Mo Davis, Real Estate Pro in Upper Marlboro, MD

How short notice will you meet your Trulia leads to show them property? Do you only meet with buyers who are pre approved?

Asked by Mo Davis, Upper Marlboro, MD Thu Sep 6, 2012

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Most showings can be arranged within 24hours. Every lead is pre-qualified one way or another, it doesn't matter where the lead came from... on-line,off-line, neighbor, relative, friend-of-a-friend, etc.

There's alot of questions when it comes to narrowing down the home search. I'm probably not the only agent that prefers to show customers the 3 to 4 absolute best homes during an outing and asking them to write an offer on the one they liked most by the end of our time together. After all we do want to make this happen, right?
1 vote Thank Flag Link Mon Nov 5, 2012
Yes, I want to! This is a 'service' business and being able to provide unparalleled service is one standard we all strive to be recognized as providing. After a few years in the business, we come to realize providing service without compensation turns our actions into a hobby, not a business.

My Dad always said, "If it's worth doing, it's worth scheduling."
He gets smarted every year. If they won't meet at the office or Panera Bread to discuss their objective and their purchase capability, I'm only fooling myself.

Not only is pre-approval needed, it is essential to know the lenders track record. Time and time and time and time and time again, Bank of America, Chase, Wells Fargo and Never Ever Bank of Clearwater Florida will betray the home buyer at the very last minute. Are you running a business or a hobby? We make that distinction with every 'impulse' decision we make.

Best of success to you,
Annette Lawrence, Broker/Associate
Remax Realtec Group, Palm Harbor, FL
1 vote Thank Flag Link Fri Sep 7, 2012
I try to set a meeting at our office (home turf) and have an exchange of information. I’m looking for their ideas, seeing if they are pre-approved, giving them information about how to find a home & the process once we begin to make offers and have an offer accepted. Basically it’s a little like a waltz you can add lib a little but there’s certain steps to follow before we move forward. My rules are simple and they protect & inform the buyer and this ensures a good fit going forward it also protects my time that I invest. I show no one homes without a copy of their state I.D., preapproval letter & a signed buyer agency agreement even if it is just for one day and one home. PS: Realtors from a safety standpoint getting someone to your office & getting a copy of their ID lessens the chance some weirdo who calls off a sign because your glamour shot is on it is going to try to take advantage of you.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Fri Sep 7, 2012
Step 1 for us is always getting them pre-approved. This happens before any showings. I normally like to have a meeting with them before we go out too, just to get on the same page and educated them. Good luck to you!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Oct 23, 2012
They are not pre-approved or screened by Trulia, if that is what you are asking. I always ask them if they are working with a lender and if they have a pre-approval. If not have a few recommendations to offer them.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Oct 23, 2012
I think its important to always meet with Buyers on neutral ground before running off to meet them at a property. This way I can get a "feel" for them as well as get a better handle on what they are looking for. I ask if they have a pre-qual, and if they don't give them names of people who they can call to get one.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Oct 23, 2012
I try to do the first face to face in the office and obtain necessar information for potential buyers unless they can forwarded me the documents ahead of time.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Oct 22, 2012
Before meeting with a potential lead (Trulia or otherwise) I try to get some basic information over the phone to see where they are in the buying process. Are they pre-approved? I don't necessarily NOT meet with non-preapproved buyers, it really depends on where they are in the process and why they may not be preapproved yet. For instance, I closed two Trulia leads last year who were not pre-approved...but they were both looking for a second home and owned their first home outright so they were planning on taking home equity loans.

In real estate I find it is best to not be 'cut and dry' about certain 'rules' about who you will meet and when. Am I available to meet quickly? Do they sound like someone who understands the buying process and will be able to buy? Then sure, I will head out fairly quickly. If not, I will work with them to get them to that point.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Sep 10, 2012
Always meet your potential clients and guide them through the process. even if credit is iffy,,,,,,,,,,,, guide them to a lender willing to help them fix it.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Sep 8, 2012
I'll ask on the phone before we meet if they are pre-approved. Unless they tell me they were turned down, or have had a foreclosure, bankruptcy, etc., then i'll meet them asap at a property one time. I feel like we've established a relationship face to face. I'll have them sign the IABS and buyers rep form before we can enter the house. That proves for me to be the best way to get them to call me back. However, my next step is to require them to get the pre-approval. If that doesn't happen, we don't see any more houses, but I do keep them on a drip from the MLS.

My theory is that most buyers have spent quite awhile looking on the internet before they ever contact an agent. They are one step closer to buying than some.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Sep 8, 2012
As soon as I get notification of the lead - I call them within the hour. Those who are utilizing internet to conduct their search for an Agent want an immediate answer - remember there are plenty of qualified Agents out there waiting to scope up this new lead. Showing properties to prospective buyers comes after a sit down discussion regarding the mortgage approval and pre-approval from a lender. No need to waste their time or yours if they are not quite ready.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Sep 7, 2012
Hi Monique,

I believe Scott said it best. If a buyer is not prepared to meet with in advance to exchange information, in all probability they are not serious and just want someone to give them access to a particular property.

As an agent, I work very hard for my clients as I am sure most of you do. They have to take the process seriously. As Laura stated, "home shopping is not an impulse buy". I couldn't agree with her more. An initial meet and greet is vital to a successful agent/client relationship.

Best of luck,

Barbara Grandolfo
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Sep 7, 2012
If you are free, then why not! Always try to make an appointment to meet a potential buyer face to face. This lets you know that they are serious about starting their search. I also always meet someone at least once even if they are not preapproved. You can answer their questions and get a feel to see if they are a serious buyer. You can then explain the preapproval process and offer some references of local mortgage brokers that you work with. If they act on that quickly, then again, you know they are serious and now you have a qualified buyer.
Once you have been an agent for awhile, you will have a better feel on people who you meet or talk with. I normally can tell on the phone if I have a good or bad feeling about a potential client. A couple of weeks ago I received a Trulia lead and made an appointment for the next afternoon. I had a feeling that they were not going to show and I was right. But, all I wasted was a half hour of my time so I don't consider it a waste. Good luck as an agent!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Sep 6, 2012
I love your thoughts Laura and Charles!!! Thanks so much! Sometimes I feel a little funny about taking out buyers at short notice, but in most cases it's turned out well. As for the buyers who aren't pre-approved already, that hasn't been so great, but I've learned to only take them out once or twice. As you were saying Laura, not devoting time to them until they get their financing situated. Also Charles, you bring a very good point, if there's that special home that's become available then its definitely agood idea to go on and take them to see the home! Thanks again for your responses.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Sep 6, 2012
Hi Monique,

Home shopping isn't an impulse buy. And all buyers should be pre-qualified before getting into serious home shopping but I have had many that wanted to wait to take that step until they saw something out there that appealed to them. So I will meet someone on short notice (same day) but won't work with them extensively until I know they are pre-qualified. It just makes sense for them too. If they shop above or below their actual qualification range they could get discouraged.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Sep 6, 2012
At the drop of a hat if schedule allows and we can get the appointment with the sellers. It is best to get the buyers pre approved so you know the price range they want and can qualify for. That won't always dictate the meeting though. If you know a buyer wants a very specific property and one comes on the market that is an exact match you often need to move fast. You can show the house and write the offer and get the pre approval letter all in the same day. Best practices would say to get a pre approval first but there's no absolute. Each buyer is different.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Sep 6, 2012
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