Expired Listings…A Great Way to Break into The High-End Market
As we see the market shifting across the nation, high-end homes are starting to sit on the market longer. Inventory in some areas is starting to build.
In a shifting market, high-end and luxury sellers are often at least 6 months behind when it comes to adjusting to the reality that they may not be able to sell their home for what they had hoped to sell for.
Buyers on the other hand, seem to figure it out right away. Agents are reporting that offers are starting to come in on luxury properties significantly under what sellers are willing to consider. This can of course make for some emotional negotiations.
Asking sellers to adjust their price or consider an offer that is not what they hoped for is challenging and requires skill. Agents often avoid these tough conversations. This means we will see more expired listing opportunities, especially in the upper price points.
Why is working expireds a great way to break into the high-end?
There is an old saying… “It’s better to be the first born, the second wife and the second or third listing agent on a higher end listing.”
Most sellers are much more reasonable by the second or third time on the market, making it easier to step in, price it right, and get it sold.
Here is a great example
One of my coaching clients, Sean Stanfield, has a team that is legendary; they are doing approximately $650 million in sales volume annually. Sean shared with me that years ago when he launched his career, he did so by working the high-end expireds in the waterfront market of Huntington Harbor in Huntington Beach, California.
Sean told me that around the time he began to focus on the harbor homes there were several dominant agents in that market, and it was a severe down cycle. The harbor listings were expiring right and left, so Sean went after them. He took the listings and sold them, quickly gaining the reputation of being the one who could get the job done. He turned the Huntington Harbor area into his geographic farm. He used it as a foundation to spread his market share across Huntington Beach and grow his team.
Many of our top coaching clients have a similar story. I too built my listing career with expired listings as a strong source of quality listings.
Of course, you will need to check the local laws and rules of working expireds in your own marketplace. Another warning is to never trash the previous agent. Instead, go in and help the seller find a new strategy and a new price to get it sold!
Once sold, you can showcase your success in the neighborhood. Be sure to have your seller write a very candid review about how you came in and saved the day. This will help you as you work to win future expireds.
What is the best way to approach an expired?
If you can access their phone number, call them. Call them early in the day before the masses do. If they don’t respond or they aren’t receptive, call them again in a few days. Then continue to check in with them until you reach them and determine if they are a hot prospect or not.
I can assure you that even if it takes a while, most of them re-list! Therefore, long term follow-up and marketing to expireds in your target area can be a very valuable source of future listings.
If you can’t get them on the phone should you mail something to them?
This depends. If you are in a highly competitive area like Newport Beach, California or Miami or Manhattan maybe not. At least not initially. In highly competitive markets they may receive a pile of mail on the first or second day after the listing expires. If you feel very few agents in your market mail to expireds, then this could be a great way to reach them. Do what makes sense.
Door knocking at a time when they are likely to be home is another free and popular way to connect. Yes, even in luxury markets the agents will door knock. They know if they can talk to them face to face, they have a great chance of listing.
There are many ways to approach expireds. Call right away, call in a week, call much older expireds, mail, door knock, and use as pocket inventory.
Your Action Plan
Find the areas and price points you are most excited about. Choose your action plan and go for it. It’s okay if you don’t win them all, and it’s ok if you aren’t 100% polished with your scripts and skills yet. Get in front of them, build rapport, and find the way in.
Don’t rule out contacting an expired just because you think their previous price was ridiculously high. The agent might have recommended it, or maybe the seller was not that motivated at the time. At least give it a shot.
Ultimately, the great thing about expireds is that we know they wanted to sell, that tried to sell, and now they just need the right agent, you!
Use this link to download my scripts for expireds: http://expiredscripts.com/