Overheard at the Kitchen Table

It’s been nice visiting with you and learning about your move. I understand: we have about 90 days to get this done; and, Dan, you’ll start working in the new location in 2 months. That’s a tight time frame, but I believe we can get the job done.

Now, we have just three things to talk about:  the Price, the Product (that’s the house) and Promotion (what I’m going to do to get it sold). What would you like to talk about first?

(Well let’s talk about what you’re going to do and why we should go with you)

Great. We are a different kind of real estate company. We’re different because we make sense. At the core of our program is the Low Set Fee we charge for our service.  It saves sellers thousands of dollars over what they might otherwise pay.  My office charges a Set Fee of $5,950 and that’s what we charge everyone, regardless of what the home is listed or sold for. After all, it takes no more time, money or effort to sell a properly priced $400,000 house than it does a $300,000 house – so why should the people in the $400,000 house pay more?

Here’s an example based on the 6% commission many ordinary brokers charge: the guy in the $400,000 house pays $6,000 more!  And what does he get for that additional $6,000? (Pause) I’ll tell you – he gets absolutely nothing!

We don’t do it that way. With us, both of these home sellers would pay the same thing:  $5,950. 

See? I told you we make sense! But it’s more than that. We also charge you based on how the home actually sells.  If there is no outside broker or agent involved in the sale – you don’t pay for one.  

Here’s the truth about ordinary real estate commissions.  When you sign up to pay that big commission you’re actually signing up to compensate four different individuals: the Listing Agent, Listing Broker, Selling Agent and Selling Broker. But in ordinary real estate, you pay that full percentage based commission even if there is no outside agent or broker involved in the sale; even if you find your own buyer; even if your listing agent finds the buyer. It makes no sense.

With us it’s very different.  You’re listing with ME.  I am the broker. This is my company.  I’m not having to pay a listing agent because I’m your agent. So I’m going to save you one of those four commissions automatically.  Also, If no outside broker is involved, you don’t pay for one, and there go two more commissions.  Now, if one of the Buyers Agents in my office comes in with a buyer, we do have to compensate them.  But it’s not the 2 ½% or 3% the other guys might charge. In my office we charge the same thing when we bring in a buyer as we do when we list a property:  a Set Fee of $5,950.

Bottom line: you’re going to save thousands of dollars with us no matter how your home sells. 

Here’s a chart that illustrates that.  Here, at the top line is our Set Fee of $5,950 – and it doesn’t change no matter how your home sells.  Over here on the right is what you’d pay if an outside agent and broker brought the buyer.  We have to pay them too, and they charge a lot!  I’m recommending 2 ½%. But even if we have to pay them, you’ll still save thousands.

Here’s what happens if one of the buyers agents in my office comes in with the buyer. You pay your Set Fee, $5,950, and also pay the buyer agent fee, which is also $5,950 – and you save even more. 

Finally, this is what happens when you find your own buyer – and it happens more often than you’d think. You save the most. That savings looks pretty good, doesn’t it?

The key to saving the most is seller participation. We’re the only company that’s going to encourage you to talk to your friends, neighbors and co-workers about your house, to show it to them or anyone they know who might be interested. And if they ultimately buy, all you pay is the Low Set Fee. We’re going teach you how to use your social media accounts to further promote your house and perhaps find a buyer. But best of all – if you’re up for it – we’ll teach you how to hold your own open houses so that you can be open whenever you want – not just when I’m available. We find that sellers who participate like this have a good shot at saving the most amount of money – and that’s what we all want, isn’t it? (Nodding)

I want you to save the most, because the more I can save you the happier you’ll be and the more you’ll talk me up to your friends and neighbors!  Seller Savings is my Marketing Plan!

(That sounds great. But how are you going to sell my house?)

I’ll let you in on a little secret: with the maturation of the Internet, the real estate marketing playing field has become somewhat level.  We all have the same tools – and they are good tools – and we all pretty much do the same things:  MLS – Zillow – Realtor.com – Website – Facebook – advertising and so on.

But I go several steps farther.

I use short code marketing so that consumers can get information on your home instantly – and also, so I have a way to get back to them immediately to further develop their interest.  Let me show you how that works. This is a photo of a sign in front of my listing in the next neighborhood.  See that small sign at the bottom?  Text 7980 to 209-395-1945?  Go ahead and do that on your phone.

Ok, so you got all the information on the house, right? But look what I get! (shows his own phone) I get the phone number so I can call you back immediately, answer questions and hopefully set up a showing. Pretty cool, huh? Technology is only as good as your ability to use it!

In addition, when I start marketing, I get the neighborhood involved. I’ll be sending postcards about your listing to the 100 homes closest to you. 

I’m also going to walk and hand deliver flyers on the property to your immediate neighbors.  You’d be surprised how often one of them knows someone who might be interested.

I mentioned Facebook.  I use it in a fairly sophisticated way.  I’ll create a post about your listing and boost it so that thousands of people in the local market who have expressed an interest in real estate see it.  When they click on the ad, they’re going to go to a special website I’ll set up with all of the details on the listing – that also captures their contact information so I can get back to them.

I’m also going to create a post for you to use in your own Facebook and other social media.  I’m going to ask you to put it out to all of your friends and ask them to share it with theirs.

I think you’re getting the picture that marketing is a very active process for me.  And it works, too.  Look at this:  this year, according to the MLS, average days on market is 63.  My average is 37. That’s almost a whole month faster.

Now, let’s talk a little bit about strategy.  I use the MLS is a very specific way.  First, understand that the MLS is just a tool.  It’s a great tool, but it is expensive.  I use it to expose your home to thousands of local agents and to tell them they’ll get a nice commission if they can sell it to one of their buyers. 

But we’re all about saving you money on commissions, remember! What I’m going to recommend is that we first price your home properly – which I don’t think will be a problem – then let’s NOT go into the MLS for 3 weeks.

During that 3 week period, I’ll be marketing your home exclusively to buyers without agents – and of course, if we can sell to one of them, you don’t have to pay that outside agent and broker!  And to take full advantage of that 3 week period, you could hold an open house or two yourself.  I’ll coach you and it will be fun – I promise.

If, after 3 weeks, we don’t have a contract, we’ll go into the MLS, but we’ll do it with pizazz!  That first weekend we’ll hold a Grand Open House. I’ll be using Zillow, Realtor.com, the MLS and dozens of signs to announce the event. We’ll invite the neighbors and I’ll have flyers delivered to that big apartment complex down the road.

When I’ve used this strategy in the past, I’ve often had a sale before the house goes public – again, saving the sellers a lot of money. And if not, we usually have offers at the end of the Grand Open weekend.

You know I could go on and on about this because it’s what I love; but let’s stop for a minute. You seem to get it. I mean, Dan, you’re over there nodding like a bobble head on a dashboard! Why don’t we move on and talk about Price?  Sound good? Great.

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