By Dave Robison
Ever had a buyer working with more than one agent? Ever had a seller who you spent a ton of time with, gave them your advice, and then they used a discounted service? Ever had a buyer who kept changing their mind or made offers on a lot of properties?
I knew an agent who had a hard time with one of these scenarios. “Tina” broke down crying one day, saying, “How am I going to pay my bills now that this closing fell through? I’ve worked so hard this past month and now the buyer is backing out? How can they do this?” Many agents have been there. (This is a real story, however, and I changed the name above.) I had to explain a secret to Tina, on getting deals done.
The secret to success is not being emotionally affected or attached to the outcome of the transaction. Whether it fails or closes, you can’t be attached to the outcome you want. It’s a Nordstrom Way Secret.
Eons ago, I had a buyer who planned to purchase a multimillion-dollar property. I remember spending hours on end, educating and reassuring this person about the home buying process, in anticipation for what was about to be their biggest purchase ever. During the process, the buyer was concerned with the inspection. The items did not seem of major importance to me, however, they caused stress for the buyer.
The buyer asked the famous question: “What should I do?” This is the point where many REALTORS® might say something like, “It’s a great time to buy,” or, “I would do it,” etc. A secret to being unattached to the outcome is that you tell yourself: “It’s okay if they don’t buy the home. I still can pay my bills. There will be other buyers.” Even if you feel these statements aren’t true, you are going to have to say this to yourself anyway. There are many buyers I meet who will tell me they felt like their previous agent just wanted them to buy something and get a deal done. Those buyers left their agent to look for someone who would help them, rather than an agent who just wants a deal.
The right approach: Continue reading »
By Lynn Minnick
I was lucky enough to have been picked to participate in NAR’s Leadership 200 and 300 classes this week at my association. I say lucky enough because we’re the largest association in our state and there were only 35 seats open. Last summer I was involved in our two-day strategic planning session, which was a first for me and pretty much blew my mind. (Rumor has it we “younger” members have an in because they’re grooming us to become the future leaders of the association!)
While the courses are definitely aimed at becoming leaders in your association, the information and experience was much more than that, as it should be if you’re going to take an entire day away from showing and listing appointments, right? The classes covered topics such as how meetings are run, Robert’s Rules, strategic and operational planning, conflict resolution, and more.
1. Always keep your association’s strategic plan at the top of your mind in committee meetings. For those who are serving on association committees, how is what you’re doing going to advance your association’s strategic plan? If it isn’t, it shouldn’t be on the agenda at all. Shouldn’t we be keeping that same focus in our own personal work agendas? Also, do we have the metrics in place to track our progress?
2. Plan more, worry less. Continue reading »
By Jennifer Klein
The current real estate market is tricky to understand. In this video with Steve Ostrom, we discuss who is obligated to whom, both in a short sale and in the case of bank owned homes. Understanding who our agreements are with as agents will help buyers better navigate the market.
Jennifer Klein is a REALTOR® in Northern California who is experienced in short sales, investments, and property management. Connect with Jen at RosevilleAndRocklin.com, JenKlein.com, and @JenKleinSac.
By Veronica Barragan
Some REALTORS® conceived 2012 as “The Year of Volume Transactions” because lower home prices created the need to increase transactions to keep up with personal career goals while maintaining life styles and income. In actuality, 2012 has quickly become “The Year of the Professional.”
We’re in an environment where REALTORS® celebrate authentic, professional standards, and embrace all markets as a visionaries. They can stand back and understand the big picture, while in turn, offering excellent client service with integrity.
For example, in states such as Arizona where I currently practice, many REALTORS® have shifted their business dramatically and quickly from the dwindling REO niche back to buyers and sellers. REALTORS® are going back to basics, which should have never been ignored if they planned on making real estate a long term career. “The basics” encompass key fundamental characteristics that never ever disappear and easily transcend time. The basics include the utmost professional attention to each and every client’s needs, appreciating every phone call as the gateway to referrals because of the agent’s attention to detail, and, more importantly, having the ability to be fully present and aware of the intentions, desires, and needs of every individual who comes to you, as an agent, for your real estate expertise.
