Housing supply

How to Generate Listings Despite a Limited Housing Supply — RISMedia

The lull in homes available for sale continued to be at the heart of many challenges facing buyers and real estate professionals.

Despite the gradual growth of the housing stock, agents and brokers argue that this is not enough to explain the deficit that has been simmering for a decade now.

“We’re in a housing crisis, and conventional thinking isn’t working,” says Greg Potts, district manager for Fathom Realty in Texas. “No matter what the crisis, you need to get out of convention and start figuring out how you’re going to help your customers, whether buyers or sellers, achieve their goals.”

Recent reports from the National Association of REALTORS® (NAR) show housing stock reached 1.16 million units in May, up 12.6% from April, but down 4.1 % year-on-year. Add to that the fact that there are more agents in the industry – over 1.5 million real estate agents @ and counting – than ever before vying for the same company.

Competition for listings is a given in any housing market. However, Brenda Maher, senior vice president of Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices New England Properties, told RISMedia that it’s especially vital for agents to stay proactive in a market with tight inventory and a growing number of agents competing for a limited number of properties.

“You need to have bold moves in today’s market, says Maher. “It’s really going above and beyond, but to be in business as a real estate agent, you have to have inventory.”

Rather than sit and wait for inventory to hit the market, Maher says she’s seen agents leave no stone unturned when trying to generate more listings.

“In any market, that’s the way to operate in real estate,” she says. “Those who are aggressive are the ones who can start getting the rosters, and one leads to another. It has always been like this. »

Whether it’s direct mail, reconnecting with customers, or targeted consumer outreach via social media, Maher adds that getting the word out to landlords is key to potentially finding sidelined sellers. .

“They have also organized or participated in different parties in the neighborhood where they can generate lists,” says Maher.

According to Potts, thinking outside the box has become imperative for those looking to find listings for their buyers. This has included homeowners going door to door and cold calling desirable markets to see if they would be interested in listing their homes.

“In a lot of cases right now, you have to go and create that inventory,” he says. “Unconventional thinking might be to identify a house that’s specifically in a target area, and you literally send a handwritten note to that client saying, ‘I know your house isn’t on the market; however , your home fits my client’s exact needs, and I just want to know if you would even consider having a conversation about it.

He also relies on his extensive database of previous customers in these efforts, but he says this approach can be difficult for new agents who haven’t yet built their cache of customers.

While the approach has worked well for Potts, who says he has a 20% to 25% conversion rate, he notes that the method’s success relies on a “numbers game.”

“If I only send one letter, my chances are pretty low, so instead I’m going to identify maybe ten houses in a neighborhood or area that match my client, and we’re going to send ten of those letters,” he says.

Potts adds that he sometimes includes a non-descriptive snippet written by a client highlighting what he is looking for. This ultimately signals to the owner that an interested customer is ready to buy if they are interested.

“A lot of industry agents have been calling for sell-by-owner listings for years and saying, ‘I may have a client looking’ when they haven’t,” says Potts. “They were just trying to create an entry opportunity, and we think we need to lead with truth and value.”

Cold calling and door-to-door sales have also been part of Corcoran Group’s Miami-based sales associate Mick Duchon’s arsenal as he seeks to generate more business in the Sunshine State. .

Duchon says he and his team have taken different approaches to generating business in the current state of the market.

“I think the most effective way for us is to be very focused,” says Duchon. “Because we focus on a particular space in the market, we seek out properties that we believe are relevant to our business, and contact owners directly.”

Casting a wide net with letter writing and marketing campaigns via social media, email and direct mail are all mixed up in his arsenal. However, Duchon found that targeting specific owners in the Miami luxury home and condo market yielded better results.

“In the luxury market, there are a handful of buildings that are considered luxurious, expensive, or exclusive, and we will contact the best units in each building and find out if the properties have sold recently, for what reason, and what is the market for them today,” says Duchon, adding that from this gathered information, he creates his angle and pitch for homeowners.

“We’re going to cultivate the owner and reach out and send him something nice to try to get his attention somehow through mutual contact or by illustrating our experience in this space,” continues- he. “Because there are so few properties on the market today and there are still multiple buyers looking, we will contact owners directly when they are not listed and tell them about a client who may be interested in the property before asking if they were considering selling.

Indeed, the imbalance between supply and demand has created a headache for real estate professionals seeking to meet the needs of their buyers. However, some brokers have found that a little tact and asking the right questions can yield positive results.

In San Diego, Bobby Martins, a broker associated with Move Up San Diego, traded by eXp Realty, often uses his open houses to find new listings.

Martins has suggested in previous interviews that he and his team have used their open houses to find sellers among visitors viewing their listings.

“One of the things we’ve done with our team is an option swap, and that’s a great tool to talk to a potential seller who comes along,” he says.

While many agents are focused on finding a buyer during viewings, Martins notes that many might miss an opportunity to cultivate a relationship with local homeowners who are likely part of the group of buyers viewing homes in their neighborhood. .

“The script is very simple,” he says. “The buyer’s agent there asks everyone who walks in if they live in the neighborhood. Depending on the answer, the next is “Do you own or rent?” Now that you’ve identified the owner, you can talk to them about the trade-in option.

Martins partners with banks like Homelight Mortgage and New American Funding who will buy buyers’ new home with 100% cash and close in as little as 15 days. The bank assesses the value of buyers’ existing homes and will assume 80% and 90% of the property’s value so they can buy before they sell.

Once the first transaction is complete, the owner moves into the new home as a short-term tenant while the previous property comes on the market after thorough cleaning and staging, allowing the home to sell more expensive.

Once that house sells, the bank sells the first property to the customer for the same price as the first transaction with only a small fee. This allows sellers to buy first and know exactly where they want to live before they have to commit to selling their existing home.

“In my opinion, if we can get approval from every homeowner in America for an exchange, they will always be looking for that next property, and that will create more transactions overall,” Martins said.

While agents and brokers agree that taking proactive and, in some cases, bolder steps to generate listings and business is part of a winning equation, Dermot Buffini, CEO of Buffini & Company, told RISMedia that the best-trained agents using “tried and true recession-proof systems” will get the lion’s share of business in today’s market.

“Referral work has been a lifeblood for our members through 20 years of hot markets and downturns and recessions,” says Buffini.

It encourages agents to leverage their “CRM A-List” of past and current top clients to find referrals and business opportunities amid tight inventory challenges in the marketplace and warns professionals to avoid being “paralyzed by national headlines”.

“Real estate is still local,” he says. “It’s your job to become the go-to resource for your community, providing relevant and timely advice,” he says. “Surviving and thriving in today’s marketplace requires reinvesting in yourself through training and systems and refocusing on past and future customers.”