short sale agents

The seven habits of highly effective short sale agents

December 27, 2013
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A Short Sale Agents Is a Juggler

In Stephen Covey’s best-selling book, he discusses seven habits of highly effective people. And, believe it or not, there are actually identifiable traits or habits of highly successful short sale agents as well. The habits of highly effective short sale agents are what allow certain agents to get their short sales closed in a quick and efficient manner.

bar The seven habits of highly effective short sale agents
An effective short sale agent—one that can navigate the treacherous waters at the lending institutions and actually obtain short sale approval before the end of the next century—has a certain skill set, and it’s a unique one. A successful short sale agent is like the best juggler in the circus—the one that never drops a ball, no matter the distraction.



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Seven Habits of Effective Short Sale Agents

Here’s a list of the seven habits of highly successful short sale agents:

  1. Strong Communication Skills. It’s generally a good idea to have strong communication skills in all aspects of real estate. But, when you escalate your short sale, you really must be able to write a clear and concise email that states what you need and why you need it. You want to rattle some chains, and strong communication skills can help you do that.
  2. Good Organizational Systems. In order to make sure that you have effectively assembled the short sale package and gotten the lender everything that is required, you have to be pretty well-organized. A short sale package contains many different items and variables, and many people find short sale package preparation overwhelming. Good organization helps to get this done quickly.
  3. Attention to Detail. There are lots of minute details that make the difference between getting a short sale through the system effectively and a having a transaction that bottlenecks. From the way the package is compiled to the items included on the settlement statement, an attention to detail is very important. A missed detail can slow down a transaction for days, weeks, or even months.
  4. Understanding of the Short Sale Process. Knowledge of the short sale process will help agents to strategize effectively and provide more appropriate advice to distressed borrowers. Understanding programs, policies, and laws is key to a short sale agents’ success as a real estate consultant.
  5. Empathy. Many homeowners face significant stress due to their inability to make mortgage payments. Understanding that fact and having empathy for short sale sellers and their personal situations will help your clients make difficult transitions more easily.
  6. Tenacity. One of the biggest challenges of short sales is working with the lenders. Often times borrowers and agents receive misleading, contradictory, or confusing information that could lead to no resolution. Tenacity and persistence really help to tread those tough waters and obtain answers when others have difficulty doing so.
  7. Passion. Just like in any other real estate transaction, a successful short sale agent is one that is passionate about his or her role in the transaction and does whatever it takes in order to obtain short sale approval—possibly even getting up at the crack of dawn to reach out to a lender, when necessary.

The interesting thing about these seven habits is that if you honed them by working short sales over the last several years, then you will have no problem transitioning as the market begins to change. What seller or buyer would not want to hire an agent that successfully survived the most challenging economy since the Great Depression? Who wouldn’t want to hire an agent that is passionate, tenacious, organized, and empathetic among other things? These habits, developed by working with distressed borrowers, can supercharge your real estate career in 2014 and beyond.

Melissa Zavala is the Broker/Owner of Broadpoint Properties and Head Honcho of Short Sale Expeditor®, and Chief Executive Officer of Transaction 911. Before landing in real estate, she had careers in education and publishing. Most recently, she has been able to use her teaching and organizational skills while traveling the world over—dispelling myths about the distressed property market, engaging and motivating real estate agents, and sharing her passion for real estate. When she isn’t speaking or writing, Melissa enjoys practicing yoga, walking the dog, and vacationing at beach resorts.



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