3 Ways to Go Over & Above When Working With Referrals

Change is everywhere. Families grow, downsize, divorce, and make career moves, among other impactful circumstances. One thing is constant though … everyone needs a place to live, and oftentimes, their destination is far from home.

Last year, approximately 1.5 million employer-assisted relocations took place, according to the Employee Relocation Council. In the same period, vacation home sales rose 57 percent, to 1.3 million properties, well above their most recent peak level in 2006, according to the National Association of Realtors®. All contribute to a country on the move.

We set out to learn a little more about how keen real estate agents are capitalizing on the surge in relocations and vacation properties by building a robust referral market. Kyle Else, a Realtor® with Keller Williams, Palo Alto, California, immediately came to mind. Kyle has spent the past decade building a solid referral practice in one of the country’s hottest relocation markets: the Silicon Valley.

“Directing the attention of a client’s trust in my brand to another agent is a high-risk task,” said Kyle. “I take it very seriously and expect the referring agent to do so as well. We each represent the other and want the relationship to grow. That means we both need to service a referral to the best of our abilities by closing the deal to their advantage.”

Kyle begins by making sure everyone is comfortable working together, followed by a formal referral agreement. Then he turns to Realtors Property Resource® (RPR).

“Whether I’m providing information to a new client or to a referring agent, I always rely on RPR’s tools and data to set the foundation for the transaction,” he said.

“RPR allows me to work creatively to provide thoughtful gestures or items of value that might be a little unexpected but extremely welcomed by a customer or referring agent.”

Kyle Else, REALTOR®

Here, in Kyle’s own words, we learn just a few of the ways he uses RPR to make inroads with his referral clients.

  • Understanding where they’re coming from

    “If I have a client who is looking to relocate to a Palo Alto neighborhood similar to his current homebase, I immediately go to RPR and pull the data on his existing area, like demographics, points of interest, traffic, and market activity. I learn everything there is to know to get a sense of what his/her lifestyle preferences are.

    Then, by the time we have our first conversation, I already understand his/her neighborhood, local economy, and home buying wishes. It makes it easier to match him/her to a distinct location that suit his/her wants.”

  • Serving as a Subject Matter Expert

    “Maybe my referral isn’t familiar with bidding wars, which are common here in Palo Alto. With RPR, I can perform in depth analyses using list vs. sale price datasets plus other real-time market activity, then share my RPR reports to ensure we have similar expectations.

    An occasional occurrence in our area is when a home’s list price is significantly higher than the AVM. The AVM will say close to $4.4 million but the list price is $8.5 million. In these cases, I’ll go into RPR; select and refine the comps based on high demand, rare property features and other market data; then sit down with my client to have a discussion on my best RVM®.

    Demand is everything here and, because of that, we have to take pricing very seriously.”

  • Backing it up With Bonafide Reports

    “When a referred agent provides an RPR report to a customer, it delivers real-time comprehensive data needed to protect and promote the interests of clients in the transaction.

    At first contact with the referring agent or new client, I run RPR reports on the original and intended locations. A Seller’s Report tells me everything I need to know about the home they are selling or have sold. I get full details on active listings, pending sales, recently sold, and those fine points about the property. The report includes side by side comparisons, but there are also full property details for each of those comparisons, which gives me sold prices and dates, days on market and more.

    I also like RPR’s Property Report. It offers incredible details on a property, like values, history, taxes, photos, and school information. I customize the report to include my brand every time.

    And I’ve noticed how valuable the Market Activity Report is to help build my referral business. It’s critical that I show what’s going on in an area and the report does just that.”

“RPR’s real estate platform is robust and the ability to make refinements towards a property’s value based on local market conditions leads to a winning negotiation and peace of mind when making a referral.”

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  1. Tyson Hall February 13, 2017 at 7:26 pm - Reply

    This was really insightful. I have two clients who are going to be relocating this year and I will utilize these measure in helping them find property.

  2. Meixue February 13, 2017 at 9:26 pm - Reply

    How we do find points of interest and demographic info on RPR

    • Kyle Else February 18, 2017 at 12:26 am - Reply

      I research points of interest near a subject property address on the RPR Report Details > Summary Tab. From this page click on the “Bigger Map” button. Then click the “POI” button inside the top-right frame. I usually discover or get reminded of POI’s such as: Daycare, Gas, Fire and Police stations. Clients that are not familiar with the neighborhood are thankful to learn about such POI categories plus it helps with my RVM before presenting an offer.

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