We did a teleseminar show in the SWS Virtual Studio yesterday called "Real Estate Consulting in the Real World - The First Steps" where we talked about what a new real estate consultant might do to get his or her consulting practice off the ground.
One of those "first steps" was to come up with a list of two or three specific alternative services you could offer (by "alternative" we mean a service that is real estate -related but not the traditional buyer or seller representation paid by a contingent commission); services you're really jazzed about - that you feel you could market and "sell" because you feel there IS a market for them.
To help prime the pump, I provided the following list of potential alternative services:
Traditional home sellers or buyers who are willing to participate in a “shared-risk” arrangement
For Sale by Owners (FSBOs)
… who want a professional, objective CMA
... who found a buyer and want help preparing, explaining and executing the proper contracts and disclosures, and/or
... want help navigating the contract-to-closing period
…are considering a significant renovation, but don’t want to “over-improve"
…need help deciding whether to “move or improve”
…need help deciding whether to sell “as-is” or renovate
…need help deciding whether to sell now or wait
…want help interviewing for a listing agent
…want help determining if they have enough equity to pursue refinancing
Landlords deciding whether to re-rent or sell
Owners of expired listings who would like an objective analysis of “what went wrong”
Homebuyers who have found a property and want contract-to-closing assistance
Potential homebuyers who are considering buying, but want objective advice without pressure to BUY NOW
Licensed real estate agents who need another agent to list their homes for E&O (Errors & Omissions insurance) purposes, but will handle most of the marketing and negotiation themselves
Licensed real estate agents who need outside expertise in their transactions (and you have that expertise, e.g. short sales, REO’s , estates)
Investors who find their own properties and want a real estate expert on their team to be involved as needed.
At the end of the show I asked the audience to tell me which of these ideas really grabbed their attention; which ones they could see themselves getting fired up to do! And here were the results:
Favorit-est Idea #1
Offer contract-to-closing services to FSBOs
Favorit-est Idea #2
Offer a "What Went Wrong?" analysis to owners of expired listings
Favorit-est Idea #3
Offering sellers the opportunity to "share the risk" by charging an upfront fee in exchange for a lower commission
Favorit-est Idea #4
Consulting with renters for a fee (not on the list above, but several mentioned it)
Favorit-est Idea #5
Offering a "tour" package in resort communities for a fee that would be credited at closing
To learn more about real estate consulting and decide if it's something that might be right for you - check out our free "Is Real Estate Consulting Right for You?" mini-course here: http://swsstore.com/index.php?l=product_detail&p=130. And please share your thoughts!