How Customers Want to Buy New Homes

Becoming familiar with your customers' needs ann wants before they ask for them may be the key to selling your next home.

By Heather McCune, Editor in Chief | January 11, 2001
Heather McCune's Editorial Archives

Curious about what customers expect from a salesperson? New home sales consultant, trainer and author Myers Barnes offers some insights from his days as vice president of a large home building company and from his experience working with and training new home sales specialists today.

In exit surveys and customer satisfaction reports, buyers always say and want the same things, according to Barnes. Their key desires:



  • "Listen to me." Understand that listening is the first commandment of sales because listening is learning. Listening establishes the prospects' needs and helps you ferret out their reasons for wanting a new home. Are they looking for security? Status? Are they moving up in the world or scaling down? What is their passion? From their viewpoint, what is motivating them?



  • "Give me a good reason why your neighborhood and home is perfect for me." If you have questioned skillfully and listened carefully, you will have an understanding of how to present the benefits (hot buttons) that match each customer's unique set of circumstances.



  • "Show me I am not a pioneer. Tell me how someone similar to me succeeded by owning a home/homesite in this or a similar community." Few buyers want to feel as though they are the first or the only, so restore your customers' confidence by confirming their decisions to purchase. Use third party testimonials, show them a published article and demonstrate that people just like them are happy with their decisions.



  • "Tell me how you will serve me after you help me become an owner." Some people inherently don't trust salespeople because previously they have been sold nothing but empty promises. Express to them the commitment to customer satisfaction that is shared by you and your company.



  • "Make sure you convey to me that the price is fair." Buyers want reassurance that the price they are paying is the absolute best value, as they per-ceive it. Remember that it is a misconception that customers are only concerned with the lowest price. Equally if not more important is your timely deliv-ery, consistent follow up, faithful follow through, and commitment to your customer's best interest.



  • "Don't argue with me. Even if I am wrong, I don't want to be told so." Keep in mind the adage: A man convinced against his will is of the same opinion still.



  • "Show me the best way to pay." Of the six top fears for acquiring real estate, two of them cen-ter on financial concerns. Your customers need in-formation and help in understanding financial alternatives.



  • "Give me a choice. Let me decide, but make consultative recommendations. Don't confuse me. The more complicated it is, the less likely I am to buy. I may be nervous and need you to assure my decision with facts that help me feel confident."



  • "Deliver to me what you sold me. I've just given you my hard-earned money (security) and, in essence, have traded my money for your promises. If I give you my money and you disappoint me, I may never do business with you again or give you referrals."



  • "Follow up with me in the manner in which I prefer to communicate."

    Customers are beginning to shop differently. They are using the Internet to begin and end their buying processes. If that's how they communicate, don't waste their time contacting them with antiquated methods of follow up.

    Customers don't take the time to consciously critique your sales process. They just say no.

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    Heather McCune is the Editor-in-Chief for Professional Builder and Luxury Home Builder. Please email her with any comments or questions regarding her column.

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