Question Details

Bert Pope, Real Estate Pro in Tallahassee, FL

What is the best closing technique for asking for the sale when someone looks like they are ready?

Asked by Bert Pope, Tallahassee, FL Wed Mar 26, 2014

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John Souerbry’s answer
I agree with Dan, the #1 reason a lot of sales never happen is because the broker/agent doesn't ask for a decision. Buyers just need to be asked: "It's decision time, do you want to make an offer?"
When the decision is no or maybe, the broker/agent needs to ask for a specific objection that can either be addressed or should be accepted as a valid reason not to make the purchase. When a property meets or exceeds every item on the buyer's needs/desires list and they still won't buy, it's because they either haven't been honest with or completely thought through their needs/desires, their needs/desires have changed based on what they are seeing in the market as they view properties, they aren't comfortable spending as much as they said they would spend, or they're FBI informants trying to catch you in a dirty agent sting operation.
If you've developed a good relationship with the buyer, help them through the embarrassment of having to change their selection criteria or reduce their price limit. Let them know it's a normal process and you're on their side. But keep asking them: "Do you want to make an offer, if not, why?"
1 vote Thank Flag Link Fri Mar 28, 2014
Based on over 30 years in sales, being a sales trainer and having been through countless hours of sales training classes with many big name trainers, the number one technique that is underused by professionals is,...Ask them. "So, sounds like you really like the house? Shall I start the process toward writing an offer?"
If you ask you can get a Yes, No, or I need more information. "I want to think about it" is the most common response, to which you respond, "great, what resources can I provide you to help you with that? Do you want a CMA, information on the schools, proximity to transit..."
In real estate sales we are not on a car lot or electronics store where we need to force the issue. In fact, the harder you force, the more "no's" you'll get. This is a huge investment of money, life, energy etc. and buyer's need to know you have their interests first. We ask when it's appropriate and the signals are there, but if you push, shoe horn or use some fancy technique people will feel manipulated. If you are straight forward and are truly looking out for them, it's okay to ask for the business when they are ready and okay to let them think. Relational sales takes time and is not a wham, bam transaction.
3 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Mar 26, 2014
"It's decision time. Do you want to make an offer?" Reminds me of my visit to the islands where the hawker greeted us with 'Hey pretty lady, beautiful scarf for you to buy today?' or the all time favorite is "What can I do to get you into this car today?"

In all of the above the buyer will be on Trulia, in a traumatized state, about their sales person pressuring them into buying, pressuring them to make an offer. Folks don't like being sold to, but the do like to buy. "Just looking" is the universal smoke screen behind which buyers hide. They don't want to be sold to.

"This is a great place to have the grand kids visit you over the weekends! Don't you agree?" In essence you've reminded the buyer of their #6 and that now it the time to make the next chapter of their life REAL. "You're right. Let's talk about what I should offer."

Who made that buying decision?

How you start the process dictates how it must end. Invest the time at the start and you have more relevant information to work with in the end. If you have elected to not mine such data you MUST put the squeeze on them in the end. One is more convenient to the sales person, the other more educational and collaborative for the one who hired you to protect their best interests.

Best of success,
Annette Lawrence, Broker/Associate
Remax Realtec Group
Palm Harbor, FL
727. 420. 4041
1 vote Thank Flag Link Sat Mar 29, 2014
I tell them that selecting a house is like dating. When you have found " the one " you will know and you can choose to dream about the what ifs or make your move. Then I just hand them the pen.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Apr 14, 2014
I like the soft approach--I've shown you three homes--which one do you like best? What is it about that one that makes it your favorite? Before you know it, they will have talked themselves into making the offer.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Apr 2, 2014

If you have a truly motivated buyer, it's not a matter of pushing a customer to make a decision. They will tell you when they are ready. If provided with all relevant information about the home, buying process, the area, and the local market they will be equipped to take it to the next level.....

0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Mar 30, 2014
Hi Bert,

ask them to please sign here on the X!

Best of luck
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Mar 30, 2014
OH - PS have a look at - he has some AWESOME free videos and downloads to help with this :)
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Mar 29, 2014
I personally believe that the Assumptive close is the best...

"So I can see that you like the property, so when we're writing up the offer for you in a moment in the office, will I be checking the purchasing case or with a mortgage box? I just like to ask so that en route back to the office I can make some calls and have our recommended people ready to help you with finance if you need it"
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Mar 29, 2014
I want to thank John and agree. If you find a fancy technique to get someone to sign an offer today, they will be back peddling tomorrow. You will also be seen as a "salesman" instead of a consultant looking out for their best. Yes, some folks need more time than others and some will drive you crazy with their indecision. That's life. Choose to stick it out with them or move on.
For all the fancy techniques I've seen and tried over the years, there's nothing like a relationship built on trust and respect for a long term business relationship.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Mar 28, 2014
Buying a home is not like buying a car, you can not rush some into it or they will simply be withdrawing their offer or want out the next day. They have to be ready, willing and able to buy. When they find something they love, they need to act. I often say that a buyer who is on the fence needs to loose their first dream home to another buyer so when they find their 2nd one, they move quickly
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Mar 28, 2014
At this stage of the buying process, the need to rely on previously established goals makes the transition from hopeful to player much easier.
Shortly after the buyer made a REAL commitment to their agent, the following was established.
1. Type and situation of housing/
2. Time line
3. Funding
4. Analytics (is the offer price going to equal Z, tax value x 0.4, Full price minus $100,000 for repairs}
5. The 5, 6 and 7.

"This would be an incredible home to have the grandkids spend a weekend with you. I know that is important to you. Are you ready to get a place so they can know their grand parents?."

How you start the process dictates how you can end it.

Best of success,
Annette Lawrence, Broker/Associate
Remax Realtec Group
Palm Harbor, FL
727. 420. 4041
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Mar 28, 2014
I assume you are talking about the gun-shy buyers, since most buyers understand they are out there to buy not look. I don't have much of a technique, I ask them if they want to make an offer. Seems straightforward, but I need to know where they stand, this is generally how I start:

So this is our third visit to this house...
We've discussed the price/comps...
I have the evening free...
Lets get together and hash out the details...

It's gotta be a yes or a no at some point, and the third showing screams yes to me, or I want to know why we haven't moved on.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Mar 27, 2014
I assume you are talking about a buyer finding the right home? If not, disregard what I'm about to say.

My opinion is that when a buyer sees the right home, asking for the sale isn't necessary. I know there are many sales people that may disagree, and I'm sure that all the sales training in the world says that you SHOULD ask and push the buyers forward, but my experience has been time and time again that when it's the right house, the buyer knows. No pushing or sales tactics needed.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Mar 27, 2014
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