Getting the sellers expectation right to sell on auction day

Only provide feedback from genuine buyers on their home. False expectations from non-buyers is an easy way to derail your campaign.

Topic – Smarter Auctions

Mentor – James Bell

  • Let them know about withdrawn interest
  • Get them to attend other auctions
  • Be consistent from day one
  • Have the hard conversations

Property Management Matters with Tara Bradbury – Here is another great way to make the time you put into the business more productive.  You will be amazed how simple it is!


Kevin: Let’s change the focus today because we’re talking about auctions. Yesterday we talked to James Bell about buyers, getting the buyer expectation right, or getting the buyer … Yeah expectations prior to auction, understanding what’s involved. What about the seller? Good day James, how you doing?

James Bell: Yeah, good thanks Kevin.

Kevin: Good to be back with you again this morning. Getting the seller expectation right to sell on auction day. Step me through the process, what do we need to do, to do that?

James Bell: Look for me it’s, as I briefly touched on yesterday, it’s to only provide feedback from genuine buyers on their home. For me I’ve seen many an auction campaign go off the rails by providing feedback from everyone that has attended the property, especially from those that didn’t have any interest in the property. But therefore I don’t think would really give an accurate assessment on where they felt the property set in price. So I think that’s number one. Number two for me, would be certainly don’t be afraid to let your sellers know about withdrawal interest through the campaign. Sometimes we set ourselves expectations up around people that have been attending the property maybe one or two times, and it can be sometimes hard to have that conversation with an owner. Because they’re thinking, well these guys are really interested. But it’s very powerful to be able to sit down with the seller and let people know that these guys have actually withdrawn their interest in your home.

Kevin: Do they typically then ask you why?

James Bell: Look they do and that can be from a number of factors, I think sometimes you never get to the real truth unfortunately when buyers do make decisions against homes. But you know it might be that they’ve seen another property and they deem that to be a lot more interest, or more value. Owners, when they’re on the market, they want to know about things like that and I think sometimes information like that is unfortunately held back from them. Therefore, it’s not empowering them to make the right decision when offers do start coming in, or certainly on auction day.

Kevin: Okay, and I guess it’s important to keep them up to date with what’s happening in the market, although you’d expect that they’d be going to other opens and other auctions if they’re keenly interested in what’s happening the market, and they’re selling at that time?

James Bell: Look you would think that, but I think as an agent we have to assume that they’re not. Making the assumption that they’re going to self serve on that information that’s out there, once again I think has the potential to impact and derail your campaign. So I know for me if there’s been similar properties on the market in the area, or a similar property going to auction I’ve always encouraged them to go along and have a look. It does two things, it gives them an understanding of what’s going to happen, what’s happening in the markets. But it might also give them an understanding that’s through a third party about what might play out on the day as well.

Kevin: Feedbacks got to be consistent to, I know we talk in this show about making sure that you meet as regularly as you possibly can, give them feedback as constant as you can. But it’s got to be consistent and it’s got to be in line with … You know you can’t be giving them mixed messages, is what I’m saying James.

James Bell: Yeah correct, because I think you know if you give an owner consistency around the feedback, it’s not your duty as an agent to keep their spirits up, and give them false hope. I think sometimes I’ve seen auction campaigns where owners are feeling really good for the first three weeks and then they feel like the world has crashed in on them on the last week, because the agent is thinking, geez I’m getting really close to auction I might release what is actually happening and what’s thinking. So I think sometimes people underestimate an owner’s ability to soak in information over a period of time, but all it really does is enable them to come to the right decision come auction day, where specifically talking about auctions.

Kevin: Yeah, ’cause hard conversations very easy to avoid, especially in the early stages, well right through a campaign I’ve seen people just not willing to have those hard conversations. I see in your notes here you call it the truth conversation, we never like to think that we’re not truthful, but it’s the hard conversation isn’t it that’s sometimes very hard to have?

James Bell: Well look I think it is, and human nature Kevin suggests that it’s hard to sit down with someone and say, look I know you might have been thinking this but this is where the market is. I think as agents we sometimes, we don’t like delivering bad news. But that is part of our role, and I think as agents we need to understand what our responsibilities are. It’s not our responsibility Kevin, to get the property prepared for sale, that falls onto the owner. It’s not our responsibility to bid on the property, that responsibility falls on the buyers on the day. But in terms of the execution of the campaign, the feedback, negotiation, that is our responsibility as agents. I think we need to take it seriously and have an open book conversation with owners as much as possible.

James Bell: I’ve seen it way too often where they do leave it till the last 72 hours to have the tough conversation. What you’re actually doing there is you’re not allowing an owner enough time to soak in the information. They could actually be making a very bad decision on auction day, where they get competitive bidding, it gets to a level that’s in line with where the feedback has been from day one. But because you’ve delayed that conversation they haven’t got their heads to that point. But what is even worse is when you check back in four weeks time, they’ve actually accepted an offer lower than what they had at auction. I think that’s a real tough pill to swallow because if the agent had, had that conversation from week one, and been consistent that owner would have actually been in a much better position.

Kevin: Yeah understanding your responsibilities and giving that feedback, quite often we see people delay far too long thinking the auctioneers going to turn up on auction day and wave a magic wand and make it all happen. Well it doesn’t happen, and we’ll talk about that tomorrow when James Bell comes back and joins us. Thanks James, talk to you in the morning.

James Bell: Thanks Kevin.

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