Helping home Buyers tell their story to Sellers
Storytelling is an important part of your job as an agent. It’s most obvious on the Seller side. When a home hits the market, you craft a story about why the house is different and unique. You establish a picture that helps Buyers imagine themselves thriving in their home, not just living in a space. The story is what entices Buyers to consider a house. But can that work on the other side of the transaction too?
Why does telling a story to Sellers matter?
It might seem like unnecessary work to tell Sellers a story about your Buyers. Whoever offers the most money with the fewest concessions gets the house, right? While that may be true in some cases, it’s not a hard and fast rule, especially when you consider how large the pre-owned market is.
The market for pre-owned homes is about five times larger than the market for new construction, according to the National Association of Realtors. The homeowners living in and selling those houses may have had deeply meaningful experiences in that house. They may have even built the house themselves. For some Sellers, it’s important that the next owner treats the house well.
Knowing the story behind why Buyers want to purchase a home can help you connect with those Sellers. It can sometimes help Sellers choose your clients among numerous competitive offers. While a good story isn’t a silver bullet in all cases, it can swing Sellers in your direction. Today, we’ll look at some ways to help your Buyers tell their stories to Sellers.
Ask your Buyers probing questions
It’s certainly important to find out what Buyers can and are willing to pay, the type of mortgage they intend to take out, and other technical aspects of the buying process. After establishing these parameters, the bulk of your work should focus on relationship building and learning as much as possible about your clients. The best way to do that is with probing questions.
Probing questions, or open-ended questions, aim to get your Buyers talking about themselves. When people start talking about themselves, they tend to share details about their wants and needs that a yes-or-no question wouldn’t allow them to. Asking probing questions gives your clients a sense of control over a huge life decision. It also gives you the basis of the story you’ll tell to Sellers.
Here are a few examples of probing questions that can help you tell your clients’ story.
- What made you start your house search?
- What does your ideal home look like to you?
- What are some of your favorite things to do when you aren’t house hunting?
As you consider asking probing questions, remember that you aren’t doing an interrogation! You’re trying to find what motivates your clients beyond the cut-and-dry aspects of home buying. This will help you not only tell your clients’ story but also give you a better idea of what they’re looking for in a home.
Find out as much as you can about the Seller
Once your clients express interest in a home, it’s time for you to find out as much as you can about the Seller. This does not mean you should talk directly to the Sellers. Most listing agents would frown at the very idea, and rightfully so.
What it does mean is gathering as much information about the Sellers from their listing agent as possible. Specifically, you want to do your best to find out why the Sellers are selling in the first place. The goal is to find any overlap between your client and the Seller and speak to those commonalities. It’s no secret that people want to work with people they like and trust. Finding common ground is a great way to build that relationship.
Don’t be afraid to speak to emotion
Once you’ve gathered as much information as you can, it’s time to tell the story. This often takes the form of an offer letter. It’s crucial that you write the offer letter, not your clients. After all, they hired you to communicate with the Sellers, and this is just a part of that expectation. The key is to make the Sellers feel good about the offer they choose. This means speaking to emotion without being overly sentimental.
As you tell the story, the most important thing you can do is be authentic. This means providing specific details about why your clients want the house, rather than general compliments that could apply to any well-kept house.
As much as possible, you’ll want to mention the commonalities your client has with the Seller. For example, if the Sellers mention their friendships with neighbors and your clients expressed a need for community, you might talk about how a friendly community is important to them.
Your clients are entering a Seller’s market, which means tough competition. But a well-crafted story that speaks to what your clients and the Seller have in common can put your clients over the top. And once you’ve gotten them their dream home, make their dream even happier with a home warranty from 2-10 Home Buyers Warranty (2-10 HBW)!
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