Avoiding the run-around...Battle of the Wills: WHO is the Decision Maker??

By
Services for Real Estate Pros with John Henry Masterworks Design International, Inc. 13013

In our lines of work we have to be psychologists to some degree.  Although I don't believe there is much preparation in that regard... by the licensing boards or schools!

 

We can mechanically DO what we need to do but if your intuition isn't turned on, if you are not LISTENING to what is happening, if you don't notice the BODY LANGUAGE... you may be wasting a lot of YOUR time!  And possibly prolonging the battle that is being waged by your clients.

 

For over 30 years I normally have an initial meeting by husband and wife to design a house.  During that first meeting you will know who is going to make that final decision.  You can sense who is the A personality.  Or the AAA personality.  One is weaker, one is stronger.  Sometimes the strong accedes to the weaker.  Usually it is the other way around.  But I have been wrong many a time!

 

If only one spouse turns out, then I think you have a problem.  There may be a scheduling issue but if the second or third meetup results in the same person showing then you have to think really hard about what is going on.  Is the other decision maker too busy or actually has no interest whatsoever in buying or building a home?  Maybe not now.  Maybe not in the style the other prefers.   Sound familiar? 

 

I have seen this latter case result in a no-go too often.  And it means a huge waste of time for me but for the client it turns into an interesting past-time it seems where one's dreams are stirred but even THEY know that nothing will come of it.  But they like to play the game and have something to talk about with their friends.  Just Great~

 

You can see the AAA spouse run the show from beginning to end but...oh-oh.... something is just not right for the other one and things fall apart again.  There is showing off to indicate who is wearing the pants in the family.  But bluster is often dissolved.

 

I think that starting the first meeting with a clear understanding by asking both parties what specifically is being sought should be the foundation upon all else that develops.  But you have to ask many questions.  Like one of those corporate written exams for employment.  Someone may be hiding certain feelings and expectations and it may take days, weeks or months for that to be addressed.  

 

Your mission, if you so decide, is to UNCOVER the underlying gambits, schedules -- real or imagined, real interests of each, etc.  A typical issue is the bottom line price or cost of either purchase or construction.  Somebody knows what that is but no one is telling you!  Or they have to see 50 houses before it sinks in that 3,200 SF won't work!!

 

Sound off if you have a similar story or method to discover what the REAL interests of your potential buyers are.  (I offer a questionnaire but that is just a formality).  This goes beyond wants vs. needs.  And I think the dynamic changes per the cost of the house and location even.

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Re-Blogged 1 time:

Re-Blogged By Re-Blogged At
  1. Barbara Todaro 08/12/2018 05:15 AM
Topic:
Real Estate Best Practices
Tags:
getting to yes
wants vs needs
finding out what the buyer really needs

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Rainer
236,287
John Henry, Florida Architect
John Henry Masterworks Design International, Inc. - Orlando, FL
Residential Architect, Luxury Custom Home Design

Hi Barbara, I didn't know that this was material that all viewers would appreciate... but I will take your advice and have this open to allow reblogging.

Thanks for 'reading between the lines'...

Aug 12, 2018 05:03 AM #8
Rainmaker
416,271
Marney Kirk
Cummings & Co. Realtors - Towson, MD
Towson, Maryland Real Estate

Hi John, it is very important to try to understand dynamics in a relationship when it comes to real estate! Great post!

Aug 12, 2018 05:58 AM #9
Rainmaker
3,824,449
Sheila Anderson
Referral Group Incorporated - East Brunswick, NJ
The Real Estate Whisperer Who Listens 732-715-1133

Good morning John. This is excellent, specific and very well written. Good information.

Aug 12, 2018 05:59 AM #10
Rainmaker
3,329,973
Sally K. & David L. Hanson
EXP Realty 414-525-0563 - Brookfield, WI
WI Real Estate Agents - Luxury - Divorce

We designed our house...I worried about the important things...room layout, ceiling heights, closet size...kitchen and baths..David took care of the kind of shingles, mechanical components...it worked !

Aug 12, 2018 06:03 AM #11
Rainmaker
3,917,112
Dorie Dillard CRS GRI ABR
Coldwell Banker United Realtors® ~ 512.750.6899 - Austin, TX
Serving Buyers & Sellers in NW Austin Real Estate

Good morning John Henry,

It takes practice but if you know what you are looking for, ask the right questions all while observing body language you'll have far better odds of determining the decision maker. The faster you recognize the signals the better your appointment will go.

Aug 12, 2018 06:14 AM #12
Rainmaker
4,432,726
Gita Bantwal
RE/MAX Centre Realtors - Warwick, PA
REALTOR,ABR,CRS,SRES,GRI - Bucks County & Philadel

Congratulations on the featured post. I hope other agents will read it too and learn 

Aug 12, 2018 09:24 AM #13
Rainer
573,172
Sham Reddy CRS
H E R Realty, Dayton, OH - Dayton, OH
CRS

Very well put!!!

During that first meeting you will know who is going to make that final decision.  You can sense who is the A personality.  Or the AAA personality.  One is weaker, one is stronger.  Sometimes the strong accedes to the weaker.  Usually it is the other way around.  But I have been wrong many a time!

Aug 12, 2018 10:13 AM #14
Rainer
236,287
John Henry, Florida Architect
John Henry Masterworks Design International, Inc. - Orlando, FL
Residential Architect, Luxury Custom Home Design

Sham: you never know but there is a law of averages going here...

