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How To Become A Better Listing Agent In 2024

Welcome back. Good morning from Mike Ferry TV it is the week of February 26th. This has been a little bit longer month than we normally have in the month of February, so I hope that it has been productive for each of you. I wrote down a question how do we become a better or even a great listing agent? Because I think all of us are aware that the biggest challenge the industry faces today is the inventory shortage. That problem has taken place or been in place since COVID took place a few years ago. And it’s interesting when you look at the reasons why that shortage is in play and has remained in play. You start looking at the numbers and of course, I’m not a numbers person, but I respect the fact that in our business, if we don’t understand the numbers and there’s some pretty basic numbers to understand, it makes the business very difficult.

So I wrote down some thoughts on what we should think about, what we should be executing on and doing to become a better listing agent. So wrote down the first thought is this in the US today, there’s someplace around 1.5, 1.6 million Real Estate licensed agents, according to the National Association of Realtors. And we have a big, big, big group, and I’m not sure of the total number in Canada, because the truth is, we’re probably all the same.

Well, of the 1.5 to 1.6 million agents in the US, 50% plus did not do a deal in 2023. And that is not uncommon in the local boards of realtors, in the state associations, both in US provinces or Canadian provinces and US states. 50% did not do a deal. And it appears that 10% of the 50% that did a deal really dominated the market. So a very small percentage of the 1.6 million are what we call strong listing agents. And what’s really fascinating to me is that group in terms of number, keeps shrinking. But the number of listings they take keeps expanding, which means they’re getting better and better and better. And as an industry, we’re not performing at a high level on taking listings.


Listings are the name of the game.

The motto in Real Estate, and you’ve heard me say this before for many years has been, “Listings are the name of the game.” And about two years ago, I challenged that thought to myself, and I created a new motto that says, “Listings are how we stay in the game.” For those of you that work with buyers. And I had a lot of you work with buyers, obviously, you know, buyers are exciting. It’s an emotional transaction. It’s fun to watch them get excited about a home they’re buying, but it isn’t a way to sustain a long-term career. A long-term career is the business that controls the inventory. And Listing property is the inventory, and agents need to carve out a portion of that for themselves so they can stay in this business for a long period of time.


I’ve never seen prices rise as quickly.

So I wrote down this question, why do agents not work daily on trying to take listings? And the first thing I wrote down is really a post-COVID thought after COVID, as most of us recognize, prices continue to rise at one of the fastest paces we’ve probably ever witnessed. I’ve been doing this work for 49 years, as I’ve told you in the past, and I’ve never seen prices rise as quickly. Even after that 2008 to 2012 recession, they didn’t rise as fast as they’ve risen over the course of the last two and a half years. Well, because of the prices, rising commission checks keep getting bigger and bigger and bigger where they used to be, say this size. Today they’re that size. And whenever you have big commission checks, there will be a certain reluctance to get outside your comfort zone and try to get more commission checks because we’re making so much money when we do deals, it’s sometimes hard to comprehend.

But then I wrote down a second thought the frenzy post-COVID shot the volume of transactions through the rooftop. That stopped, but that also deleted a big portion of the inventory because agents that had never really spent a lot of time working with buyers came into Real Estate, sold four, five, six homes, and you multiply that times several hundred thousand agents. Inventory is going to drop. It’s going to drop. And they’re not listing property today because they still think we are involved in a frenzied market. And were involved in exactly the opposite of a frenzied market. We’re operating in a market where the number of transactions post-COVID has dropped by 40% to 50% nationwide.


The majority of all agents simply do not prospect.

But then I also wrote down a third reason why we don’t list property. The majority of all agents simply do not prospect, and when they hear the word, they get angry at me. Well, let me ask you a question. If you’re sitting in your office four to five days a week for three to five hours at a time on your computer doing whatever you do, are you getting a lot of calls from people saying, would you come and list my home for sale? I don’t think so. Are you getting a lot of calls from people that say, would you show me property tomorrow? I don’t think so. Are you getting a lot of walk-in traffic into your office? I wish you did, but we know that is not the case.

So how do we solve that problem? We have to learn to converse with people on a regular basis. “But, Mike, I’m shy. I’m not used to talking to people. I don’t have any sales experience.” Well, those kind of stories have been told for years and years, and we know that prospecting is a learned skill, and if you learn the skill, you can make prospecting a lot of fun, enjoyable, and very productive for yourself.

But I wrote down next too many agents take what I call the path of least resistance. “You know, Mike, I don’t like to think about myself as a prospecting person.” Now, if you look at most of the agents, they list, most of the properties, they prospect two to three hours a day and you’ve seen them do it in your office, and then they’re going on listing presentations on a regular basis. So the path of least resistance is I’m not going to really start prospecting, but I’m willing to hold an open house because that is not going to create the level of rejection that, for example, calling on an expired listing might create.


Most agents don’t have good basic sales skills.

I wrote down third or actually fourth, most agents don’t have good basic sales skills. Prospect, present and close is how we learn to sell. Now, yes, you have to fill in good lead follow-up. you have to fill in pre-qualifying. There is a lot to learn, but are you committed to learning the skills necessary so you can go out and take two to three to five, seven listings per month? Because it’s being done all the time. In fact, I’m accumulating a list as we are talking to you today of agents that we work with and coach closely, that take 7 to 8 to 12 to 15 listings per month. Month after month after month, and have done it for years. So for those that say it can’t be done, I just want to tell you you are correct. So understand that there are six words that I’ve been sharing with you over the course of the last 12 months: mindset, skills, activities, action, consistency, and discipline. If we take those six words and make them our mantra, listings will be out there waiting for you, and you can find them. You can list them, they will sell, and you’ll get paid a lot of money. I hope this message, at least, moves you to the fact that you CAN list property if you choose to. Thanks for watching. Talk to you next week.

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