I have a property that I'm getting ready to list, but it has been held up by nearly everything you can imagine. It's my property. So, that makes it a little easier to deal with, but that also makes it a financial drain when it should have been sold already. Initially, my painter had a heart-attack. He wanted to come back and finish the job, but it never happened. That was about six weeks wasted. Then, the flooring company took months to do the new floors. Anyway, we're at the end of a long overdue activation of the property. On the positive side, it looks amazing. I spent a lot of time upgrading, repairing and preparing the property.
I had it as a "Coming Soon" listing in our MLS, but because of the events in the early days of the preparations, the coming soon day limit came and went and I had to put it on a "Temporarily Off Market" status. Sadly, that also came and went and then it expired. Today, I received a flood of letters from Realtors wanting me to list with them. The first one I opened said, "If you are reading this letter then your Realtor has not sold your home." The second said, "I,m (spelled that way) absolutely shocked that your home hasn't sold." The second letter had so many false and misleading statements in it, that it was more fraud than fact.
That brings me to my point, if you're going to go after expired listings let me give you a few pointers:
1. Don't insult the seller or the prior listing agent. My property never actually made it to the market. It wasn't a mistake that the agent (me) made, it was a series of insane events that kept it from being activated.
2. If you're trying to woo expired listings, don't send false information, inflated sales statistics and flat our lies in your marketing. A smart seller can find out the truth and you'll just look like another opportunist who will to say anything to make a buck.
3. Don't make promises you can't fulfill. Don't promise, "I can sell your house in 7 days," or "I'll make you're home disappear in half the time the average home sells in," or "Thousands of homes sold last month, but not yours. I can change that," etc.
4. Don't patronize the seller. Statements like "I know you're frustrated," "I'm sure you had confidence in your agent, but he/she let you down," only adds to a seller's view of you as a vulture who has no idea why a home didn't sell.
The letters I received were insulting, patronizing and down right baloney. One said that thousands of homes sold last month, when in reality, our market sells about 1900 a year. There are ways to get expired listings to re-list with you, but you might want to find out why a house didn't sell, or if the expired listing is in the process of being re-listed. That would be good to know before you send letters insulting the listing agent and the process that the listing went through. In my case, everything that held up the listing was the result of circumstances outside of my control. I didn't cause the painter to have a heart-attack. I didn't encourage the flooring company to take three times longer than normal. Not every expired listing is a result of an agent who didn't get the job done. Sometimes things just happen.