Real estate agents do more than provide homebuying and selling help, they offer friendship as well. It’s easy to form a bond that turns into a long-term friendship when you’re helping first-time homebuyers.
Qualifying for a home loan, ensuring the property is in good shape, filling out a number of forms and working toward closing can be a lot for a homebuying rookie to deal with. That’s where real estate agents can step in as friends and calm down stressed-out clients. Even homebuying veterans can start feeling the strain. Here are a few ways you can step in to offer relief to stressed homebuyers:
Remind them to keep an open mind
Often, first-time homebuyers are looking for their dream entry-level home, but that’s not always available. Real estate agents should remind clients that sometimes it’s necessary to make concessions. This is especially true of clients looking for their first homes, whose savings reflect a shorter tenure in the workforce and credit profiles are relatively thin. Keeping an open mind to compromise is necessary when buying a home for the first time, and it’s a real estate agent’s job to help make sure that happens.
Emphasize planning ahead
One way to ensure clients keep open minds is to start budgeting for the homebuying process right away. Planning ahead in this way helps first-time homebuyers visualize what purchasing looks like from a fiscal standpoint, and what their budgets can afford. Make sure that there is some financial cushion in case of unexpected events such as the loss of a job. This point in the conversation may be a good time to discuss the benefits of a home warranty and the potential savings a warranty can provide if a major system or appliance breaks.
This could take some time
First-time homebuyers may not yet understand how long it can sometimes take to go from initial discussions with a real estate agent to closing on a property. Be sure to make it clear that depending on the time of year and market, it could take a little while to get to closing.
Keep an ‘open-door’ policy
Someone buying a home for the first time is bound to have plenty of questions. Keep an open-door policy when it comes to curious or stressed-out homebuyers. All of this is new to them, and they’re going to be leaning on you as an experienced resource. This may be the most important step toward calming stressed out homebuyers – simply being there for them.
Real estate agents play a crucial role as a resource for relief during the homebuying process. When the going gets tough, the best real estate agents get going.
Brought to you by HMS Home Warranty. HMS is an industry leader with over 30 years of creating success for clients and providing peace of mind for customers. To learn more click www.hmsnational.com.
Grow Your Database
Do you have Facebook Friends and LinkedIn Connections? Get their email addresses and add them to your database.
- Facebook– Go to your Friend’s Profile and then click on their Info Page
- LinkedIn– Click “Contacts” tab and then click on one of your contacts
Get a Website and Market It
Since over 90% of buyers find their home online, it is essential to be where the consumers are and invest in a website. Generating leads and being found by new prospects requires proper marketing.
- Put your domain on all of your print marketing (fliers, postcards, brochures, business cards)
- Build link authority by creating free profiles that link back to your website
- Add keywords to the backend of your website (refer to the Agent Website Webinars for assistance)
Keep Your Sellers Updated
Compile reports for your sellers that will show them stats such as how many buyers have viewed their home online and where you have advertised their home. This time of year, many sellers consider taking their home off the market and waiting until spring, let them know why they should strive to sell in the winter!
- Seller Stat Report from Delta Net
- Adtrack Report from Adwriter
- Listing Report from OSA
- Stats from Realtor.com (For Showcased Agents)
Become a Local Expert
As a local Realtor, it is crucial to know your market. Sharing your knowledge of the area is one way to grow your market share.
- Send a newsletter regularly
- Keep your website updated with area resources
- Share local market data with your clients
- Post local events and information on a blog and your social media
Develop a level of trust with your clients by proving to them that have the knowledge and experience that it takes to get them to the settlement table. Keep informed of the latest industry happenings, know the programs you use inside and out, and stay on the cutting edge of marketing and technology.
- Subscribe to a real estate blog to receive email notifications of new posts (Next.Inman.com, KCMBlog.com)
- Attend training sessions or watch recorded webinars (TeamHomesale.com-Training Center Tab)
- Take a class and get a new designation
To help support your online marketing efforts Prudential Real Estate is releasing a podcast program. Share these 12 consumer-based audio podcasts on your websites, facebook fanpages, blogs, other social media sites, and in direct marketing to clients and prospects.
