As an agent, qualifying buyers is key to the sales process. It will help you identify where a buyer is on their purchasing journey, their motivations and their overall situation, including their price expectations.
In order to get to this crucial information, you must ask quality questions.
Together, McGrath’s Braden Walters and Cunningham’s Matt Nicastri created a go-to guide for qualifying buyers in a recent REINSW Webinar.
To begin the discussion, Nicastri made an important statement: “Let’s dispel myth number one in relation to buyers – they’re not the second-class citizens, I think you’d agree. They have a lot of benefit to anyone’s business, whether you’re a developing agent or a more senior agent.”
Why do we qualify buyers?
“The market’s a little bit different to what it was in my area say five years ago, where you were meeting 20 or 30 buyers at an open house and you didn’t get to spend as much time with each buyer as you should. Nowadays where you’re meeting maybe five or ten buyers at an open house if you’re lucky,” Walters said.
“Why is it important? Because you get to spend enough time with the people that are actually looking at buying, as we are representing our sellers.”
Nicastri agreed that quality time spent with quality buyers can lead to better end results. “It’s the chicken and the egg. If you control the buyers in the marketplace then chances are you’re going to list better, you’re going to have better conversations around pricing with owners,” he said.
“Also remember that without quality buyers you’re not going to sell property, and when you don’t sell property you’re not doing your job, you’re not going to make any money,” Walters added. “And it also allows you to build clients … you’re nurturing clients from day one.”
Nicastri and Walters then outlined the kind of questions agents should consider asking prospective buyers:
- What’s your situation?
- Do you need to sell before you buy? If you do need to sell first, are you on the market and where are you with offers?
- When does your pre-approval lapse? The answer to this question can indicate whether the buyer is ready to act
- Have you bid on anything recently? What have you missed out on?
- Ideally what sort of range are you hoping to stay within? (This is a more polite way of asking, ‘What’s your budget?’)
More tips and benefits of qualifying a buyer
During the webinar, Nicastri and Walters provided further advice about effectively qualifying and servicing potential buyers. The top tips and benefits included:
- There’s no such thing as over servicing a buyer
- A buyer you meet today will eventually become a seller and they will remember the people that looked after them well
- Directly asking the buyer their budget is generally not the best way to establish this information
- Monday afternoons and Fridays are good times to speak to anyone you’ve identified as a ‘hot buyer’
To learn more about successfully qualifying buyers click here to watch the webinar.
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