The spring market is well and truly under way and as cycles go, this is the time of year that is traditionally viewed as selling season for agents.
Having a powerful buyer database is vital to the success of the spring market (or any market) and without it, you may find yourself gathering listings and struggling to sell them.
Keeping it simple is always the best approach and for my coaching clients we have been working on the following three key elements:
Be clear on who you are dealing with
It’s so easy to be distracted by people who might behave like an active buyer but who are not at the peak of their buying cycle.
There are three different interest groups to identify:
1. Active buyers, who make offers and are ready to transact now. There is nothing in their way and they can perform immediately.
2. Research buyers, who are still gathering info, weighing up locations, what is important to them and sorting out finance. There is something preventing them from buying now, but they will be buyers in the future.
3. Other interested parties who are not buyers at all. Their reason or interest for inquiring or inspecting is for reasons other than buying.
Filtering these interest groups must be top of mind so you can sift through and readily translate to your vendor how many active buyers you are dealing with.
Evidence shows that in a flat or declining market, the active buyer group can be as low as 15-20 per cent.
Explain and teach this to your clients in your pre-campaign (set-to-sell) meeting before the campaign starts, so they know what to expect and recognise the value of an active buyer when you have one.
Classification and follow-up strategies
Research buyers and other interest groups don’t often engage further with you, and spending time following them up can be frustrating, disappointing and even confusing.
I don’t agree with the ‘buyers are liars’ belief. It’s more likely you may not be digging deep enough to correctly classify them.
A great question to ask at the inquiry stage or at the open house is, “What prompted you to inquire on/inspect this particular property?”
Finding out early will assist you to target your follow-up and spend the time on those that can, and will, make a buying decision.
Once this is done, classify or categorise them so that you can access them easily for every new campaign.
This will assist you to have hot buyers at your fingertips and will give you confidence when going in to win the listing.
How to influence buyers to engage and buy now
For many people, making the decision to buy can be a difficult task.
There is so much to consider, and the current climate is creating doubt and fear.
Many potential buyers are concerned that they will overpay, and they are trying to time it right.
Which takes us straight to the most important question to ask those who are holding off or want to wait and see.
“How will you know it’s the right time to buy?”
If buyers want to wait to know that the market has hit the bottom, then the reality is that they will be entering when the market is next on the rise and what if the right property is not available at that time, where will the market be by the time they find it?
You can help buyers recognise what that means for them and the different problems they will then be facing as other buyers are also re-entering at the same time.
They will need to compete, participate in a bidding war and risk missing out on the property they want.
Help them to see this by asking, “What is your preferred way to buy? Taking advantage of low competition, or do you prefer to have to fight against multiple other buyers?”
The hallmark of an elite agent is one who can strategically identify true buyers, know how to filter and classify them so they are easily accessed, and then to be able to influence and shift their beliefs.
These skills are best developed in market conditions like these.