Whether you’ve already had your home on the market some time without success or are just preparing to list it now, it’s important to get as much input as possible in order to increase your chances of a sale. If you can’t sell your home and are wondering why, you might want to think about requesting buyer feedback. In real estate, as in retail, the customer is always right. You want to make your home more appealing to buyers, as in the end it’s the buyer’s opinion which matters most. By not asking for buyer feedback, you could be missing out on important information that could help you land a sale more effectively.
It’s a good idea to coordinate requests for buyer feedback with your real estate agent, since it’s your agent who will be fostering relationships with buyers and listening to their needs. Your agent will also most likely be in charge of showing your house during open inspections. Find a real estate agent who is open to buyer feedback by comparing online proposals at LocalAgentFinder, and you can start the process of fine-tuning your sales strategy – register here.
It’s difficult to ask buyers for their opinions until after they have seen the property. Your agent can ask what they are looking for in a property when initially following up on leads, but generally the best time to request this feedback is at the end of a showing. Asking for opinions during the showing can come across as intimidating or pushy, so it’s best to let the buyers see the home without distractions. At the end of the showing, however, you and your agent can engage in a casual conversation with buyers to find out what they think about the property. A good real estate agent will collect contact details at this time as well, to follow up with any leads generated.
Asking Relevant Questions
Before you start showing your home, it’s a good idea to sit down with your real estate agent and formulate a list of questions to ask buyers. General questions like “What do you think of the property?” will get vague answers in return that are less than helpful. You should design questions that will lead to constructive criticism that can help you make any adjustments to your sales strategy. The following are a few ideas to spark off a helpful conversation:
1. What do you think are the best features of the house?
Although you may think that you know what your home’s standout features are, the answer to this could surprise you. Buyer feedback could alert you to areas of the home that you didn’t realise were standout features. These can be highlighted in future showings or a professional staging as a result.
2. What do you think are the worst features or aspects of the house?
Don’t take it personally if a buyer doesn’t like your property. Every potential buyer will have their own preferences and taste. However, if your agent talks to several potential buyers and none of them like the wallpaper in the bathroom, this might be reason enough to take it out.
3. How does this property compare to others you have recently visited?
A good agent will have a strong working knowledge of similar listings in your area and how your property measures up. You can find an agent that fits this profile by comparing proposals using the free online dashboard at LocalAgentFinder. Yet it’s interesting to get a buyer perspective as well. Your agent will be looking at this through a professional lens, while buyers will be viewing properties with a more personal viewpoint.
This question can be posed to find out what makes your home stand out in comparison to local competition, or may highlight reasons why it is lacking. If the other homes that buyers have been viewing all have brand new kitchen appliances, you may have to invest money to bring yours up to the same standard. This question also allows you to highlight features which other properties are missing in the future.
4. What do you think of the price?
You will want to take answers to this question with a grain of salt, because most buyers won’t admit if they think the price is too low. However if they give any concrete reasons why the price is too high, this is something to consider adjusting.
5. Could you envision yourself living here?
Your agent can use this question as an inroad to a deeper conversation. It can help identify interested buyers, who will respond with enthusiasm. Yet at the same time if someone states that they cannot envision themselves living in your property, you can find out why and offer suggestions that may sway their opinion.
6. What factors would make you buy today?
This is another question that can be used to start a real conversation with the buyer and find out their motivations and concerns. Your agent can ask this, take contact information, and follow up on this lead in the days or weeks to come. This question also opens up the doors to negotiation, if there is a highly specific factor that would encourage them to agree to a quick sale.
Asking for Buyer Feedback
Chatting with buyers at the open inspection is only one way to learn more about their opinions. When you sit down to discuss your marketing strategy with your real estate agent, you can discuss how to work asking for feedback into the plan. The following are all options:
This has the advantage of providing immediate feedback, and can lead to a serious discussion or negotiation on the spot.
Another option is to ask the buyers to complete a survey before they leave. This is a good option for larger open house inspections where it may be difficult to get a chance to speak to each visitor. An advantage to this method is that some buyers may be shy and uncomfortable expressing their honest opinions verbally. By allowing them to write down their opinions, they may be more forthcoming.
Leaving survey cards and pens at the inspection will work for many buyers, but some may be in a rush and won’t be keen on hanging about to fill out the card. You can choose an eco-friendly alternative that allows the buyer to take their time by having your agent send out an email survey. The only downside to this is that if the buyer checks their email a few days after the inspection, they may have forgotten their initial impressions or specific details.
Your agent may also wish to follow up with buyers the old-fashioned way, using a telephone survey. This is most effective when conducted within 24 hours of the inspection. If there are a lot of buyers, this could be quite time-consuming.
Some potential buyers will not want to provide feedback for whatever reason. It’s important to respect their wishes and back off, because there’s no bigger turnoff than a pushy sales approach for some consumers. Be ready to accept negative comments about your property without going on the defensive. Always thank buyers for any feedback they provide, whether it’s positive or negative. Finally, you’ll want to take this feedback and turn it into action. Use their answers to reformulate your sales strategy with the help of your real estate agent, and turn negative comments into positives.
You can find a real estate agent who is willing to work with you in this task by using the free, no-obligation comparison tool at LocalAgentFinder. You can register your details now, and garner a quick, productive sale.