Today’s market is diverse and includes first-time home buyers, the tech-savvy newest generation, the growing and underserved Hispanic community, investors, second home buyers, and sellers in a hardship situation. To be able to serve this new and diverse clientele effectively as a professional, you must be able to adapt the basics into your business plan and into your soul.
There is no more sitting back and waiting for the bank to assign you that distressed property, because you will not survive — Continue reading »
By Marc Guzman
We all know how important your credit score is when it comes to borrowing money for credit cards, auto loans and home loans. But how many of us really take the time to educate our clients on the benefits of preparing their credit score before they buy a home?
Buying a home can be very exciting and a daunting process. Home buyers do a lot from preparing paperwork for the loan officer, research and viewing properties with their REALTOR®, reviewing disclosures and signing paperwork, to saving enough money for the down payment. But in working with many buyers, both first-time and experienced, it is amazing to me how many buyers overlook the importance of their credit score. Many buyers think saving the down payment is sufficient as long as their credit score is above 620. You know that question, “What is the minimum credit score I need to qualify?”
But the truth of it all is, no matter what the credit score, it is important to begin working on improvements 6 months to 1 year before buying a house; longer in other cases. It takes some time to significantly increase the score. You may also want to partner with a company that specializes in credit counseling. Now why place so much emphasis on improving an already qualifying score?
- Average score for buyers using conventional financing is 760
- Average score for buyers using conventional financing in which the loans were purchase by Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac was 755
- Only 1 percent of loans were offered to buyer with less than 620 credit score
- 75 percent of loans were offered to buyers with credit score of Continue reading »
By Scott Newman
I often encounter other REALTORS® who see little to no value in developing relationships with their fellow agents, and it just baffles me every time! We are in one of the most challenging real estate markets in U.S. history, not to mention we’re in an environment where rules and regulations change daily, which is only adding barriers to establishing a successful business. I think we need the support of one another now more than ever.
But how do you develop those bonds? Read on, as today I’m presenting a few great tips for building your agent network as a way to grow your business in 2012.
This is by far the most important piece of advice I can possibly share with you. Put down the phone, computer, tablet, and anything else with a power cord if you really want to network with your fellow agents properly.
I love social media, and I owe a great deal of my success to our ability to market effectively on that platform. But when it comes to connecting with other REALTORS®, you simply can’t replace face-to-face interaction with any technology that currently exists. Make it a point to attend one live networking event a week related to our industry, giving you have a chance to meet other agents in person. Bring plenty of business cards and come ready to mingle.
Here’s another great tip: Take some time to figure out what distinguishes you from your fellow agents so you stand out. Whenever I’m around other agents, I make it a point to nail home just how successful and interested I am in working with short sale listings. More often than not, another agent in the room is all too happy to take a referral fee for the few short sale listings he gets each year, which is a win-win for everyone.
Maybe you do leasing, or you’re a luxury specialist — whatever it is, emphasize your specialty and talents to distinguish yourself from the crowd and elevate yourself as the top expert in the room. It will go a long way towards cementing relationships and help you create pipelines through which new business and referrals can flow.
Join Up Continue reading »
By Anand Patel
One of the most helpful pieces of advice I received several years ago that I continually advise my agents to do today is to recap, in writing, your conversations with clients, attorneys, title companies, appraisers, fellow agents – any and all parties involved in your transactions. These details will help clarify the conversation you have, leaving no confusion about who said what. It will help cover your “assets” if things go sour in a transaction, and it will aide you in solidifying and growing your relationships.
Here’s what I recommend:
Take detailed notes of your phone calls. I keep a notebook by me at the office at all times and also take it on the road with me. When I’m at the office, if I’m on the phone with you, I probably have you on my hands free set and am taking notes at the same time. If taking a call on the road, once I get to my destination I’ll jot down some notes in my notepad (or sometimes in Evernote on my iPad or iPhone).
Things to write down: Continue reading »