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3 Difficult Seller Questions and How to Respond to Them

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When you first get started marketing directly to Sellers, it can seem a little scary to field those Seller phone calls and respond to their comments and questions. There’s a direct correlation between your confidence in responding to their questions, and the progress you can make in your off-market acquisition efforts.

In this episode, Jeff shares three of the most common challenging Seller questions and objections, and provides simple examples of how to respond to them smoothly and simply.

Episode Transcript

For a lot of people getting started with direct marketing to sellers and having conversations directly with those sellers can be kind of scary for a few reasons. But one of the main reasons is that people often feel like oh, I don’t know what to say, you know, they’re going to ask me a question that I’m not going to know how to respond to and then that just calls up all this doubt and imposter syndrome. So in today’s episode, I’m going to give you three common, challenging questions or comments that sellers make, and how I would recommend that you address and respond to those comments. Because when you master that, then you walk into these conversations with a much greater sense of confidence, and then you can move forward. So let’s cue up the theme song. We’ll jump right into talking about these three challenging questions and their best responses.

Welcome to Racking Up Rentals, a show about how regular people those of us without huge war chest of capital or insider connections, can build lasting wealth acquiring a portfolio of buy and hold real estate. But we don’t just go mainstream looking at what’s on the market and asking banks for loans nor are we posting We Buy Houses signs are just looking for “motivated sellers” to make lowball offers to. You see, we are people-oriented dealmakers, we sit down directly with sellers to work out win-win deals without agents or any other obstacles, and buy properties nobody else even knows are for sale. I’m Jeff from the Thoughtful Real Estate Entrepreneur. If you’re the kind of real estate investor who wants long term wealth, not get rich quick gimmicks or pictures of yourself holding fat checks on social media. This show is for you. Join me and quietly become the wealthiest person on your block. Now let’s go rack up a rental portfolio.

Hey there thanks again for joining me for another episode of Racking Up Rentals. Show Notes for this episode can be found at thoughtful our e.com slash e 84. Hey, please do us a quick big favor by hitting the subscribe button in your podcast app, it really helps send a message back to the platforms that they should tell other people looking for shows like this about our show. So thanks so much for doing that. honored with today’s episode.

So as I mentioned in the intro, I find that there’s a really a direct correlation between how confident you are in your ability to handle questions and responses or objections and your ability to make progress. And so I want to take this episode and share with you three of what I find to be pretty common seller questions that can be can seem a little bit difficult that could trip you up if you weren’t really ready for that. Because if you have kind of a simple framework for a rehearsed couple bullet points in your mind, that you can call upon. If somebody asks you one of these questions or says one of these things to you, then I think you’re going to be a lot more confident. And when you’re a lot more confident you’re going to make a lot more progress. So here is the first of the three.

Sometimes when you send a letter to a seller, whether they call you back, they might just send you an email, they might even do something really passive in arm’s length, like send you a text, but sometimes that first question is, so what’s your price? Alright, so this person, the so what’s your price person is trying to cut to the chase and is often doing it kind of in a gruff manner. And they’re really testing you, they are testing you to see if they think you are real or if you are legit. Now, often these people don’t really think that a reasonable situation is one in which you already have a price in mind. But this is a defense mechanism. They’re testing you to see if you are the real deal, or if you’re somebody there who’s just going to waste their time. And they will often claim Well, if you can’t, you know, give me an answer that right now you must not be for real. So what we need to do with our answer is meet them where they’re at, of course, I mean, we kind of have to do that with all of our answers, but we need to meet them where they’re at. But turn the tables just a little bit by pointing out what it would mean, if you actually could give them a number right there. So here’s what I like to say in situations like that. I might say something like this, hey, trust me, Bob. I am just as eager to get to the bottom of that one as you are. But I obviously want to make sure that when I give you a number, I can stand behind it. And with that in mind, I’d like to just ask you a few questions, if it’s okay, so that I can make sure I have all the information I need to give you an offer that you can count on and I can stand behind. Does that sound okay?

