How to Not Scare Away Expired Listings and Convert Them into Leads

In the never-ending search for leads, some real estate agents turn to homeowners who have already been turned down in their attempts to sell.  In industry parlance, these homes for sale that went without a buyer are known as expired listings. These are homes that received no offers – or if they did, the offer was too low, the financing fell through or something else prevented any sale from happening; and the listing lapsed.

Smart real estate agents who follow the life cycle of local properties for sale will know when a listing is expiring. A frustrated home seller, who may already have bought another home and is anticipating a move – may be asking: “What now?”

Postcards to the rescue

Postcards are a tried-and-true way for real estate agents to break the ice and introduce themselves to potential home sellers. Why not combine knowledge of local expired listings with outreach through postcards and send high-quality real estate expired listing postcards to homeowners who have been unable to sell their homes in recent months?

One problem: other local agents are probably also thinking about reaching out via postcards. Meanwhile, home sellers who may become more frantic by the day about not selling their house are likely being lured by other agents to re-list with them.

How do you avoid scaring a potential client with an expired listing postcard while standing out from the crowd seeking their approval? How can you do this with an inexpensive postcard and convert them into a lead and hopefully a client? Here are a few ideas:

  • Personalize the message: Get to know their situation. Study the MLS database and public records to know the date that was listed and at what price. When did the price change, how often, and by how much? How does the final listed price compare to recent local sales? How many offers were made? Try to determine how and why offers did not close.

Then convert that information into a personalized postcard message that demonstrates to the upset homeowner that you are informed and concerned about their situation and ready and capable of helping to rectify the problem. Don’t forget to provide reasons why you can succeed where others have not.

  • Offer practical solutions: Do you know of a potential buyer or do you know another agent who may have someone interested in the type of expired listing home you are targeting? Can you affordably assist the seller in making improvements that might prompt a sale

What other practical or creative solutions do you have in your toolkit to assist the seller in their time of desperation?

  • Farm it out: Depending on the size of your agency, there may be an administrative staff member to enlist who can monitor expired listings in real estate. If not, a competent college student should be up for the task. There are professional services that are also ready to assist – at a price.
  • Offer a variety of ways to connect: A successful postcard will elicit a response. Make sure you include a phone number, website address, and a QR code on your postcard, and consider listing social media contact information, too. You never know what will work for any particular person to hook up with you. 
  • Give them options. If all else fails, knock on their door. If your postcard message resonated, they may be ready to talk with you in person.

Add real estate expired listing postcards to your sales efforts

If you have not already done so, consider adding real estate expired listings postcards to your marketing toolkit. They are a relatively simple, inexpensive way to reach out to frazzled would-be home sellers and perhaps offer them what their previous agent could not: hanging a sold sign.