Agent2Agent in 10002>Question Details

Wei Yang,  in 10002

How to tell signs of uncommitted customers (renting/ buying/selling)?

Asked by Wei Yang, 10002 Fri Jan 24, 2014

Hi all, I am new to this business. I started making my listing inventory and got some leads. However, I feel they are not in the rush or commitment to get the deal done. Please give me your advice on this rookie. Thank you.

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Hi rookie. First of all, good luck in this business and I hope you do amazing! Pre-qualification via first contact -- be it a walk-in or via phone -- is a must. You must ascertain that your prospect is qualified financially. Find out when they need to move. When does their lease end? Why are they moving? Are they getting divorced? A new higher paying job? A natural disaster a la Sandy?
A break up with significant other? Expanding the family? Look for urgency in their response. Also be upfront. I ask: "If I show you an apartment today that you like, are you prepared to submit an application on the spot?" Put that action in their head and kick them of the fence of indecision. You also must qualify whether they are an A+ prospect (urgent, financially sound, responsive, organized) or D- (they can move anytime, they have weak financials, cancels appointments, they are dealing with multiple brokers.) Not all leads are created equal. Spend most your energies with A+ to B- leads. I wish you the best of luck in this business. You're going to need it! ;-)
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Mar 27, 2014
Hi Wei,

Focus on the leads that are in a "must" situation first. I must buy or need to sell my home client. Those that are just looking or seeking information i.e. exploring places for them on, place on a marketing campaign to keep in touch with them.

The "must" are those clients that you sign a buyer agreement and need to buy w/i 90 days or less. Sellers that are motivated to sell.

Best of Luck
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Jan 25, 2014
Jennifer Fivelsdal, Broker, Red Hook, NY
This sounds like a conversation you should be having with your Broker. Signs of a prospect not wanting to commit could include :Will not sign Buyer's Agreement. Do not want to give basic information. Tell you they are working with other agents. Testing the market etc.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Jan 25, 2014
Get a pre-approval letter from buyers, then you know they are ready and you are looking in the price range they qualify for. Prepare a list of questions to ask the seller to determine their time frame and reason for selling. Renting - I don't handle, so I can't help you there.

Tammy Hayes, Realtor
Re/Max Palm Realty
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Jan 25, 2014
Hello Wei,

This is the hardest part of this business!

How to tell when a lead is serious, how to know when to cut someone loose?

Please note you will get burned. There will be someone who appears motivated and will allow you to show them multiple homes, just to end up not closing any kind of a deal with you.

The rule I was taught by my first broker (which I do not always follow, and each time I did not I got burned) Here is the rule:

Have a sit down with the client first. Get a clear detailed list of what they desire in a home. If they say they want to buy get them pre approved before you show them anything, if they want to rent view their credit report and pay stubs before you show them anything.

Show them four homes with their specs and within their price range, if they do no submit an offer to buy or application to rent on any of the four, then chances are they are not serious (at least not now)

You van say to them "I have shown you several properties in your price range and with the specs you indicated you wanted, and you have decided to pass on them". "are you sure you are ready to move now, or would you like to take more time to think things over?

Welcome to the business, I wish you the very best!

Kawain Payne, Realtor
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Jan 25, 2014
Hi Wei,

You should get in the habit of asking your customer if they are pre-approved...this is usually a sign that they are ready to buy.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Jan 25, 2014
I pre-screen everybody, whether they are buyer or seller. If you ask the right questions you'll know their motivation. If they don't or can't answer your questions, move on. Good luck to you!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Jan 25, 2014
The answer to the client not being committed is directly related to the market you service:

What is the average days on market?
If properties in your market average 30 days or less and your client is not ready to make a decision within a couple of weeks after you have shown them every property that is available in the market that meets their criteria, they're not committed.

How is the inventory? One discussion I have every day with other agents is the difference between low inventory and poor/over-priced inventory.
If you have a very low quality inventory, prices steadily increasing and market is not expected to change any time soon, yet, your clients want to continue to wait, they're not committed.

Who is the most probable purchaser?
If market is investor/all cash driven and your clients purchase is subject to financing, yet, your clients insist on making low offers on the very few properties that are in the market, they're not committed.

These are 3 examples of "LET GO AND RUN" specifically related to the market I service. How is yours?
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Jan 25, 2014
If people sense that you're in a rush for them to make a decision, they may read it as impatience or desperation and back away.

A conversation with prospective clients about goals and timelines is useful. If the timeline is far out, ask why but don't try and change their mind. You're filling your pipeline of business, so timelines shouldn't really matter.

When you sense a lack of commitment, ask if the prospective client is working with another agent or if they have a relative who is an agent. When you ask people direct questions in a kind, but businesslike manner, they'll usually answer honestly. You can then decide if you want to continue with them or not.

Some people will run you around and have you working for them and then do business with someone else. Don't fall for it.

You sound like you're super motivated and ready to deliver great client service, but not everyone is deserving of your time and effort. It's okay to let people go.

Host open house often to meet prospective clients. I've had people I've met at open house buy or sell right away and others who have waited years. It's all about that business pipeline. When the client is ready, so are you.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Jan 25, 2014
Talk to your broker. If he isn't willing to help you with this very basic stuff, find a new firm that will.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Jan 25, 2014
Always have an initial consultation with any prospective customers and clients. There are test questions you can ask to figure out their motivation upfront. Have your manager work with you on developing your own style. You will find in this business that buyers and sellers will waste your time, only if you let them ;)

0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Jan 25, 2014
Great answer, Christopher!
Flag Sat Jan 25, 2014
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