Common Listing Presentation Mistakes that Lose the Listing

As a real estate agent your listing presentation is one of the most important things you do. It’s where you truly “make the sale” with your prospective client. That means you have to do it well. No – you have to do it incredibly, amazingly, stupendously well. But how do you do that?

The National Association of REALTORS® has handed you a golden ticket for success. The Buyers and Sellers Profile tells you EXACTLY what sellers are looking for in an agent: 

  1. Help marketing the home to potential buyers
  2. Help selling the home within a specific timeframe
  3. Help pricing the home competitively

Naturally, your listing presentation must communicate to the seller that you will help them accomplish these three things.

In addition to understanding what your client wants from you, it’s also important to understand the criteria most clients will use when they choose a real estate agent — ahem, you.

  1. Reputation of the agent
  2. If the agent is honest and trustworthy
  3. If the agent is a friend or family member
  4. Agent’s knowledge of the neighborhood

Now let’s get to the HOW.

Here are six mistakes you must avoid during your Listing Presentation to ensure you’re the only agent your prospective client considers and, ultimately, hires.

1. First call is way too long

Does this sound like you? When you were first trained on how to receive a call from an interested prospect, were you given a list of 20 questions to ask? Sure, they are meant to “pre-qualify” the prospect but they tend to frustrate them more than anything else.

Just put yourself in their shoes. They are calling around to lots of agents and don’t want to be bogged down on a long phone call. Plus they are expecting to cover these questions during the listing presentation. Instead of playing 20 questions, get some basic information and then set the listing appointment. The goal of the first call is to understand the motives behind selling, the timeframe, and establish yourself as a partner in the process. By default, you’ll also be setting and managing realistic expectations with your clients.

2. Touring the house before getting to know the client

When you show up at the door of a prospective client’s home for your listing appointment, what do you do right away? Most agents tour the house immediately. DON’T DO IT! It’s vital you make a connection and build rapport first.

Additionally, when the tour happens immediately, you shift control of the appointment to the client. So instead, say “I would love to tour your home with you, but first, I’d like to sit down and review what we talked about on the phone and learn more about how I can better serve you.”

3. Focusing too much on you and not enough on the client

Most prospects who call you for a listing appointment have already researched you online. You don’t need to go in and try to “sell them hard” on who you are, especially if your online presence builds trust.

That’s not to say you can’t add your branding in your presentation. It simply means you can’t be obvious with your sales pitch. For instance, when sellers ask about your experience selling homes in the market, don’t spend 10 minutes detailing your background. Rather, highlight one or two properties you’ve sold that are similar to that of the seller, and demonstrate your knowledge of the seller’s neighborhood and the current market.

Pro Tip: Gradually building relationships with sellers is the best possible sales pitch you can implement.

4. Still working that paper listing presentation like it’s 1988

Do you have a company listing presentation that is too much fluff, outdated, or just not good enough?

Since today’s housing consumer is digital you need to be also. That means upgrading to a digital listing presentation. In fact, very few real estate professionals have made the switch, so yours will be a memorable experience. Read: MAJOR advantage points.

It is also a huge WOW factor.  A digital listing presentation will give the impression of modern, professional, high-quality service – and it reflects how you’re going to represent their property.

According to Paperless Agent, when the seller interacts with a tablet, it fosters more of a dialogue than an actual presentation. This mode of interaction positions you as the “trusted advisor” and not a “sales-y real estate agent.”

Pro Tip: It’s a good idea to bring paper as a backup…you know, just in case 🙂

5. One size (marketing plan) fits all

If you recall, the number one task that sellers want from their real estate agent is to help market their home to potential buyers.

Addressing this concern helps you connect with the seller’s highest priority in working with you. Showing the channels that will help you market the home has an additional benefit – you get to leverage well-known consumer brands in your presentation like this:

It’s critical during this step to differentiate your services. Talk about the new marketing tools, apps and software you’ll be using. Successful real estate agents understand the importance of property history when selling a home, so be sure to feature the home’s Housefax Report. Show sellers exactly how you’ll be leveraging the Housefax Report in the online listing and during an Open House. And of course, have a paper copy as a leave behind. It adds to the overall WOW factor.

6. You get that “deer in headlights” look when it’s time for questions

We can’t stress this enough. Whether you’ve been to 1 or 101 listing presentations you must prepare and practice. Most questions and objections center around pricing and you as an agent — especially commission, says Kevin Ward, REALTOR® and founder of YESMasters Real Estate Success Training. “Know going in what the objections are going to be. Have an idea of what’s going to be an issue for them. Never get surprised by an objection,” he says.

If the sellers are asking for a commission reduction, Ward offers this scriptIf you’re looking for the cheapest agent, I’m not your guy. I don’t deliver discount results. But if you want to get the most money for your house in this market, then I’m the agent for you.

Stick to the data and the price you decide to present to the sellers after you tour their home and have researched the comps. If you waver at all, they’ll begin to doubt you, Ward says. “Make your case in absolute certainty. Have the data to back it up.” Also, be clear that it’s not you who is determining the price, but the market. Again, a trusted third party like Housefax, which professionally presents the history of a home from over a dozen sources, helps to support the asking price.

Have an upcoming listing presentation?

Learn from the mistakes of others and follow these tips. And don’t forget to run a Housefax Report for an extra WOW factor in your listing presentation. For other ways to use a Housefax Report to grow your business, contact us at