The Confident Rookie Series - Secret One - Master Your Systems BEFORE You Need Them!

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Education & Training with Sell with Soul

How comfy are you with your systems? Specifically, your MLS and your contract software? For me, if I'm not proficient with my tools of my trade, it's easy for me to shy away from using them. Well, in OUR trade, shying away from using the MLS or your contract software is pretty much fatal to your chances of bringing in a paycheck. KWIM?contract

Last year, after two years away from the trenches, I re-activated my real estate license. The RE/MAX office I joined had a new fancy-schmantzy contract software program I'd never used before. Well, the heavens smiled on me and I got a buyer off my blog literally the first day back. We went out looking at houses and they found one they liked and wanted to make an offer on it.

YIPES! I had no idea how to even fire up the program, much less navigate through it, so... get this... I put them off with some stupid excuse until two days later so I could get a crash course on the software. But even with the crash course, I was a bit of a basket-case writing up the offer, from a technology perspective.

For a new agent, I imagine this would be doubly or triply unnerving! At least I'd actually gone through a purchase contract with a buyer a couple hundred times, so I wasn't nervous about that... but the actual technology of it just about shut me down.

So, the first step is admitting you have a problem. When you run an MLS search for a buyer, do you trust your results? When you're looking for comparables to price a home for a prospective seller, are you sure you found them all? No? Then practice practice practice. And get some training, either from the local MLS provider/board or from another agent in the office. Do 5 practice CMAs* on 5 office listings. Do a CMA on your own house. Search for homes Just Like Yours and go preview them.

If you use contract software (as opposed to handwriting your contracts), GET SOME TRAINING. These systems are not intuitive and you'll be a basket-case like I was if you're sitting down with a buyer to write an offer and can't figure out how to print it out. Or how to auto-populate the fields from contract to contract. These programs are typically pretty powerful and can do a lot of things for you... LEARN THEM.

Yeah, yeah, I know that Learning your Systems isn't nearly as sexy as learning how to prospect, but unless you're a master fake-it-til-you-make-it-er, those prospects you bring in won't be worth much to you without a decent knowledge of your systems.

Tomorrow: Secret Two - Practice with Your Printer (more important than you might think!) 

* CMA traditionally stands for Competitive Market Analysis or Comparative Market Analysis, however, I recently a much better definition, compliments of Broker Bryant - "Compilation of Market Activity." A CMA is a report prepared by a real estate agent to determine the market value of a home.

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  1. Yvette & Dennis Gardner 04/07/2009 09:19 PM
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Topic:
Real Estate Best Practices
Groups:
Art of Professional Salesmanship
New Agent's Fasttrack to SUCCESS!
Real Estate Professionals
Real Estate Rookie
Selling Soulfully
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Comments 11 New Comment

Ambassador
1,483,833
Gary Woltal
Assoc. Broker Realtor SFR Dallas Ft. Worth
Keller Williams Realty

Jennifer, you illustrated with your example, just like anything in life, lots of practice helps.

April 04, 2009 01:08 PM
Rainmaker
333,409
Dan Brudnok
REALTOR,e-PRO,ABR,GREEN,SRES,CSP
Keller Williams RE- Exton - PA License Number #RS225179L

Jennifer,

Practice always makes perfect.....take the opportunities to perfect your trade......you will never regret it.

April 07, 2009 04:54 PM
Rainer
8,836
Jason Daley
Kitsap County Real Estate, Bremerton, WA Real Estate

Boy I remember some of my first contracts 4.5 years ago... Talk about a lump in your throat!!!

When I moved from WA to UT, and had to learn all new contracts (A bit different from state to state in this case) I went through every line of the contracts and addendums and highlighted anything that I wanted any clarification on, and then took that to our office and had them go through each item with me.

They told me that I am the only agent that they know of that has ever done that. Nuff Said...

April 10, 2009 11:00 AM
Rainmaker
971,166
Sharon Alters
Your Fleming Island Relocation Agents.
Coldwell Banker Vanguard Realty

Jennifer, it's learning curves that keep us young - and frustrate us along the way lol! We have a contract system that is used state-wide and it can be great or frustrating if you push the wrong button and delete by accident!

April 10, 2009 11:11 PM
Anonymous #11
Anonymous
Another Realtor

Odd that you couldn't just ask your broker for help with the software.

July 22, 2009 12:56 AM
Rainmaker
427,949

Jennifer Allan-Hagedorn

Author of Sell with Soul
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