Saturday, March 24, 2018

An interview with top producing agent Kathy Casarin, Prudential Preferred Properties

By Julie Escobar

I had the great pleasure last week of sitting down with one of my favorite REALTORS,® Kathy Casarin to talk about the strategies and solutions she uses to ensure that she gets the expired listings she wants – every time.

Q:  Kathy, you came into the business at a tough time – tell me about that.

A:  I did!  It’s funny a few years ago, homes were selling for $30,000 more than what they had, everyone had multiple offers and people were scrambling to get their license so they could cash in on an “easy market.”  I, of course, came into this business AFTER that.  I started real estate when people were turning in their licenses!  So I knew to make it, I’d have to do some things differently.  I got with my broker who really helped me understand how important it was for me to get my name out there.  So I started with a website and lucky for me, a representative for ProspectsPLUS! came into my office to do a workshop and introduced me to your software, and it was a blessing for a brand new agent – I didn’t have to reinvent the wheel!

Q:  I’m glad for that – what made you decide on working with Expireds as your niche of choice?

A:  Well, I’m not much of a cold calling person to start with, and since I had a marketing background, in many cases, I could see the reasons the house didn’t sell.   With Expireds you already know they’re motivated to move the property, so it seemed like a good way to build my business, get new listings and like my broker taught me, get my name out there!

Q:  Well, it worked given that you were named one of the Top 50 Realtors on the Rise by RIS Media two years ago, the top listing agent in 2009, and top sales agent for 2008-2009 for your company!  Share with us some of your secrets to success!

A:  Sure! I knew that to compete in my market, especially without having a lot of experience, I had to do the homework and brand myself as the professional to turn to.  For me, putting a system in place to help me list those expireds just made sense.  So, I put together a comprehensive pre-listing package that I send out to every expired that comes on the market.  The package helps present me as a professional who is ready, willing and able to start marketing their property and provides the seller with valuable information and insights they need to make the best decisions for their families.  In many cases, that package alone spotlights that I’ve already done more in terms of market analysis and marketing preparation than the other agents in they’ve talked to.   So it enables me to get the call not to interview me as an agent; but to say, “Come over and list my house.”

Q:  Sounds like you’ve got a well oiled machine at this point. Can you give us a sneak peek at what’s inside that pre-listing package?

A:  Sure, I keep a lot of the pieces that don’t need customizing printed and put them together in advance.  That way, every day I can look at the Expireds that come on the market, quickly add custom pieces to the pre-assembled ones and send the packages out.  It a great way to start your day when you know that before you even go out for your morning run, you’ve put 2-5 packages in the mail and you’re pro-actively moving your business forward.  Even if there are  no Expireds that day, I recommend going back through your MLS and looking  at the listings that expired 3-6 months ago and see if they were sold or re-listed.  If not, don’t assume they’re not a good prospect!  I’ve gotten a lot of listings this way and the sellers are thrilled that they weren’t forgotten!  I think of it as planting seeds.  If you’re always planting – you’ll always have something to harvest!

Sometimes the packages vary depending on the property and if there are obvious reasons it didn’t sell, but some of the main ‘ingredients’ include:

“Julie, I had the good fortune of being introduced to ProspectsPLUS! three years ago when I first became a Realtor.  I was impressed by the software then and still recall being told by the presenter ‘you’re going to be somebody in this business, Kathy.’  I signed up for the software and having been using it to build my business, maintain relationships with my past clients and grow.  I had the pleasure of meeting you two years ago and you lit a fire with me.  Your enthusiam with ProspectsPLUS! and its features kept me coming back and delving into the product more…Thanks for that! 

Your monthly updates with ProspectsPLUS!  are dead on what is going on with the market…so just in time!  The graphics and writing grasp my clientele and pull them in to ask me more.  It moves them to action which I say, what more can I ask for of a product!  Your company’s exemplary customer service is unparalleled!  Now in the business three years I’ve been exposed to alot of products and services and you’ve got them all beat!  Kudos to you and ProspectsPLUS!  I couldn’t have become top listing agent for 2009 and top sales agent for 2008-09, and also ranked in the top 6% of my market without it. 

ProspectsPLUS! is a great investment in your business and very affordable. You can’t be afraid to invest in your business, which as a Realtor is YOU!  Think just one listing and it pays  for itself  times ten for the year! Kept me at the top with technology…can’t say enough good about it! Still my go-to software of choice after three years!”

Kathy Casarin , Prudential Preferred Properties REALTOR

An Interview with Coach Patti Kouri

By Julie Escobar

It’s been interesting and encouraging to hear how agents all across North America are faring in the wake of what has been quite the real estate roller coaster ride over the last year and a half.  A lot of agents simply threw up their hands and left the industry – but if you’re still here, if you’re still in the game, then there’s something about this business that you love, something that keeps you tethered and brings you joy.

I had a chance to catch up with Coach Patti Kouri recently to discuss this topic and explore the success her clients are finding playing The Real Estate Game™.  Sharing her good humor, positive outlook and genuine insights from agents out there in the trenches – we outlined five specific ways real estate professionals can propel their business forward and find new ways to love what they do.  Let’s take a look:

Q:  Hey Patti – it’s great to work with you again!  When we first started talking you were telling me how a big part of coaching, and helping people get the most from their careers, is helping them ‘get out of their own way.’  Tell me a little about that.

A:  Sure!  What I’ve found with a lot of agents is that they get stuck in that feeling of free-falling, tapping into all the “Chicken Littles” of the world who are telling them the sky is falling.  It’s easy to fall into that rut when you’ve got team members, journalists and national news anchors extolling the “real estate is dead” mantras or even when you’ve allowed yourself to lose sight of those things that brought you to this business to start with.  One of the things that I teach agents is to literally get out of their own way. They’ve got to re-set their ‘internal GPS’ so that instead of seeing all things negative, which you and I both know tends to become a self-fulfilling prophecy, they can focus on the good stuff or those things that they love about this industry – and that focus helps to propel them forward.

Q:  I like that idea.  To succeed in today’s market, there really isn’t a whole lot of room for negative is there?  What have you found is the secret to doing finding that new focus?

A:  You know, I think it starts with really knowing what you want.  I’m reminded of a quote by Dr. Wayne Dyer which says, “There’s a place deep within us that wants to feel fulfilled. It wants to know that my life has made a difference, that I’ve left this place, this planet that I’ve lived on, better than when I arrived. That someone’s life has been profoundly touched because of my existence.”  What better place to make a difference and affect other lives then selling real estate?  So I ask agents, “If you’ve chosen this wondrous career of selling real estate, let’s get you back in line to love what you do.”  I mean think about it —  There is nothing like ten great listings, ten great sales, and ten great leads to overcome just about any setback that comes your way and cause you to ‘be in’ or ‘fall back in’ love with your real estate career.

Q:  That’s true, but I think a lot of agents just don’t know how to get from here to there.  In other words, they don’t know how to get out of that rut where they’re either convinced the market is too tough, they don’t want to prospect or they’re stuck in a fear mode.  We all have that ability to talk ourselves in—or talk ourselves out of a lot in life. So let’s talk about the five ways they can help to get themselves on track! 

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