So the beauty of that type of a response is that it’s actually pretty difficult for them to object further, right. I mean, you can imagine Bob saying, No, I’d really rather just have you give me a completely based on nothing. undependable price right now, that would be way better for me. No, of course that’s not better for Bob and you have just very nicely pointed out to him that if you did have a number, you’re making this point without saying, if I did have a number already, Bob, that’s when you should be questioning me because upon what would that number possibly be based and so you nicely deflect. So let me give it back to you one more time real quickly. Trust me, Bob, I am just as eager as you are to get to the bottom of that one. I want to make sure though, that when I give you a number, I can stand behind that number. So with that in mind, is it cool if I just ask you a few questions so that I make sure that I’ve got all the information I need to give you an offer that you can count on?

Okay, so that’s our first one. So what’s your price? The second common thing that I hear a lot that you might hear as well, that can come up is somebody says something like this? Why are you contacting me? My house was not listed for sale? Why don’t you just call a realtor and look at the houses on the market? Okay, so why are they asking you this type of question? It’s, again, it’s an objection as much as it is a literal question. And the reason is, they’re trying to assess whether you are, as you see, and so you’ve sent them a nice letter you’ve come across very nice, but people still sometimes have a little bit of a guard up. And they might be thinking, wow, this person sounds almost too nice and polite. And they wonder cynically if you have got ulterior motives. And so they’re trying to figure out if you perceive them as a mark, you know, if you perceive them as somebody who can be taken advantage of because they don’t have the protection of a realtor, that’s often what’s going through their mind when they say this kind of thing. And they’re kind of looking then to see if your answer will provide any clues along those lines, like they’re looking to see if you will give them the impression of Yeah, well, I’ve contacted you because I think I can get a better deal. If I find a seller who doesn’t know what they’re doing right there. They’re looking for evidence of that, because they’re cynically wondering in the back of their minds, if that’s what’s going on.

So a great answer to this question, alleviates that concern but actually can go beyond alleviating that concern and can actually make them like you more can endear them more to you. So here’s the type of answer that I often give to that type of question. You know, Miss seller, I might be a little old fashioned. But the truth is, I just appreciate being able to get to know the other person and to be able to discuss things face to face. You know, when you look at listed properties, everything just feels so far removed, it feels like a game of telephone or something. I just believe that if you and I talk directly to each other, that probably gives us the best chance of coming up with something that could possibly work wonderfully for everybody involved. I don’t know call me old school.

Okay, so in this answer you are, you are saying, look, I might be old fashioned. And you’re actually saying that maybe a couple times. Because a lot of times, if you’re doing the marketing that we do here at the thoughtful real estate entrepreneur, your sellers often will be quite a bit older than you. So actually, the idea of saying I’m a little old fashioned that itself might resonate with them. But then now you’re now pointing out the fact that just the whole listed market, realtor thing is so disconnected. And if you’re more of a personal person, then you just like being able to talk to real humans. And that’s something that while not everybody who on the other end of the line might feel exactly the same way or do the exact same thing. Most of them will understand and respect that. So you have now you’ve taken their question of why aren’t you just looking at listed properties? And you’ve given a very plausible answer that, again, is hard to argue with and oftentimes will kind of extinguish that concern or that cynical fear or doubt in the sellers mind.

The third one is not so much a question at all. It’s a statement and it’s a statement. That is a defense mechanism. And so you will hear often some variation on this comment. Well, I don’t need to sell at all, you know. And that, like I said, it’s a defense mechanism they are, they are trying to send you a message that says, I am not desperate. And if you came here finding, trying to find somebody who’s a quote, motivated seller, or who’s in a pinch so that you can exploit their current situation other than being in a bind, then you’ve come knocking on the wrong door, buddy. That’s what they’re trying to say to you. So they’re protecting themselves. They’re fighting back, preemptively. Almost. They’re expecting that you were there to take advantage of them and they want you to know there’s nothing to be taken advantage of. Sometimes this objection can come with a little hint of arrogance also, as if to say something like Well, I’m in an excellent financial position. Clearly, I am a genius for owning this property. It’s amazing, it’s desirable, and you need to buy it more than I need to sell it. Sometimes that’s the tone and the air of the comment itself.

