Real estate is a rewarding but challenging career with many moving parts to navigate. This is especially true in the current market, where demand is soaring and lenders are being extra cautious. Here’s how carve out success as a real estate agent in the Spring 2021 Market.
- Know Your Market.
Knowing your market inside and out is key to success as a residential real estate agent. Understand what kind of properties are found in the area, what amenities are nearby, how good the schools and hospitals are, what kind of commutes people can expect, and whether there are any weather-related quirks to know. Also make it a point to keep tabs on what’s recently sold or about to go on the market, and carefully track pricing trends along with interest rates and changes to loan terms.
- Be Responsive.
Make sure that current and prospective clients can easily reach you. Strive to respond to calls and emails as quickly as possible – the longer you take, the more likely someone is going to go with another agent. We’re currently seeing enormous market demand, and people want to move fast on the properties they like. If you’re overscheduled, bring on an assistant to help.
- Listen to Your Clients.
Most residential clients will come to you with a particular type of home in mind, but might not have thought through all the details. It’s your job to translate their ideas into specific listings in your market. If a young family comes to you asking for a starter home, know that they probably want something single-story, close to schools and playgrounds, and away from major roads. Don’t try to steer them towards something that’s not a good fit just to make the sale.
- Manage Their Expectations.
Buyers want as much as possible for as little as possible. Sellers want to sell at the top of the listing range. But sometimes budget restraints, market factors or property idiosyncrasies mean that expectations have to be managed. Gently educate your clients about what’s realistic. For example, in the current hot market buyers might need to look in a lower price range so that they have room in their budget to bid over asking.
- List Like a Pro.
If you’re a listing agent, you’ll need to be on top of your game when it comes to showing off your properties in their best light. Remember, the spring 2021 market is still running hot, and people are expecting top dollar for their properties. Use a high quality professional photographer, loop in a copywriter to help jazz up your listings, and have a plan for how you’ll present a property. Follow up with every lead and keep your clients in the loop so that they know they’re being looked after.
- Build Your Contact List.
As a residential real estate agent, your contact list is gold. Getting your name out to clients with marketing tactics and word-of-mouth is crucial to real estate success in spring 2021 and beyond. So is building a network of preferred vendors. These include photographers, title companies, lenders, inspectors and tradespeople – basically anyone your clients might need to be connected with in a pinch. In a hot market you’ll be receiving inquiries from people new to the area and who need help making these connections.
- Never Stop Marketing.
Brand building is vital for residential real estate agent success. Every interaction someone has with you is a chance to build your brand. Update your website, be active on social media, send out mailers, arrange holiday drive-bys and events, and follow up with past clients to see how they’re enjoying their new home. This will keep you top of mind when they meet someone looking for an agent – or they’re ready to move again themselves.
- Negotiate Everything.
When negotiating an offer, don’t just stop at price. Do everything you can to help smooth things out for your clients. This may include asking for all appliances, moving out a close date, sticking to your guns on repairs, and demanding a professional clean. You won’t always get everything you ask for, but your clients will remember that you tried to get the best deal possible for them in an ultra-hot market. On the flip side, be tough but friendly. Real estate can be a small world!
- Carve Out a Niche.
Most agents naturally end up falling into certain niches of real estate. Find what you like to do most, then work to position yourself as an expert in that niche. Gradually you’ll find that you’re winning more and more business working with the types of clients and properties you love. Use the current market as your impetus to truly go after what interests you.
- Ask for Reviews.
If they don’t have a word-of-mouth recommendation, people go to reviews next. Ask everyone you’ve worked with to leave a review or testimonial on Zillow, Google Maps or your own website so that prospective clients can see what you’re all about. You can provide a small gift card in exchange for reviews, or provide a brief note along with your request to help jog a client’s memory about how you went above and beyond in their transaction. Every review is a one step closer to market domination!
- Find a Great Title Company
At True Title we’re big believers in delivering more than expected, so here’s a bonus tip: find a great title company to make your life and your clients’ lives easier. A great title company will simplify the closing process, understand the details, ensure regulatory compliance, and help the entire transaction run smoothly. In this busy market, working with reliable and efficient title professionals will help get your deal across the line on time and amendment-free.
Spring 2021 is going to mark a continuation of the hot residential real estate market we saw through 2020. Competition is stiff, and expectations are high. But by knowing your market, treating your clients like gold, and making the right industry connections, you’ll position yourself ahead of the pack.