Category: Property Management

Episode 030: What’s Up With Social Media Part #1 What You Must Know About FB!

We’re going to talk about a few things that have been changing and evolving in the social media world. To *survive* in this industry, you need to be listening to this entire podcast!

We have a wonderful guest today in the studio: Welcome Deanna Leigh Miller, co-founder of Stark Social Media, who’s in charge of our social media/web design and with whom we’ve been doing the Stark and HomeSmart Social Media Series, which you can all find on her StarkSocial app. They are life changing; you should go and listen to all of them! You can also listen to her on her own podcast, The Social Life.

5 things that we need, as real estate agents, to embrace:

  • Facebook Live Videos; this is your moment to reach whoever is on Facebook/likes you page/is following you etc. So you need to make sure that you are targeting your audience, which hasn’t been that easy in the past. In the coming months, there is going to be the opportunity to build and create a more tailored, ideal audience. Facebook rolls things out to page that are the most active; so do something with it!

So is a 2min video that gets about 500 views a successful live video? –Yes, that’s fantastic! 500 people got to engage with you and kept watching your video (Facebook only tracks a view after the viewers watches about 30 seconds of it and more). Plus we don’t always want to be seeing you at your open house; we want to get some snapshots from your life, to get a sense of who you really are. If hundreds and thousands of people get to see your video, this is working for branding as it gets your name out there!

You want to make sure that you are connecting with people in your community who are supportive of your business and give them a shout out from time to time. For example make a video at your favorite restaurant; anything that can benefit your local community.

  • Facebook has been developing new ways of advertising. We so the addition of the Lead Generation Ads. Lead ads let people show their interest in a product or service by filling out a form in the ad with their details and allowing a business to follow up with them. That was huge for real estate agents and changed the way we think of advertising.

Facebook is going to continue to roll out more and more features like the lead generation ads. And there will be more cool stuff, like doing ads with videos!

  • So how much should we be spending on Facebook per month? I spend about  $3,000/month, which gives me a return on investment that is quite good. Should we be spending about $10,000/month? Deanna recommends to spend about $300-$500/month if you are just getting started and you should be looking at what your goals are and what you have accomplished so far in terms of sales. And this is also part of building your brand identity!
  • It’s always going to be a thing and it’s just going to continue getting better on Facebook because they’re always improving their algorithm for that. For example, I have noticed that they have added more interests, hobbies and other options to better target your audience. You can even better pick the income level of your audience now!

Facebook has also opened their API to a lot of new tools. That means that there are a lot of new tools you can use to retarget and ‘set and forget’. Outside Ad placement is also offered more and more though Facebook so you can actually now see you ad on, say, Home Depot or LA Times blog! But remember it all depends on your budget; the bigger the budget, the more prominent the placement of your add will be!

  • LinkedIn has updated their targeting so you can now target zip codes and area codes now as opposed to just, say, Los Angeles or California, which is really big for real estate agents! It is now way easier and budget friendly for those of you who have set up a business page, to boost individual posts and it works like Facebook’s boost. LinkedIn will guide you through the steps once you login to your account!

You can do all kinds of ads on LinkedIn, like a market update or write a blog post and then make it an ad campaign. You can also update a video directly on LinkedIn!

Episode 029: How To Get Your Offer Accepted Every Time! No More Bidding Wars!

“Mike, how in the world do I get my offers accepted?” Buyers are getting heartbroken because their agents can’t get them houses!

Writing The Offer, Negotiation, and Setting Buyer Expectations
If you’re going to work so hard showing homes, you might as well get it to the closing table.

Writing A Strong Offer
• Ask the listing agent what they want
• You should double app with the listing agents lender
• Fax machines screwed up our market! This turned into emails and so forth! Hand deliver and try to shake hands with listing agent, it just gives this warm fuzzy feeling and gives you a chance to get to know them a little bit. It’s important sometimes to use old school family values in our business.
• Give a small but yet somewhat valuable gift (‘guilt presents’) to listing agent with offer (wine openers for example are great!)
• Send a package that’s meaningful and fun
• Your letter about the buyers should include a FAMILY PICTURE – Nothing more powerful! This shows that you are a serious buyer to the listing agent! If the person has no emotional attachment to your home, how hard do you think they’re going to fight, to close this escrow?
• A second letter should be from a BUYER
• Point out what buyers love about the HOME or YARD
• Let the agent know the buyers have had the chat about not ASKING FOR NONESENSE REPAIRS.
• Buyers are willing to BE FLEXIBLE AND SENSITIVE to all sellers needs; this is always a breath of fresh air and makes your statement so much stronger, minimizing contingencies!

