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Agent specializes in ‘reverse offer’

Christian Merrill knows there are plenty of real estate agents to choose from when someone makes the decision to sell a home, but he hopes more than 20 years of experience makes him stand out a bit from the crowd.

“I have twenty years of negotiating experience, and I know what it takes to get a property sold,” Merrill said. “Every property has a story and a situation. Every property is different. So it’s a great inventory of experience to pull from.”

News from the real estate market has been a lot of doom and gloom the last several years, but Merrill, who is working his second down cycle, said there is still plenty of action locally.

“Last year, an average of twelve houses and two condos sold per day, seven days a week, in Knox County. People are thinking nothing is happening, but actually twelve [houses] are going to sell today,” he added.

“If I know that twelve houses and two condos are going to sell today, my job is to find those people.”

Pricing is one way he finds buyers.

“Pricing is an action verb. We’re going to price the property, put it at a price that will cause it to sell … It causes results.”

As a listing agent, you wouldn’t expect Merrill, who’s been licensed with RE/MAX since 1988, to write offers, but he does.

“I do a reverse offer. This is when the seller, my client, because I’m a listing agent, gives an offer to a buyer,” he said. “I don’t like sitting around, waiting for offers to come in. I’m a proactive person. The reverse offer is one of the best ideas I’ve come across. I didn’t invent it.”

Merrill said few people around here know what reverse offers are.

“It’s just paperwork. It’s all legal, but it’s unheard of. Most sellers just stand around,” he added. “There are a lot [of properties] to look at, so if someone says, ‘I want you to buy my home,’ that’s going to be different, and get you excited. You’re going to remember that house. So what we’re trying to do is make the listings I represent bubble to the top. That’s something different that nobody else in the county does, that I’ve heard.”

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