[ecis2016.org] Knowledge about similar and competing real estate projects is crucial for a broker, to ensure successful sales. We examine how realty agents can deal with such queries from customers
“Addressing queries about competing projects has been my biggest failure in negotiating deals with prospective home buyers,” admits D Shetty, a broker active in the north Bengaluru market. “I know about the three to four projects that I am selling but to answer queries about projects of other builders in the same micro-market is tricky, especially when the client insists that those projects have better value for money,” he explains. Shetty’s experience is echoed by many brokers operating across India. Most of the time, brokers and sales staff have no response, when the potential buyer talks about the strengths of other competing projects in the vicinity. As it happened with Diwakar Jain in Gurgaon, who had no idea about the project in the vicinity that the potential home buyer was talking about, all that he could say was: “Har project ka kuchh na kuchh toh strength hota hi hai (It is obvious that every project has some strength or other).”
You are reading: How brokers can address queries about competing projects
However, such uninformed responses are a big put-off in today’s highly competitive market, where the home buyers do a thorough cost and benefit analysis, before making a final purchase decision. A look at the global matured markets, like the US and the UK, indicate that the successful real estate agents are those who are well read about the market, its physical, social and economic infrastructure, projects to be sold and competing projects in the vicinity.
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How to identify the USPs of a project?
Selling a real estate project is no more about matchmaking between the buyer and the seller. It requires application of mind and knowledge about the market, as well as competing markets and projects. A broker will have to do a thorough research and use analytical skills, to make a lasting impression on potential buyers. Once you have the knowledge about the market/micro-market, project to be sold and the competing projects, you become a specialist, with the potential to invite clients through word-of-mouth publicity.
Every housing project has something to be talked about – a USP that makes it stand out in the crowded market place. A seller or agent should ask oneself what is the USP that you could impress upon the potential buyers:
- Does the developer have a strong brand value that can act as a USP?
- Is the brand reliable enough to make an impression and justify the premium?
- Is the resale value of the project higher than those of other developers in similar competing markets?
- Are you playing on the competitive price advantage of the project in the affordable category?
- Is the loading lesser than other competing projects in the market?
- Does the project offer better lifestyle and amenities?
- Are schools and hospitals closer to your projects than other competing projects?
- Are employment hubs close to the project that you are selling?
- Are infrastructure projects like metro trains at a walking distance from your project?
- Are reputed banks offering good home loan deals to the given project?
How to win clients in a competitive market place?
It is imperative for the salesperson to do a thorough research about the micro-market where the project is located. Chances of a client saying yes, are much higher if you have answers to all the questions that are relevant to the home buyer. Put yourself into the shoes of the prospective buyer who would gather all the information. Give him all the relevant information about the micro-market and all the projects that fit his given budget.
[ecis2016.org] Information that brokers should keep handy, while dealing with clients
Make a comparative data analysis to present your case; be it about the neighbouring micro-market or the competing projects in the given micro-market. A SWOT analysis of the competing projects can help to gain the buyers’ trust, as the buyer will feel reassured that his home buying decision is the best.
Knowledge also equips a real estate agent to focus on the strengths of the project to be sold, whether it is the brand value of the builder, or resale value of the given brand’s projects in other parts of the city, or price advantage if it is a budget housing project.
Lastly, do not lie about your projects since today’s home buyers make conscious efforts to check references and evaluate several projects before making a final purchase decision. The key, for sellers, is to showcase the strengths in a comparative analysis, in terms of the project, its pricing, value for money, etc.
(The writer is CEO, Track2Realty)
What is the USP of a real estate project?
The USP of a project can be its price, location, amenities, construction quality and other such factors.
How can a broker best explain the advantages of a project?
A broker can perform a SWOT analysis, to explain the advantages of investing in a specific unit.
How can one obtain information about a particular real estate project or neighbourhood?
One can make a physical visit to the site, or search for information online on forums, property listing portals like ecis2016.org or the state’s RERA website, etc.
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