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How brokers can prepare for sales, post the COVID-19 lockdown

[ecis2016.org] What are the efforts that property brokers must take now, to boost sales and be ready to seal as many deals as possible, once the COVID-19 lockdown is lifted? We examine…

Real estate brokers are having a hard time right now. Even as the Coronavirus pandemic and the subsequent lockdown have restricted their chances of closing deals and making any profits at present, the pandemic threatens to make their future survival a challenge for most.

You are reading: How brokers can prepare for sales, post the COVID-19 lockdown

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This is one way to look at it. However, as the lockdown forces people to stay indoors and, consequently, realise the worth of owning a home of their own, there is a near-consensus among experts that the COVID-19 crisis will prompt people to reconsider their investment choices, reinstating more focus on real estate. ‘Generation rent’ is also likely to change its approach and view permanent ownership in better light, in the post-pandemic world. In other words, housing purchases would gain traction. Consequently, real estate brokers who have done the hard work during these hard times, would be able reap the benefits of their efforts.

In the meantime, what are the efforts that property brokers must take, to be ready to seal deals, as and when the time arises?

How brokers can prepare for sales, post the COVID-19 lockdown

Check your database

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A real estate brokerage is likely to have a large database, thanks to years of running a successful business. This database might be sitting untapped, because when the business was running as usual, your attention may have been occupied elsewhere. Invest your time and energy, to identify potential leads from this database. Make a list of those who can be converted into potential clients or buyers and communicate with them. Mining this data, could also provide you with valuable insights, which you can incorporate in your overall business practice.

Keep your sellers motivated

Those, who were thinking of selling their property in 2020, may find themselves in a difficult position, owing to the current situation. It is crucial for real estate agents to keep such people engaged, in a positive manner. How can one do this? Ask the sellers to come up with better pictures for their listed property. You can also ask them to make a video walk-through that could be added to the original listing. Give them feedback on the material they send and try to make improvements.

If you see any scope for improvement, in the manner the property could be staged, make that suggestion. Small changes and repairs can make a sea change in the appearance of a property during virtual tours. Encourage the sellers to make such changes, so that they are ready with a better property to sell.

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Keep the buyers interested

While most people might not be buying homes at present, many may certainly be thinking about investing. Since they are considering property investments in future, you have to aggressively promote your services and products, through marketing campaigns and social media presence, to make a lasting impression on the buyer’s mind. Additionally, you could conduct or participate in buyer-centric webinars, to answer buyers’ queries. This will also help you to get in touch with your buyer and seller base.

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Strengthen communication with your clients

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Your execution-centric work schedule may not have allowed you as much time to connect with your clients, as you would have liked. Although the lockdown has brought with it several challenges, this period also affords you the liberty to work on aspects that are key to the growth of your business. Client communication is one such thing. You may already have started increasing your presence on social media and other networking tools like emails, webinars, etc. It is important to note that your clients too may be working from home and would be eager to listen to you. Combine your online communication strategy with personal communication. In other words, do everything it takes to leave an impression – virtually, as well as personally. This will include focusing on important calls, connecting with people whose insights will help you to improve your business, and invest in yourself to become a better communicator. All these measures, will bring you closer to your ultimate goal of improving your business once the lockdown is lifted.

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Consider your clients’ limitations 

You are not serving them right as a broker, if you fail to give due importance to the limitations your clients might face. Let us understand this through an example. Virtual tours of a property could do wonders if they are part of the listing. You have been asking the sellers to create a virtual tour of the property to make improvements on this front. You may be surprised to learn that some of your clients not only find it difficult to do, they are also unwilling to learn.

Similarly, there may be serious buyers out there who may be more comfortable with browsing through pictures of the property on the listing site, rather than going through the virtual tour.

To put it succinctly, all that seems easy to us might not be easy for your clients even if it is day-to-day easy technology. Be mindful of those facts and serve your clients accordingly.

Make your listings picture perfect

Most of all, despite the many tools that make it convenient for buyer to check every part of the property, most buyers still love photographs. They would, in fact prefer if these pictures do not have editing and clever modifications. Keep your listing updated with plenty of photos, without going overboard and changing it regularly.

FAQs

What is a virtual tour?

A virtual tour is basically a 360-degree view of the property, providing a sequence of photos or videos. A bespoke virtual tour would invariably give the user utmost control over what he wants to see and at which speed.

How can brokers conduct site visits during the lockdown?

Brokers can offer virtual site visits, during the lockdown. For this, the broker can ask the sellers to provide pictures of their listed property or to make a video walk-through.

Source: https://ecis2016.org/.
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Source: https://ecis2016.org
Category: Lifestyle

Debora Berti

Università degli Studi di Firenze, IT

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