Dear Zuess,

I’ve been meeting a lot of condo buyers recently, but they all seem to want to sit on the fence and wait for the market to crash. They want information, they want to go out and see places, but when I try to close for an offer, they say they want to wait and see what happens. How can I convince them to buy now?  

Miranda, Toronto

Dear Miranda,

Oh yes – condo buyers indeed? Or are they curious market bystanders carelessly leading starving real estate agents down the garden path with dreams of prosperity (or at least this months mortgage payment)? A person is only a buyer if they are qualified and they have signed a BRA contract. Otherwise, they are a just real estate prospects.

Definition of a prospect: a mental consideration. Real estate prospects are people who may become customers or clients. Real estate prospects are great. They represent an opportunity, but they are not buyers or customers or clients. So to begin, qualify them. While financial qualification is essential, it is just the tip of the iceberg.   Just because they can buy a home, doesn’t mean they will. They must be motivated and they must be reasonable. “Motivation” means that they need a place to live and “reasonable” means that they will pay a fair price based on the current market conditions. Everyone else is a prospect. The great thing about prospects is that they can test our lead management systems, give us people to talk to each week to earn referrals, and offer us a playground to practice our persuasion and influence skills as we serendipitously try to convince them to become motivated and reasonable……and when they do – we are on the front line having earned their trust and respect.

A strategic business plan can certainly help you with converting your real estate prospects into qualified buyers.

Be patient!


Columnist, The Nature of Real Estate

April 2013


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