Working With Buyers: Setting Up Property Searches & Coordinating Your First Showings!

So you’re a brand new licensed real estate agent – congratulations! Maybe you have just joined your first brokerage and are ready to hit the ground running.  Or maybe you’re about to join one but are still weighing your options (check out the rest of our site to learn more about what we offer)! More often than not, when you begin as a REALTOR®, you will likely start off working with buyers first.  You get your first couple of leads and you think, what now? Being a buyer’s agent can be fun and rewarding but also stressful.  We are here to walk you through some fundamental basics of working with buyers – setting up property searches and coordinating those first showings. 

Gathering The Search Criteria

Aside from asking if your customer is preapproved for a loan, one of the first things you want to do is speak to your buyer about their search criteria.  Be as thorough as possible – you never know what could be key in finding the perfect property!  Standard things to ask are price range, property type (single family, townhome, villa, condo), cities of interest, # of bedrooms minimum and # of bathrooms minimum. In addition, ask them if there is anything else important to them, such as square footage, lot size, # of stories, homeowner associations vs no homeowner associations, views, private or community pool, garage or carport, # of garage or carport spaces, etc.  Some things are very important to people, some are not – it always depends on the individual.  You can also ask if there are any specific areas of a city they want to focus on – or that they want to exclude.  You can not however suggest “good or bad” areas to a customer or design their property search to exclude any specific areas unless explicitly expressed by your client.

Creating The Property Search

Now that you have your criteria, you can design the property search on the MLS (or our Boomtown CRM!) according to the specifications provided to you.  In some MLSs (such as Stellar MLS – the most common in our area) you can “concierge” a property search.  Concierge means that even though they are set up on an automated search, every time a property hits the market that matches their criteria on paper, you are emailed the property first to review so you can approve it to be sent to your customer or discard it altogether.  This can be helpful if a customer has expressed they do not want a “fixer upper”, but the photos suggest the property is in need of severe updating even though it matched the other criteria – so you can discard it instead of wasting your customer’s valuable time.

Arranging The Showings

Once your customer has selected the properties they would like to view and the date and time frame in which they’d like to view them, you now need to arrange the showings.  Go into your customer’s portal in your MLS and select all the properties that pertain.  Then click the “direction” button, then the system will arrange the showings in order of geographical location and directrion.  You can then rearrange the order if you desire.  It will show you the distance and the drive time between the properties – giving you key information when scheduling your showings. You will want to follow the showing instructions of each listing to book the showings, but you now know what time frame to book each showing for and you can account for the drive time distance between.  A good place to start is booking each showing itself for a 30 minute time frame, if you can book it for longer you can do an hour time frame to be on the safe side. The showing itself will likely not last an hour (they are typically about 15-20 minutes) but it can help accommodate for any error in calculation of drive time, traffic, longer showings at some properties, a skipped showing (if the customer doesn’t like the neighborhood as you drive in), etc.  You will want to print out the MLS customer synopsis for each property and provide them to your customer in order of what you are going to see that day, handing it to them at the first property if that is where you are initially meeting.  Make sure to print yourself an MLS broker synopsis for each property and keep them in order as well so you can review them and answer any additional questions as you go along.

Now that you are ready to begin working with buyers, we would love to have you join our team! Check out the rest of our site to learn what we have to offer.  If you have joined us, look out for an invite to our array of helpful trainings on working with buyers and using your Boomtown CRM to work your buyer leads and set up their searches, amongst many other trainings! We look forward to hearing from you soon.