The Details Matter Most
• So, minimize contingencies
• None is best
• Pre approval subject to appraisal and clear title only
• Earnest money should always be 5% OR MORE

I like to think that deposits do matter; it’s another step on your ladder that proves that you do have the money and you mean business and, at some point, you could be risking that deposit. So the higher the deposit, the more it will mean to me, and the more it will mean to that seller.

• Make the deposit NON REFUNDABLE
• Write an as-is clause in the offer or some call it PASS OR FAIL within 48hours
• Write an ESCALATION CLAUSE; what we write is ‘Buyer has the right to pay $1000 over the highest offer, not to exceed ___’. You got to protect your buyers with that, so that they don’t find themselves in situations where they can’t afford the house anymore.
• Include a COPY OF BUYERS CREDIT REPORT; when I am a listing agent, I always want to see that! Obviously get buyer permission
• Always provide PROOF OF LIQUID FUNDS; this is a big one for me as a listing agent!
• Write in a DELAYED CLOSING PENALTY Try $50-$100 per day; If you really love that house, this is just another piece of that ladder to get to the top!

Costs Paid By Buyer
• Have buyer pay selling agents COMMISION; there is nothing wrong with the buyer paying the commission!
• Buyer to pay sellers CLOSING COSTS
• Listing agent bonus PAID BY BUYER; it doesn’t really matter how it’s done. Check with MLS and State laws however.

How To Write Full Price Or Above
• Set up expectations at the initial BUYER CONSULTATION
• Price you offer like you were LISTING IT FOR SALE
• Go over all 90 DAYS COMPS
• Prep buyer for MULTIPLE OFFERS
• Remind the buyer that just because today there is only one, tomorrow could HAVE MULTIPLES. There could be another family writing as you speak.
• Agents might not always TELL THE TRUTH! Agents want to double end homes and male YOUR COMMISSION; they need to understand that.
• This is one of my favorite lines: Remind the buyers that a couple grand to save their dream home is pennies over the life of a tax deductible interest rate. If you only went out to dinner one time less, it will only make up for the difference!

Episode 028: Open House Buyer Conversion

In this episode, we’re going to talk about Open House Leads. If you are serious about learning how to do open houses, you have to listen to our Episodes 14 & 15, Open House Part 1 and 2.

Open House Leads Are:

  • Let’s focus first on how cheap it is to get an open house lead. For probably even less than a $100 you could have a knockout open house! From my experience, I’d gladly pay $1000 throwing a mega open house with a 100 people through, than buying a few crappy online leads a month.
  • Easiest to convert. If you say the right thing, you’re going to get a good deal or a good lead out of it.
  • Get as many or little as you want. If you want to be super lazy, make your open house 1:00 PM – 4:00 PM, or if you want to get a lot of leads, do it from 10:00 AM – 6:00 PM.
  • Never ending supply. There are open houses everywhere; there’s always going to be open houses on the market and people love to physical see homes!
  • People take them very seriously. Chances are, if they’re willing to stop a car and get out of the car, go talk to them because they’re pretty damn serious! They’re either very serious or totally not! There isn’t really an in between.
  • First impression means everything. People think we, agents, are all the same. So this is your one time to impress the hell out of people (buyers) with a great and unique open house!

Open house Conversion.

There is a certain way, that agents attack people at the door because they get so nervous that somebody is coming in! They become these shark salesmen waiting outside a house. So, attacking at the door is a ‘no no’. I always strategically put my setup, with monitors, laptops, printers etc, very near of where I am going to be and I make myself look a little bit busy (ruffling papers, printing something out, etc.). That way, they know I am not attacking them. I finish up my ‘busy work and then turn around and look at them and say “Hi, I’ll be right with you but, make yourself at home” Quickly finish what you’re doing and apologize and let them know “…I was setting up an appointment for a couple to see a foreclosure I have down the street…” and start the conversation there with what brings them in today.

