timelines for inspections and closing. And if the buyer’s agent has his or her client on stand by or nearby, the seller’s counter-offer can be addressed on the spot and the transaction inked that hour. No waiting; no chance that a higher offer might come the next morning to trump your bid.The risk of miscommunication is lowered when all the parties are present to ask and answer questions and clarify intent. “We weren’t sure what you meant by that” doesn’t end as a fly in the ointment of the agreement.
The additional benefits of a personal presentation to the seller are that his or her agent can provide data supporting the offering price and provide advocacy in the event of multiple offers. Conversely, the listing agent can provide additional background on the seller and the offer that don’t’ find their way into the ink.
Lastly, a tremendous value flows from the agents meeting face-to-face. Nothing serves the interests of the clients more than a smooth working relationship between their respective agents. In many real estate sales these days, the agents (let alone their clients) never are in the same room together. When rough spots appear, and with no feel and empathy for the other agent, it’s difficult to smooth the way for solutions.
Best advice……always have your agent present all offers personally. If they can’t present to both the listing agent and the seller then the agents should at least meet face to face to review the terms of the contract. Though this takes a little extra effort on your agents part the advantages to both the buyer and seller far outweigh the impersonal convenience of the fax. An enthusiastic and warm human being looking you in the eye sells a home or a buyers perspective better than sterile print staring at you from a cold page.
This should be a discussion you have up front with your real estate agent even before you hire them.