Dear Realtors – 10 ways home owners mess with the sale (and your mojo)

Realtors – Understand 10 ways your sellers unconsciously sabotage the speedy SALE of their home
(plus mess with your income & reputation)

 

92% of people are guilty of number 1, but NO-ONE talks about it and I am here to change that!

Dear Realtors – you have my deepest sympathy!

Selling all your client’s homes -Yuck or Yah? Or a bit of both? Everyone knows that selling a home elicits dread, anxiety and heightened stress for the seller and the buyer. But what about you and your pivotal role?  Don’t your client’s drive you nuts sometimes, or the current market place and trends that seem top make everything that much tougher for you to get the deals through?

If you are taking the time to read this, then I understand and respect that….

  • You have been in the business for a long time
  • Are brilliant at what you do
  • Always super duper professional
  • Engaging, generous with your time and go the extra mile
  • Passionate about people, families and homes
  • Have a great eye for what works and doesn’t……

… and yet still you feel like you are wading through sludgy mud. You are fast having to adjust to ever-changing market trends and the fact that more and more sellers believe they can handle the transactions on their own (yeah right!).

Everyone is trying to undercut your commission and you probably aren’t having as much fun in this industry anymore? You even think about getting out and doing something less “uphill” or stressful pretty soon. But, you also just LOVE this industry and it runs in your blood. And ….sometimes your blood boils when your sellers just won’t listen darn it, refuse to heed your advice or uphold their end of the bargain to get ready for show day or viewings of their property. Aaargh!!!

There is only so much responsibility you can take – the rest is up to them, isn’t it? On top of the painful sales and lodging of documents process, you also know all the other stressful stuff your clients dread in anticipation – which often means you are not their favorite person in the transaction.

It’s easy for them to mutter about when you want to view the house, or canceling viewings at the last minute when their child is sick, or another emergency arises. Or they complain about your commission, the photos aren’t right or you aren’t bringing enough people through to view. It’s always YOUR fault isn’t it?

So how do you find a way to approach this all with a new edge?

To stand out in the sea of sameness in the industry?

To be the REALTOR to offer something totally different with a uniquely compassionate angle?

A way for you to honestly help your clients help themselves and get on board?

For them to ultimately get what they want with more ease and grace?

To enjoy a smoother viewing process, offers to purchase and ultimately the speedier sale of their home?

To offer them a way to handle and process all the stress of the sale and move in their hearts and lives?

A way for you all to feel invigorated about the process of selling and moving again?

I’m Kate Emmerson, the Quick Shift Deva, and I am hell-bent on supporting realtors and home sellers in today’s stressful times. Helping realtors to shift your vooma back into showcasing and selling homes and doing what you love, and letting me help you handle your clients and their hearts, minds and homes.

To help you offer your clients a unique way that has never been spoken about until now – one in which they willingly step up and take more responsibility for getting 100% ready to sell.

That’s my forte- speaking directly through you, to your seller. Coaching, cajoling, nudging and providing practical solutions to shift the sale of their home with grace, speed and ease. Helping them process the angst, stress, to de-clutter, pre- pack, handle inevitable show days/viewings, and ultimately being fully ready to make this move.

So whether your sellers are moving because it’s aspirational and they really want to, or because they somehow feel forced to, they still have a way of embracing the process. To feel way less stressed, more in control, at peace and actually excited about uprooting life, heart and home when selling this time around. To be able to embrace this dreaded process with a lightness of expectation of what’s unfolding.

This is such a potentially powerful and pivotal time in their lives– one that is usually their worst nightmare that fills them with angst and stress. Yet, it can be done with grace, ease and speed through the transition.

Can you imagine shifting the status quo and being able to say how much you LOVE dealing with your clients again?

How you feel more connected to them yet not taken for granted?

How you have discovered a way to make the selling process effortless and life-changing for them?

As an expert in letting go and moving on, I’ve spent 16 years researching home-owners and working in their homes, understanding what keeps them deeply stuck at the internal, psychological level. Holding on for dear life, not budging on ideas or price. When your client feels truly ready to move on, from the inside out, that particular home will sell with lightning speed. And I promise you that my process is down to earth, practical and simple to implement. Clients refer to my style as compassion with a kick!

You know you want me on your team!

