Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Would You Hire You?

Ok... let’s pretend for a moment….think back years ago, when you made the decision to start your real estate career. Let’s suppose you chose to go a different route…let’s say… starting a software company which had this crazy idea about people actually wanting to build social relationships over the internet. You hit it big and Yahoo buys your company for a bazillion dollars!!! Lucky you!   Well now the time has come to spend some of your cash and you decide you want to make a real estate purchase…a really BIG real estate purchase! Who are you going to select to represent you?
As long as we are pretending… let’s suppose the time continuum split at the precise moment you decided your career path(s) and the alter you elected real estate as a career path and everything has happened exactly as it has really occurred in your life… and today is the big moment when the Yahoo “financially enhance” you is considering hiring their REALTOR. Would You hire You to represent You?

In short, the question is…would you hire yourself to do the job of representing the purchase or sale of real estate? As you contemplate your answer don’t get too self-righteous.
Think about the following questions:

·        Are you prepared to supply the services required by the real estate consumers of the future? And how are (or will) your services be shaped by generational attitudes and preferences?

·        Is your current transaction processes model attractive for the real estate consumer of today? Or are you still holding on to tired outdated marketing models and transaction platforms.

·        Do you have the market knowledge, job related skills, and tech savvy-ness to properly service today’s buyers and sellers?

·        Are you doing just enough to get by… (What most agents offer)… or do you provide exemplary service by going the extra mile with each one of your clients?

·        Are you taking the time to build relationships… or just rushing from transaction to transaction…commission check to commission check? When is the last time you called a past client to see how they are…how the family is doing… and if they still love the house you sold them?

Many real estate professionals think folks will choose to work with them and refer their friends and family to them… just because… a complacency which could prove to be their downfall. To survive in the real estate industry of tomorrow we will have to examine and re-examine our business models consistently to insure they are current with the needs of the consumer.

ü Know the market

ü Stay current with technology

ü Develop prospecting systems to attract the clients you want to work with

ü Think and work relational based…not transactional based

ü If your skill set needs sharpening…take the time to hone the talents today’s consumers are demanding

ü Design your business model around doing the little extras most other agents can’t or won’t provide…Always do what you say you are going to do, and then some!

For more info on how Production Coaching can alter your career go to www.ICU-Coaching.com

Eddie Brown ©2013

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Create an Experience With Power Prospecting!

Today’s blog is designed to aid you in putting some “power” into your prospecting systems. For most agents prospecting systems are short term energetic at best…but when exposed to a proper endurance test… they quickly become feeble and sluggish. 

We hope the following info and suggestions will give you the motivation to take a long look at your prospecting methods and systems, and the consistency of how you incorporate them into your current business plan. 

As of May 01 2013 The Triangle Area has 6988 active REALTOR Associates…even with the Pareto Principle 80/20 rule (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pareto_principle ) taken into account...it leaves 1400 agents who are highly competitive and consistent when searching for new business. To be distinguishable in this prestigious crowd… you will have to create an “experience” with the prospects. Do something a little different….Do it all a little better…and do it more consistently than your competition and you will capture more business. You will never capture it all…don’t try… just go after your share with a purpose!

·        Face to Face visits are the most effective way to build relationships…try it…you might just like the world out there beyond your computer screen!

·        Write a Hand Written Personal Note (HWPN) after each face to face or voice to voice visit. There is power in the hand written words…and the magical thing is…people read them!

·        Items of Value (IOV) – As a giver, discover what is valuable to the prospect and the items you send will become valuable…and in turn add value to your offer to assist them buy or sell property. 

Two Suggestions to Inject More Power into Your Prospecting Systems

1.     “The Quick Six Fix”:  Should become the action plan of choice when you meet a new prospect. Start on day one and then perform the next action 5 days later…giving you a full 30 days of contact in the action plan.

·        Mailed IOV
·        Call… asking did you get the IOV? Ask for referral “who do you know”?
·        HWPN… follow-up to call and thanking for speaking with you
·        Emailed Market Data
·        Call… asking did you get the Market Data and do you have questions? Ask “Who do you know”?
·        HWPN…Follow-up on call… thanks for speaking with me….
·        Start over or move to another action plan depending on time frame, qualification, and or status of motivation/desire. 

2.     10-10-20 Just Listed Marketing:  This action plan is designed for building awareness in a neighborhood where you have just listed a property. The day the sign goes up start the plan and run the program until the property closes.  

