Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Follow-up, follow-up, follow-up!!!

Follow-up is the word when it comes to selling properties. In fact follow-up is the word in buying properties also. You must not rest on your leads. Even if you get tons and tons of leads (I actually don't know how many tons and tons of leads are but it sounds like a lot) you can not wait for them to call back. As my mother says "He who hesitates is lost" and that can not be more true. The buyer or renter has too many options for you to sit back and wait.

Do not count the property sold or rented until you have cash and a contract in hand. Otherwise the property is still available. Let me tell you a tough example on that note. Our first property we purchased, and I will admit we purchased it wrong. We paid too much and were optimistic about selling it quickly. We poured all kinds of money in the home. We took it from a REO nightmare to a beautiful home. We had our open house and we got a few people through it. We were priced to high for the market. We continued to market the property to avail. Then a woman came by and said the house was perfect for a program she was putting together. In fact she wanted buy it with owner financing and pay it off in 7 years. That worked out to $3300 per month. Well we got the agreement drawn up and she sign with a earnest money deposit. We found out later that the check she gave for the earnest money bounced. We asked her and she said that an investor pulled his money early but she would have the money in there soon. Meanwhile she paraded interior designers, furniture reps, etc through the house to begin to get the house ready. Well many months passed and no closing. Finally we told her to put up or shut up. We canceled the escrow and realized that we lost 3 months of marketing for the house. We lost all the momentum. We never recovered. We gave the house back to our private lender and learned a very expensive lesson.

The deal is not closed until we have the money and the contract in hand. Otherwise the property is always available.

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