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We Are In A New Era, But Are You?

By
Mortgage and Lending with Pinnacle Mortgage Lending

The Classic Era was in the years 200-1519.  The Industrial Revolution was in the 18th to 19th Century.  The Progressive Era just after that.  Those periods were a long time ago, we are in a whole new era now and if you are not prepared for it you are now part of the same ancient history.

We are in the Information Age.  There is no doubt about it.  Gone are the days of living only off of telemarketing, direct mail, and hardcore sales presentations.  Homebuyers are not falling for the dog and pony show and are all interested in the same thing…..information.

I have been teaching a homebuyer class for a couple of years now.  It is amazing how much my business has grown since I started educating instead of selling.  Every month more than a dozen potential buyers walk into my class wanting to know what it takes to qualify for a mortgage and what kind of a home they could buy only to be so optimistic in their quest that they set an appointment with me the following week.  I average about 20 attendees per month in these classes (I count individual attendees not couples).  It is a free, non promotional class that goes over the pros and cons of all the major loan types (including the state down payment assistance programs that the big banks don’t do) and the homebuying process from prices in our market to what to expect at closing.  My students leave as experts in loan programs, mortgage insurance, credit requirements, how to figure out the payments on a home, and what the bank says that they can borrow.  They know how the offer process works, who pays the closing costs, what the inspection and appraisal is for, and who their Realtor works for. These potential buyers are now armed with the information needed to buy a home in today’s market and will actually know what they are signing at closing.  These students are now ready to move forward, and because of the information that they have received, more of them will buy with fewer issues and accurate expectations on what to expect during the homebuying process.  These buyers are exactly what every lender and Realtor are hoping for.

 After several years of giving information instead of sales pitches I now have enough data to see what information instead of sales pitches means in respects to qualified leads.  Information and education compared to sales using Craigslist, direct mailers, and telemarketing mean roughly twice as many applications for purchase business from more qualified and prepared borrowers who are ready and excited to buy a home and refer a friend or family member to you for about 25% of the cost.  

 No more borrowers who want a 3 bedroom 2 bath home on acreage for a $400 a month payment.  No more borrowers who want to start “flipping” houses because they have been watching reality TV on A&E. No more handing out business cards after a brief encounter at an open house with little more than a prayer of seeing them again.  Just more qualified, eager, and excited buyers to sell homes to. How’s that for information?

Karen Berg
Queen Creek Realtor, San Tan Valley Realtor, United Brokers Group (602)919-2375 - Queen Creek, AZ
Experience Matters!

Absolutely love your ideas!    I would love to try to implement these here:-)

Jul 26, 2013 12:53 AM
Marte Cliff
Marte Cliff Copywriting - Priest River, ID
Your real estate writer

I agree - and I believe there's no reason to think people won't need us if we share knowledge with them. As a copywriter, I spend a lot of my blogging time reminding agents how to write better marketing letters, web pages, etc. 

Jul 26, 2013 01:14 AM
Raymond Denton
Homesmart / Evergreen Realty - Irvine, CA
Irvine Realtor®

You're like me, Chris.  I'm not a Saleperson - I'm an Information Provider.

Jul 26, 2013 01:32 AM
John Dotson
Preferred Properties of Highlands, Inc. - Highlands, NC - Highlands, NC
The experience to get you to the other side!

Tongue in cheek... TMI Age

Jul 26, 2013 01:34 AM
Kate McQueen
Realty Associates Texas - Cypress, TX
Tailored service for your real estate needs!

So very true, and the main focus of our blogs -- provide information, that's what online searchers want.  It's really not a new concept but one that's increasingly important in today's world, where most everyone has a smart phone, computers, and they start their search online.

When I saw your blog title, I was hoping it was about personal styles that real estate agents practice while negotiating a transaction.  I've met too many that think they have to "win" by battering the other side with a cattle prod, stomping their feet, holding their breath....you get the picture.  This is OLD SCHOOL and frankly I wish someone would explain to these agents that they have a BAD REPUTATION in their market.  As many agents know, there is almost always a "so-n-so" that no one wants to show their listings because they don't want to have to work a transaction with them.

At Keller Williams we practice professionalism and win-win strategies.  A real estate transaction can turn very bad very quickly if one party thinks they need to "prevail" over the other side.  Both sides should walk away feeling happy with the end result, and remember that it's not often that both sides walk away feeling ecstatic.

Jul 26, 2013 01:35 AM
Michael Murphy
Bienvenidos Real Estate - Parksville, BC

Thanks Chris...in my business I have been educating buyers about buying in Mexico for the last 6 years and I provide mainly information which supplies me with a never ending supply of buyers.

