The good news for real estate agents is that, despite the financial insecurities created by the pandemic, we’ve not seen a decline in the demand for housing.
The bad news, of course, is that inventory levels continue to decline.
Or, is it really BAD NEWS?
The truth is, you can’t control fluctuating inventory levels, any more than you can control the 30-year fixed mortgage rate. The only thing you can control is your response to the challenges created by lower inventory. A 2020 survey in Homelight found 59 percent of real estate professionals saying that their biggest challenge is low inventory. This suggests that the other 41 percent do not see inventory has a problem and, in fact, might see it as an opportunity.
Perhaps a better was to frame this situation is that, low inventory or not, homes will be listed and sold in 2021. The question is: what can you do to ensure that you’re getting the lion’s share of those transactions in your area?
In reality, it’s going to take more time, more energy and a lot more focus to win in this current market situation. But make no mistake, you can win. And, for the most part, you will win by sticking to the same strategies that all top performers to “win” on an on-going basis. Let’s walk through a few of these strategies, looking at the through the lens of current market dynamics:
- Chase down expired listings: Just because the market is tight doesn’t mean some listings will lapse because a home was poorly marketed and/or over-priced. That’s your chance to offer the homeowner a better strategy. Espresso Agent gives you a leg-up on other agents with the best expired leads delivered to your desktop daily.
- Remember old expireds: Listings may have expired in the early stages of the pandemic lockdown, prompting those homeowners to stay put given all of the economic uncertainties. With things starting to open up, these homeowners may welcome an agent who shows interest in their property, and reminds them that the current market situation works to their advantage.
- Work your sphere: Put in the necessary time every day to connect with those in your sphere of influence, especially past clients, friends and professional contacts from your area. It’s important to keep your name top-of-mind. In fact, this may be the perfect time to send out a video email via StoryTellr.
- Talk to rental property owners: Because of super-low mortgage rates, many people purchased new homes, while holding on to their existing home as a rental property. With rents generally in decline, these homeowner/landlords might be interested to take the profits by selling the rental property.
- Think downsizing: Use your sphere to identify older Baby Boomers who may have been considering different retirement-living options pre-COVID. They may have decided to stay put because of the pandemic, and low interest rates. But if they’re vaccinated and can see things opening up, they may be interested in dusting off those retirement dreams.
- Don’t forget FSBOs: Yes, high demand/low inventory is exactly the dynamic that prompts many homeowners to go-it-alone and save the real estate commission. Begin your outreach now (using Espresso Agent, of course) because there’s a strong likelihood they’ll be looking for an agent after a few weeks of selling futility.
Zig Ziglar once said: “You were born to win, but to be a winner you must PLAN to win, PREPARE to win, and EXPECT to win.
Low-inventory is a short-term obstacle waiting for real estate pros who plan, prepare and expect to win. Are you one of them?