Real Estate Investing with Brian Evans Jr.
"Some Quick Tips For Talking To Sellers"
First and foremost, you've got to be able to talk to sellers. If you're afraid to pick up that phone and call a seller you've never spoken to before and ask them those questions when prescreening, then you're probably going to have a hell of a time trying to do this business! This is a people’s business. You’re solving people problems, you must be able to talk to people, ask questions. You must be aggressive.
You must be able to talk to sellers just by picking up the phone and cold calling, to a degree. And hear that you're not cold calling. You're calling people back, when you're doing your direct marketing. You're calling people back that have called you, saying yeah, they’re interested in selling, or they’ve raised their hand. The marketing gets them to raise their hand, and now, let’s talk; let’s have a conversation. Don’t complicate that part of it, because that's all it is, is a conversation.
You're not trying to make friends or enemies. You're just gathering the facts and quickly determining if the seller is a prospect or a suspect. I'll tell you a story back in my early days investing. I went out to a seller’s house, walked around, and they offered me some water, a cup of coffee, or something; either way, I accepted it. We walked around and they were telling me stories and I'm talking to them, and here I am thinking I'm creating best friends.
We sit down and about an hour later, I end up finishing my coffee after seeing the house and talking, not so much about the house, but other stuff that really didn’t matter, thinking I'm building rapport, when in actuality what I was doing is doing the exact opposite; diminishing the rapport. These sellers do not want a new friend, they don’t want an enemy. They want somebody to solve their problem and this is extremely important. That was a huge learning experience for me, and I kept thinking, racking my brain, “Why didn’t that work? I was so nice. They were so nice. Everything was going perfectly.” But I was not giving competence in them because, was I there to solve their problem? Sure, but I wasn’t, because I wasn’t doing it in a professional manner.
So my advice to you is if somebody offers you a coffee or water, don’t accept it. You don’t need to be rude to them just say; ‘I appreciate the offer, thank you, but I don’t want to waste your time or mine. Let me just take a look at the house and see if I can solve your problem in buying this thing, and let’s go from there.” People respect that honesty. It’s important.
You should be able to determine if a seller is a prospect or suspect in 60 seconds or less. So I just gave you an extra minute, but ideally, you need to know immediately. If you're not doing the things to quickly determine if they’re a prospect or suspect by answering those questions, then you're not in control of the conversation. You're not asking the right questions.
Always remember that what comes out of your mouth goes into your bank account. What you say or don’t say determines your pay. Don’t be afraid to ask for things. You have to flap your lips in this business. If somebody says no, so what? Say it a different way, five more times in a different way. You'll be surprised.
Be aggressive and assertive and don’t be afraid to push the envelope with some of these sellers. The worst thing that anyone can say is no. Don’t let the fear of what not knowing what to say stop you in the beginning.
Get into the habit of asking a question with a question. For example, “Well, what would you offer me for my house?” “Well, what would you like me to offer you for your house?” Always answer a question with a question. That's a phenomenal habit. It’s a great negotiating strategy as well.
Don’t get diarrhea of the mouth when you speak. This can destroy rapport and kill a deal. So more or less, when I was at that person’s house talking away and they’re talking away, it was killing the deal. It was destroying our rapport. And this is going to come from practice, so I would rather you just screw up quickly. Make a bunch of calls and just be a moron on the phone and get rid of it and get it out of your system, so that we can start doing it right.
Diarrhea of the mouth is giving answers to questions that weren’t even asked and thinking you need to prove something to the person on the other end of the phone. You don’t have to prove a darn thing. You don’t need them, they need you, so set yourself up in that way where you can be in control of your business, of your life.
Don’t make promises you cannot keep. “Well Mr. Seller, I promise I'll be able to buy this house and stop this foreclosure,” or whatever it is you’re making, don’t promise it. I would rather say this, “I'll guarantee you I'll do everything I can to buy your house (and now I'm switching it on the seller). But again, I can’t control the future. I don’t have a crystal ball. I don't know what’s going to happen. But I can guarantee you this, that I'm going to bust my ass trying to make it happen. I want to buy your house and I'm a serious buyer, but the last thing I want to do is promise you it’s going to happen, because I just don’t know.”
So don’t make promises you can’t keep. Shoot it straight. Tell them the facts. You've got nothing to hide. Don’t beat around the bush. Have confidence with the way you speak. Confidence must exude from you in some degree or another, and that's nothing more than being in control of a conversation, and sometimes it’s talking less. It’s you asking the questions. The person, I believe, who’s asking the questions in a conversation is the one that's in control of the conversation.
Don’t let rejection get you down. This is a big one. Let it motivate you. Remember, this is a numbers game, and most sellers will be suspects. So what? Figure out the rejection quickly within the first 60 seconds, and your life is going to be so much smoother when you do this business. It’s when that rejection lingers out and you're trying to make a deal out of something that's not a deal that it starts to not be fun.
Don’t ever let the seller’s problem become your problem. This is a Star (*). A lot of people what to help everybody, and they want to do these things, but these sellers have problems, and the last thing you ever want to do is make that problem your problem, and it’s very easy to do. If they’re facing foreclosure and you try to buy this thing, and you do things the wrong way, which I don’t teach, and you go and get a new loan, and you pay them off, and all this stuff, now you've made the problem your problem.
The risk must always be on the seller or the buyer. It’s plain and simple, or you don’t do the deal. You're never going to use your credit. You're never going to write the check. The bottom line is don’t make the seller’s problem your problem. If you have questions about that, we can talk about it in more detail, but that's a biggie.
Always get inside the seller’s head before you get inside the seller’s house. No research until you've talked to the seller and determined whether they are a prospect or a suspect.
Use scripts whenever possible until speaking to sellers becomes second nature. What’s the big key to this? I still have scripts next to my desk. I don’t really look at them, but every now and then if I've got a brain fart or something, I might look at them if I'm talking to a seller. I don’t talk to sellers a whole lot, because we have systems in place and other people that help me do that, but when it’s time I do. When it’s time to get involved, I will. So don’t be afraid to have scripts.
I know I’ve given you a lot of information in this article so take the time to read over it as many times as it takes to sink in. And remember, what you say or don’t say will determine your pay in this business!