I challenge you to have an open mind as you keep reading…

For most home sellers, the notion of getting their home ready to firstly invite you, the realtor, and then let total strangers trudge unceremoniously through their space, opening all the cupboards (oh yes, you know this is true!), deciding if this space suits their taste and budget can elicit feelings of terror and panic, even in the most resilient of folk. There’s always a heady mixture of emotions contemplating selling a home, aren’t there? It’s debilitating and overwhelming. Life is already busy and stressful enough, and this is just a huge added burden on their plate and they hold you responsible for it going smoothly. After all, what are they paying you for?

All sorts of things come into play for them.

How will they pack up everything?

Do they even want to use you, as their realtor if they don’t “have” to?

Are they making the right decision and do they have clarity about what they want?

Who do they trust to move their worldly possessions?

Will doggie Rufus adjust to the new house?

Will grandpa be ok in the new home?

How will they ever get their home show-day ready with all their current obligations?

Gasp – what about that hideous overflowing garage and shed they never got around to clearing out. It’s downright embarrassing and now they are thinking of having you walk through their space!

Will they ever find a beautiful new space that feels like home again?

Will their worldly possessions ever fit into that new space?

While it’s true they have to dig deep to face the above, and most people hate it, what if there is something far more critical that is the real sabotage to them selling their home? It all starts with what’s going on inside, and you can be the one to introduce them to this novel idea.

If you are reading this article and wondering how your clients might be sabotaging the sale of their home, chances are they are in one of a few places right now!

Where do you find your CLIENTS fit right now?

A. Life is changing rapidly, and they are just contemplating selling their home. This would be a very exciting and aspirational move to upsize, downsize or life-size. But right now they might be unsure which route to take along with a mixture of dread and excitement. You might not even be on their radar yet!

B. They are unfortunately being ‘forced to sell’ their home (perhaps due to economic, death, health, divorce or relocating), and are both resisting and dreading everything about life right now it. It’s all too much to handle, it really shouldn’t be happening, they are in shock, and now they have to wrench themselves from their safe safe nest. It couldn’t get any worse. They might view all realtors as another vulture trying to take advantage of them….. or you could be really clever and position yourself as someone who truly understands and can support this awful time in their lives!

C. Their home is just not selling and has spent way too many DOM’s (Days on Market), but they really need this property to sell fast. Enough already! There have just been far too many people trudging through the doors, they are sick ‘n tired of you and no real offers to purchase are materializing. They are losing hope of ever selling, blame you as their realtor, feel frustrated, trapped, and can’t move forward. Horrible all round!

My guess is that you are a Realtor wanting to up your professional game and find unique ways to support your clients to sell faster and with more ease. You are interested in unique ways to help you do your job better – you’re brilliant at what you do, but know something is missing that’s outside your scope of expertise.

You’re confused why a perfect property is somehow not shifting on the market, or you know your client needs help to get a grip on making peace with their life, moving on and handling emotional and physical clutter. You are exhausted from everything being an uphill battle with your sellers and need a business boost.

Here are Kate’s 10 ways your clients are unconsciously self-sabotaging the speedy SALE of their home!

PART 1: LOOSEN THE EMOTIONAL GRIP

  1. SAY ‘GOODBYE’ EARLY ONIn my experience, over 92% of sellers fall into this trap, and it’s the first way they will sabotage the sale! It’s also the one no-one else out there talks about because it is considered too fluffy, too soft, too naff. But it will affect the speed, ease, and ultimately the financial aspect of the sale.

    This is the single most significant factor that your client is 100% in control of and the one to take the most seriously.

    They have to be ready in their heart and entirely at peace to welcome this move BEFORE you put the “For Sale” up! Take control early on and help them emotionally “detach” from the home and say goodbye to this era of their life with mindful intent. Emotional closure right upfront will bring acceptance and significantly reduce stress.Most sellers wait till move day to get the emotions in check and wonder why it’s so unbearably stressful. This psychological, emotional, and mental shift is how Kate supports her clients (with life-changing practical exercises) at this pivotal time to ensure they do not sabotage the potential sale. They are energetically and emotionally embedded into every brick in their homes and they have to loosen this grip before they can move on.

