In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic with social distancing challenges and economic uncertainty, bringing listings to a close is more crucial than ever for you and your sellers. In many cases, working remotely and limiting personal client interactions can mean that you’ve had to put in even more hard work, be more creative and spend extra time to market and successfully sell the property. Here are some tips for finishing the transaction strong.
Help your clients prepare for the home inspection. This can be a stressful time for sellers, as a lot hinges on the inspection results. Prep your sellers on what to expect, whether they should be present in person or virtually and how they need to prepare their home. For example, make sure the inspector has access to every area of the home and ask them to move any furniture, boxes or other items that could impede examination. Give them an idea of how long the inspection might take and when the report should be available.
Communicate with your clients regarding timelines and next steps. Things can happen quickly as a listing heads toward closing, so be sure that your clients know what to expect and when. If possible, put a timeline in writing and email it to them for reference. Send them reminders, too, when they have a deadline to meet. Remember, they are likely prepping for a move as well as a house sale, so they may be overwhelmed and will appreciate your help.
Offer practical help with their move. Ask if they need referrals for a moving company, packing assistance or other service providers. Give them a list of utilities and services that they need to have changed out of their name, including contact numbers. Offer suggestions for mask wearing and staying safe when interacting with movers and service providers. Any support that you offer during a hectic move will be long remembered.
You may want to present your clients with a closing gift as a gesture of appreciation for their business. Gifts don’t have to be big, but they should be thoughtful, such as a scented candle or a doormat for their new home, or a meal service for the busy days after they move in. Even if you don’t choose to send a gift, be sure to send a card thanking them for trusting you with their real estate needs during this turbulent time.
Make sure you have your clients’ new mailing address as well as any other contact information that changes with their move. You’ll want to stay in touch with them and hopefully serve them again someday as repeat clients.
If an American Home Shield® home warranty hasn’t already been added to the transaction, it’s not too late to get this valuable protection. In fact, homebuyers have up to 60 days after closing to add American Home Shield coverage at special, affordable Real Estate Edition prices. With coverage for some of the most critical home system components and appliances that break down over time due to normal wear and tear, American Home Shield home warranties give homeowners important budget protection, plus a reliable repair resource for help when covered repairs or replacements are needed during the contract term.
Visit ahs.com/realestate to find out how American Home Shield coverage can help real estate transactions go smoothly.