Edward Norton and Brad Pitt: Fight Club. If you have seen the movie, can you remember the first rule of Fight Club? – Do not talk about Fight Club! A simple motto, but one that they understood, lived by and implemented. But what has this got to do with auctions? Dave Eller explains.
It’s no secret that I love the auction process, but I may be slightly biased as I am an Auctioneer. Furthermore, I do believe that when that process is understood and implemented correctly, it provides substantial benefits to not only the vendor, but also to you as the selling agent. It’s also no secret that, all around Australia, most of the top performing agents, those who I call Real Estate Athletes, employ the auction method as a major part of their business.
But what will make a seller choose an auction? It’s simple: when they see the process as a SOLUTION. A seller will only see Auction as a solution, however, when they understand the process and realize the advantages. Therefore the words that you use during the listing process are extremely important; additionally, so are the words (or word) you don’t use.
What was the first rule of Fight Club? So what would be the first rule of Auctions?
The word ‘Auction’ can scare some vendors. Forget the C-word and the F-bomb, the A-word can really offend owners. It can make them not list with you purely because you mentioned the word. But why? I believe it is due to two things: they have either had a bad experience (personally or via a friend), or they don’t understand the auction process. Or both.
It is possible to sell the process to the vendor without even mentioning the word ‘Auction’. If you can explain to the vendor why time on market is important, as well as the benefits of marketing without a price, AND relate the concept of vendor paid advertising (see my last article – The Case for Advertising), then you are almost there. The way in which you approach each of these three topics is particularly significant. Again, the words that you use will either win you the business or see you walking back out the front door empty-handed. Once the vendor grasps the essence of the process without being weighed down by the name of the process, you can then introduce the final piece to the puzzle – the Auctioneer.
But what if the Vendor mentions Auction first?
There you are, folder in hand, having just knocked on the front door to meet a potential vendor about the prospect of selling their home. You are feeling good; you had a great breakfast, went for your morning workout, recited some positive affirmations in the car on the way over, and you visualized yourself doing the deal. The house door opens; you commence with your normal smooth and relaxed salutation only to be greeted with “Come in, but don’t talk to me about auctions; I DO NOT want to do an auction.” What do you do? What do you say?
Well first and foremost you would want to find out the reasons why they don’t want to do an auction. Ask if they have had a bad experience. You need to dig a little deeper if you want to be able to still push ahead with the auction route. Let them talk. Let them explain. They may just provide you with some invaluable insight into their way of thinking.
Once they have spoken, AND you have listened wholeheartedly (not just waiting for them to finish), you could then use dialogue along the lines of….
“I appreciate how you feel Mr Smith. Many of my clients initially felt the same way. What they have found, however, is that the Auction process is not as ominous as they first thought. At the end of the day you don’t have to auction if you don’t want to…. And when I leave here today I will only market your property the way you want me to market it.”
This is a nice assumptive close; that you will have their business either way. Then you could follow it up with….
“However, I would be doing you a disservice if I did not run you through all the options. I would like to take you through the options and let you be the judge of what is best for you. Is that ok?”
Work on the dialogue that suits your style. Have a plan. I have mentioned it before: don’t let yourself be ruled by fear. The only reason that this would be so is if you yourself did not completely understand the process: I recommend reading an article posted here on April 24th by Mark Kentwell – Gaining Acceptance of Auctions in any Marketplace.
It is imperative that you don’t fear talking about auctions with a vendor (just don’t start by mentioning the A-word!).
It’s time to put YOU into ACTION….It’s time to AUCTION!