The Short List: Adrian Provost’s Strategies for Finding Buyers the Perfect Home

by Peter Thomas Ricci

adrian-provostEvery week, we ask a real estate professional for their Short List, a collection of tips and recommendations on an essential topic in real estate. This week, we talked with Adrian Provost, the associate broker of Coldwell Banker Buckhead/Provost International Realty.

When seeking the perfect home for your buyers you must: know your client’s wants versus needs; know their purchase capability and spending comfort level; have an efficient search and tour system in place; communicate effectively; and be diligent.

Here are a few tips to finding that perfect place for your buyers:

5. Conduct an In-Depth Buyer’s Consultation – It is critical to find out as much information as possible about what the “perfect home” is to your buyer; to do this you must ask many pertinent questions. Have them identify what a dream home looks like to them. If your client intends on obtaining a mortgage, make sure they are pre-qualified. To find the perfect home, it is imperative to know what one can afford.

4. Shut Up and Listen – Save on selling all of your “expertise.” You need to listen carefully to everything your client is saying and take detailed notes. To find your buyer their perfect home, avoid selling them on what you think they want and listen to what they’re telling you they want. Discover what their ideal location truly is. If they are uncertain, give them some “home” work. Have them explore their future neighborhood without you tagging along.

3. Have an Effective Search – Go beyond the traditional method of submitting automated MLS listings and waiting for your client to select one. If you work in Atlanta as a real estate agent, you should be a member of GaMLS and FMLS. Search thoroughly for your buyers. Your initial search should take place at your office, during the buyer consultation and along with your client. You can simultaneously setup their listing alerts while performing the first search. Be sure to conduct manual searches following the criteria associated with your client and only adjust it when no properties are available or when prompted by your buyer(s). Send frequent MLS listing alerts and sign your client up to your personal website’s IDX property listings as well.

2. Be Available and Ready to Tour – Sounds simple enough, but you’d be surprised at the horror stories I’ve heard from past clients in regards to dealing with agents when they find a home they are ready to tour. Remember, if you can’t show them the house, someone else can and will. When touring properties, be sure your clients pay close attention to the structure’s quality over its cosmetics. Their perfect home needs to be structurally sound, unless they intend on knocking it down and starting fresh.

1. Communicate, Communicate, Communicate! – Find out their preferred ways of communication. I like to get at least two ways to constantly contact my clients: text, phone call, email, video chat, etc. Be sure to update your buyer consistently and as frequently as they’ve requested. Be sure to establish an agreed upon follow-up schedule – beyond showings – and stick to it.

As you can see, simple criteria searches are just the beginning of establishing and finding the perfect home for your client.


Adrian Provost is the associate broker of Coldwell Banker Buckhead/Provost International Realty. A luxury real estate marketing specialist, Adrian is known for his high level of customer service, and works with such clients as American Estates Inc., Buccamont Bay Resort, H Barbados, Harlequin Hotels, Las Canas & The Hideaway, The Marquis Estate, The Merricks Resort, The Edge Village, Private Sellers, Regus, and Two River Resort.