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How to Keep Business Booming in a Slow Housing Market

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RISMEDIA, Oct. 24, 2007-It seems like a lifetime ago when our housing market boomed. Now inventory’s built up, there are fewer qualified buyers, and sellers still hold tight to high (and often unrealistic) prices. This downturn is a difficult time for most Realtors. For the ones who haven’t changed careers or gone out of business, many are struggling.

But not all have such a bleak future. Seasoned Realtors aren’t scared by this market downturn. They’ve lived through it many times before. While others chase leads, these experts close deals. While some waste hours negotiating listing prices, these professionals set realistic prices without trouble.

How do they do it?

“Successful Realtors avoid the top 5 mistakes most Realtors make during slow markets. Rather than go into panic mode, they strategize for growth. For instance, instead of cutting back on marketing and training, they increase it.”

That’s the opinion of Linda McLean of McLean International. She spent 18 years coaching real estate professionals to achieve greater profits. To help other Realtors during this difficult time, she compiled that knowledge into a popular booklet, “Why Some Realtors Still Succeed in a Slow Housing Market…and How You Can Use Their Tips to Grow Your Business!”

Says McLean, “Seasoned Realtors understand these housing bubbles are just a part of their business cycle. So during slow times, they start acting less like Realtors and more like business owners. Now is the time to analyze your business and ruthlessly cut anything that wastes time and money. It’s also a time to concentrate on activities that get you in front of your clients and prospects.”

In her booklet, McLean gives time-tested strategies from real estate superstars:

- Go back to basics: Traditionally, real estate was a face-to-face business. It involved a lot of customer contact and relationship building. But during the housing boom, Realtors got lazy and made transactions online or over the phone with minimal customer contact. You can’t do that now. Now, you must be on the phone and face to face with clients and prospects. Everyday, you need to spend time generating leads and working your contact list.
- Reposition yourself as an expert: In such a confused economy, clients fear making a mistake. Especially with pricing. To gain a client’s trust and support, it is critical Realtors position themselves as industry experts. They do this by staying updated of competitive listings. McLean advises, “Realtors should think of themselves as stockbrokers. You have to always be plugged into the market everyday and know what’s happening. It automatically makes you more knowledgeable and effective.”
- Add value to your services: During the housing boom, many clients felt Realtors didn’t earn their commissions. Part of repositioning yourself as an expert involves giving your clients value. The client needs to feel you have such a strong, thorough grasp of the market. They must feel you are the undisputed resource for all real estate questions. This includes staying on top of local and national economic trends. Consider compiling a report on updated market information, then offer it to your clients and prospects regularly. Invite them to call with questions.

“There’s a time to work in your business and a time to work on your business. Realtors can grow their business during this housing bubble if they take the time to sit down and strategize. Now’s the time to throw out old business plans, cut all costs that don’t directly bring in revenue and create simpler, more basic business models.”

To get your free copy of McLean’s booklet, “Why Some Realtors Still Succeed in a Slow Housing Market…and How You Can Use Their Tips to Grow Your Business!” download it now at www.mcleaninternational.com.

Linda McLean is the president of McLean International. She is a nationally known real estate coach and trainer who helps individuals and groups achieve higher revenue. She can be reached at 775-851-8934 or linda@mcleaninternational.

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