Viewpoints: Cydney Parker, Realtor, RE/MAX Compass, Houston

by James McClister


Cydney Parker is a Realtor with RE/MAX Compass working in Houston.

Every week, we ask a Houston real estate professional for their thoughts on the top three stories from the week before. This week, we spoke with Cydney Parker, a Realtor with RE/MAX Compass. 

Houston Agent (HA): Negotiating is a huge part of real estate, and if you don’t understand how it works, it could cost your client big. What are some key skills that every good negotiator should have?

Cydney Parker (CP): Communication is the most obvious. You have to be able to communicate concisely, easily and non-threateningly with the other party and your own client. You have to build trust and rapport. I purposefully start this process from the beginning of the transaction. By the time we get to the inspection phase I have built a relationship with the other agent so that I can more easily negotiate without egos and emotions muddling the process.

Using the right vocabulary helps as well. We all learned to call it a “house” to the seller – to create a sense of detachment – and “home” to the buyer to romanticize it. This example is pretty basic, but when negotiating it pays to be very articulate and concise and to use the right wording and tone.

Also, know when to stop talking and listen. You will accomplish more with the right balance. Don’t offer everything you’ve got at once, and dont come off as a bulldozer. Showing a bit of compassion for the other side goes a long way.

Understanding. You need to really understand what each party wants to accomplish and why. Know their priorities and you will be better equipped to compromise with less important items. You might discover the parties have different priorities anyway and both can be met and everybody wins.

Creativity. Often the solution is not “in the box” but since you are dealing with people, nothing is. Allow yourself to be creative; brainstorm all the possibilities and you might just come up with a unique solution that you didnt learn in real estate class.

Lastly, education on cultural differences and negotiating styles is VERY important in our diverse marketplace

HA: What are some of the challenges you’ve faced working with first-time homebuyers, and how have you overcome them?

CP: I have been very successful with first-time buyers because I practice these two concepts: simplify and educate. The biggest challenge with first-time buyers is that they are drowning in misconceptions, bad advice and way too much information from non-professionals.

I tell them the steps: Get a loan, choose a house and hire an inspector. I explain that everything else is done by me, the lender or the title company. I realize this is oversimplifying but it puts them at ease, helps them breathe, and gives us a chance to build a relationship. Then I educate them along the way about the details of what is going on. This strategy is what has worked well for me.

HA: Development in Houston is booming, but so is demand. Do you expect the local inventory to fill out in 2015, why or why not?

CP: I hope to see enough new development so that buyers have a real chance to buy the home that they want without the bidding wars that we’ve seen this year. But I also dont like to see overbuilding that tends to adversely affect the resale market. When new home builders have an over-abundance of spec homes and start offering incentives and bonuses, the resale sellers cant compete. Those sellers might have to take a loss or default on the loan, creating more foreclosures. We dont want to see either scenario in our industry, but I recall this happening in the late 90’s in West Houston. New homes were selling like hotcakes but the resale market suffered for it in some areas.

I dont see development slowing down for 2015 at all, but it seems that the demand is still keeping up and business is growing and our economy seems to be thriving. The reports are that we will have an influx of homebuyers for several years to come so I anticipate another “healthy” real estate market in Houston next year.

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