1. Communicate is key!

Stay in close contact with your sellers to keep them abreast of how the industry is impacted by regulations surrounding the virus. Explain the status of our market, and discuss the pros and cons of staying on the market, changing their status to temporarily off the market, or withdrawing their listing. Be proactive by keeping in close contact with clients to monitor if their financial situation or desire to move has changed. 

2. Review the status of the Charlotte Metro real estate market.

Use some of your free time to take another look at your online marketing and brochure box to make sure both properly convey every feature of your listing. Promotion of properties should tell the full story of the home and all it has to offer, both inside and out, especially now that in-person showings are risky or not allowed. 

It’s even more important in today’s market to virtually promote features, upgrades, updates and unique benefits buyers should know about. Make sure that each of your properties has a brochure box with a features list since buyers are more likely than ever to do drive-bys before scheduling.

3. Engage with your clients

Show your clients that you are working even harder to get their home sold by embracing creative strategies. Invite them to create a “Top 10 Reasons Sellers Love Their Home” list. Encourage them to ask their children (if appropriate) to participate or to make their own list and create artwork to go with it. 

It doesn’t have to be 10 reasons, but make sure it’s full of positive features that enable buyers to picture themselves making memories of their own in your listing. The list enables you to quote sellers as they share bonus insights about the neighbors and subjective features that you aren’t able to verify and include in your own Realtor-created brochure language. 

You could even invite them to create their own video tour to use in your social media posts and online marketing (in which the sellers walk through their home and share features).

4. Coach sellers in analyzing their homes

Invite sellers to play “make-believe buyers.” Encourage them to step outside and analyze their home as if they’re about to pull into the driveway for the very first time. Coach them to look at their home from the inside out with a critical eye and make a list of noticeable flaws.

They should focus first on curb appeal improvements (starting at the front of the house and moving through the main living areas), prioritizing enhancements they can start to make — ones that would have the most impact on improving showing appeal. 

As they walk through their home, ask them to visualize how two buyers and a Realtor would fit through the living spaces, and plan to clear large furniture or unnecessary items that crowd the rooms.

5. Have frank conversations about pricing and their motivation

Send your sellers listings to review homes with similar features and of homes in their same price tier so they can better understand how they rank compared to their competition. Also send closed comparables, making a special note of how long it took them to get under contract (as well as their sold vs. original list price). 

Emphasize the importance of appropriate pricing in getting their homes sold despite current world conditions. None of us know with certainty what the crisis will do to the real estate market. Have those tough conversations sooner than later to determine what price would be one that the seller would accept to get the sale behind them.

Given the current unpredictable climate, there might not be any “wiggle room.” Remind sellers that if buyers need closing costs, they could be added to the purchase price (if the appraisal is not a concern). A price reduction combined with these tips could get you at the virtual closing table a lot sooner.