The first signs of spring are arriving, and with them comes anticipation for the spring homebuying market. After the typical slowdown that descends on the housing market in winter, it’s time to get in gear, get organized, and get ready for business to start b(l)ooming!
Just as you spring clean your house, you also need to spring clean your business. Review your contact database and delete anyone who has taken too much of your time with no payoff. If you don’t already, organize your contacts into Prospects, Leads, Hot Leads, Past Clients, and Industry Associates. You’ll be able to see what you’ve got at a glance and can plan your marketing accordingly. Next, declutter your email inbox. You don’t want to miss any important communications because there are just too many messages sitting there, distracting you. Take advantage of the myriad apps and software available to help you stay on task and focused throughout your busy days.
Another important step to take is organizing your team. Who will take over if you get swamped, sick, or have an out-of-town wedding to attend? Be sure to name a Number Two and get them up to speed on how you work and what you’ll need from them in a pinch.
It's time to go full-bore on social media. If you aren't already posting regular updates, now is the time to start and get your name and face out there. Reach out to referral partners, past clients, and any prospects who may have slipped under the radar over the winter. Phone calls and emails are a start, but consider a direct mail campaign, and a quiz, giveaway, or poll on your website that requires entering contact information. Put call to action buttons on every piece of e-communication you send, with labels like "Learn more" and "Start your journey now!" Post articles on Facebook that position you as a knowledgeable, trustworthy advisor, and link to them from Twitter and LinkedIn. And don't be afraid to ask for referrals: You want to have a full calendar when spring arrives!
Speaking of getting your name and face out there, you need to do that IRL (in real life) as well. Host an office open house to get to know your neighbors and attract new clients. Partner with me to hold a seminar or workshop for first-time buyers. Doing so can position us as trusted advisors who provide guidance throughout the homebuying experience, making it much easier and much less scary.
Educating clients on the steps involved in buying a new home is one of the best ways to help them make smart, timely decisions throughout the process. I'm happy to walk clients through the home loan portion of the process to ensure they are well-informed. While I'm at it, I can also pre-approve those clients who qualify. Pre-approval weeds out the prospects who just aren't ready or able to purchase a new home right now, so you can spend your time and energy on hotter prospects.
What's hot in your 'hood right now? Are people moving to the suburbs or back into the city? What percentage of your client base is millennials? Empty nesters? What's the walkability scale in your territory? Are rising home prices projected for your neck of the woods? Do you know how many times experts estimate the Federal funds rate — which affects mortgage interest rates — will increase this year? The more you know, the better prepared you can be for any curveballs that come your way.
Spring brings longer periods of sunshine, blooming plants, tax refunds (aka potential down payment funds!), and motivated buyers. These are all to your advantage, so be sure you're prepared for capturing clients and closing deals!