Buying or selling a home is a big life-changing decision, and during that process, it can get very emotional for buyers and sellers (and for their real estate agents as well).

Here are some tips for real estate agents (and buyers and sellers) about recognizing and responding to client emotions that might result from residential real estate transactions:

• Expect emotional reactions. Selling or buying a home might be stressful at times, so be ready for emotions to surface and be prepared to deal with them. The best way to keep emotions under control is to carefully listen to client’s concerns and always respond in an understanding and reassuring manner.

• Anticipate the stressors. Here are six reasons why clients may become stressed during the real estate transaction: 1. transaction is not going as they expected; 2. thinking about losing control of the process; 3. too many options to choose from; 4. buyer’s or seller’s remorse; 5. fear about making the wrong decision; 6. feeling out of touch with the real estate professional. Great agents stay in touch with their clients and keep them informed during the entire transaction.

• Keep expectations realistic. It’s possible that client expectations differ from the market realities, and that these differences may result in emotional distress. Keep the emotional calm by using local market statistics, knowledge of the community, and personal real estate experiences to come to realistic compromises.

• Help clients stay in control. It is very upsetting and stressful when you are feeling that you are falling out of control in any life situation. It is even moreso when you are buying or selling your home. To help your clients remain in control, communicate with them often, making sure that they know what is going on with every step of the buying or selling process.

• Confirm their trust in you (over and over again). When a client hires a real estate agent, he or she has already decided that they trust that person. However, it’s up to you, the agent, to continue to earn their trust and to keep them satisfied with your services. This is not always easy to do, but if you make their needs your No. 1 priority and keep them informed on a regular basis, you are sure to have happy clients.

Larry Stoller is a broker and Realtor with Real Estate Five of the Lowcountry.,,