FSBO Sales Appointments Part Three: What are you doing this Saturday? How about visiting a few FSBO open houses? Learn tips for maximizing this strategy and getting closer to a listing.
Part One: I Have A Buyer
Part Two: May I Preview The Home
Let's talk about the method of stopping by the home unannounced. This time-tested strategy is still an option, even though agents do it a bit less than they used to.
One tactic that Rick Culp shared, attending FSBO open houses, sounds like a fun and productive way to spend a Saturday morning.
“The best way to meet a for sale by owner is at their open house. I've got about a half a dozen scheduled for this weekend sitting on my desk here. They've advertised them on Zillow. They'll advertise the time. I'll put a packet together with some comps, maybe a public records printout and some information about me, and I'll show up at their open house and hopefully get an opportunity to spend a few minutes meeting them, talking to them.
If a buyer is there, don't interrupt!
One thing that I would advise you never to do, though, is if they've got buyers in their open house, you never interrupt that and pitch them. You just shake their hand, leave your information and leave, because that's their best opportunity, and you do not want to offend somebody.”
You see, open houses are a great opportunity to meet sellers, and open houses are less awkward than dropping by randomly. Just like Rick said though, make sure you do your homework and your research, because the last thing you want is to be unprepared -- it will harm your credibility.
For example, if they're hitting you with questions about the area, and you keep saying “I don’t know,” it’s not going to look very good at all.
Remember to come prepared.
If you genuinely don't know, you can always offer to research the answer and email them or get back to them later. Still, if you say that for every question, they're going to be questioning your competence. So do your homework. Know what houses sold around the corner, up the street and over the hill. Talk about them. If you can talk about the owners by first and last name, that is really powerful.
Oh, the Jones's house that sold for just 389K? They had only one offer, and they were priced too high for six months.
If you know a bit about the neighborhood and what has sold, you’ll be perceived as not just the expert but the local expert, and that's very powerful.
Meeting FSBOs at an open house is also a great opportunity for you to introduce yourself and share pieces of your story that set you apart from other agents.
But just like Rick said, don't interrupt if they have a buyer speaking to them! If they have a buyer looking at the home, leave your package and leave. Maybe you can drive back by at the end of the open house, or maybe call another time, let them know that you were the one that left the package and continue the conversation.
Sellers appreciate a "hands on" approach.
Again, this is a great opportunity if you’re a “boots on the ground” type of agent. Sellers love meeting savvy agents who aren’t just attempting to get listings from an office -- show them you're the local expert; you're active on the weekends; you're engaged with what's going on in the neighborhood. They appreciate that.
I’ve talked to agents about this and they tell me that when they use this strategy and drop by on the weekends, many home sellers say, “Wow, good for you. You're out here in the trenches making sure that buyers know what's on the market.They know when a good salesperson is cultivating the environment they're selling in, they are the ones who are going to get the house sold faster.
So I hope this helps. I encourage you to go out there and check out open houses. You can put reminders on your phone with Zillow and do a process so you stay up to date on it. Remember, if you go by one open house and it doesn't go so well or it feels awkward and then you just stop doing it, you won't get results. You have to continue and improve each time. That is going to get you more listings, and more importantly, fill that pipeline up. And then you’ll have a continuous source of listings plus referrals coming in. Isn't that what we all want?