These podcasts feature a series of common real estate challenges and leverage Prudential’s “Bring Your Challenges” campaign. The first three are available today with subsequent recordings available Nov. 8th, 15th, and 29th, post or distribute 3 per week.
To access these podcasts:
- Login to PREACenter http://prea.prudential.com
- Click the Marketing link on the left side of the page
- Click Podcasts
Follow the steps under “Share” to embed the podcast player on your blog.
To Post on your Facebook Page:
- On the PREA Podcasts page, click “Link to podcasts on Media Center”
- Find the podcasts category and click “open” on the one you wish to share
- Click “Links”
- When the new window opens, copy the url provided
- On the wall of your facebook fanpage, click “Link”
- Paste in the url and click “Attach”
- Add a message where it says ‘Say something about this link…”
- Click “Post”
The information below will help you communicate the Dangers of Over Pricing to your sellers:
Many potential buyers won’t even look, thinking it’s out of their range.
Those buyers who do look are shopping by comparison, and looking at your home may convince them to make a bid on a different property.
Since an appraisal is often required in financing a property, it’s futile to price a property for more than it’s worth.
Properties left on the market for extended periods of time usually become “shopworn,” causing many to believe something’s amiss.
Overpricing tends to dampen the other salesperson’s attitude, making it less likely to be shown.
Overpricing lengthens marketing time, and invariably results in a lower selling price than would have been otherwise obtained.
Click Here for the Flyer Version (You will need to login to TeamHomesale)
Pricing Advice for Your Sellers
Agent-Seller Pricing Dialogues
Rent vs Buy. Renters are afraid that they can’t afford to buy a home. Many renters are making payments that are close to or exceed an average monthly mortgage payment. Rather than wasting their money on rent, help them see the benefit of building equity in a new home.
Hire the Right Realtor. Let them know how important it is to hire the right Real Estate Professional and assure them why they should hire you.
-You know the market
-You’ll guide them through each step of their real estate experience
-You’ll aid them throughout their decision-making process
-You’ll find the home that meets their needs and aspirations
-You’ll take care of all the details and negotiate on their behalf
-And you can assure that they will have a smooth transaction from contract to closing
Get Pre-approved. Getting pre-approved will allow both you and your buyer to have a full understanding of what they will be able to afford. This will enable you to show them houses within their budget and will eliminate the frustration of showing them homes they can’t afford.
Meet Their Needs. Let your first-time buyers know that this is a big commitment. Find out what their goals are for the future and help them find a home that will meet both their current and future needs.
Educate Them. Explain the buying process to them. They need to be aware of what steps will be taken and their responsibilities throughout the entire process.
Close. Guide them through the stack of paperwork that often seems overwhelming and assure that they have a smooth settlement.
We would like to share a recent email from Lloyd Dreibelbis, the Office Manager of our Schuylkill Haven Office with you:
“We tend to get caught up in the Do Not Call mentality. If you’re calling someone you know… someone in your Circle of Influence… the Do Not Call list just doesn’t come into play. In my opinion, everyone in your Circle of Influence should receive a phone call from you once a quarter. Make the call. Here are some good reasons to call.” Lloyd D.
- To get an e-mail Address: “Hi how are you? I was just updating my database on my very best friends and clients, and I noticed that I’m missing your e-mail address. Would you mind giving that to me?”
- To add someone to your Client Appreciation Program (Circle of Influence Mailing)
- To announce your affiliation with Prudential & Prudential Landis Homesale Services (Follow-up call to your announcement card)
- To talk about your new Business Model: Working exclusively by Referral.
- A Birthday
- A Wedding Anniversary
- A Home Purchase Anniversary
- A Special “Life” Event… new child, new job, etc.
- A Holiday Greeting
- To acknowledge an achievement you read or heard about
- To let them know that you plan to be in their neighborhood and that you might “pop by” just to say hello
- Just to say HI… “I’m still in the Real Estate business and am never too busy for any of your referrals!”
“If you made two phone calls a day… five days a week… for three months (a quarter)… you would make contact with 120 people!”