As you work to close listings, sellers will often raise a variety of objections. To win more deals you must learn how to overcome these objections, including two of the most common ones: listing price and commission rate.
But before we address those objections, it’s important to remember that you DO NOT want to win every listing – because you only want to win every listing with a motivated and reasonable seller who is willing to negotiate a sellable price.
There are certain situations where “no” is the most powerful word in your listing presentation. To say “no” to a seller requires having the confidence to understand that you’re not missing out even if another agent takes the listing and completes the sale. It requires the confidence to remind yourself of the times you did say “yes” and later wished you had said “no.”
Of course, it also helps your confidence to have a steady stream of new leads so you can easily move on to the next opportunity. And once you qualify sellers that meet your requirements, you can begin handling their objections and close more listings.
The 2 Most Common Listing Objections
Successful listing agents make three times more money than buyer agents, which is why you need to learn what to say to ensure your prospect agrees with your recommendations. Learn how to present yourself, watch your body language, be confident, ask for the deal, and don’t oversell. And learn how to handle objections.
Of course, you are going to encounter many objections as you work to securing listings, but rest assured in today’s marketplace there are two you’re going to get every time. We suspect you can handle the “I don’t know your company” or the “I have a friend who is a relator” objections, but to be a successful listing agent, there are two you must be able to handle every time:
I need to sell my home for more money
Consider the following approach to overcome this objection.
Realtor: “I understand, which is why I’ve prepared you a Comparative Market Analysis. There are two parts to this research. A) What we can list and sell your home for and B) What you desire to sell your home for. We need to decide right now if you want to sell your home or just list it for sale.
Let them answer.
Realtor: What I do is sell your home for the maximum price possible in the shortest time possible and here’s how I do it. First, I tell you the truth. Most agents don’t have many listings so listing with them is life or death – and they will tell you anything to get the listing. But buyers determine value by comparison shopping. They look at your price and features and compare it to similarly sold homes. Make sense?
Let me show you…this home is like yours, same number of bedrooms, baths, square footage, neighborhood, and here’s what it sold for ___. It’s important we use “sold” data because that’s what buyers are willing to pay, not listed data as that’s not reality.
Now if we price your home above the market, two things will invariably happen.
1) other agents will feel you are not motivated and not show it. It will sit. Buyers who find it organically will realize it’s over-priced and they too will ignore it.
2) If we then drastically reduce the price, we will have missed our best opportunity in the proper price range as buyers will think there’s something wrong with it.
Do you understand?
Let them answer.
Realtor: Ok, so what price are you thinking? Remember we want the buyer to want to buy your home and not another one on the market.
Let them answer.
Realtor: Ok, may I ask why you feel your home is worth X more than similar homes that have sold in your neighborhood?
Let them answer.
Realtor: Ok, did you add those things to increase the value of your home for resell or did you add them for your enjoyment?
Let them answer.
Realtor: Now imagine you are the buyer. If you could purchase a similar home for less money, do you think you’d use that savings to add features that you wanted? Understand the buyer may not care about your X_feature. He may rip it out or it may have no value to him. That’s why I recommend a price of $___.
Based on what you now know, if you sign the listing agreement, I can go to work for you and help you get your home sold in the timeframe that you desire.
Alternatively, you could tell the seller that the price you are proposing is what the comps indicate – and propose meeting you in the middle if they agree to reduce the price to X in 15 days. Assure them that you’d rather they reject 10 offers that are too low than never get a single one.
Will you cut your commission?
Again, consider this approach.
Realtor: No. Do you have any other questions or are you ready to sign the Agreement?
They likely will have another question, but they may just chuckle and sign the Agreement. If not, just wait for them to speak first.
Realtor: Well yes, I understand that other agents are willing to cut their commissions. There are many agents who are willing to do anything to get your listing. May I ask is there anything more valuable to you than your home? Is it your biggest asset? If the agent is willing to cut their value, how can they possibly represent your value when they are sitting across the negotiation table with a buyer and their representative? They’ve already discounted themselves so what’s going to stop them from discounting your home? I suspect they feel the value they offer is sub-standard. I work X hours a day and employ assistants. I will be tough and professional at the negotiation table, just as I am at the listing table. If you want someone in your corner who won’t back down, then I suspect you want me. Let’s sign the Agreement.
There may be times when shaving a point of commission does make sense, such as for a family member or if you have a chance to double-end the deal. In these instances, you may consider offering a different marketing package that requires less of your money invested in marketing. However, consider this: if you get the seller top dollar in minimum time, that 1% is easily recoverable to the seller – so it may not make sense to cut your commission.
There are no new objections. Script your answers to these two and learn them – because you’re going to get them every time. Every professional, including jet pilots, heart surgeons, professional musicians, and stand-up comics, uses a script. As a professional, it’s essential that you know what you are going to do and say, day in and day out, over and over again.
At ArchAgent, we are dedicated to helping you have the confidence to qualify your sellers – because we supply you with an unlimited number of leads. Check out our recently developed likely-to-list analytics, which help you build your pipeline and make it easier to pass on an unmotivated or unreasonable prospects.
Steve Cortez is a seasoned real estate professional with decades of experience and owner of ArchAgent. ArchAgent brings together the tools and resources the country’s top real estate agents rely on in a single package for a low cost.