If it isn’t in Writing, it Doesn’t Exist
Agents can easily be lolled into believing that their buyers or sellers are committed to their flawed strategies and can’t be swayed. Nothing could be further from the truth. Think about it. How good can their strategy be when:
1. They have very little experience in buying and/or selling
2. Their strategy isn’t even in writing
Take advantage of this situation by physically getting your clients involved in the close. All you need for the Ben Franklin Close is a blank sheet of paper, draw a line down the middle of the paper, and on one side put a “plus” sign and on the other side put a “minus” sign. Ask your client to write down all the reasons why they should buy (or sell) the home. Don’t forget, you must help them come up with the “plus” list as much as possible. Then, ask your client to think of the reasons why they shouldn’t move forward. Don’t help them with the negatives. Don’t say anything! If it’s logical for them to go ahead with the transaction it will be obvious. And you didn’t say it, they wrote it. It’s surprising the number of times that an agent will say “I had a conversation with them, and I explained all that.” You cannot violate the written law . Quite simply, if it isn’t in writing, it doesn’t exist.
Seller Close #21: The Short Sale Close
For many underwater homeowners, especially those that are delinquent on their mortgage payment, banks are offering a gift from heaven. Where a homeowner can’t afford their home, most banks are willing to let them homeowner short sale their home with no further liability to the bank. Not to be outdone, for the next 18 months, the IRS is also giving a gift from heaven. Instead of paying taxes on forgiven mortgage debt the lucky homeowner can short sale their home and the IRS will relieve the homeowner of all tax liability. For example, if the bank forgives $300,000 in liability the IRS will waive an average of $60,000 in income tax due.
So why are some distressed sellers hesitant to jump all over this opportunity? Because many of them aren’t paying their mortgage and feel they can live in their home free of charge indefinitely.
Your response to these sellers if they don’t sell now should be as follows:
1. The rules could change because the banks don’t have to forgive the debt and this could cost them hundreds of thousands of dollars.
2. The banks could still foreclose then they would owe hundreds of thousands of dollars plus some and bankruptcy maybe the only solution
3. They could get stuck keeping the home and paying hundreds of thousands of dollars more than it’s really worth. This is just like re-purchasing the home at a ridiculous price that nobody else would ever pay.
4. If they don’t sell, they get many more sleepless night. Piece of mind is priceless isn’t it?
5. even if the banks are the bad guys, two wrongs don’t make a right. Even if the seller could stick the bank with a bigger loss, it’s always better to do the right thing.
Buyer Close #21: The Great American Dream Close
Don’t believe the recent reports foreshadowing the death of the American dream. Home ownership always has and always will be a basic desire for people. It’s important to remind buyers who are delaying a purchase of all the benefits of home ownership. consider the following:
1. Pride in Ownership. How often have you heard someone say I “rented” my home for 10 years?
2. Perception. People perceive a “renter” as being temporary and sometimes make less of an effort with tenants than they do with homeowners in the neighborhood.
3. Personalization. When a home is yours, the money and time you put in the home are a reflection of who you are. It’s not the same when you rent.
4. Sense of Accomplishment. People tend to believe that you haven’t really “arrived” or “made it” until you own your own house.
5. Long Term Investment Opportunities. A home is not a car. Even in the worst of times, your home will eventually appreciate in value and will be paid off. In other words, eventually you save the rent cost and have an appreciating asset.
6. Sense of Belonging. One of the fundamentals humans need is a sense of belonging or social needs. If everyone else in the neighborhood owns and you don’t, then you’re not likely fit in as easily.
7. Finally, it’s inevitable that you will own if you can afford it. If you wait, it will cost a lot more.