Jul 26, 2013 02:29 AM
Bill Reddington
Re/max By The Sea - Destin, FL
Destin Florida Real Estate

Working buyers is great and lots of agents do that. Educating them is better. Reality is still that the one with the most listings wins the race. Keep prospecting.

Jul 26, 2013 02:31 AM
Kimo Jarrett
Cyber Properties - Huntington Beach, CA
Pro Lifestyle Solutions

Many people get caught up in sales pitches and lump them all together regardless of the products or services being offered. There is a huge difference in how sales are closed, so it depends on the price of the product or service and the captivation factor. Real estate sales are unique and prospects must be qualified to own as opposed to other type of sales that anyone can own by using cash or a credit card or easy credit. The easy credit for real estate has been eliminated for some time now yet I do agree and advocate the use of educational seminars to market products or services, especially on complex products and services.

Jul 26, 2013 04:41 AM
Stacey Mayer
Snohomish-Homes.com - Everett, WA
Snohomish-Homes.com

Your blog was very helpful - and wow, the responses are wonderful! It's helped crystalize why some agents find their success naturally, and others are still whining. Good job!

Jul 26, 2013 04:49 AM
Rob Arnold
Sand Dollar Realty Group, Inc. - Altamonte Springs, FL
Metro Orlando Full Service - Investor Friendly & F

Very exciting for you.  People want more and more information quickly anymore.  If you can get to doing online presentations, they are even more powerful.

Jul 26, 2013 04:59 AM
Mary Seidel
Syracuse Realty Group - Syracuse, NY
Associate Broker

Chris this hit home for me.  I always tell clients that it is my job to educate you so you can make an informed decision.  I believe I am the only agent in my company that likes to do a full buyer presentation. I think it helps build rapport and trust and again an educated client.

 

Jul 26, 2013 06:15 AM
Hella Mitschke Rothwell
(831) 626-4000 - Honolulu, HI
Hawaii & California Real Estate Broker
And while you are it, how about one for agents? Great way to get referrals.
Jul 26, 2013 06:17 AM
Bob Miller
Keller Williams Cornerstone Realty - Ocala, FL
The Ocala Dream Team

Hi Chris, we agree.  We have worked with computers for over 30 years.  But the internet and mobile technology is like an explosion!

Jul 26, 2013 06:45 AM
Menlo Park Real Estate and Homes for Sale
Wende Schoof - Menlo Park, CA
WendeByTheBay.com - 650.504.0219 - SF Peninsula

Hmm...Sounds like a good, back to basics idea that is working for new reasons.

Jul 26, 2013 08:51 AM
Kristal Wilson
KB Home - Fontana, CA
Cause We Like 'Em New ~ New Home Specialist!
Chris~ this new era has made many traditional lead generating activities obsolete. You were ahead of your time by providing a service and building relationships. Well done!
Jul 26, 2013 02:15 PM
John DL Arendsen
CREST "BACKYARD' HOMES, ON THE LEVEL General & Manufactured Home Contractor, TAG Real Estate Sales & Investments - Leucadia, CA
Crest Backyard Homes "ADU" dealer & RE Developer

Now that your secret is going viral you'll be sharing the stage with 10's of thousands of other RE and Mortgage professionals looking for that new hook. LOL! Actually I have been working with a fellow broker for years doing rehab and fix and flip clinics throughout San Diego County. It's still working, Sharing information and knowledge is what it's all about. That's why blogging platforms and a healthy website prescence is so important nowadays. Great post.

Jul 27, 2013 03:26 AM
Sharon Parisi
United Real Estate Dallas - Dallas, TX
Dallas Homes

Sharing information of value often results in clients and is much more fun than sales pitches.

Jul 27, 2013 07:58 AM
Dana Basiliere
Rossi & Riina Real Estate - Williston, VT
Making deals "Happen"

That sounds like a great way to help them help the brokers and agents; not to mention the loan processors. I have only done one such class as an invitation from a local Credit Union. Real good blog post. 

Jul 27, 2013 11:42 PM
Andrea HoffDomin
Florida Dream Homes Realty - Fort Lauderdale, FL
- in Real Estate always on your side!

Thanks for sharing. There are so many details to think of when buying a home and being a proud home owner so that such an education is a well spend time.

Jul 29, 2013 12:21 AM
Tim Lorenz
TIM LORENZ - Elite Home Sales Team - Mission Viejo, CA
949 874-2247

I am glad to see you move outside of the box and have success. Keep it up.

Sep 26, 2013 01:07 AM