Navigating Home Sale Contingencies

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It has been more than seven years since we last had a buyers market for resale homes, so it is not surprising that many new-home sales professionals have become anxious when dealing with customers who have their own home to sell before a deal.

November 01, 2006

It has been more than seven years since we last had a buyers market for resale homes, so it is not surprising that many new-home sales professionals have become anxious when dealing with customers who have their own home to sell before a deal.

Imagine a conversation between a new-home sales professional who has just completed a tour of the builder's community with a customer who has yet to sell their current home.

When a sales professional hears the homeowner has a home he or she still needs to sell, what should the new-home sales professional say?

A. "Come back when you have your home under contract."

B. "We can write a contingency sale."

C. "We love to work with customers who know the value of home ownership."

The right answer is "C," but without a road map for "home-to-sell" customers, many sales professionals are stuck somewhere in the first two answers.

Sales professionals should consider adopting this six-step process for customers with homes to sell:

Step 1. "Let's work together to understand the resale market." It is imperative that customers consider their new-home sales professional as an expert on all aspects of residential real-estate.

Step 2. "Let's determine the average number of days on the market a home in your price range and neighborhood takes to sell." Smart sales professionals focus on the average days to sell.

Step 3. "Let's find the right Realtor to sell your home." Tell your customer that a good Realtor will not bother to list your home unless it can be sold in a reasonable amount of time.

Step 4. "Take your home's appraisal information and use it to your advantage." If your customer's goal is to sell his or her home rather than just list it, this is the measurement he or she should focus on.

Step 5. "Take your home-selling to-do list seriously." Realtors know what trimming trees or removing bulky furniture can do to accelerate the sale of a customer's home

Step 6. "You must be willing to provide your Realtor with a lock box and reasonable access to your home." Customers must understand that most Realtors will not bother looking at a home that requires a 24-plus hour advance appointment.

Once customers are convinced this is the best road map to selling their existing home, they will beat the average time it takes to sell their home.


Author Information
John Rymer is the founder of New Home Knowledge, which offers sales training for new home builders and real-estate professionals. He can be reached at john@newhomeknowledge.com.


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