Archive for the 'Landing Good Real Estate Deals' Category

As interest rates increase and mortgage rules shut some would-be buyers out of the housing market, there are less real estate leads available for business.

But there are still the same number of real estate sales professionals — and perhaps even more.

So, with more people going after less business, how can you stay competitive?

One word: agility.

Agility is the key to keeping your real estate business afloat and finding leads even when the numbers appear to be dwindling. Here’s how to put it into practice:

  1. Create relationships.

Relationships have always been important in real estate, but that is especially true in a crowded marketplace. You want to make sure that you have people in your corner to send referrals your way.

This might look like the people you know in your neighbourhood — past clients, friends, family, etc. — but it also applies to other people in the real estate industry.

Think about the people who are your allies. For instance, if you are a real estate agent, who else do you work with regularly — mortgage brokers, private lenders, real estate lawyers, investors, etc.

It could help to expand your industry networks. Chances are that the real estate market is getting tighter for everyone, so creating alliances could be a big help to landing good deals.

It can also help if you are on the same page with the tools you are using. For instance, if you source your property data from GeoWarehouse, your partners can access the same data (either through GeoWarehouse or our tool for mortgage professionals, Purview), which can make working together that much smoother.

  1. Look for motivated sellers and buyers.

When the market is flooded, it can be easy to find motivated clients — they might come right to your door! But as leads are scarcer, you may need to do more legwork to find opportunities.

Think about the demographics of your neighbourhoods. Are there elderly couples who may be looking to downsize? Or younger families who might be looking for more space? If you have a large condo selection you may be able to find renters who are motivated to buy.

Another motivated opportunity — divorce leads. Consider creating relationships with your local courthouses or family attorneys.

  1. Up your digital real estate marketing.

The last two suggestions can be significantly easier using digital marketing.

Social media, SEO targeting, and the like can all help you identify more real estate leads, but it can also help you create partnerships.

For instance, you might search Facebook or LinkedIn for groups with other mortgage professionals in your area.

You may find the local college or university groups and advertise affordable condo opportunities — or break down the true cost of renting vs. buying.

Or you might look for a support group in your area for divorces or consider creating a pay-per-click campaign centred on divorce leads.

A well-rounded approach is critical to remaining competitive.

  1. Search for properties that aren’t on the market yet.

If you are only searching for leads based on properties already on the market, or those seeking you out, it will be harder to stay competitive.

In some cases, you need to take lead generation into your own hands and plant the seed in your clients’ heads.

Demographics can be a great way to do this. You can use a demographic report to search for up-and-coming neighbourhoods, niche markets, areas popular with cultural or generational groups, and the like.

You can then use this information in your real estate marketing.

  1. Consider expanding your listing sources.

If you have traditionally sold one or two dwelling types, it may be time to expand your reach.

Condos, multi-family dwellings, and commercial real estate is rising in popularity even as single-family dwelling sales fall. Assess your portfolio and see whether there is room for you to enter a new market.

  1. Make use of data for up-to-the-minute information.

To truly stay agile, you need to make sure that you are working with data that supports your cause. If you’re using outdated information, inaccurate numbers, or real estate tools that don’t tell the whole story, then you’re already behind the competition.

That’s where a comprehensive property tool is your best ally.

For instance, our tool, GeoWarehouse, allows you to access demographic reports, comparable sales, advanced property searches, and much more. All of this combined can help you find the most qualified leads and stay ahead of your competitors.

The competition may be heating up, but that’s not necessarily a bad thing — it just means that you need to look for ways to stay even more agile.

GeoWarehouse’s tools put in position to focus your marketing and find the most qualified real estate leads. Learn more today. Call 1-866-237-5937 or visit www.geowarehouse.ca.

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It can be a real estate agent’s nightmare. You’ve taken the time to arrange a great deal for your client who is selling their home… but then they can’t pay you the commission.

Suddenly, you’re out money and time. You could take the client to court to try to recoup the costs, but again that is more money and more time.

Wouldn’t it be easier to just make sure your client is able to pay in the first place?

That’s where this one secret comes in. You will want to be sure this is included in your real estate tool case.

It’s called a Parcel Register*.

A Parcel Register* from GeoWarehouse is like a credit report — but instead of checking a client’s credit score, it checks the property.

It will show you:

  • If any encumbrances exist.
  • The lender the encumbrances are with.
  • When the encumbrances were registered.
  • The registration value of any encumbrances.
  • The legal homeowners and the type of ownership.
  • A history of registered mortgages and liens.
  • And more.

With this tool, you’ll be able to find out from the get-go whether or not the client can pay you and if there is enough equity available in the home for it to be worth your while.

This is vital in today’s changing economy when interest rates are rising, and new mortgage rules are in place. Federally-regulated lenders have to take into account the client’s gross debt service (GDS) ratio — all of the housing related debt they carry — and total debt service (TDS) ratio — the total amount of debt they carry.

However, private lenders that are not federally regulated do not have to do this. So, it could be possible for a client to be securing their mortgage privately and struggling with debt — and you may not find out until it is too late.

