Strategies for Handling Objections

Objections are the biggest driver of an agent being reluctant to prospect or pick up the phone. And why wouldn’t it be? If everyone we called, texted, and emailed responded with “I’ll be there in 30 minutes and I’m ready to buy a house,” then we wouldn’t even be talking about this, much less have the need for scripting coaches and seminars on how to prospect and what to say on calls.

You can learn lots of specific things to say in response to common real estate objections, but the way to drive the needle forward on real progress is to re-frame the way you think about objections altogether.

Change your mindset about objections

If you can wrap your mind around how to embrace the objection and look forward to it, rather than viewing it as a negative event, you will WANT them to spit out their objection because you’re going to be SO ready for them.

The path to embracing the objection is to ensure that you re-frame the fear surrounding it. Are they really objecting to what you have to say, or are they merely asking for more information in an unusual way since you are strangers and they feel a teensy bit defensive as a natural human response to a sales call?

For instance, if a future client says, “I’m not willing to sell right now because I have no idea where I will go. There’s nothing on the market that I’m interested in. I don’t want to put my family in a position to be homeless or moving multiple times.”

Woof. Although they clarified that they will be buying AND selling with you, they just told you that they’ve been looking, haven’t seen anything they like, and gave you a really understandable reason as to why they are a firm STOP on the process.

They are expecting this to be the end of the conversation, as that’s likely where it ended with the last five agents who rang them up. When someone hits you with a doozy, smile and say, “I am SO glad you said that! Let me share with you what I have been doing for other clients that will make this less of a challenge.”

This wasn’t an objection to what you were saying, it was an opportunity to show this person your value, to teach them what you have done for others in their exact situation (social proof, anyone?), and give them specific guidance on how you can confidently guide them to the top of their real estate transaction Everest.

Most of us feel that friction and negative energy through the phone and we get defensive and nervous, leading us to end the conversation early without even a chance to connect. By practicing viewing an objection as an exciting thing, you can smooth the conversation over and move forward easily. You knew it was going to happen, and you were ready for it because you are well-educated about your market and you have experience and solutions to share.

Remember, if they didn’t want to talk to you and hear what you have to say…they would have hung up already.

Facts vs Feelings

For many people, buying a home is a huge, scary thing to wrap their minds around. AND most people aren’t emotionally aware and mature enough to say, “I don’t know where to start with this and I’m scared, can you help me learn?” to the agent on the other end of the phone, trying desperately to help them.

You ask them if they are considering buying or selling and those gut feelings arise and, as a result, they say the worst things they can think of about it to move on with their day, doing the comfortable things they prefer: “I can’t do that! I’ll be homeless! I’ll lose money! I’ll get stuck with a house I don’t like! I’ll pay too much, the prices are inflated!”

New view: They aren’t objecting, they are asking for more information. This is your time to shine. Educate them on why they won’t be homeless. Why they won’t lose money. Why they won’t pay too much for a house, and what you have done for people JUST LIKE THEM in similar situations.

They are operating very much in their feelings and that often isn’t based in reality. Hear them first (NEVER skip this step!) and then educate them on the facts to move them out of that mental space.

Be proactive about the objections you are hearing

As an agent, you are really in tune with what people are concerned about in your market right now. Having this information will allow you to build your toolkit around these potential challenges for your client and allow you to really address the objection head-on in a kind, stress-free manner that will disarm any friction.

Lead the conversation by asking if they are worried that this isn’t a good time to sell or buy and then listening to all of their perceived knowledge about the market. This will assist them in feeling understood, and lower their guard a bit. After you hear about their concerns, you can then offer them facts to support why now is actually a perfect time to buy or sell and how you can help them.

Remember though, THEY think that what they heard from their neighbor or read in their favorite opinion news source is 100% true. Don’t approach this with an air of “I know best so I won’t listen to you.” Listen, acknowledge THEIR truth, and then share your truth along with your very reliable, factual sources.

Don’t offer them this energy:

Listen to truly understand, not impatiently waiting for your turn to speak

This is incredibly important and the best way to get good at this is to role-play, y’all. Get comfortable with talking about these challenging topics so you aren’t clinging to your script.

The more comfortable you are talking about these subjects, the more you can listen to what the lead is actually saying and respond thoughtfully instead of being on your heels and just waiting for your turn to talk and shout out the next thing you’re SUPPOSED to say to move the conversation along.

Scripts are important to get you started, but the more you can have a natural conversation about real estate, the higher your conversion rate will be!

Listen and ask open-ended questions so you can help them work out what the root of their objection is. Is it time? Is it money? Is it needing more information?

Once you have a direction, provide them with information and resources to sort out how to make a decision.

If you can’t resolve it right then, tell them you’ll get back to them with answers soon…and then do it!

They want to feel heard and understood by you. If they don’t think you are truly listening and helping them meet their needs, they will find someone who will fit that role for them!

P.S. Did y’all know that Steve Harvey has a courtroom tv show? I had no idea until I was putting this together for you.