Expired Listings Spell O-P-P-O-R-T-U-N-I-T-Y
Increased competition and inventory in the real estate industry is seeing an unprecedented number of expired listings –- properties that are not sold during the term of a listing agreement with a licensed real estate professional. Many sellers, disillusioned with the sales process, try the for-sale-by-owner route. Others become highly discriminating in their search for a new real estate agent.
Real estate software tools and marketing efforts are designed to assist sellers in areas where market time is increasing, list-to-sale ratios are decreasing, and previous attempts to sell a property with a real estate professional are unsuccessful. A new wave of real estate agents is seizing an opportunity to grow their business by building their listing inventories with the unsold, expired listings of their competitors.
“Many agents don’t do much to market properties,” says Ryan. “Business has been slow and many consumers think that all real estate agents are the same. Preparation of the house and staging are important to consider.” Ryan is an Accredited Staging Professional and uses staging expertise to counsel sellers how to ready their properties for sale.
“The market has closed up” says Ryan. “Getting into the game offers me a chance to develop discipline and accountability. Players work with partners and we report to each other daily to keep ourselves on our toes.”
The RedX software imports expired listings from the user’s multiple listing service and couples the listing data with tax record and other contact information including seller’s name, address, and telephone number. The RedX automates a process that can be time consuming and labor intensive: It scrubs the telephone number against the national “Do Not Call” register and cross checks the listing with new listing data on the MLS. Previous expired listing downloads are flagged daily when expired listings are relisted by previous agents or new agents.
Kathleen Nagro, ABR, CRS, GRI, e-PRO, is using The RedX to build her listing inventory in the Naples FL, market area. Nagro recently moved to Florida from Connecticut. Nagro says that The RedX reduces the time it takes to update her database daily; a 90-minute process to gather data sufficient for a half hour’s worth if calls is completed in mere seconds with The RedX software.
Christine Willard is a 26-year veteran associate broker and a leading agent in Greensboro, NC, where expired listings have been a major part of her business for most of those years. Expired listings there reached 67.4% in the first four months of this year, versus an historical 50% expired rate, says Willard. Greensboro is located in The Triad area of North Carolina, a region that has seen major economic setbacks with downturns in the tobacco, apparel, and furniture industries.
Forty percent of the Willard’s listing inventory is drawn from expired listings. She hears four major complaints from sellers on the expired listing rolls:
1. 50% of the sellers claim that they did not have heard from their real estate agent regularly. Many say that they never heard from the agent after the property was listed.
2. Brochure box is empty.
3. Agent who listed the property never showed it.
4. Agent did not offer feedback on showings.
Willard is a listing agent who concentrates her efforts on listings management and marketing. She only works with buyers who are interested in seeing one of her own listings.
“You may never see my showing this house,” she tells them. “I concentrate on marketing my listings. I do not drive buyers around town on the weekends showing them properties. How can I market you home if I am busy with buyers?”