It’s no secret that what should be a more-than-robust housing market is lagging due to a lack of homes to buy. Homeowners are moving less since the Great Recession and with prices going up, they’re recouping lost value or enjoying equity growth.
So, what do you do when there’s demand — but no supply? How do you reach potential sellers to satisfy buyers facing an inventory shortage?
One way is to help sellers appreciate the benefits of a sellers’ market. This is their chance to tap into the value of their home. If they’ve stayed put because of a loss of equity, they now have the opportunity to cash-in, make their move, and upgrade to a new home.
This is particularly true for first time homebuyers who find they need more room to accommodate a growing family. At the other end of the seller’s spectrum are those older homeowners looking to downsize but have held off waiting for prices to rebound.
How to Find Those Potential Sellers
1. MLS – Start by searching the MLS for withdrawn or expired listings. Contact the owners and update them on current market conditions. Explain that while their property may have been priced too high previously, they stand to profit should they decide to sell now. Depending on which market you’re in, they may actually even have to choose between competing offers.
2. Zillow’s Make Me Move® – This feature lets homeowners post the price they’d be willing to sell for. Filter these listings to identify homes in your community and reach out to the potential seller directly. Let them know that you represent people with a strong interest in buying in their neighborhood.
3. Open House – With an open house we think first of buyers, but how many of those buyers will need to sell? What about those neighbors who are just looking? Do they know the current value of their home? Would they consider selling? Would they like an estimate free of charge?
4. Door Knockers – If you’re unable to speak directly with the owner, leave a door knocker with current value statistics for the neighborhood and offer a free estimate. If you have buyers interested in a neighborhood or a particular home, reach out to the homeowners to see if they’d entertain the idea of selling.
5. Rentals – Look for homes currently being used as rentals. Are the owners aware of the current market and possible profit they could make by selling now?
6. FSBO – Reach out to homeowners trying to sell on their own. They may be at the point where they’re realizing FSBO isn’t so easy — or you could explain the benefits of working with a Realtor® like you.
7. Empty Nesters – Run a demographic search to identify possible empty nesters in your area who may be ready to move.
8. Off-Market Listings – Work with other Realtors® to get a heads-up on homes that have not yet been listed — sometimes referred to as coming soon, off-market, or pocket listings.
9. Social Media – Post about current market conditions on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, and other social media outlets and offer free estimates to any followers who may consider selling.
10. Past Clients – Reach out to clients who you worked with five years ago or more to see if they’re ready to make a move.
Once you’ve found a seller, help them find their next home.
- Approved to Move™ – Get buyers fully approved financing so they can make an offer on-the-spot with Embrace’s Approved to Move™.
- Alternative Loans – Learn about alternative loan products such as the 203(k) and 203(k) Streamline which enable buyers to purchase a home in need of upgrades or renovation. This can be one way to help those homebuyers looking to upgrade that may not have sufficient funds. Having a good contractor to recommend could help seal the deal for these buyers who are willing to sell.
- New Construction – Even though the rising cost of materials is slowing new construction, there is development going on which may be of interest to sellers who are looking to upgrade.
To prosper under these market conditions, you’ll need to tap into all your marketing resources and expertise.