Meeting With the Sellers

Jan 05, 2010 Comments Off by

Most new investors fear at least one aspect of Real Estate Investing, and one of the most common fears is talking to the homeowners either face to face or on the phone.  Without the ability to talk to homeowners, Real Estate Investing may be a very tough road.  This is a business where you are dealing with new people every single day and polishing up on your communication skills will not only help you when talking to homeowners, but also give you an edge when schmoozing with other investors or when your building your team.

Yes, you may have some competition in your area, and the Motivated Seller may have talked to a few of them before you, you need to make a good impression right away.  Let’s say you already talked to them on the phone, found out the details, determined that they are motivated and set the appointment.  It’s only the first couple appointments that you’ll have the butterflies in your stomach, if at all.  So, there’s nothing to worry about.  When meeting with a Seller, you want to be neat in appearance and dress for your area.

If you’re dealing in upper-scale neighborhoods, you may want to dress up a little more than you would if you were out in the country. Smile and introduce yourself at the door and hand them a card.  It’s amazing how something this simple can set the tone for the rest of the meeting.  Be yourself and keep your cool.  One of the most important things you need to do is build rapport with both homeowners.  Look around at the house for things to talk about.  Do they collect something?  Do they have pictures of children or grandchildren?  One of the first things you need to do is find out what the seller likes and have them talk about something that they know a lot about or enjoy.  Find a common ground that you can relate to or know something about as well and all of your worries will melt away.

Note: Always accept a drink when they offer you one and sip it slow.  The meeting isn’t over until you’re finished with your beverage.  If the meeting was going bad, you’ll see them looking at your drink to see if you’re finished, so they can close up the meeting and get you out.  After spending some time talking about their likes and/or hobbies, you’ll know when the Homeowners are getting comfortable with you by their actions and they may start joking with you.  Many of these homeowners need to sell because of a bad situation, which may bring them down, so it’s great if you can get them to laugh and show them that you’re there to help and a nice person.

After talking to them for awhile, you’ll know when it’s time to get down to business. Sometimes I let them bring it up, or I take the lead.  It all depends on the situation and the person’s personality.  There are 1,000s of ways to “Get down to business”, but the way that I often use is ask them an open-ended question such as, ‘What have you done to this point, trying to sell you house?  Who have you talked to before me?  Who do you plan to talk to after me?’  And so on.  The Sellers are looking for an out and someone who can help them.

Before you make an offer to take over their payments, make sure you’ve established a good rapport, once again. They have to trust that you’ll make the payments on time to save their credit and help them out of their situation.  If you remember back a couple months ago, I posted the “Newbie Newspaper Call Blitz”.  For many of you, calling ads in the papers got the ball rolling and enabled you to feel comfortable when talking on the phone.  Now it’s time to take it to another level and meet with Motivated Sellers.  So much can be accomplished when meeting face-to-face as opposed to just talking to a seller on the phone.  Once you learn how to weed out the motivated and unmotivated sellers, get the appointment.  Making offers on the phone will not make you rich in this business.  Meet with as many people as you can and make offers to them when you’re there.

One technique I use, is ask the seller over the phone what is the lowest amount they would accept if someone came to them tomorrow with cash.  The number they give me is my starting point for negotiation when I meet with them.  As far as negotiations go, it would be wise to do some research and read a book or two on the subject.  There are many techniques to learn and ways to negotiate properly.  To become a DealMaker, negotiation is one of the most important skills you need to develop.

Now that you’ve mastered the Newbie Newspaper Call Blitz, now it’s time to use the skills you have learned and apply them when you meeting with a seller.  (For the Newbies- the post “Newbie Newspaper Call Blitz” is back a few pages on the forum.)  There is a new Blitz posted on the board and it’s there for us to post our experiences talking to the Sellers face-to-face.  And as always, it will be used as a learning tool for the Newbie Investors out there that are interested in this business and learning about it through Dealmakers Café.  Now let’s go talk to those sellers!  Until next time!

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