Creating a Real Estate Expired Listing Letter
If you’re lucky enough to be a Vulcan 7 client, you’ll start each morning with the newest (and best) Expired and FSBO (For Sale by Owner) leads at your fingertips. We’ve written extensively about mastering the world of FSBO, including:
But for today, we’re focusing on the unique needs and mindset of Expireds, those homeowners with homes that failed to sell and are no longer listed on the MLS.
After you finish your second cup of coffee and, perhaps, spend an hour or so role-playing with an accountability partner, you’re ready to plug in your Vulcan 7 dialer to start prospecting. Regardless of whether you can immediately connect via phone, you’ll likely add other prospecting “touchpoints” to your business development strategy. For today’s discussion, the most obvious is the real estate expired listing letter.
INSIDE THE MIND OF A SELLER OF AN EXPIRED LISTING
Agents typically lack knowledge about several aspects concerning sellers of expired listings. This includes information about the seller’s chosen listing agent, their motivation for selling, reasons for the home not selling, and their current state of mind. It is important to note that assumptions about the seller’s agent being incompetent should not be automatically made, as the agent may have a personal connection with the seller, such as being a family member. Additionally, assumptions that expired listing sellers are angry and frustrated should be avoided, as it is not wise to approach them with such assumptions. In summary, agents often lack information about the seller beyond basic facts, and it is crucial to avoid making assumptions about their circumstances.
Whether you’ve been selling real estate for a few years or decades, you understand the unique challenge (and opportunity) new expireds represent. Clearly, you might be dealing with someone frustrated and unhappy, even though you shouldn’t make that assumption as we mentioned above. After endless open houses, last-minute (and often inconvenient) showings, and shifting pricing strategies, the client is no further along than they were months ago when the process began.
Of course, therein lies the opportunity for, unless something has changed, you know the prospect is motivated. Perhaps even urgently motivated depending on their plans and dreams. You need to convince the prospect that you can help them figure out why their home did not sell and why you are the person to help them achieve their goal. And you need to navigate this process while, at the same time, not making them feel as if they made a massive mistake in hiring their most recent agent.
In an ideal world, you’ll be one of the first agents to connect over the phone. You’ve mastered your real estate scripts , and in the course of a few minutes, you’ve been able to secure a time to make a listing presentation. Of course, the world is not always ideal. Perhaps the homeowner has shut down for now and is not answering the phone. Or, even if you can connect, the client is not ready to commit to anything at that moment.
Now that you’ve completed your initial phone prospecting efforts, you might want to move on to a second step: An expired listing letter. The expired listing letter is, on a certain level, your formal sales pitch, your introduction, and your chance to make an excellent first impression. It can’t replace a well-crafted, scripted phone conversation. But it can serve to round out your sales pitch and maybe even be the thing that helps you get your foot in the door.
When it comes to creating a compelling expired listing packet, it’s essential to include a range of elements that leave a lasting impression. Here are five key components that will make your packet stand out:
- Timing: Timeliness is crucial in making a strong first impression. Ensure that your letter is sent promptly after receiving the new expired listing. If you’ve mentioned following up with a formal letter of introduction, make sure not to keep the client waiting.
- Empathy: Remember, you are dealing with someone who may be feeling discouraged and probably frustrated. It’s essential to convey empathy in your tone to build trust during this initial prospecting phase. Let them know you understand their situation and are here to help.
- Analysis: Offering valuable insights into why their home may not have sold is a critical aspect of your packet. Show your understanding of market conditions and provide a thoughtful analysis that inspires confidence in your ability to successfully sell their home.
- Vision: Express your unique perspective on how you would market their property and outline any innovative approaches you would take to advertising their listing. Paint a vivid picture of the possibilities that lie ahead with you as their agent.
- Succinctness: Keep your message concise and to the point. Avoid rambling about yourself; use bullet points to communicate the critical points mentioned above effectively. This will ensure that your story is easily understood and remembered
While these five elements form the foundation of a top-rate expired listing letter, it’s important to remember that a comprehensive packet presentation requires additional details. Consider including an outline of the packet’s contents in a logical order, providing a clear structure for the seller. Showcase your pricing philosophy, opinions on the previous agent’s pricing strategy, and evidence of your experience in the neighborhood or with similar homes. Don’t forget to include your best testimonials, a well-crafted marketing plan, and samples of your past successful marketing efforts. To add a personalized touch, attach a photo you’ve taken while touring the neighborhood to the front of the packet. This will leave a lasting impression and help the seller connect with you more personally.
By combining the elements of a top-rate expired listing letter with the thoroughness of a comprehensive packet presentation, you’ll create a compelling and persuasive presentation that sets you apart from other agents
The following is a sample expired real estate listing letter for your review.
Dear [Homeowner’s Name],
I hope this letter finds you well. I understand that your property at [Homeowner’s Address] was listed on the market previously but did not result in a successful sale. I want to take a moment to introduce myself and discuss how I can bring fresh energy and effective strategies to help you achieve your goal of selling your home.
My name is [Your Name], and I am a dedicated real estate professional with [X] years of experience in the [City/Region] market. I specialize in turning stagnant listings into successful sales by leveraging innovative marketing techniques, industry expertise, and a proactive approach to the entire selling process.
I recognize that selling a home can be a complex and often emotional experience, and I am committed to guiding you through every step of the journey. Here’s how I can make a difference:
- Comprehensive Market Analysis: I will provide a detailed analysis of your area’s recent sales and market trends. This will help us determine the most competitive listing price for your property.
- Strategic Marketing Plan: I have a proven track record of developing effective marketing plans that showcase properties in the best possible light. This includes professional photography, virtual tours, and online advertising across various platforms to reach a wider audience of potential buyers.
- Open Communication: I believe in transparent communication throughout the selling process. You will be kept informed about showings, feedback, and any developments related to your property.
- Negotiation Expertise: My strong negotiation skills will ensure you get the best possible deal when offers come in. I am dedicated to safeguarding your interests and achieving a successful sale.
If you’re open to exploring the potential of relisting your property with a fresh perspective, I would be delighted to schedule a no-obligation consultation to discuss how I can assist you. Let’s work together to breathe new life into your home sale journey.
Don’t hesitate to contact me at [Phone Number] or [Email Address]. I look forward to the opportunity to help you achieve your real estate goals.
A compelling real estate expired listing letter is a great way to differentiate yourself from other agents. It helps to build confidence and set the prospect’s mind at ease about your capabilities.
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