I am often asked, “What do you say when a potential seller asks…?” I always have an answer for every objection, but only because I keep the objective of the conversation IN MIND at all times. Here is a list of common seller objections and a quick follow-up statement for the listing agent.

They say: “I am going to try to sell it myself.”
You say: “I am just curious, how do you plan on marketing your home?” “…representing the buyer?” “…responding to buyer leads?” “…being available for buyer showings?” (seller response) “If you had a proven plan for selling your home at top market value, would you be interested in using it?”

They say: “I am not going to give my house away.”
You say: “Good! I prefer to work with sellers who believe in the market facts and are willing to negotiate from a position of equity and strength. When would you have time to get together?”

They say: “It is not a good time to sell.”
You say: “I know that it is almost counter-intuitive; the supply and demand ratio indicates that this is a good time to be on the market. We are at a _____ month low in ‘homes for sale’ inventory. The demand remains high due to the low interest rates, the tax credit and the declining number of foreclosures available. Do you have time to meet this weekend?”

They say: “I am going to talk with other realtors.”
You say: “That’s fine. Help me understand. What is it that other realtors will provide you that we have not discussed?” (seller response) “Would tomorrow morning work for us to review the differences between my plan to sell your home and my competitor’s ideas?”

They say: “We have to do several things prior to listing our home.”
You say: “The two big steps in getting your home on the market are meeting with a realtor and preparing the house for the market. Would you be able to meet tomorrow during the day or in the evening to discuss them?”

They say: “We are waiting for the neighbor’s home to sell before we go on the market.”
You say: “What could possibly be more convenient to potential buyers than having two homes in the same neighborhood available at the same time? I am going to preview your neighbor’s home, would you like to join me?” (seller response) “Would you have time to meet at your home after our preview?”

They say: “Yeah, but my home has (seller’s exceptional home feature).”
You say: “If both properties are equal except (seller’s exceptional home feature), and both homes are priced the same, then your home will be the first to sell. Can you meet tonight?”

They say: “I know most people don’t like busy streets, but we think it is a real advantage to be so conveniently located.”
You say: “Location is always a factor for potential buyers, and we will secure feedback from every buyer who views your home. When is better for you to meet, Monday or Tuesday evening?”

They say: “I want to sleep on it.”
You say: “That sounds good. I will call you in the morning to see if you are ready to put your home on the market. Do you have any other questions on the selling process? (seller response) “Do you have any other selling concerns I can assist you with?”

They say: “I have a friend who may be interested in purchasing the home.”
You say: “Great! We can make your friend a ‘timed-exclusion’ to the listing contract and not miss any valuable market time. That way you know you are getting top dollar in today’s market either way. Can you meet tonight?”

They say: “I want to fix a few things first.”
You say: “If you do not mind, I would like to review your list with you. Just to make sure the items you are doing will ‘help’ the sale of your home and be worth your investment. Would you have time to meet tomorrow afternoon or evening?”

They say: “I am too busy with the holidays coming up.”
You say: “I understand the extra effort the holidays take. However, what we have found with the holidays is that homes look and show their best when they have received that extra holiday touch. When do you expect to be ready for the holidays?” (seller response) “How would the next day work for us to meet?”

They say: “I heard that there are companies that will put my home on the MLS for a small fee.”
You say: “This is true. What marketing and services do they provide?” (seller response) “I took a few notes, are you available tonight to compare those notes to our marketing and service plan?”

They say: “We want to think it over.”
You say: “You’re right. This is a huge decision. However, if you are ready to list your home, we can do the paperwork and I will hold it until you are ready to go on the market. This gives me the opportunity to prepare the ads, flyers, recordings, and home show.” (seller response) “Is there something specific holding you back? How can I assist you with your decision?”

They say: “I don’t want to sign a long contract.”
You say: “Ok. I will simply work with you as a temporary listing client rather than a full client. It will not impact the representation you receive or the marketing efforts. It only restricts us for the ads your home will be eligible for. It’s your decision. When are you available to meet?”

They say: “If I can not get $xxx,xxx, I cannot sell.”
You say: “Ok. I’m curious, if I brought you an offer that was 95% of that amount, how would you proceed?” (seller response) “If I could get you top dollar for your home in the next 30 days, would you list today?” (seller response) “Can you meet this evening to review our plan?”

The Key to Successful Responses

When responding to potential seller objections, it is not a matter of being through, accurate or adding value. Rather it is important to acknowledge the seller’s concern(s) AND close for the appointment. Only the best closers (successful realtors) completely understand that over 90% of the public does business with the first vendor of service they meet eye-to-eye. Once you have the appointment set, you will have the opportunity to clarify and reveal seller motivation. The bottom line result is more appointments equal more listings equal more satisfied clients.

The Next Step

Of course, if you set an appointment YOU must have a PLAN. If 90% of being successful is being there, then the remaining 10% is what you do once you are there. Think it through, do you homework, and make sure you are prepared. Nothing adds to a confident presentation than being prepared and rehearsed.