    Homeowners don’t usually wonder about how their “energy” is embedded into every brick and mortar of their home. This is where they realized the dream of owning this home, perhaps had their first child, started a business, danced around the kitchen table after signing the big corporate deal, made love to their partner, and watched little Jamie take his first steps. It might also be a space signifying struggle, heartache and pain – and now they have to say goodbye. It’s all very complicated at a heart level and most folks don’t know how to approach this time and process. Kate shifts that in a jiffy.

  1. PLEASE STOP CALLING IT ‘HOME’Too many sellers sabotage the process and hold on with double doses of superglue! They intensify emotional attachment, heartache and stress, by continually referring to this space as ‘home.’

    Yes, of course, it has been their home, and you feel like you are honoring them by speaking kindly about their “home”, but one of the pivotal shifts to make is to help them consider from this moment onwards, that they are a custodian of this space and start thinking of the home as a house. The challenge is that from now on, every time you all speak about it or think about it (after you have done the emotional closure that Kate’s teaches), is to always use the term HOUSE instead of home!

    Better yet, think of it as a guesthouse always ready to welcome new guests. Keep the term home for the potential BUYER. You can catch Kate live on the radio sharing her passionate house selling tips to Shado Twala on SAFM 

  1. HELP THEM CATCH A WAKE-UP ABOUT WHAT’S LURKINGMost sellers do a little tidy up around the house, thinking they will clear out properly when finally packing the boxes and move. Beep! Remind them that buyers will open cupboards, and more importantly, they will get a “feel” of the house. If it feels stuffy, cluttered and overfull, buyers will feel stifled in the space even if it is seemingly the perfect house for them on paper and budget-wise.

    The moment your client decides to sell, please get them stuck into de-cluttering every single inch of the space.

    They need to, as I like to refer to it,  Zap Your Kr@p – Not only will it make the house appear more spacious and light for the buyer, but means they will also not lug any “stuff” that no longer serves them into the next phase of life.

    A house move is an ideal time to purge at every level. Let go and live a little lighter, taking only that which you love, use and respect into your new home. If THE SELLER fills up too much of the house, there is no room for THE BUYER to breathe new life into this space. Tone down that bright cerise wall, get rid of 75% of the objects d’art and remove the 30 family photographs stuck on the wall! Buyers need to be able to envisage THEMSELVES living in this space.

PART 2 – HELP THEM CHANGE PERSPECTIVE

  1. PLAYING THE BLAME GAMEMost sellers sabotage the process and fall headlong into typical victim mentality by thinking that everything and everyone else is at fault in this process. It makes great conversation to play the blame game! Blaming the housing market/location/high mortgage rates/recent increase in crime/country’s current junk status/awful neighbors/commuter traffic into the local work hub/local elections etc.

    They will find ways to blame every aspect of the market for the lack of a sale and extended “days on market” or non-interest of your property, especially blaming YOU, their realtor. If you can let me, help you, to help them understand that they are way more in control than they think, well you will come off as their hero/heroine.

  1. INFORMATION UPLOADTry and make sure your seller is never left with a mouthful of teeth when potential buyers ask about the neighborhood, the shopping outlets, local school, who runs the local council, etc. Do your homework to also fully understand what properties are listing and selling for in your immediate neighborhood and educate your client.

    You want them to be seen to know their home and their ‘hood. Be open and willing to share that information. Any upcoming changes to the neighborhood should be top of mind – such as building mall outlets, new schools planned, current crime in the area, better access roads being built, shifts in zoning homes as businesses, etc.

  1. SALES SAVVYYour client might be undermining or sabotaging the process by getting too involved.

    Are they honestly any good at sales – especially selling something they love? Even when they are 100% at peace with, and excited by this sale and move, they may not be the savvy salesperson they think they are. So yes, while it is absolutely possible in some countries for your clients to bypass you and sell their own home nowadays, especially with online property sites (unless your specific county prevents this by law), it still does not mean that they should be the one doing it.

    Help them understand that a neutral, professional, home selling expert like yourself will assist them in getting the sale price as high as possible, assess the right buyers, market the house appropriately, and handle all the dreaded paperwork on their behalf. Help them understand why you are the right realtor for the job.

    I always suggest sellers get a trusted recommendation or find someone who excels at closing deals in their neighborhood. If you are confident in your work ethic and track record, you too can suggest they shop around, feeling quietly confident you have something different to offer them and they will see your value. Educate them so they understand why they need you. Help them understand the difference between the selling price VS actual money they get out that ultimately put more money in their pocket at the end of the day.