We also want to have some guilt food/drink, at least a bottle of water, so as to make them feel welcomed. Pay attention to how the act when you offer them something, that will bring light to their personality styles.

Now it’s that awkward position where they’ve been in the house for a couple of minutes but they still haven’t looked around the house as they might have decided already they don’t like it. Don’t simply hand them a flyer. In fact, don’t have a flyer at all as it is very distracting and takes the focus away from the house. Instead, invite them to show them the house they are in “check out the living room, and the kitchen, etc”! That will take away the awkwardness of these first 2 minutes!

Just talk to them and ask them questions that they can answer instead of just pointing at rooms and naming them! By asking the right questions, you will remain and in control and understand their personality styles. You continue to hang back and ask questions then can answer while also providing information, “This house is 1200 sq feet. Is it the size you are looking for?”

Now is time to get serious: “Are you looking to purchase in this neighborhood? How about I give you a list of foreclosures or short sales within the Santa Clarita area and we can go from there? Did you know almost half of the houses available are not open or on the MLS? Are you serious about buying a home in the next week?”

And follow up, make the appointment. I am going to give them a brochure, a pamphlet, a market evaluation, a list of foreclosures and short sales etc: I am going to give them something and they will be with me for another 20-30 minutes, until they set up an appointment.

So Open Houses are like an absolute total 100% goldmine! But you just need to have that conversion script and dialogue down and prepare the open house the right way! And don’t get frustrated, because it’s going to take some time to get used to doing this but, if you do it right and practice, you will see a huge difference, really fast!

Episode 027: Online Lead Conversion

Let’s talk about Internet Leads. If you missed Episode 26, go back and listen to it, to better follow us on this episode!

So how are Internet Leads different form Sign Calls?

Internet Leads
• They can be expensive! These platforms (e.g. Zillow, Realtor.com, Trulia etc.) have made it almost impossible for me to get my leads directly, without paying for them! However, now I am a huge fan of buying leads; building a team requires buying leads, just so that you have a guaranteed slew of leads to go through and this helps you diversify your resources!
Just like in Vegas, it’s almost impossible to win with a little bet. So the more you spend on Internet leads, the higher your odds of converting are. If you only have, say, $500 extra to spend don’t buy leads! Now, Facebook that’s a different story; $500 could bring you 50K.
• They are much colder than sign leads
• They are pushing buttons like crazy; Because we want faster information right now!
• If they’re rude, it’s OKAY. They’ve only gone through a cold stage, they’re not serious yet and they’ve got bombarded. It’s kind of like door knocking; you don’t know what these people are going through.
• It could take 7-11 months to really cultivate these leads, to find the right timing to get a hold of them, stay consistent, follow up, and build the relationship with them. Know your personality styles!
• Now conversation rate is down to 5%. So, as of today, we are only going to close 1 out of 20 leads. The point I am trying to make to the agents out there is, don’t be like me and first completely discard leads. Instead, learn to understand them and use them wisely; It’s a whole new world of Internet leads for us!
• If you think they’re real buyers, set the appointment no matter what. If you don’t somebody behind you is going to have a better script and getcha!

In a normal call from an Internet lead stress to them, “did you know that 50% of the homes available are not even on the computer yet? So if you knew that you had an agent committed to finding homes that are not on the market all day and every day, would you like to come see some with me?” “Sure” “Fantastic!” “So one of the benefits of working with Team Bjorkman is that we do find better deals that are not on the market…” So those same scripts with sign calls, Foreclosures, Short Sales, and Not On The Market. Sometimes we have to tell a story to have people understand, but it’s important to pick up on the buyer’s drivers, when they indirectly say that they are keeping up with the conversation and are curious to see know how you will put your words into action!

Find out their hot buttons, and again it is super crucial to state all properties are not online! It depends where they are in the process and in their life. Pick up on where they are in the process so say, if they got water boiling, dogs barking in the background, life may stop them from having a strong buying position. That’s why I like online leads, because you need to find out where they are at in the buying process by talking to them.

