Here is what I have learned when it comes to real estate negotiation… Despite my best efforts, sometimes the agent on the other side of a fledgling deal, simply doesn’t want to (or can’t) call me back to discuss it!
I’m sure they have a good reason:
- Dead phone battery… one of my favorites!
- Out of cell range while traveling. (On a flight, then a different time zone)
- In a place where phone calls are not allowed or appropriate (Hospitals, anniversary dinners etc)
- Not comfortable with real estate negotiation over the phone … or with phone conversations in general.
Whatever their reason is, my clients still expect and deserve information and progress and it is a fact that the chances of having a successful negotiation via email or text message are incredibly low compared to face-to-face or by-phone negotiations. So, I set about sharpening my “virtual negotiation” skills.
Yes, that’s right, there is a class that teaches real estate negotiation via email and I have taken it! It was part of that series of classes that took me from being a CNE – Certified Negotiation Expert, to being a MCNE – Master Certified Negotiation Expert.
The way I see it, is my clients should get every advantage. Either I have the real estate negotiation skills or I may be involved in a negotiation with someone else who does. I don’t like being one step behind and neither should my clients!
Negotiation via email is part art and science.
- I learned how to get my message across in a clear, concise way. To increase the chances of the entire email being read and forwarded as needed. Which language and style of writing should be used (and avoided) in order to gather information and get our needs met.
- I learned how my first thought might be to use logic in an email. How this is less effective than recognizing and appealing to emotions.
- I learned professional looking formatting. Which words and phrases should be highlighted and when. How to use white space.
One of my favorite lessons was not in the outline, but came from our instructor, Oliver Frascona. Getting the email recipient to reply to the email as soon as possible… Thereby confirming receipt and gaining information. I’m keeping that to myself for now! 🙂
Rest assured, it’s not about tricks or unethical behavior. The skills I learned are for the purpose of recognizing resources and using them to gather (and give) information. It’s about working in the best interest of my client. Using advanced skills to create win-win outcomes and long lasting relationships.