We heavily prospect expired listings. Typically, by the time sellers come to us, they are ready for truth and honesty. They are ready for reality. I am a big proponent of being 100% honest, and because of this, there are sellers out there that decide not to use our teams real estate services.
For a while we thought we were doing something wrong as it seems we are running about 50/50. For every 2 listing appointments we go on we are taking 1 listing and “losing” 1 listing. The “lost” listings are choices either by us or, the seller chooses to use someone else. It wasn’t until we started really watching what Russell Shaw does and listening to what he says that we realized that we are doing it right, perfectly right. We should be running about 50/50 and no, higher ratios are not something to strive for. We want to work with sellers who want to sell and will work to sell. We could care less to have an ‘inventory of listings’ just to say we have ### number of listings.
We recently had a meeting with an owner that has moved out of their home. They are financially strapped and have moved into something less expensive. They’ve had this home on the market for the past 17 months – listing 3 different times over that time period with the same agent. The home has been over priced anywhere from 7%-9% throughout this time period. With hundreds of similar homes to choose from in significantly better condition, even 1/2% over priced is fatal and will result in no sale for the seller.
When we met with the seller, we told the truth. We talked about the work that needed to be done in order to sell the home for top dollar. The home smelled badly of pets and the carpets needed to be replaced. Additionally, the home desperately needed interior painting and exterior sprucing and cleaning up. In other words, we let the owners know they had work to do. The owner is financially strapped and can’t do any work that requires money. That means the major depreciating issue on the home (the pet smell filled carpet) can not be replaced. This means less money for the seller. This also means that the home absolutely must be priced lower than it’s comparables to get anyone interested.
Now, on to comparables. For some reason, this particular subdivision is beyond over priced. Every single home in this subdivision is at least 7-9% over priced, many are closer to 20% over priced. They’ve been languishing on the market for months and months, when homes are selling in other areas. For some reason, owners in this particular neighborhood think their homes are worth more than the exact same home (literally in some cases) in other nearby neighborhoods. Why? Who knows, but the agents listing homes in this particular neighborhood are not doing their job, quite literally.
Here are my thoughts why sellers keep choosing the same agent over and over again, even though their home just sits on the market. See, when an owner tells me they need to sell and tells me why, I take it seriously. I want to do my job and price the home well so that it sells within the time frame needed by the owner, making the owner as much money as possible. It is not easy having to tell owners things they do not want to hear. Unfortunately, sellers all too often choose agents that will:
- List their home at a higher price
- List their home for a ‘lower’ commission
- Not require them to do any prep work on the home
While I totally understand this thinking, choosing an agent based upon any one of these reasons is unwise and quite foolish. To continue choosing the same agent because of these reasons is, well, shame on you.