Please, please Mr. Seller list with me. NOT!

Let's talk about Seller interviews. Yep, that's right Seller interviews. when I go on a listing appointment, I know in advance that the listing is mine. why? Because I'm great! Well, maybe in my own mind. But seriously, I have the mind set that if they are calling me to list their home, then they have already made up their mind to give me their business. They could be meeting with other realtors as well, but frankly, I am never concerned about that. Cocky? Probably. But I do know from my years of experience that it is very rare that I will not leave with the listing.

So, I go in prepared to have a new listing. I approach listing appointments as an interview, except I'm not the one being interviewed. I am interviewing them to see if they are someone I want to work with and to see if their motivation fits in with what I am trying to achieve. My goal is to have the house priced properly, clean and with easy access. I want to be able to sell the house in 45 days or less. In this more difficult market the sellers have to be in the "need to sell" category. This means they have a set timeframe they must meet and they are willing to price the home so that it will sell during this period. The way the market is right now, the "right price", could be anywhere from 5%-15% below the most recent sales.


My interview will include the following questions.

  • Why are you selling?
  • When I list your house today and find a buyer tomorrow, that wants to close in 30 days and take possession, where will you go?
  • Will your house be in "showing condition" at all times?
  • If I call you tomorrow and tell you a Realtor is coming by in 15 minutes will the house be ready?
  • Can you leave with 15 minutes notice so the Realtor and his Buyer can take their time and look at the house?

Then I have to address the things I don't do.

Then to make their day, I will tell them what I will do.

Then, assuming they have given me all the right answers during my interview and they have agreed with my pricing strategy, I will let them list with me.

Now folks, when you are reading this it may sound cold and calculated but it's not. My Seller interview is full of honesty, confidence, knowledge and humor. The point is, do business on your terms. Make sure the relationship between you and your customers/clients is built on understanding and trust. Make sure they know what to expect from you and make sure they know what you expect from them. When I take a listing, my Sellers and I become a team. The only way for us to be successful is if we are all on the same page. The time to determine this is before you agree to take the listing. Sellers love this. They don't care about all your awards and marketing techniques. They care that you are on the same page as them and that you are working towards the same goal, which is, selling their home in the shortest amount of time for the most amount of money.

If any one of these areas is in conflict, then don't be afraid of turning down the listing. There are plenty more properties out there and having a listing with uncooperative Sellers is time consuming, stressful and you will probably not get paid anyway.

So don't be needy. Be picky. chose your business relationships wisely and enjoy the rewards you will reap.

Please, please Mr. Seller list with me. NOT!

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