In the business world, it’s a well known concept that those who control the inventory control the marketplace. In the world of real estate, it’s no different. So as business people, are you going to control the marketplace by being a super listing agent or only showing homes to sustain your profits?
If you want to make more money in real estate you absolutely have to focus first on listings. Of course, it’s no walk in the park to list more than to show. Dealing with buyers is a lot easier and feels instantly more gratifying. There’s not as much a science to it as with listing a home.
Here are some facts about working with home sellers versus working with home buyers to chew on:
- Average buyer takes 3 days (24 hours) to show homes
- Average listing takes 2 hours
- You can sell 5 to 10 times as many listings in the same time as having 1 buyer
- Buyer agents cap at about 25 sales per year
- Listing agents can sell 50, 75, even 100 listings per year
So, where would you rather put your focus?
Basic Skills of a Listing Hero
- Prospecting – A showing agent doesn’t really prospect in most cases. He or she usually waits for somebody to come to him if they are interested in buying a house. A listing agent, on the other hand, invests the time to connect with people and secure leads and listings. Past clients, FSBOs, expireds, just listed and just sold prospects are all fair game.
The key is to prospect daily. A sample plan: two hours per day, 20 contacts, including five past clients or centers of Influence, five FSBOs or expireds, ten just listed or just solds. This gives you 100 contacts per week, 400 contacts per month and, on average, one to three listings per month!
- Lead Follow-Up – Both buying and listing agents need to work with speed when it comes to follow-up. Listing agents, especially, should focus on follow-up as survey after survey has shown that most sellers who do not have a preferred agent will go with the first agent they find.
If someone tells you they are thinking about selling, pursue it! Use your content management system to manage contacts. Don’t wait for leads to call you back. Have a consistent plan to follow up with phone calls, texts and/or emails until you get a firm answer.
- Pre-Qualifying – Pre-qualifying is an important skill every listing agent should have. Pre-qualifying requires understanding the seller’s motivation and ensuring that you speak to those motivations. The best time to pre-qualify a seller is before your listing appointment. Make sure from day one that you understand why they are selling.
The goal of pre-qualification is to find out whether you have an actual potential client. If commission, pricing and the like will be issues, then it’s good for you to know and right away. Also, if you detect any particular reason why this might not be the client for you, then make that decision before investing too much more time and effort.
- Presentation – This is probably the most important aspect of becoming a listing hero. It takes time to refine listing presentation skills, but if you stick to some basics, you will get there. Having a balance of positive energy, enthusiasm, listening and confidence will make it easier to build trust with the seller.
Any successful professional, no matter the industry or field, only succeeds with practice. Role playing can help as will having more and more listing presentations under your belt. Over time, you will know how to respond to objections, pre-qualify better and the more efficient and effective you will be.
- Handling Objections – It’s never easy to take objection after objection. But over time and with a little practice, you will get better at handling objections. One important way to manage objections is to listen closely to potential clients. Another way is to do some research in advance and search online, for example, a list of the most common seller objections. Have answers to them in your back pocket and expect that one or more will likely pop up in conversation.
- Closing Sales – Closing is a natural ending to any presentation. If you gave a good presentation, then you have a good chance of closing the sale. If the seller is saying they want to think it over, then they didn’t understand your presentation. Re-clarify with them what you plan to do and why you are a good choice. Don’t give up too easily!
If you haven’t already considered adding more listings to your repertoire, then hopefully these tips will help you get started. Have some patience, make a plan and commit to creating some balance in your real estate business – and reap the rewards!