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The top 3 questions to ask as part of your pre-listing conversation

By Adrian Bo
28 March 2023 | 12 minute read
Adrian Bo 2 reb

Number 1: “Will all title owners and decision makers be at the appointment?”

Every agent reading this has either lost or won a listing — either by design or default — because they met or didn’t meet all the decision makers. If the client says they actually won’t be able to make it, you need to dig deep and find that extra five seconds of courage and say, “I don’t mind visiting at 8pm this evening or on Saturday afternoon, or even Sunday morning”.

It’s important to collaborate with all decision makers and title owners. Given my experience, I find many questions come out of my comprehensive proposal and it is ideal if to create an open forum and discuss all details of the sale with full transparency.

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Number 2: “Will you be inviting other agents?”

Oftentimes, the vendor has been referred to you by some friends that you sold for a few years ago. Why is that important when you get to the listing appointment? You’re less likely to have to negotiate fees, so you double down on your standard commission rate.

Another response could be, “Well, actually, we’ve been told to invite three agents.”

Ask the vendor if they mind telling you who they are and when they’ll be coming. You’ll be surprised with the response. Why is it important to know who the other agents are? So at the listing appointment, you double down on your unique selling propositions (USPs). There’s no need to talk about the other agents or be unprofessional in any way; however, you do need to identify what is novel and unique about your offering. Is it both compelling and comprehensive? Whether it’s your personal USPs around being a developing agent or a super team agent or whether it’s your brand’s USPs in terms of the reach and breath of your buyer database, it’s critical to understand.

Number 3: “Are you considering a certain method of sale, such as auction, private treaty or off-market?”

A common response is, “Well, clearance rates seem to be dropping, so I’m not too sure about auction.” Why is that important to know? Because you may not go in “all guns blazing” for an auction. However, it does provide you with an opportunity at the listing appointment to say, “Do you mind if we discuss all methods of sale despite you being reluctant towards auction? I do feel auction as a process, not necessarily as an event, is still the most effective and efficient way to sell.” “One of my strategies is to adopt a hybrid approach of off-market, private treaty and auction, where we have a deadline date that creates a sense of urgency for interest, offers and due diligence; however, the property is for sale every day up until the auction day.” Another common response may be, “We will be guided by you as the agent.”

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