When you list your own home, you take on a responsibility to interact with potential buyers. You’ll receive phone calls, emails and maybe even a few knocks at the door. So to prepare you (and to make it easy), we put together a list of 10 seller commandments for buyer follow up. Check it out!
Set up a Google Voice number and separate email address:
The last thing you want is for a potential buyer’s message to get lost in the shuffle of your everyday inbox or voice mail box. To avoid this issue altogether, we recommend you set up a free email account and a free Google voice number specifically for capturing all listing messages and inquiries.
People looking for homes are antsy. When they send a message, they want to hear back from you yesterday. Why? Because they want to make sure no one else is going to swoop in and snag the home they’re interested in. To alleviate buyer stress, be sure to prioritize checking your emails and voice mails a few times a day and sending responses as quickly as you can.
Always give time estimates:
Set up an auto-reply email message telling inquirers how quickly to expect a response. Also do the same with your voice mail message. Doing so will give buyers peace of mind. It will also motivate you to stay on top of communications. This is especially important if you have a hectic schedule.
Make yourself accessible:
When you first respond to new inquiries, be sure to let home shoppers know when you’re typically available. Also, be sure to provide all of your contact information and details on how to schedule a showing. Doing so will put home shoppers at ease because they’ll feel like they’re in control when they questions come up and they need to contact you.
One of the most basic communication rules is to try to establish rapport as quickly as possible. Use any details home shoppers give you to find common ground. If they mention school districts, ask how many kids they have and how old they are, then talk about your own kids and where they go to school. If they mention a dog, bring up a local dog park and how great it is. Whatever the case, try to use what you learn to build commonalities and make easy the communication flow.
Ask buyers about their communication preferences:
When you first start talking to potential buyers, ask them how they like to communicate and make note. Sometimes you’ll find people prefer to text or email because it’s easier for them to manage during business hours. Other times, you’ll find buyers who prefer phone calls to any other form of communication. Once you identify potential buyers’ favorite communication channel, try your best to accommodate their preferences whenever possible.
Keep a log of all the buyers you’re talking to:
As your listing starts to pick up steam, it can become confusing to respond to incoming messages if you don’t have good notes on your buyers. Use a list or spreadsheet to log key details of each new person you communicate with. Use your list as a quick reference guide. We created a version you can download for free and use to keep yourself organized. Get your copy here.
Be prepared to answer questions:
People will have questions about your property – about the square footage, permits for add-ons, area attractions, school districts, etc. etc. For best results, build a quick reference FAQ sheet and keep it handy so you have easy answers to common questions.
Play “Let’s Make a Deal”:
If buyers love everything about your house except forfill in the blank, considering offering them a cut in price to give them the cash they’ll need to solve whatever the issue is. For example, if they love the house but ugh, those old eggshell kitchen appliances have got to go… offer to reduce your asking price by $3,000.00 so they can buy new appliances. It’s a small sacrafice at the end of the day, and a technique that can make hesitant buyers eager to put down an offer.
Turn “not quite” into “just right”:
If you talk to buyers and it turns out something about your home doesn’t end up being a perfect fit for their situation, ask them to share your listing with anyone they know who might be interested. Doing so is a free way to get more exposure, and so long as you’ve had good communication, they’ll more than likely be happy to do so.
By following these guidelines, not only will you make the follow-up process easy on yourself, potential buyers will love working with you.