Real estate agent handing over keys to a home

5 Reasons you’re not winning the real estate listing

Is the competition for real estate listings increasing in your market?  Do you find yourself competing with flat fee brokers or brokers who promise “Buy this home from me and I will sell yours for free”? Or maybe the sellers are interviewing a slew of agents before they decide on whom to list with.

Whatever the reason may be, we have a round-up of the reasons why you might not be winning more real estate listings and ways for you to turn your game around.

Reason 1: Your pre-listing presentation isn’t fresh

The goal of your pre-listing package is to sell yourself before you even walk in the door. “By letting the pre-listing package be the third party that sells you and brags about you, it allows you to relax, focus on the seller and tour the home at your first pre-listing meeting,” says Gayle Henderson, instructor of McKissock’s Winning the Listing Pro-Series. It’s important that your pre-listing package is fresh and relevant. Look for simple ways to improve it and make it relevant to today’s market. It should include:

  • An updated photo of you (taken within the last one to two years)
  • A short intro and one-page resume
  • References from the past 6 months
  • An updated list of your partners (closing coordinator, listing coordinator, marketing director, administrators, etc.)
  • Updated information on your brokerage
  • Your process for the pre-marketing phase
  • Your social media accounts/examples
  • Menu of services marketing plan
  • Updated pricing strategies
  • Sample property brochures (from the past 6 months)

Reason 2: You’re booking listing appointments too soon

Once you’ve built your pre-list package it’s quite simple to launch it.  Within less than 30 minutes you’ll have it ready to be delivered. Establishing your value is very important, so don’t just be ready to react to a seller’s need to see you now, recommends Henderson. Make sure you give yourself the time to plan and research the neighborhood and client. In order to be well-prepared, and not harried, book your appointments no sooner than one or two days from seller inquiry. This way you have a greater chance that you arrive at your appointment, organized, feeling fresh and enthusiastic.

Reason 3: You haven’t established your value

Your fresh pre-listing package should get you on the way to establishing your value. Giving your client time to absorb the information you provide helps secure it. But the final test comes when meeting face-to-face with your client. “The most important thing to communicate to a prospective seller is what makes you more valuable to them than the other agents you are up against. If you don’t know your unique value proposition, your seller won’t know either and that pushes them straight into the arms of your competitors,” says seasoned real estate agent Michelle Stansbury.

Reason 4: You forgot to listen to the seller

Break out your yellow legal pad. Now it’s time to listen and take notes. At the listing presentation, get a good understanding for the client’s reasons for selling. Are they moving out of state? Are they looking to downsize? Or was it an investment property?

Take a tour of the home and focus on what both you and the potential client think is special or unique. Understand the special treasures within the home that may have ultimately caused this seller to buy the house in the first place. While touring the house at the listing presentation, be sure to take good notes. Listen to what the seller doesn’t like about the home and be prepared to help the seller correct any of the negative features or find ways to help minimize their impact. Take the time to stop and admire a piece of art or a family photo so that you can connect with the potential client on levels other than just real estate.

Reason 5: The seller doesn’t understand your valuation process

Experience with past sales and a vision of the marketplace makes real estate agents irreplaceable in the home valuation process. But with the availability of Zillow and Trulia home estimates, it’s often easy for your clients to get lost in “what could be,” without knowing all of the variables that go into pricing a home to sell. It’s important you walk your prospective client through the ways in which you will arrive at a listing price at your initial meeting, including how you will prepare a comparative market analysis, your approach to collaborative pricing and the pros and cons of a pre-listing appraisal.