5 Proven Strategies to Convert FSBO Listings
5 Proven Strategies to Convert FSBO Listings
For sale by owner listings offer a quick and easy way for agents to build their listing inventory. Half the battle is determining whether or not a prospect is in the market to sell their home, and you already know that! All that’s left to do is effectively engage them through sales and marketing activities.
Unfortunately, the motivations behind owners choosing to sell their own homes can be quite powerful, meaning the objections you’ll face will be much more difficult to overcome. Once you understand what their pain points are, you’ll be able to navigate those objections with ease. Let’s take a deeper dive at the psychology behind FSBO listings and 5 ways you can overcome their powerful objections.
Goals, Time, and Money
Your focus should always be on providing a positive client experience, and for FSBOs this matters more than all else. Stop selling yourself and sell what they want: solutions and results. Your accomplishments may add credibility, but they shouldn’t be the focal point of the conversation; the more you talk about how great you are, the more prospective sellers will tune you out.
This means you need to position yourself as the best person to get the job done quickly and cost-effectively. Sculpt the conversation around getting to the root of their decision to sell by themselves, which often comes down to three key things: goals, time, and money. When you understand why the home seller is tackling this project without the help of an expert, you’ll be able to soothe their fears and reassure them that you can solve their problems – better and faster than any other agent.
After surveying thousands of sellers, hundreds of agents, and studying several top coaches in the industry, REN discovered that home sellers consistently have the following five major pain points:
- Lack of Communication
- Over Promise / Under Deliver
- Lack of Knowledge of the Marketplace
- Client’s Interests are Not Protected
- Lack of Availability
You may have a strategy or plan at the ready to address a few of these pain points, but it’s essential that you cover all five. Remember, you’re trying to set yourself apart from the competition and provide the best overall experience for your client!
Consider the difference between a postcard that says “Want to get your home sold fast? I can help!” and one that says “I can sell your home in less than 29 days or I’ll sell it for FREE… 100% GUARANTEED!” The latter is the obvious winner, and for good reason; you’re going after people who not only don’t know who you are, but are purposefully turning away from using real estate agents in general. This performance guarantee not only grabs their attention, it assures them that you are good at what you do. Because time is a major factor for most FSBOs, you’re solving that pain point immediately.
Of course, performance guarantees should both put your client at ease AND protect the agent. By outlining certain conditions that define who qualifies for the program and the terms surrounding it, you’ll be safe from having to sell homes commission-free left and right.
For example, price is a vital condition guard; if a seller thinks they can overprice their home by $100,000 and still expect you to sell it in 29 days, they’re dreaming. It is your job to make reasonable and achievable promises so you’re not trapped by your own guarantee – and make sure you put all the terms and conditions in writing up front.
One of the main objections FSBOs have is that they don’t want to be locked in to a contract; they’re worried if they end up with a less than competent real estate agent, their home will waste valuable time and exposure on the market. An Easy Exit Listing Agreement can alleviate this pain point.
As with the performance guarantee, there should be limitations. Include the opportunity to fix whatever problems or concerns the home seller is experiencing before just dropping the contract immediately. However, the point is to build trust and credibility; if you are unable to remedy the situation within a certain time frame, you must honor the agreement. Consider the following risk-free offer as an example:
“If we do not provide 100% satisfactory service for some reason, just let us know. We promise to remedy the situation within 24 hours, and if you’re still not satisfied, we will release you unconditionally from the listing agreement with no further obligation.”
With just two simple sentences, you’re able to solve another pain point!
Some agents live a little too much within their own world and leave the homeowners almost entirely out of the selling process. Because many FSBOs are concerned about being taken advantage of, communication guarantees create an air of transparency and ensure that your client always knows what’s going on.
The structure can vary depending on your schedule and how much the client wants to be updated. For example, you can promise to call your client every Monday to discuss the positives and negatives of the situation so far, the challenges and successes, and communicate any other activity related to their property. If they fail to hear from you one Monday, they are within their right to terminate the listing agreement on the spot; you’ll pick up your signs, shake hands (all while being professional), and that’ll be the end of it! No questions asked.
One of the major benefits of communication guarantees is that they go both ways. The seller receives more value from the experience, and you are provided the opportunity to have those difficult conversations about price and other aspects of the sale. This “forced communication” also helps you build a relationship with the client, which not only builds trust throughout the selling process, but can keep you in their minds if they ever want to buy or sell down the road (or send your referrals).
Seller Advantage Programs
For sale by owner homesellers often choose to go it alone because they think they can do the same job as an agent. Seller advantage programs give them the opportunity to try while also positioning you as next in line should they fail within a certain time frame. If the FSBO seller’s efforts result in a sale within a set timeframe – usually the first 30 days – they don’t pay a commission; if it doesn’t sell in that timeframe, then you can take over.
Seller advantage programs are usually offered with a variety of commission rates so they are able to choose their own option. This helps sellers feel more in control, which is a key aspect of building trust. Ultimately, these programs create a natural partnership as both the home seller and agent work together to get the job done.
Detailed Marketing Plan
FSBO home sellers need to believe that you are the best person to sell their home – better than even themselves, who are passionate about the process inherently given their closeness to the situation. If you are asked what you’re going to do to market their home and you can’t give a detailed answer – or your answer is to stick a sign in their yard and call it a day – you’re going to lose out on a lot of opportunities.
Start by putting a number on how many steps you’ll take to market their home. For example, you could say: “We have an 89-point marketing plan designed to get your property sold in the shortest amount of time and for the greatest amount of money.” This tactic is especially effective if you haven’t secured an appointment yet; it’ll get them interested enough for you to get a foot in the door so you can expound upon it when you meet in person.
Of course, now you need to follow through on that plan. You need to utilize multichannel marketing to hit as many avenues as possible in your client’s local market; social media posts, flyers, postcards, and newsletters should be going out to advertise the property. All of your marketing at presentation material must have compelling visuals and a powerful call to action.
The Bottom Line
For sale by owner home sellers can be tough to crack, but can provide long-term benefits if you can overcome their objections. If you’re not implementing at least three of the above strategies in your pitch, you need to make some changes to your sales and marketing plan!
Not sure where to start? REN 360 is an all-in-one marketing tool that provides everything you need to start reach out to buyers and sellers of all kinds – including FSBOs. If you’re ready to build up your listing inventory and create long-lasting relationships with the for sale by owner home sellers in your market, you’ll sign up for your 14-day free trial today.
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