The winning formula
You can blink your eye three times in the time it takes a person to judge your trustworthiness and competence just by looking at your face, according to research conducted by Princeton University.
Yet, the real estate industry is confounded that most real estate consumers go with the first agent they meet and that so many homeowners spend only one day choosing a listing agent.
As with all things real estate, time is of the essence during the listing appointment, so let’s take a look at how you can ensure the homeowner’s first impression is a winning one.
It starts with the first phone call
Whether it’s via a phone call or a response to a Free Offer postcard, how you respond to that first contact with a potential seller will pave the way to a successful listing presentation. This is the time to gather as much information as possible about the home and the owner.
Right now, make a list of questions so you’ll be ready for that next listing lead.
The National Association of Realtors even offers up some examples to get you started:
- Why are you selling your home?
- How soon do you need to sell?
- Do you have a ballpark price in mind?
- Tell me about your home – how long you’ve lived there, what you like best about it and whether you’ve performed any renovations or major repairs.
- In your opinion, what makes your home different from others in the neighborhood?
When you set the appointment, let the homeowner know that all decision-makers should be present.
Before compiling the CMA, take a tour of every home currently for sale in the seller’s neighborhood and a drive-by of sold comps.
As most listing agents know, potential home sellers are keenly aware of current listings in the area and will many times bring them up during a listing appointment.
Rather than being embarrassed that the homeowner knows the local market better than you do, be the agent who is completely up-to-date on the local market.
Now you have the information necessary to put together the CMA. For the rookies out there, here is a list of quick tips to help you out with that:
- Generics won’t make you stand out. Every home and every seller is different. Customize your presentation to this home and this
- Even if you use a digital presentation, ensure that everything in your hard copy is professionally printed. Your competition won’t bother using the color printer, which is why you must. From your branding to the graphics and photos, color grabs attention and gives the impression that marketing is your forte.
Powerful first impressions
Remember how quickly we form first impressions? One of the best ways to ruin your chances is by being late for the listing appointment. No excuse on earth will work just show up on time.
Before you leave your car, turn off your phone, take a deep breath and relax. Remind yourself to smile and make eye contact as the homeowner opens the door. Hey, you got this!
Steer the participants to a place where it will be easier to maintain eye contact with everyone who is present. A round dining table is ideal.
Then, break the ice. “Driving over here, I was thinking about how excited I am about this meeting,”lets them know that you’re confident and have exciting things to share, suggests author and sales leadership consultant, Lisa Earle McLeod.
Another suggested ice-breaker is to ask a question. Engaging the homeowners immediately will help you make a quick connection.
while every listing agent is different in how they conduct a listing presentation, most that we’ve spoken with share the following:
Homeowners want to know that you’re truly listening to them. Making eye contact conveys that and taking notes as they speak shows you are serious about remembering what they’re saying.
Assume the close
While some agents we’ve spoken with wait until the end of the presentation to assume the close, others do so throughout the presentation.
Here’s a brilliant example we read about at ActiveRain. Draw up two lists of services – one the basics, and one with the extra services you offer your listing clients.
Then, when explaining your services during the presentation, start with the basics – the stuff that is standard in your area. Then, whip out the second list and, as you tick them off, stop occasionally to ask if this is a service they want you to provide.
For instance, “Will you want aerial photography as well as the 3-D home tour?” Or “Do you want me to hold open houses?”
Although we don’t expect these tips to be everything required to beat the listing presentation willies, they offer ideas on how to prepare. And, knowing you’re prepared is calming.
And, when you’re calm, you’re confident and unbeatable!