27 Jul Our New Client Workflow: 5 Important Steps (+ Free Download!)
After working with hundreds of clients over the years we have been in real estate, we have learned a thing or two (and made some mistakes!) along the way. Over time, we’ve been able to refine a pretty streamlined system for new clients to make sure each transaction goes smoothly, and today we want to share our new buyer client workflow with you!
Here are five of the most important steps to our workflow… and make sure to read all the way to find some pretty sweet free downloads that we think you will love!
Step One: Qualifying the Lead
We have many lead sources, but typically our buyer leads come in either as an online lead responding to an ad, a direct lead from Facebook or Instagram or as a referral from our sphere of influence.
As you can imagine, these leads can be on a scale of varying degrees of urgency. Some need to buy right away and have a high motivation to do so, while some are really just looking or have general questions about the process.
Our first job is to determine the urgency of their need to purchase a home, and quickly qualify the lead. Usually, this can be handled over the phone or email. After we make contact with the lead, we want to determine a few things:
Are they working with another agent?
If they need financing, have they spoken to a lender for a preapproval?
How quickly are they looking to buy?
After we get a good gauge on this, we are looking to set an appointment. Unless a lead is out of state or very definitely doesn’t see themselves buying in the next twelve months, you bet your bottom dollar that we are going to hustle to get a face to face!
If they need financing and haven’t spoken to a lender yet, we connect them with one of our referrals and get them on their way. Then, we are scheduling a time to meet with them and conduct a buyer consultation.
Step Two: Buyer Consultation and Questionnaire
The buyer consultation is a chance for us to build rapport, and also set expectations. By this time, we should have their prequalification details from their lender, as well as an employment agreement in place, so we can discuss what type of home they are looking for, and how reasonable their wishes are compared to what they can afford. It’s really important for us to set expectations in this area and guide our clients about what to expect in the market.
We then go ahead and set the next steps for a client. Forward momentum is critical! Depending on their timeframe to purchase, we set somewhat of a deadline on when we’d like to have them under contract.
Then, we need to collect all the information that will be used in our database. We have a questionnaire form for them to fill out, so they can provide us with their contact information, current mailing address, other purchasing parties, as well as fun things like their favorite restaurants, sports teams, and birthdates.
This way, as soon as we leave the buyers consultation, we all have clarity on next steps, expectations, and all of the client’s information is in our CRM so we can keep tabs on them throughout the process.
Step Three: Send Transaction Overview and additional resources
After working with hundreds of clients, we began to realize that most of them had the same set of questions. A lot of our clients happen to be first time homebuyers, and the purchasing process can be confusing!
In order to help our clients feel supported, and empowered with the information they need to feel confident with a home purchase, we make sure to provide them with as much information as possible about the process upfront.
Bryce put together an awesome email a few years ago that we template and send every time we start showing houses to a client. It’s our FAVORITE email because it’s a pretty detailed account of the next steps of the purchase process.
Once we began sending this email, we realized some of our clients would even print it off and follow it like a checklist! So, we got with one of our graphic designers and had a complete Home Purchase Timeline document put together to provide our clients. That way, they can follow each step along the way of the transaction process.
The best part of this step? It hugely reduces our inbound emails and texts for repetitive queries. (This is the WHOLE POINT of systemizing your business!!) Our clients love feeling empowered enough to answer their own questions and feel informed during the home buying process. This reduces their need to reach out to us for questions like, “What’s a home inspection, and who pays it?” or, “When do we order the appraisal?”
Our clients love having all of this information from us up front, at their fingertips, and we love helping them feel more confident along the way.
Step Four: Get under contract and connect all parties
Once we find the right home and get an accepted offer, we follow the normal transaction proceedings. We are in Arizona, and like any state, we have our own regulations and timelines to follow.
As soon as we open escrow, we send an email to all parties to the contract and connect those that need to be connected. This is a pretty long email, but it ensures that each vendor is on the same page from the very beginning. Sometimes we also hire the file out to a transaction coordinator, and at this point, we would introduce that individual.
Then, we send our template milestone emails to our client along the way, that coordinate well with the Home Purchase Timeline map they have. We make sure that there is a lot of communication not only with our client but also all parties involved, to ensure that things run smoothly.
Step Five: Order a closing gift and move the client to the closed-client-workflow
Ah, and finally after around 30-45 days, we reach the closing table! About a week before close – once we know we are all in the clear! – we are sure to order a custom gift for our clients so that it will be ready to hand over when we record the file.
Our favorite part of the transaction is recording day! We are so excited to hand over the keys to our clients for their very own home, and watching them open their front door for the first time is thrilling! It makes all the hard work through the transaction totally worth it.
Then, we hand over their beautiful housewarming gift with a handwritten Thank You card, and off we go! Our clients either have movers scheduled or are just ready to have a few moments to enjoy their house. (There have even been a few surprise proposals on closing day!) So we peace out of there to let our clients enjoy the home.
After all the fun, we move our clients to our closed client workflow in order to keep in touch, make sure they feel appreciated (and get something nice on their birthdays!) and encourage referrals for years to come.
Whew! So that’s our client-to-close workflow.
We have as much of this system of ours automated as we can so that we know we aren’t missing any steps. Of course, this happens in our CRM and our task management systems (we really love Asana!). Because we’ve taken the time to systemize and automate these steps, we get to leave town worry-free, and always have clarity on what’s what in our business!
To try this awesome process for yourself, you can download our transaction workflow checklist by clicking HERE. It will give you peace of mind to know you’re always on the right track! Then you can use our special gift of a downloadable Home Purchase Timeline map! You can give the Timeline PDF to your clients to use, or adapt it with your own branding to make it yours.
This whole process has brought so much peace of mind to our own business, and we hope it helps you, too! We’d love to know your thoughts, so be sure to check in with us on Instagram (@BryceAndStefanie) to share how it’s working for you!
This post (and awesome resource!) was made possible by our signature online course, The Real Estate Method! To take your business a step further, we invite you to check out this course that has helped dozens of agents create more systemized, profitable businesses from coast to coast. See ya there!