Today, business waits for no one. Both buyers and sellers are feeling the pressure that mobile technology and expedited services have placed on the industry; around the clock business means that we are facing increased competition and, subsequently, a race against time. A few tips will help you stay ahead of your competition for quick, successful transactions.
Your A-Game Never Sleeps
Thanks to websites, social media and apps your contact information is available to potential clients worldwide at all times. You may receive inquiries from clients in any given time zone, at any time of day. Twenty-four hour business requires agents to snap on their best professional demeanor whether it’s 6am or 9pm.
When You’re Unavailable, You Miss Out
If you’re slow to respond to inquiries, your competition will snap up your opportunities. As the market recovers, real estate professionals that stepped out of the business are making their comebacks. You will also encounter new competition from fresh-faced, enthusiastic agents and brokers who just received their licenses. These competitors may have hip marketing techniques, relatively clear schedules and a thirst for business. They will gladly walk away with the sale or purchase that could’ve been yours. Return emails, texts and other inquiries promptly.
Schedule Flexibility Reigns
Now more than ever, clients appreciate (maybe even expect) agents who are willing to work around their schedules, be it late evening or weekends. Be willing to explore your weekly schedule for odd hours of availability.
Have Your Contacts at Hand
Keep your list of contacts (recommended inspectors, appraisers, staging specialists) up to date and readily accessible to assist your clients when needed. Reach out occasionally to maintain good rapport, even when contacts’ services aren’t needed. Your contacts often work with your competition, too, and it’s important that they make you the priority.
You Snooze, You Lose
Around the clock business doesn’t leave much time for sleeping on an opportunity. Buyer’s agents must encourage clients to act quickly to obtain the deal of their dreams before their competitors walk off with it. To do so, remind clients of a few key preparation points:
- Before setting foot in the first property, ensure that clients have pre-qualified for financing when necessary. They should know the comfort zone of their budget, as well as the absolute maximum that they can spend while maintaining a comfortable lifestyle. This way, agents can hone in on the most viable opportunities and put in an offer without delay.
- Likewise, buyers should have liquid cash stashed aside for earnest money, down payments, etc.
- Encourage clients write their list of must-haves and negotiables in stone! Indecisiveness can eat away at valuable time; a solid list will save time when comparing properties.
Develop Tough Skin & Pass It On
Always-on connectivity means that your competition is weighing in on properties within your pool day and night. Properties can fly off of the market faster than ever before. There is no time to sulk when your clients are outbid or otherwise deterred. Similarly, when houses all around you are selling, it can be tough to watch your listing sit untouched for weeks. It’s important for agents to remain positive. You must develop a tough skin against setbacks in order to help your clients overcome their disappointments and move forward.
While it’s important to be accessible and flexible, don’t let always-on connectivity enslave you to your office. It is vital to set ‘Do Not Disturb’ times that are specifically for you, your family and loved ones. A healthy work-life balance can reduce stress, improve your health and prolong the enjoyment and effectiveness of your career.
As the market continues to improve, always-on connectivity will promote faster decision making for all members of the industry. Those who take proactive measures and react decisively will emerge as victors against their competitors.
How does today’s always-on mentality affect your work-life balance? What do you do to create separation between the two – or do you?
Today’s guest post comes to us from Erica Rascon, a writer for The Balance Sheet — the Yardi corporate blog — as part of a post exchange.