That is why it’s always a good idea to get a Parcel Register*. You’ll be able to know more sooner and rest easy knowing that the deal will go through uninterrupted and you’ll be able to get your real estate commission.

A GeoWarehouse Parcel Register* is easy to obtain. Find out more today. Call 1-866-237-5937 or visit www.geowarehouse.ca.

* An official product of the Ontario government pursuant to provincial land registration statutes.

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November 26, 2018

There is one real estate opportunity that seems to only be growing in popularity: selling condos.

The Canadian condo market continues to boom. From 2016 to 2018, more than 14% of private mortgages came from condominiums.

In June 2018, residential construction starts across Canada surged to 248,000 units, driven by condos.

“While there has been some moderation in price growth and less speculative demand in the single-family home segment, prices for condominiums have continued to increase rapidly in some markets,” the Bank of Canada noted in its July 2018 Monetary Policy Report.

Condos have also benefitted from tougher mortgage rules and increased interest rates. As house prices have gone up, condos have remained the more affordable option. This means that not only are younger buyers opting for condos over traditional homes, but so are older buyers. For instance, some members of Generation X are choosing to move into condos for a smaller mortgage.

In 2017, three out of every four homes built were multi-family units, compared to 65% the decade before.

If you sell real estate in Canada, the signs are there that this is the time to consider selling condos, too.

Should you decide to join the condo market, or ramp up your efforts, here are some best practices to keep in mind:

  • Look at property details. Just like you would request a property report for a single-family dwelling, you should do the same for a condo. For instance, with a GeoWarehouse report you can see all condo units in a building, search by level, look up related PINs, access the full legal description, and more.
  • Don’t only consider constructed condos. Look also at pre-construction condos. New condo buildings are being constructed quickly, especially in larger urban areas like Toronto and Vancouver. Sell clients on making a decision early to beat the rush.
  • Condos aren’t just for younger buyers. As we mentioned above, condos used to be the millennials’ residence, but that’s not always the case these days. More and more older generations are choosing condos amid new mortgage rules, increased interest rates, or wanting to stay in an urban area. While millennials are certainly still a big market, they’re not the only market.
  • Look at what else the building offers. There may be additional assets included with a condo sale, like a parking space or storage lockers. Unlike a traditional dwelling type, a condo can come with other perks, too — security guards, an on-site gym, a luxury view, etc. Play up these features in your sales pitch.
  • Focus on unique features. Condos are a space sacrifice, especially if a potential buyer is used to a larger home. But because they are rising in popularity, there are many more options for comfortable condo living today, like urban agriculture, unique storage ideas, and two-in-one furniture items. Don’t be afraid to get creative with your staging.Access condo status certificates online. There is no need to request your condo status certificates by fax anymore. Instead, use a tool like GeoWarehouse to do it all online.

While the condo boom is continuing to thrive, it makes sense to take advantage if it’s in your area. GeoWarehouse can help you stay on top of the latest condo trends and access property information.

Learn more by calling 1-866-237-5937 or visit www.geowarehouse.ca.

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landing good real estate dealsDeals go POW all the time…. Most times deals go POW when they weren’t “a deal” in the first place. Landing good real estate deals depends upon discerning good deals from POW-destined deals right from the get-go.

What does that mean? Well, when you meet a client and conduct a new client interview, the prospective buyer or a seller provides you with available personal information. But at this point in your relationship with them, the information provided is all you have with which to assess them…. So what do you do next?

Often times, a client may often innocently omit information they could have provided you. Many times a prospective client could have been confused or simply forgot about other documents that would have been of appropriate interest to you. Other times a prospective client may intentionally omit providing information he or she well knows positions them to reap some personal gain, perhaps even at your expense.

Whether you are trying to prevent fraud or simply keep a deal from going POW, you should perform your due diligence at this crucial application stage. So what information is vital to confirm at the application stage? Here are some essentials:

Verifying a Seller’s worthiness

  • Verify your client’s identification by asking to see it
  • Verify that your client is the legal homeowner
  • Verify that your client is the only legal homeowner and if they are not, insist on knowing who all other legal homeowners are
  • Check registered mortgages to ensure that there is enough equity to pay for closing costs (including your commission)
  • Check the sales history on the property to make sure that there is no funny-business or reason to suspect the property has issues

Verifying a Buyer’s worthiness

  • Check the client’s identification
  • Ensure that your client is able to finance a mortgage
  • If a client tells you their purchase depends on the sale of their other property – check that the other property has enough equity to finance the purchase of another (including land transfer taxes and related closing costs)

Conducting an airtight interview is the first vital component to your landing a good real estate deal as a real estate sales professional. Utilize tools to validate information about your clients ahead of all other business to pave the way for a successful deal – and close. Some real estate sales professionals perform due diligence at various stages in the real estate process and for good reason. If something comes up the deal could go POW.

Even if the client provides you with documents like the deed or MPAC assessments – you should still independently verify all information provided by a client or prospective client. Tools like GeoWarehouse, Google and even the MLS are great ways to do this and can save you substantial money and headaches in the long run!

For more information about how you can validate the information your client provides to you please visit www.geowarehouse.ca.

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