This is right when you meet them in person for the first time, or even just talk to them on the phone. Use these questions to cut right to the chase and not waste any time asking them about unnecessary topics. This will prepare to directly address the biggest concerns and problems when you give the listing presentation.
Start Off By Asking Them, “In Your Opinion, Why Didn’t It Sell”?
This is important so you know what their expectations are and what they need to have addressed. Of course, they are not the expert and may be completely off base. This question will also go a long way to determine if the seller is even worth working with. If they seem like someone who is going to have unreal expectations and can’t be talked down, they aren’t worth working with.
It should give you insight into if they had been willing to work to stage their home properly and put in enough effort to show their home.
“How Many Showings Have You Had and What Was Your Agent’s Reaction?”
This question is going to give you an important reading into the situation. If there has been a bunch of showings, that is not a bad sign. It’s a good thing. This means that people are interested in the property.
Feedback from other agents and their customers can help redefine some seller objections and address them better. If the agent or customers showed concern over a certain area or an outdated part, a price reduction could be all that was needed. If staging was the problem, you just need to illustrate to them how important it is to show a well-staged home.
“What Type of Marketing Has Your Home Received?”
If their home seems to have been properly advertised, then it is another sign the price is too high and maybe the condition of the home is poor. That’s a bad warning sign, since it may demonstrate they are unwilling to lower their price and it will be a process.
Most likely the other agent did the minimum by just listing the property and submitting the listing to the company to be included in their standard advertising schedule.
This will give you the opportunity to create that point of difference with the other agent. Send them your detailed marketing steps and everything you offer.
“Did You Have Any Offers?”
This may be the biggest factor. If they’ve been turning down offers, it shows they aren’t flexible and if you decide it’s worth it, you are going to have to really do a lot in order to convince them to lower the price. Find out what the offers were and how they were structured. With new information, you will be better equipped to present a pricing and marketing plan that positions this property to sell quickly.
“Will You Help Market and Show the Home More Effectively?”
They may need to repaint some things or even make a couple of repairs. They might need to touch up the yard. This is where they HAVE to work with you. It’s not like the listing price, where you can invoke strategies to convince them to lower it. An owner who doesn’t put the work in is not worth the time or effort. Simple touch-ups can turn the sale around.
There are more you can ask, but these are what you should focus on, to quickly get a read into this listing.