First impressions are everything!
When you get a call from a prospective seller requesting your expertise, what is the first thing you do? Top agents provide their sellers with a pre-listing packet! This could come as a printed document that you hand deliver or a nice online slideshow presentation that could be email to them.
Delivering the pre-listing packet
In my business, I had a nicely bound printed booklet that I hand delivered to each potential client. Whether I met them at an open house and scheduled a time to provide a market evaluation or if they called me from a referral or an ad they found, I always had a few pre-listing packets on hand and ready to go.
I practiced the art of the two-step listing presentation. On the first visit to take a look at and to make notes about their home, I would hand them a packet as I was saying my good byes. I would simply ask them to review it before our next meeting and jot down any questions they had about the information. I told them if they would read it, we would save about an hour when I returned.
When I returned for the full listing presentation and pricing discussion, I’d always start by asking them if they had any questions about the information in the packet. If they took the time to look through the packet, my in personal presentation time was greatly reduced. You may be surprised that most of the sellers I met DID take the time to read through it, simply because they really didn’t want to sit through a long presentation when I returned! A few hadn’t read it before I returned, but by them admitting it, I knew I’d just have to take a bit more time with them during the presentation.
So what’s in a great pre-listing packet?
Educating the seller is key. I provided all the information they needed so they could make the informed decision that I was their best option to use as their REALTOR® for the sale of their home. Here is a list of some of the information I included in my packet;
- An color graphical cover page (all other pages were b/w)
- A list of what they should expect from their REALTOR®
- 10 questions to ask when interviewing REALTORS® (of course I had the answers, competing agents wouldn’t be ready if asked)
- 5 reasons a property sells
- My marketing plan for the sellers property
- A long list of websites their home would appear on and why online exposure is important
- My qualifications and achievements
- My company’s history and achievements
- What to look for in an agent and why they shouldn’t choose an agent based on what price they suggest the home should be listed for
- Photos of my office support staff including my broker (it shows that I have a team supporting me)
- A list of reasons why I am the best REALTOR® for their needs
- I added a few charts and graphs and explanation of why they need to price their home correctly when they list initially (setting these expectations upfront did help get my listing priced correctly!)
- A list of commitments from me to my sellers of what they can expect from my services
- Testimonials from happy clients
- A cancellation guarantee (yes, I gave them a document in writing stating that if they weren’t happy with my services, I’d release them if we could resolve their concerns) You wouldn’t believe how many listings this helped me get when they didn’t feel trapped in a listing agreement!
Here are a few pages from the pre-listing packet I used. Note each page was branded with my logo, my company logo and my contact information.
In my research I found a few pre-listing packets online that were 30 or so pages long. Mine was only 16 pages, just enough for them to look through read and not be intimidated when I handed it to them that I was asking them to read War and Peace!
First impressions are everything
If you are meeting a potential seller and really want to impress upon them your professionalism or run the risk of the seller interviewing multiple agents, what makes you stand out? Taking the extra step to educate the sellers by giving them a professional looking pre-listing packet shows them that YOU provide extra-ordinary service and put more effort into your marketing. Won’t they believe you will do the same when marketing their home? That is the impression you will leave when you use a great pre-listing packet!
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