It looks like we are finally seeing some light at the end of the COVID-19 tunnel. As more and more states end shelter-in-place orders and loosen restrictions, our lives are at least beginning to become somewhat normal again. In the majority of states, real estate agents are once again allowed to buy and sell houses, and most markets are starting to pick back up again. Although there are still fears of a second wave of COVID-19 and it’s important to take the proper precautions, I believe this is great news for our industry.
What does that mean for real estate agents? Well, if you’re like many agents, your business probably has taken a hit over the past two months. You may even still be taking a hit. However, now is the time to surge forward. It’s time to safely gain back as much ground as we possibly can for 2020.
I’m sure you’ve seen a lot of memes and jokes out there about 2020 being the worst year ever. After COVID-19 it’ll be killer bees, then 5G sickness, and then aliens will invade and wipe us all out. However, the most extreme calamities we can imagine notwithstanding, the year is still young and there is plenty of time to salvage your business and even thrive.
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Knowing you for the productive, forward thinking agent that you are, I know that you took advantage of the last two months as much as possible. If you’ve been following the advice we’ve been giving at Smart Inside Sales, then you’ve been nurturing your existing leads by offering to help, becoming a community connector, and being the bearer of good, positive news in the face of the negativity.
Right now is when all that work starts paying off.
Being a community connector during times of hardship isn’t only the thoughtful, right thing to do, it also means that the people in your sphere think of you as someone they can count on when things are tough. You’ve built up trust, which means that they are more likely to think of you when it comes time to buy or sell their home. It also makes them think of bringing your name up if a friend or family member is thinking of buying or selling a home.
If you were consistently reaching out to your network, then you should know of at least some leads who are looking to buy or sell now that things have settled down a bit. Now is the time to reach out to them if you haven’t already.
When contacting leads or prospects, you should still be focused on how they are holding up, what their situation is, etc. Many people are still out of work, sick, or going through difficult times. Continue to come from the angle of helping out (which is really the angle you should be coming from in any situation, COVID or no COVID).
Start using the credit you’ve built up with your sphere over the past two months. They know they can trust you. They now have proof that you are looking to assist them in solving their particular problem instead of only making a sale. Plus, hopefully, their own situation is improving to the point where they want to starting acting and moving forward with buying or selling a home.
Be an expert for your market. That means know what restrictions are still in place and understand the dos and don’ts of showing and selling homes as we move back towards a more recognizable world. People are still going to be a bit apprehensive, and you have to be there to put their nerves to rest.
It would be a good idea to continue offering virtual showings, as well as to offer the capability to complete as much of the home buying process online as possible. Even if you are allowed to meet or show houses in person, give your leads and clients the option to do so or not, so they can feel as comfortable as possible during this transition time period.
Now is the time to move forward full steam ahead. Virus or no virus, economic slowdown or no economic slowdown, there are still people who need to buy and sell homes. Like I’ve said in the past, people are still having families who need a bigger house, people still need to downsize, people are still moving for work, and people are still getting out of their parents’ homes.
You’ve got a solid sphere, you’ve built up your network, and you’re itching to help people move forward with their lives. Now’s the time to go to work.
In the words of Walt Disney, “I heard there’s going to be a recession. I’ve decided not to participate.”
It’s in your hands to make the most of this year that you can.