I teach courses all over North America and there is one common theme in every major city…there aren’t enough listings and sellers are in the driver’s seat.
My students all share the same two concerns:
- They have buyers who want to buy, but there is nothing out there for them to look at, and when they do find a property their buyers like, they end up competing with multiple offers. They often lose out to all-cash, over-asking-price, no-condition offers, and then they must start the whole search process over again. Their buyers are frustrated, and rightfully so.
- They have sellers who want to sell, but they are afraid if they put their house on the market it will sell too quickly and they won’t find another house they like in time. These hesitant sellers are creating gridlock in the market.
Working in a seller-controlled market can be complicated, but there are solutions! Don’t see the inventory shortage as a problem, see it as an opportunity. When you get a listing, it is guaranteed to sell if you price and market it properly. If you know how and where to prospect for listings, you can put up for sale and sold signs while other agents are waiting on the sidelines.
Attitude is everything in sales. Don’t adopt the negative attitude that I’m hearing in a lot of the offices. The Negative Ned agents of the world would rather spend their time hanging around the water cooler talking about how bad the market is because nothing is moving. That’s not the case. People ARE moving. Regardless of market conditions, there will always be real estate sales. People will still get married or divorced, have babies, empty nest, get a job transfer, retire, or need to move to assisted living. These life events necessitate a move, no matter what the market is doing. The key is to keep your real estate radar up to find these opportunities.
Prospecting for listings fixes all problems in real estate. Very few agents regularly prospect because it feels uncomfortable. I get it, but success in any market is achieved by the agents who are willing to get up, suit up, show up and constantly prospect for opportunities.
Need more leads? This is what I suggest you do this week:
- Start by phoning your friends and family to catch up. This is an easy call for you. Let them know how the market is doing (it’s a great time to make a move). After the small talk is out of the way, ask them if they’ve heard anyone in their circle talking about making a move. Perhaps they’ve overhead conversations at work, at the gym, at PTA, or at the golf club. You are not asking them directly if they want to sell, but rather if they know of someone who is thinking about selling. It is a softer ask but says the same thing. If you haven’t talked to them in a while, then you owe them a phone call anyway. After you hang up, log the details of the call in your CRM system and set a reminder to call them again in a few months. Frequent conversations with friends and family will keep referrals coming in.
- Once you’ve exhausted your phone calls, go door knocking this weekend in your neighborhood. Introduce yourself as one of their neighbors who sells real estate in the area. Let them know you have buyers interested in the neighborhood (if you don’t have buyers, someone in your office will) and you are looking for homeowners who want to sell. If they are not interested in selling, do they know anyone else is the neighborhood who is? Bring market update reports with you and ask if they would like to be added to your email list to receive monthly updates on what is selling in the neighborhood. Everyone likes to be kept up to date on house values in their area. Add their contact details in your CRM systems and set them up to receive monthly market updates to stay in touch.
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