As a Mentor, one of the biggest things I stress to my Students/Partners is that you can’t buy and flip houses in sloooow motion. As soon as a Seller calls you, you should fill out a Seller Information Sheet and schedule for the following day (within 24 Hours) an appointment to see the house. Most of the information that is needed on the Seller Information Sheet you can get directly from the Seller. I have been asked “How long do you talk to a Seller about their home?” Since this is your first communication with a Seller and you NEED to build rapport, you should be on the telephone for a long time. What does that mean to you?
I would suggest at least 30 minutes on the phone to talk to the Seller about their home, their life, where are they going…anything and everything you can think that you might have in common with the Seller. Sellers like to do business with people they like. So, if you are only on the telephone for 5 minutes, then did you build rapport or even completely ask all the questions that are on my Seller Information Sheet? Probably not. Call the Seller right back and ask ALL the questions on the Seller Information Sheet so that you will know what he/she wants for the house, why they are moving, where they are moving and when they want to leave.
What if the Seller doesn’t give you all the information? Then you need to look it up on the public records. You also need to immediately drive by the exterior of the home and if it is vacant, look in the windows and/or secure the home for some people. Sellers assume you have already driven by the house and you are to give them an Offer right over the phone without even knowing anything about the house. You want to know everything you can about the Seller, as the only thing that makes a great investment deal is a motivated Seller. If you don’t have one, then you won’t get the price you need to make it a great investment deal for either a flip or hold.
Recently, I dealt with one of the most difficult Sellers. A Partner and I wanted to go to his personal house in Orange City to get him to sign the Purchase Agreement WITHOUT seeing the inside of the 2nd house he owned. He insisted for us to wait. We overnighted the Purchase Agreement to him, based on the facts that we drove by the vacant home, looked in the windows and knew the values in the neighborhood. We called him to see if he would sign the Purchase Agreement and return it and he informed us that we could now get inside the house to see it. We went inside the house and immediately called him back. Again, we wanted to get him to sign the Purchase Agreement. He had an excuse that his daughter also had to sign and we even offered to drive it to her. In the end, he sold the house to the neighbor at the same $50,000 price that WE had negotiated, for a house worth $140k with minor repairs. He didn’t even allow us to counter our price. What is the lesson on this deal? Drive out to his house and just stop by and see if you can get him to sign it. What if he said no, can’t come in and/or no he won’t sign it right now? Well, we lost the deal anyway so what do you have to lose? See if you can get both Sellers in one location for signing.
Another Student contacted me about a great short sale that had loads of equity in the home. She went by the house, took pictures and even secured the house with new locks since the house was unlocked. I sent the Seller the Offer overnight with a return envelope, at the asking price that she wanted. The Student went on vacation and I called the Seller several times. The Seller had built the rapport with the Student, not me, so I did not have the relationship that the Student had. I finally got a hold of the Seller and she informed me that she received another offer which was $6,500 higher than ours. I told her that we could match it, as the Student did get in to see the house after our last call. She refused to sign with us and said she was going with the other person. The Seller lived out of town, so how do you think you could have made this deal work? I believe constant contact with the Seller with long discussions to build better rapport. Obviously, the other investor offered higher, offered to pay for an attorney and could close in 10 days or less. Which doesn’t always happen due to inspection, title work and closing package; however, they locked the deal. Next time, I would suggest that listening longer as to what the concerns are with the Seller will get us the deal.
Another Student spoke with an elderly woman who owned a vacant home. The student gave her the amount that she wanted, prepared a purchase agreement and even went to her location where she lives. She then said that she had things in the house that she wanted and needed to wait 2 weeks prior signing the purchase agreement. The student did offer to help her move her belongings and extend the time of closing on our Purchase Agreement, however, she still wouldn’t sign. As to the status of this deal, I don’t know yet. The Student definitely needs to go again to the vacant house and see if there is any activity there and go to the Seller’s house and get the deal signed. However, obviously we did not really find out her main concern why she won’t since the contract, so it will take another 30 minutes at her house, face to face, to get this deal done.
My hope is that this article will deeply impress upon you the importance of a 24 hour contact with the Seller, going to the house, whether or not you can get in, filling out the Seller Information Sheet with all the information on the home, knowing your comparables and having the Purchase Agreement ready to be signed the day you go to the house. Let me ask you as a Buyer: Do you have to buy the house, if after the inspection you found out that your repairs are too much or you won’t make any profit on the house? No, you don’t have too; however, you have locked the house up for at least 15 days for inspection and no one else can buy the house. Also, if the price is not a good deal for you, you can always counter the Seller at that time, after inspection, to see if you can make it a win-win situation. If not, then you didn’t lose anything. You did receive the knowledge and the experience of dealing with a Seller, identifying repairs on the house and how to make the next deal better!
Please keep sending me your questions and topics that you would like to hear about, so I can be sure to keep feeding you with the information that you need in order to move confidently through 2016 and bring your Real Estate Dreams to Life!
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Kimberlee Frank Broker Short Sale Expert
Kimberlee Frank is known as “The Real Estate Junkie,” for her unique ability to find ways to creatively help buyers and sellers no matter which direction the real estate market is heading. Kimberlee had already worked as a legal administrator for an Attorney, Builder and Broker for 18 years when she began her Real Estate career in 1998. She dotted the i’s and crossed the t’s on hundreds of real estate transactions and thousands of documents, making her an expert in real estate documentation. Kimberlee’s success began in Fenton, Michigan. She specialized in selling, purchasing, renovating, retailing and lease optioning single-family homes. She has helped many sellers get rid of their “headaches” and helped many buyers find their dream homes!
Since 2003, she has specialized in foreclosures and short sales. After realizing how many families were being forced out of their homes due to financial difficulties, Kimberlee had a heartfelt obligation to use her experience to help those families. She has mitigated and closed over 500 short sales with the mortgage companies, saving Sellers from going into foreclosure. In 2006, Kimberlee and her family moved to Florida. She lives in Oviedo and her Sell Fast Realty Office is in Winter Springs, serving residential and commercial sellers and buyers in multiple counties in Central and Southern Florida.
Kimberlee is also a Trainer and Mentor and has created several different “How To” systems on real estate. Her unique strategies continue to educate real estate professionals across the country. If you have a proven system to help others out of hardship, why wouldn’t you duplicate it and share it with as many people as you can? Kimberlee continues to work with this philosophy!
Kimberlee Frank has been featured on ABC, NBC, FOX, CBS as well as Wall Street Journal, Newsweek, USA Today and numerous other publications. She is the bestselling author of “Big Ideas for Your Business” (Advantage Media 2009). She was also selected as the #1 Short Sale Expert by America’s Premiers Experts.
Please contact Kimberlee at her office at 407-888-3433 to schedule a Free Facts About Foreclosure Seminar. She has numerous testimonials from sellers, buyers and other real estate professionals who are familiar with her giving heart. Whether it is 1 person in need or 1,000…..Kimberlee will educate them on real estate and give them a solution with a peace of mind!
Are you unsure what to do with your house? Do you need to educate yourself about your options. Click the following link Free Facts About Foreclosure for more information.
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