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25 March 2014

BHGRE National Open House Weekend Countdown: Part 3, Establishing Benefits and Closing for the Appointment

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Welcome back for part 3 of our countdown to our BHGRE National Open House Weekend, establishing benefits and closing for the appointment.

We are finally about to get into the day of your open house event – there are several strategies which you can use to establish the benefits of using a real estate agent, and for closing for appointments with interested buyers.

One important point for you to know is that I am focusing on landing appointments with clients for after the open house, but you should be prepared to do business at the actual open house. Sometimes buyers have already fallen in love with the property (or they will once you tour it with them), and they will want to get the ball rolling right away. So, as I pointed out, you should have all the documents and materials that you would normally bring to your appointments with you at the open house.

For buyers who have not decided that they love the home you are showing (yet), initial contact and identifying what types of customers you are dealing with is an extremely important step. Initial contact should be a learning process for you, give people space, and observe their body language. Introduce yourself, have them sign in on your clipboard and ask an opening question to break the ice. Their answers and the body language information that you gained should allow you to decide which of the two types of buyers (primary targets move within 45 days, secondary targets take longer or are just lookers), you are dealing with. The purpose of identifying the customer is to determine if you have someone with whom you may do business. You want to find out if you have a buyer for this house, a listing project, or just a looker.

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There are two steps or levels of questions which you may ask your clients as you tour the home with them. The first level of questions should tell you what type of customers you have, and if you have primary targets, you will move on to step two in order to move closer to identifying their intentions. If you are dealing with listing projects or lookers, some of the level two questions would be pointless to ask, but some of them can still give you some good information about them. Some examples of good questions to ask are:

STEP ONE:

  • Where are you living now?
  • How long have you been looking for a house?
  • Have you seen anything you liked?
  • (‘NO’) What are you looking for that you haven’t found?
  • (Or ‘Yes’) … What, may I ask, prevented you from buying it?
  • How many bedrooms do you need?

STEP TWO:

  • Have you been successful in finding enough of the right kind of houses to see? Have you discussed the purchase and financing of the house with a mortgage company?
  • Has anyone ever taken the time to explain today’s financing to you?
  • Would you be interested in knowing the amount of equity you have in your house?
  • Would you be interested in knowing how much money a lender would allow you to finance on a mortgage?
  • Would you be interested in having some help in finding a house?

Closing for the appointment is of course the goal of running the open house in the first place. Before you can ask a prospect for an appointment you must provide enough benefits to do so. The benefits must match the need you’ve just uncovered through probing. There is a three step process of, 1. Summarizing the need, 2. Presenting the benefit, and 3. Asking for the appointment. A few examples of questions you can ask to get the appointment are:

  • I’d be happy to review financing alternatives with you, are you available at ________ today?
  • You mentioned that you were having some difficulty in finding the right houses to see. I have access to information on almost every area in the state of Connecticut. If I know specifically what you’re looking for, I can easily find it. Could we get together and visit for a while after the Open House?
  • Since you’ve never discussed the purchase of a house with a salesperson, I think you’ll be pleasantly surprised how much easier this can be when you do. Would _______ be a good time to get together?
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After your open house, make sure you shut off all lights, close and lock all doors, and pick up all signs. Also, leaving a nice note and your card can be a nice personal touch for your sellers. Lastly, make sure you e-mail or call all of the clients who came to your event before the weekend is over. Yours is probably not the only open house that many of them visited, so you want to thank them for coming and actively search for ways to stay in contact with them.  It is critical that you do all of this on Sunday or else you may lose some of your momentum.

I hope this information has been helpful to you – we’re very close to our BHGRE National Open House Weekend now, and I’m looking forward to seeing and hearing about all of your enthusiastic participation this weekend!

And, remember, you can click here for additional information about the weekend, or find more tools and resources in the BHGRE Greenhouse.

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