Select 10 homes to the left of your listing…10 homes to the right…and 20 homes across the street for this action plan. Save these in your data base for when you get your next listing in the neighborhood…pretty soon you will have the entire community aware you are the professional neighborhood expert who can sell their home!

·        Day one: Just Listed Post Card photo of home listed asking “Do you know someone you want as your neighbor”?
·        Day Seven: Activity High…  We need more inventory! report mailed… Ask for email address to send real estate data which affects the value of their property.
·        Day Fourteen: Invite to Open House
·        Day Eighteen and every week until pending: Mail Neighborhood info on Active, Pending, Closed. Ask again for email address to send electronically.
·        When Pending:  Same Card as day one stating CONTRACT PENDING!
·        When Closed: Sold in ___ Days! Meet your new neighbors! 

This system is great to start “geographically farming” a neighborhood… with your first listing you start with 40 home owners on your list…When you list the next property add 40 more and so on…. Soon the entire neighborhood will be in your data base and your name will be remembered as the agent who gets the job done.

For more info on how to use Power Action Plans for prospecting…go to www.ICU-Coaching.com  or call Eddie at 919-785-4201

Eddie Brown ©2013

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Are You Wielding The Sword …Or Raising The Shield?

Are you Playing Offense when you should be Playing Defense? Or Vice-Versa?
I am sure you have heard the term “The best offense is a better defense” right? Today’s topic is regarding how we handle transactions with the co-broke associate and for our clients.
Since the 1990’s when Seller and Buyer Agency was introduced into North Carolina Real Estate transactions we have seen the growth of transactional confrontational agents (TCA).  It seems some licensees take it upon themselves to wield a sharp and swift sword for their clients…sometimes with… but most times without the client’s best interest in mind and/or even without their knowledge!
Example: A TCA listing associate takes it upon themselves to “fight” for the sellers to not make a minor repair requested by a buyer…or a TCA Buyer’s Agent who verbally “demands” a seller of a 35 year old home make every repair and “FYI” observation on the inspection report without having a formal due diligence request signed by the buyer. ..or even going over the details of the report with the buyers.
So when do we need to brandish the sword and when do we need to put up the shield in defense?

As a Broker In Charge I get to witness all the dirt in a transaction up close and personal… Agents don’t come to their brokers for assistance when everything, and everyone, is Happy, Happy, Happy!
“The Firemen” get called upon when the barn is on fire and the buyers, sellers and agents are all running in circles screaming “the sky is falling…the sky is falling”… Hence the term “putting out the fires”.
What we see most often is a situation where if the two agents would have allowed the buyer and seller to work out a compromise between themselves… the small spark which started the conflagration could have been easily extinguished early on… (And more often than not)… the cause of the disagreement was a misunderstanding caused by one or both agents verbal or written “delivery” of sensitive news to their clients.
Five Tips on Keeping Peace in a Transaction:
1)    Explain the process and Educate your clients before and during the transaction…prepare them for the requests and road blocks they may face so it will not come as a surprise when it occurs…this comes under the category of “Do Your Job” better up front to avoid “Bad Press” later.
2)    Put everything said….and I mean everything… in writing. If it was spoken of in a phone conversation or face to face…send a follow-up clarification email…if it is in a voice mail…save it…Once it is in writing… file it. Once filed keep it safe.
3)    Never make assumptions… Never assume what your clients answer will be… with the proper explanations and education as in #1 above you may be surprised how agreeable people can be. Also never assume the other agent or client will do the right thing…follow-up to ascertain things promised have been done.
4)    Put all requests in writing…don’t just hand an inspection report to a listing agent and say the buyers want everything fixed. Follow the proper procedures and ask for specifics…how to be repaired and by whom. If left open the repairs may be done sub-standard, without required permits, or even “cosmetically repaired” just to pass a visual re-inspection.
5)    Finally…BE NICE! In the movie Road House... "Dalton" (Patrick Swayze) told his security staff at a rowdy night club to be firm…but be nice. These are great words to follow during a transaction. Negotiations don’t have turn into a Stanley Cup Final Game Brawl. Most times being nice will take you much further than swinging a heavy sword and screaming a battle cry. Dalton was hired by the night club to be a "cooler"... that is the REALTORS job in a transaction...BE THE COOLER!
We hope these tips will help you to have more enjoyable transactions and happier clients…and happy clients are more likely to send you qualified referrals to grow your business!
Eddie Brown ©2013