Conflict and Its Resolution in the Real Estate Industry Term Paper

Excerpt from Term Paper :

Conflict and Its Resolution in the Real Estate Industry

In real estate, all experienced sales people will have an unhappy customer to deal with at some point in their careers. Those who are most skilled know how to utilize specific techniques that will defuse or reduce the intensity of the situation. In every instance, conflict and resolution techniques will often work in conjunction with each other. (Tamper, 1999) (Furlong, 2010)

For real estate professionals, the key is being able to avoid one and use the other to satisfy complaints. To fully understand these variables requires focusing on relevant issues and key questions. Together, these elements will offer specific insights which are highlighting how the two work in conjunction with each other. It is at this point, when they can reduce conflicts and provide more effective resolution techniques. (Tamper, 1999) (Furlong, 2010)

Relevant Issues

In real estate, the customer relationship is critical. This is because buyers and sellers will turn to realtors to achieve their objectives when it comes to conducting a successful transaction in the marketplace. The problem is there will be times when a customer will have conflicts with the agent. This is because they are receiving a commission and could place their own interests over the client. (Tamper, 1999) (Furlong, 2010)

These kinds of challenges are problematic, as they will hurt the integrity and reputation of various firms and professionals. This will have negative impact on the industry with more customers going out on their own to find the right property. To maintain high standards of integrity requires that the most common conflicts must be resolved inside the sector. These include: technology, placing the interests of clients first and honestly working with the other side to address their genuine needs. (Tamper, 1999) (Furlong, 2010)


Technology is often utilized by realtors to locate properties and post them on the multiple listing services. The problem is that when it comes to creating value for the customer, none of this is passed onto them. Instead, their commission structures remain the same. Moreover, the agent is conflicted by creating win -- lose situations. (Tamper, 1999) (Furlong, 2010)

For most customers, this is troubling as they feel how the agent is not working with them through passing on this savings. Instead, they will utilize technology to benefit them. To avoid these kinds of challenges requires offering customers with access to all of the firm's technology solutions as part of the service. This will allow them to feel as if they are receiving more and are included in the process. (Tamper, 1999) (Furlong, 2010)

Placing the Interests of Clients First

Placing the interests of the other party first is challenging for most realtors. This is because they are concentrating on enhancing their commissions as much as possible. Over the course of time, these kinds of transactions help one party to receive considerable benefits at the expense of the other. This increases the odds of customers complaining and becoming upset in the process. (Tamper, 1999) (Furlong, 2010)

For example, any real estate transaction often involves one party giving up something to receive a benefit. The problem is that agents are working with sellers who want the highest price for their property. While the agent, will make more money by negotiating these kinds of deals. For the buyer, they can lose several thousands of dollars in equity and closing costs from these tactics. At the same time, any kind of saving from the utilization of technology will benefit the agent. This kind of situation can also be reversed with the buyer receiving favorable treatment over the seller. These deals create conflict with one party feeling as if they were cheated. When this happens, they will become upset and emotional. (Tamper, 1999) (Furlong, 2010)

To prevent these issues, the agent must make a commitment to represent everyone's best interests. This means working out a solution that will address the needs of both parties. In the future, this reduces the odds of having these kinds of disputes occurring from misrepresentation on the part of the realtor. At the same time, technology could bring buyers and sellers more into the process. This will help them to understand what is happening, the fee structure and costs. These elements will educate the client and enhance the quality of the services provided to them. (Tamper, 1999) (Furlong, 2010)

Moreover, specific programs can be tailored based upon the underlying levels of assistance the customer needs. For example, if the customer wants to utilize technology solutions with reduced advice / services. This could result in lower fees with more self-help style programs. While those clients who need lots of assistance, could use this to educate them and offer increased profit margins for the agency. (Tamper, 1999) (Furlong, 2010)

However, there will be times when one side is irate and unreasonable. In these kinds of situations, it is important to remain calm and offer them with a solution that will meet these needs. This requires remaining objective and listening to what they have to say. Then, make a counteroffer to determine their flexibility and if a negotiated solution can be reached. (Tamper, 1999) (Furlong, 2010)

In those situations where there may be some kind of litigation. It is encouraged to use mediation. This is a voluntary conflict resolution technique which seeks to create win -- win situations and the decisions are nonbinding. Technology will play a central role by helping the agent to understand what was provided to the customer and previous conversations with them. This assists them in comprehending and building some kind of solution that will address these needs. (Tamper, 1999) (Furlong, 2010)

Honestly Addressing the Needs of Both Sides

Honestly working with both sides requires understanding what is important to them and helping to obtain it. The problem is that most agents do not listen to what matters the most. Instead, they are busy closing the sale and pointing out the benefits of the property. This is something the client may not need or is uninterested in. (Tamper, 1999) (Furlong, 2010)

To avoid these kinds of challenges, the realtor must listen to what each side is telling them. Then, talk about what was discussed in their own words. This reduces the chances of any kind of miscommunication. The way that this decreases conflict is to encourage open communication between the different sides and placing their interests first. When this happens, it is difficult to claim how the agent acted unethically or breached various provisions of the law. (Tamper, 1999) (Furlong, 2010)

In general, conflicts will emerge in the real estate industry based upon miscommunication, confusion and a lack of coordination. These areas are problematic, as all agents are expected to embrace the highest levels of integrity. The challenge is acting in a way that will encourage both sides to work with each other in creating a win -- win situation. This means listening to what is important to each party, observing how they react and offering them with something that will satisfy their basic needs. Those who are able to do this will have reduced any chances of customer complaints. (Scott, 2009) (Furlong, 2010) (Dent, 2012)

In the event that some kind of litigation is required, it is encouraged for everyone to use mediation. This will create win -- win situations and it is seeking to quickly resolve the problem. The best way this can be utilized is to have customers sign an agreement stating they will resolve all disputes utilizing this format. If this were to occur, they will be more inclined to use this solution to put an end to the challenges they are facing. (Scott, 2009) (Furlong, 2010) (Dent, 2012)

These ideas are relevant, as understanding how conflicts and potential mitigation strategies will make agents more successful. This takes place with them using these techniques to disarm the other party emotionally and encourage them to sit down with an open mind. Once this happens, the odds improve of being able to come to an agreeable solution with no third party assistance. If this is ineffective, mediation can be used to solve the dilemma and move forward in the form of win -- win solutions. (Scott, 2009) (Furlong, 2010) (Dent, 2012)

Questions to the Company

To create an effective program that will help everyone requires using creativity and offering new ideas. These insights could be utilized right away to improve the ability of professionals to troubleshoot conflicts. This reduces the chances of the situation spiraling out of control and having a negative impact on the individual and their firm. (Beirne, 2006) (Filho, 2008)

However, to improve the process requires concentrating on specific questions that will assist everyone in achieving these overall objectives. The most notable include:

What other techniques can be used to identify and resolve conflicts?

Are there specific types of personalities involved in conflict? If so, what are the best approaches for communicating with them and reducing the odds of any incidents?

How can the program be…

Sources Used in Documents:


Beirne, M. (2006). The Property Management Tool Kit. New York, NY: American Management Association.

Dent, P. (2012). Real Estate. New York, NY: Routledge.

Filho, W. (2008). Conflict Resolution. Oxford: Peter Lang.

Furlong, F. (2010). The Conflict Resolution Toolbox. Hoboken, NJ: Wiley.

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