How to Prequalify a Seller Before You Go to the Listing Appointment
Have you ever shown up for an appointment with a seller and they weren’t ready, willing, or able to sell their home?
I have, and I don’t want you to make the same mistakes that I did. I have a lead sheet that’s a checklist to remind myself to ask the right questions of my sellers over the phone that I want to go over with you. Following this lead sheet, collecting the right information, and asking the right questions as you’re on the phone with your sellers will save you both time and energy.
First, you must get all of their contact information. When I get off the phone with a seller and I set an appointment to meet them, I get their email address and confirm they’ll check their email before I get there because I also send them a pre-listing video. This is a great way to get them information in advance so that when you get there, they’ve already had the chance to do some research and get some work done.
Next, you can make the following inquiries • What are their true motivations? • Do they really need to sell? • Have they already been working or talking with other agents? • Are they relocating? • Will they have relocation benefits?
These are important questions you must understand and know up front. Over the years, I’ve focused on making sure the people I work with are motivated to sell and have equity in their home to sell, and if they don’t, they have a way to make it work. The market will help determine what the seller’s home value is, and you don’t have to sell if you don’t get the right offer.
After that, ask them questions to describe their home. This will give you insight as to whether they’ve made updates or not. People will tell you the truth about their home. You can also ask if they have a mortgage left on their home. In the old days, I was insecure about asking this question because I felt it was too personal. Quite honestly, I don’t care what their mortgage is; I just want to help them get the most money in their pocket at closing. Back when the market was a little harder, they might not have had the equity to sell their home to be on the positive side. You want your sellers to be set up for success from the very beginning.
How did they find out about you? Were they referred to you by a friend? If so, you might want to thank that person who sent that referral. Rewarding referrals are important.
From there, set the appointment. Email them in advance or drop off a pre-listing packet—whichever is your preferred way of doing business. This will help you show up for the appointment on time and ready.
I also use a pre-qualifying script that features some final questions to ask before you meet. When using this script, you’ll first confirm the appointment and make sure everyone who’s selling the property is ready to meet. After that, you’ll ask the following questions:
• Do you plan on interviewing other agents? • Where are you moving? • How soon do you need to be there? • What would you do if your house didn’t sell?
These are qualifying questions to help you help them and better manage your time. If you’re prepared in advance and they’ve done the homework you’ve asked them to do, you can walk into the home and say, “Besides price, is there anything we need to discuss today?” If they’ve shown that they’re ready to go and they’ve invited you into their home, they’re already at a yes, so go for it!
Don’t talk yourself out of the business, ask them questions and make them feel like you care about them—because you do. You care about helping them achieve their real estate goals and getting their home sold. I trust that these will help you have a better life and business because the purpose of qualifying is so that you can spend valuable time with your family.
If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to give me a call or shoot me an email. I look forward to speaking with you.
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