So the best response to this is one that absolutely again meets them where they’re at and acknowledges their comments, but turns the table to position everything, they just told you, as a positive thing and sort of turns their quote objection into a positive thing. And before I tell you the exact kind of words I would use, I want to reiterate that when we do our marketing, using the thoughtful approach, we are trying to position ourselves as being appear of the seller, we’re trying to position ourselves as being on the same level on the same playing field, because when somebody perceives you as appear on the same level, as them, they feel comfortable with that. And so we are actually wanting to make sure that they don’t feel like we are looking for people who are exploitable. So we want them to feel like there’s an equal and balanced power dynamic in our conversation. So our response is going to go back to that and is going to take their objection and spin the objection around, so as to reinforce the idea that, hey, this is just two people talking. And we are both on an equal power playing field. So here is how I would often respond to that.

I understand Ben and I admire that you’ve put yourself in such a good position. That is the name of the game, after all, isn’t it? I think it really is. Personally, I prefer a situation like this to be honest. Because since you don’t need to sell this property, and I don’t need to buy it. That kind of removes a lot of the pretense that means we’re just two people willingly exploring a conversation to see if we can come up with something that works great for both of us, if we can, that is fantastic. If not, not only are there no hard feelings, I’d say at the very least we’ve each made a new friend in the process. So you might say something along those lines. So again, you take their objection, you acknowledge it, and you say, Man, that’s not an objection at all. That’s a great thing. That’s how I want it. I’m looking for people who are desperate to sell I’m not desperate to buy, I just want to have a real conversation between two people.

Now you’ve taken their comments, and absolutely not only neutralized it, but now they feel more comfortable with you. Because you’ve had this little conversation. So one thing I want to point out here is that as you have heard me give you my, you know, my sample responses to these people, you might have noticed one thing, it wasn’t just the words that I said, it was the way I said the words. And when you can use your inflection and your intonation, and even like little chuckles here or the you know, the variation in modulating your voice that sends a message. Now, if you go back a few episodes, you will hear an episode about why things like text communication are just unbelievably inferior, in terms of our ability to communicate with our seller, because when I’m texting the seller, I can’t, I can’t convey something like this. I understand Ben and I admire that you have put yourself in such a good position, right? And a text that’s going to read as I understand Ben and I admire that you have put yourself in such a good position. That’s not what we want. We want Ben to perceive that we are saying Ben, holy cow, man, I totally admire where you’re at, I am working to be in the same spot that you are. So that’s fantastic. And when you use those inflections and voice modulations and little changes in intonation, that carries a lot of the message beyond it and in addition to just the actual words that you are saying.

So my friends, get out there and talk to more sellers and go out talking to those sellers armed with a comfortable response to the questions that you might be worried that they will ask you if you can have practiced some of those things in advance. You will feel so much more confident and it will make you want to talk to more and more sellers.

So that is it for today’s episode of Racking Up Rentals. Again, show notes for this episode are at thoughtfulre.com/e84. Please do us a huge favor by hitting that subscribe button in the podcast app and take just a second to rate and review the show. I so appreciate seeing those. They don’t have to be Shakespearean in length or eloquence, just hit the hit the button to write a review leave a rating. We’d love to see five stars if you feel we’ve earned it. And I’m so grateful for that.

Hey, did you know we’ve got a Facebook group as well for thought real estate entrepreneurs? You should be in it! I’ll just put it straightforwardly, you should be in it. It’s called Rental Portfolio Wealth Builders. And if you just type in group.thoughtfulre.com, your browser will take you right to that page within Facebook and you can join.

If you liked this episode, please take a second and screenshot it and post that screenshot to Instagram. Just tag us; we are @thoughtfulrealestate. I’ll catch you in the next episode. Until then this is Jeff from the Thoughtful Real Estate Entrepreneur signing off.

Thanks for listening to Racking Up Rentals where we build long term wealth by being win-win dealmakers. Remember solve the person to unlock the deal and solve the financing to unlock the profits.

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