    Know your real strengths, play to those – draw on your designations, qualifications, passion and experience to help them navigate this complicated territory and tap into the right buyers. Speed and ease are what we are after, remember?

  1. BUYER CENTRICEven though your client is obviously the owner and seller and you feel it’s all about them, when it comes to selling, this concept alone will totally sabotage and derail the process. From now on, you need to teach them to become “buyer-centric” and put themselves in THEIR shoes.

    The moment potential buyer’s pull up at the front curb, they need to be instantly impressed with the look and feel and be able to see themselves living in this space the moment they walk through the door. You want their positive feelings and initial experience of the space; from the moment they set eyes on it, to positively influence the economics and dynamics of this purchase. You want your potential buyer to be “blown away” and put in that OTP (Offer To Purchase).

    Remind your client they only need ONE buyer, and you don’t want them to mess up that opportunity when it arises. Remember that when your clients have done all the work Kate suggests, it WILL happen fast!

PART 3 – SHOWTIME – READY, STEADY, GO!

  1. CUTTING CORNERS?Cutting corners will sabotage the sale.

    You need Kate’s kickass energy to teach your clients not to be lazy and ‘half-a$$ed’ when it comes to show days or viewing appointments. Let Kate have the tough conversations with your clients – she can play ‘bad cop’ on your behalf! She has a knack of saying it like it is, getting sellers excited to do the process. She will get them super vigilant to get SHOW DAY ready.

    After thoroughly assessing the property and its current condition, it’s crucial to complete property maintenance, sprucing, fixing, cleaning, clearing, and de-cluttering. The seller needs to KEEP the house in tip-top shape – should you need to bring the ideal prospective buyer round with very little notice, there is no stress involved or days to wait. You want everyone to be poised and ready.

    Are you also following the international property trends by home-staging to showcase and highlight all the positive attributes? Think bigger and bolder!  A little time and money spent in the right way will have exponential results!

  1. STUCK IN THEIR WAYS?The current buyer’s market could mean cash buyers are a very attractive prospect – your sellers have to be ready and agile in their response and be willing move as soon as possible as there will be no delay in waiting for banks/loans/bonds/mortgages to be approved. Your sellers need to be prepared to move out of the house sooner than expected to help facilitate this sale (and enjoy some occupational rent if your country allows).

    It is common for sellers who have honestly and truly done the closure work, to get buyers bidding against each other for a property – all wanting to move in ‘yesterday”. When you read more about what Kate’s clients experience when working through her process, “SHIFT YOUR HOME,” speed is a typical result.

    If your seller is too stuck in their own timelines, you might all lose out! Teach them to be flexible and prepared to move swiftly along.

  1. MAKE IT A ‘NO-BRAINER’Are you showcasing their house appropriately?

    Highlight the best features with high-definition professional photographs and professionally edited videos to walk buyers through this space in virtual reality. One of the current trends is also to use drone footage to show off the neighborhood from above to enjoy that all-important bird’s eye view, as that dramatically influences buyer’s decisions.

    Buyers can see the property in relation to everything else around it, proximity to or distance from schools, retail, health facilities, motorways, etc.

I hope this has given you a different perspective as you embark on trying different approaches with your client. IF you can be the realtor that stands out, understand how saying goodbye is so difficult, then you will have a more powerful impact on your business, neighborhood, and clients.

My role is to help you help your clients take responsibility to shift the sale from the inside out, while you sell it from the outside in. Your seller’s heart, mind, and soul all need to align to the look and feel of the property to get the outcome you all want. To sell this house with grace, speed, and ease at the highest price possible. Kerching! To move on, feeling proud and with closure.

I would love to hear your thoughts on this article. Comment below or drop me a line directly on kate@kate-emmerson.com!

Kate is known as the Quick Shift Deva – South Africa’s foremost clutter expert, life coach, best selling author, and international speaker. She bounces into homes, offices, and hearts to help clients to sort out their clutter and their lives, freeing them to move on to LIVE LIGHT, LIVE LARGE. Much like a combination of Clean House and House Doctor, she will both physically and emotionally help YOU and YOUR HOME get show day ready.