When a transaction goes bad and I get involved, the trainer seems to come out in me! As a trainer I do pick apart a dead deal to see where we have gone astray.
In most cases agents simply need to get back to basics to help prevent dead deals.
In most cases they were never transactions to begin with.
Certain steps were missed, yes let me say that again, "Certain steps were missed and in most cases the dead deals were never transactions to begin with".
To me the most important step when dealing with the consumer is screening of leads.
It's too many times I can be in any real estate office in any given time and I overhear (ok, I listen) a conversation with a realtor and a potential customer.
The value of each lead that calls the office....don't they get it! If you are going to just give information rather than screen that lead. Don't Answer the Phone!
It's better to lose them today rather than 6 months down the road wasting your time, money and expertise on someone who is unable to buy or sell today or ever for that matter.
Yes, Sweathogs has stuck with me throughout all these years!
Doesn't matter if you are face to face or over the phone, the bottom line....listen to the consumer...you'll know if they are a true buyer or seller...if you listen..you will learn.
Listen to their words
- Need and want are two different things! "I want a million dollar home but I need a $1000.00 payment because that is all I can afford."
- "I am approved for a mortgage." (Have you ever heard of a person who gets approved for a mortgage and they do not want to buy? They may wait...but they want to buy!)
- "I have been getting listings in my e-mail for over a year!" Who sent the listings and why are they still waiting?
Most sales people spend most of the conversation selling their services rather than determining whether they are dealing with a potential customer.
Most agents lose the customer because they spoke at the customer rather than asking questions and really listening to the customer's needs.
By listening they will give you hints on whether they have the ABILITY to buy or sell real estate.
- Every-time they ask you a question answer and then respond with a question. It's simple like tennis, let the conversation bounce back and forth. Allow them to answer and then you ask another question. You'll get the info you need to determine if they are a ready, willing and able buyer or seller.
- Use a lead sheet regardless of how seasoned you are. A lead sheet will help the conversation flow and increase the odds of the customer communicating the truth with you.
- Probe until you get the information you need to get them into the office. Once in the office you have a better shot in building rapport and creating a bond.
When you probe you learn. When you probe you have to listen. The more questions you ask the more open the prospect becomes. The more open the prospect becomes easier it becomes to be a little more open yourself. The more open your questions become the more likely the truth will be revealed.
How long should you screen a lead? As long as it takes...I would rather spend an hour or two on the phone in advance than spend 6 months in my car to find out they were not buyers.