Aug 12, 2018 11:26 AM #15
Rainmaker
491,241
Bruce Hicks
Best Homes Hawaii - Honolulu, HI
Your Lifetime Friend/Helper!

Well done John Henry . I've experienced all that too!  It seems to me that if they are in it, the one with the longer hair is in charge.

Aug 12, 2018 01:32 PM #16
Ambassador
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Kathy Streib
Room Service Home Staging - Delray Beach, FL
Home Stager - Palm Beach County,FL -561-914-6224

Hi John- and look at you!!!!   This is where listening and asking the right questions are so important. Just as it is paramount to determine price points and location, or room size and count, it is equally important to know who the decision maker is. And sometimes, one person makes decisions on color, style, and floorplan and another has more weight with location and other amenities. As a stager, I've learned to play to my target audience and decision maker. 

Aug 12, 2018 03:19 PM #17
Rainer
236,287
John Henry, Florida Architect
John Henry Masterworks Design International, Inc. - Orlando, FL
Residential Architect, Luxury Custom Home Design

Hi Kathy, it's been a good day, yes!

I am glad some of the things I encounter in my line of work has a parallel in yours and others on AR.  Happy to share and sometimes it hits a nerve.

I think finding out who really makes the hiring decisions in job interviews is also a valid comparison.

I now get this funny feeling when I think I am not getting the truth and nothing but the truth from clients!  Thanks for your comment.

Aug 12, 2018 05:24 PM #18
Ambassador
3,672,970
Debe Maxwell, CRS
www.iCharlotteHomes.com | The Maxwell House Group | RE/MAX Executive | (704) 491-3310 - Charlotte, NC
The right Charlotte REALTOR!

Hi John!  Oh, those Type-AAA's - there has been one quite often in couples that I work with. I respond well to them because I enjoy the challenge of always being a step ahead! 

As I'm sure you've experienced, there is ALWAYS one who is the lead and lately, I've found it to be the women. Either way, I'm cool with it, as long as they are communicative and respond to inquiries in a timely manner.

Aug 13, 2018 02:50 PM #19
Rainer
236,287
John Henry, Florida Architect
John Henry Masterworks Design International, Inc. - Orlando, FL
Residential Architect, Luxury Custom Home Design

Hi Debe, I am going to have to do another blog because I would love to know WHO wins the battle more often!!  Thanks for posting.

Aug 13, 2018 02:55 PM #20
Rainmaker
3,338,427
Endre Barath, Jr.
Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices - Beverly Hills, CA
Realtor - Los Angeles Home Sales 310.486.1002

John, I find that it is important to make the people go through some gates...simple ones like please text me with both of your email address and both of your mobile phone numbers.... if I get both we are in business if I get one or from one party both usually that is an indication...Endre

Aug 14, 2018 07:06 PM #21
Rainer
236,287
John Henry, Florida Architect
John Henry Masterworks Design International, Inc. - Orlando, FL
Residential Architect, Luxury Custom Home Design

Endre, good hurdle to put up.  In a soft market you tend to go into every situation hopeful.  In a hot market you can afford to be more selective.  

Aug 14, 2018 07:08 PM #22
Rainmaker
1,883,518
Lottie Kendall
Compass - San Francisco, CA
Helping make your real estate dreams a reality

Hi John Henry - I'm sure residential architects see this as often or more than we real estate agents do. It's easier for me to quickly size up buyers than sellers at a listing appointment. so I go into every listing appointment paying attention to each seller, asking questions directed to each, making sure they both speak up.

Aug 14, 2018 08:34 PM #23
Rainer
496,565
Kimo Jarrett
WikiWiki Realty - Huntington Beach, CA
Pro Lifestyle Solutions

Spectators or players can be determined quickly by the consulting fee or retainer for your professional services. So, setting the stage by uncovering their goals and objectives, their timeline to complete a task, project or transaction and budget constraints if any, including their source of funding, should determine if their scope of work or your opportunity should be explored further or terminated.

Professionals should be fearless about disclosing their fees for services prior to engaging ideas, recommendations or solutions to their prospects or clients.

I usually discount my first hour by 65%, if the prospect agrees, we explore the challenge and within 60 minutes both parties should be in agreement to go forward or terminate the relationship. Being selective with who your clients are is essential but that's just my opinion.

Aug 14, 2018 09:17 PM #24
Rainer
236,287
John Henry, Florida Architect
John Henry Masterworks Design International, Inc. - Orlando, FL
Residential Architect, Luxury Custom Home Design

Kimo, this is GREAT advice for design pros.  I think your suggestions are bold and realistic.  I tend to go soft at the beginning of a discussion to get people to open up and dream out loud before getting into fee disclosure... I am going to forward your blog to some friends.  This line especially gets me: Professionals should be fearless about disclosing their fees for services

Thanks very much

Aug 15, 2018 05:00 AM #25
Rainmaker
1,008,826
Jan Green
Value Added Service, 602-620-2699 - Scottsdale, AZ
HomeSmart Elite Group, REALTOR®, EcoBroker, GREEN

So true.  There are sometimes differing agendas between spouses that even they don't know.  I like your questionnaire idea. 

Aug 22, 2018 05:41 PM #26
Rainer
236,287
John Henry, Florida Architect
John Henry Masterworks Design International, Inc. - Orlando, FL
Residential Architect, Luxury Custom Home Design

Yes Jan, I have a short Questionnaire.  Let me know if you or anyone else on AR would like a copy.  Thanks

Aug 22, 2018 06:17 PM #27
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