The biggest problem I see with new investors is that they know the “technical side of the business”, but not the deal closing side. These investors own dozens of courses on wholesaling and can tell you everything you would want to know about assigning a contract, however, they don't know how to go to a sellers house and close the deal.
All of that knowledge is useless if you can't walk into a seller's house and have the self-confidence and sales skills to walk out with a signed contract in 30 minutes or less. Lack of sales skills also means you are wasting a ton of marketing dollars! You can mail 10,000 postcards a month, but if you don't have sales skills then those leads are absolutely worthless. I hear from investors all the time who claim this business is too tough or that they got 100 leads last month, but every seller they met with wouldn't do a wholesale deal or a subject to deal with them (I bet I know why).
So, how do you gain self-confidence and sales skills and stop throwing away money?
First, you should be investing in your sales education.
I highly recommend the following books:
1. Zig Ziglar- Selling 101
2. Brian Tracy- Advanced Selling Strategies
3. Tom Hopkins-Sales Closing for Dummies
4. Jeffrey Gitomer- Little Red Book of Selling
5. Dale Carnegie- How to Win Friends and Influence People
Second, learn your scripts and objections.
When you walk into a seller's house they are always going to have a lot of questions and objections. (Why should I work with you? How do I know that when you take over my payments that you are going to make the payments every month? Can you explain to me what a due-on-sale clause is? What happens if we do a lease option and the tenants destroy the house?) If you can't immediately respond to these questions and calm their concerns, then the sale is lost. There should be no hesitation when you respond to a seller's objection. In fact, you should love these objections and questions because it means the seller is seriously considering working with you.
Nine Traits You Need to Succeed
All deal closing champions have the following nine traits (if you don't posses any or all of these traits, get working on them now:
- High level of self-confidence – All sellers want to work with confident individuals. They want to feel that you are the right person to help them get out of their situation. They also want to feel that you have been doing this for years and helped hundreds of sellers before them.
- Be Enthusiastic – Enthusiasm shows sellers that you love your job and that you will do everything in your power to help them out of their difficult situation. When a seller asks you a question you should answer with; absolutely or certainly (assuming you can take care of their question.)
- Invest a lot of time in education and self-improvement – This is one of the traits that people find the most difficult to master. There are areas in your life to be cheap and education is not one of them. Don't spend $30,000 on a brand new car, and don't buy a $5,000 flat screen TV (those are depreciating assets and will not help you earn money.) You should constantly attend seminars, purchase courses and work with mentors and coaches. I know that not every investment you make will be worth your money, (I think all of us have been ripped off by a less than informational course) however, in the long run this will cut your learning curve by several years. Also, all serious investors are always looking for a “slight edge”. If a course or seminar shows you how to buy an extra house this year, or fill a house faster with a tenant, it is worth thousands of dollars over your lifetime.
- Smile – Sellers want to work with friendly and warm individuals. You should have a great big smile as you shake their hand and first meet them.
- Be positive – This trait goes along with being enthusiastic. You want to assure your sellers that you can help them out of their situation and that their difficult rental property (or whatever problem they face) will be a thing of the past.
- Dress well – Image is everything and people do judge a book by its cover. When you meet with a seller, show up in business casual attire. Never show up in jeans and a ratty t-shirt. Also, when you dress well you feel more confident and better about yourself.
- Treat everyone with respect – You may not like a seller or a tenant, or you may disagree with their lifestyle. However, treat everyone like they have 100 houses they want to sell to you (you never know, they may not have 100 houses, but their aunt, uncle or brother might!)
- Use Showmanship – You should have a deal closing kit that you give to sellers when you meet with them. This should include the following:
Use a cost to sell worksheet – This shows the seller's how much money they will save by working with you.
Use Testimonials – This shows how you are the world's greatest real estate investor and how you have helped many people just like them.
Give Coupons – Present coupons to the sellers at closing as a courtesy from your company (such as an expensive dinner, or a one night stay at a fancy hotel.)
Use Letters of Recommendation – This is a letter which describes why you are superior to other real estate investors.
Use Special Reports – This will show how you can buy their house fast or take over their payments immediately.
- Be an excellent listener – There is the old saying that God gave us one mouth and two ears and we should use them proportionately. Listening is so important in this business because you will discover a seller's true motivation for wanting to sell a house and then you can structure your presentation accordingly.
Become a Deal Closing Champion
Every time you prepare to meet with a seller you need to “pump” yourself up so you have high self-confidence and you feel ready to go. On the way over to the seller's house, you should be listening to music that will get you motivated. I love to listen to “Eye of the Tiger” by Survivor to get in the deal closing mood. Then, as I sit in front of the seller's house, I will repeat to myself “I am the greatest”, “I am going to close this deal”, “I am a deal closing champion”. (If you think this stuff is mumbo jumbo, then I bet you are not a deal closing champion and you have a long way to go to become successful.)
Once the seller opens the door, you better have a firm handshake and you better “act as if“! Act as if this is your 1,000 deal. I know this is not easy to do. When we start out in this business we are all terrified. The thought of meeting a seller will make your legs tremble and cause you to break out into a cold sweat. You better not let a seller see this fear or lack of self-confidence. This is because sellers are like wild animals. They can smell the fear in you and this will subconsciously make them not want to work with you. I mean, would you want to work with a car salesman who was shaking as he was trying to sell you a car? Or, would you want to even work with another investor who you could tell didn't have the foggiest clue in the world what he was doing?
So, after you have built a rapport and answered all of their objections, how do you close the sale? One of my favorite closes is the “yes or yes” close. This is where you give the seller multiple offers so they have more choices on how you can assist them. For example, you could give a seller a cash offer of $125,000 or a subject-to offer of $151,000. Then, when you are getting ready to close the deal you could say, “Mr. Seller, would you rather have $125,000 cash now or $151,000 and we take over your payments and give you more cash when the house sells?” You can also use the “yes or yes” close when setting the terms of the deal. “Mr. Seller, would you rather close on June 30 or July 10? Which works best for you?” “Mr. Seller, we can either set up our visit for Thursday at 7:00 or Friday at 6:00, which is best for you?”
Please take the time to learn how to become a deal closing champion. Stop losing thousands upon thousands of dollars every month because when you meet with a seller you never seem to walk out with a signed contract. Or, even worse – your skills are so bad that you can't even get an appointment and persuade a seller in the first place that you are the person who can help them get rid of their property problems. Becoming a deal closing champion is one of the most important skills that you will learn. You will be able to walk into a seller's house and walk out with a signed contract in 30 minutes or less and do this on nine out of ten appointments. If you aren't closing nine out of ten, then you aren't screening properly over the phone, or your sales skills need lots of improvement.
Remember, that practice makes perfect and nobody starts out as a deal closing champion. If you invest in your sales education, learn your objections and consistently meet with sellers, you will eventually join the top 5% of real estate investors and close several deals a month.