Episode 026: Sign Call Conversion

Let’s talk about converting buyer leads.
It’s not that hard; you just have to know what to do, what to say, and when to say it!

Don’t forget to learn more through our Facebook Groups:
• 10 Week Social Media Series
• Club Wealth Real Estate Master Minds
• HomeSmart Next Level Training Series

Getting To Know Each Kind of Lead
• Open House Prospects
• Sign Calls
• Internet Leads

Close the first time every time!

These are the three forms of leads that agents typically work with on a day-to-day basis. I wanted to help agents understand that these are very similar and different and so, they need to be practiced differently.

Theory of Sign Calls
• They are designed to get as many quality leads as possible
• They are a lot cheaper than buying leads. A way to do this is to put phone numbers that are tracked and usable by to an agent (e.g. with Proquest) or you can just put your own cellphone number on there. However you should be able to return a call in 30 seconds!
Force the phone to ring as much as we want. We can put out as much or as less information on the sign as we want (and obviously we would recommend little if you are going for buyers).
It’s very serious because they have seen this neighborhood already.
• This could be your only shot with this person.

Practicing a sign call; ”One of the benefits of working Team Bjorkman, is that we preview homes all day, everyday and specialize in short sales and foreclosures which aren’t yet on the market. Not to mention that our time is flexible, so we can make sure to accommodate you the best… Well this particular house is still available and if it seems to be a little bit expensive for you I could definitely offer a list of short sales and foreclosures that would be a better deal. If I could show you a home that’s not on the market yet would you see that with me?”

We want both decision makers to be present in the process as we don’t want to be wasting time if, say, one of the two spouses is not quite ready to take the step. We simply don’t want to be repeating things twice.

So there are a couple of things we need to worry about with Sign Calls, just to summarize:

1) I have foreclosures and short sales not yet on the market. Every time you say that, you’re going to get a ‘yes’. Unless they do not understand that there is a difference.
2) Better deals. And I am not only talking price wise; it might mean, “this one has a pool, this one has a view, a two car garage…” SO when I say a better deal, it may be better for them. So offering a better deal is having an open mind on what matches they are looking for, it could be better parking, or a bigger pool for example.
3) Setting the appointment, closing the first time. Remember this could be your only shot!
4) Prequalification letter. You might have not asked for a prequalification yet, so as to prioritize bonding time with them to make sure we are the first agents they meet. So just assume they have their prequalification letter and ask them to send it over to you, as ‘sometimes some of these sellers won’t let us in without that or the other agents’ and encourage them to spend 15-20 minutes with their lender to make sure they’re the most comfortable and beneficial payment wise.

Episode 010: Property Management and Real Estate

 

Should real estate agents enter the realm of property management? It’s natural to want to cover 100% of the real estate marketplace. Whether your client wants to buy, sell, rent, or invest you have your client covered.

But, in our opinion, based on having managed properties for the last eight years, real estate sales and property management are about as far apart as you can get.

Benefits of Property Management

Some of the benefits of incorporating property management into your real estate sales business include:

  1. Exploding your sales
  2. Predictable monthly cash flow
  3. Creating more freedom by building a staff

Property Management Isn’t for Everyone

The most successful real estate agents have an outgoing personality. At the very least, they have an amiable personality.

And these two personality types aren’t always the best personalities for property managers. Sometimes a property manager needs to say no.

Property Management May Be Right For You

Property management may be a good fit for you if:

  1. Your selling price is low and your rental commission is high then property management may be right for you
  2. You are more analytical and want to use property management as a real estate lead generator
  3. You have the time

Tips for Starting in Property Management

  1. Cherry picking your clients will assure that you are working with like minded customers
  2. Put your management company and real estate company together under one name
  3. Educate yourself on the rules of your state and local area
  4. Determine what roles your current staff could fill
  5. Have the real estate sales person be the front line sales person when talking to landlords and try to convert landlords into sellers.
  6. Make sure your broker will allow property management
  7. Don’t let the sales slip just because you want to do rentals.

Also Mentioned In This Episode

Michael Hellickson’s episode
NARPM
Melissa Prandi