By Bob Corcoran
Have you been outside to check your thermometer? Trust me, the temperature is rising. Summer is shaping up to be a hot one – not just literally, but also for the traditional real estate market. Finally, experts are agreeing that real estate is rebounding.
According to CoreLogic, the real estate research services company, 42 of the 50 markets recently surveyed in the United States have started to rise. And it reports that housing affordability is the best it’s been in two decades. Add to this interest rates that are at rock-bottom (in fact, they’re at 60-year lows), and you have serious conditions for a red-hot summer and real weapons to knock all buyers on the fence off and into the market.
Here are a few practical tips to keep your summer sizzling with sales:
- Understand the changing market. A point from Stephen Covey’s book “Seven Habits of Highly Effective People” is to seek to understand first, then to be understood. Get a full grasp of what your local and national markets are telling you, then share this in your advertising and marketing, and of course with your clients. The clouds are floating on their way and the sun is starting to shine once again on real estate – this is exciting news. If you’re not already excited about this, get excited! That enthusiasm is contagious and it’ll help you attract more business.
- Spread a sense of urgency. This is closely related to my first tip: this particular market creates urgency for both buyers and sellers. These conditions are not going to last (most experts agree that interest rates will very likely rise before 2013) and consumers need to act now to take advantage of what may never be available again in our lifetimes. Remember, in a buying situation, people hate to lose opportunities. Emphasize what they may lose if they don’t act now in all your communications with consumers.
- Get out of your office. Summer is the time people are out and about. Be there with them. Walk your farm neighborhoods and visit the yard sales, meet them out in their yards face-to-face and compliment them on their landscaping and flowers. Take a report of home values and what’s selling for how much to leave behind with them. You might even discuss refinancing options with the super-low interest rates we’re seeing. Also, be on the lookout for special summer events many neighborhoods hold during this season (i.e. swim meets, softball games, socials, etc.) and attend them. Get to know them on their own turf.
- Hold a client get-together. Summer is the perfect time for a barbecue appreciation picnic to bring past clients and others together to say thanks. Spice it up with some music, maybe a face painter for the kids or other fun and games.
- Open your car door for only the qualified. Another part of this market is that qualifying for a mortgage is a little tougher than it used to be. My take on this is you shouldn’t put a buyer in your car unless they’re qualified. Otherwise, you may very well be wasting your time.
Let me hear from you about this article. Do you have specific plans to make this summer a record-breaker for sales? If so, what are you doing? How are you communicating the changing (and improving) real estate market in your farm areas? Is your message generating excitement and a sense of urgency? Please send any comments or questions you have to [email protected] or
Bob Corcoran is a nationally recognized speaker and author who is founder and president of Corcoran Consulting Inc. (CorcoranCoaching.com, 800-957-8353), an international consulting and coaching company that specializes in performance coaching and the implementation of sound business systems into the residential or commercial broker or agent’s existing practice.