Approach Realtors the Right Way

Seven ways to make inroads with real estate agents.

December 29, 2011

Have you tried to approach real estate agents to drum up mortgage business—only to be shut out?

Maybe you’re taking the wrong approach, says David Hershman, president/CEO of The Hershman Group. He offers these suggestions for making inroads with real estate agents:

1. Approach the right target. “If you approach the wrong target, you’ll get the wrong result,” he says. The right target is someone who’s open to working with someone new—there’s no “relationship interference”—and who’s compatible ethically, technologically, and geographically.

“Do your research first,” Hershman advises.

2. Don’t make cold calls. Doing so will greatly harm your chances of connection. “Do your networking and get a warm introduction,” he says. “I don’t care if it’s from another Realtor, a vendor, or even a church member.”

3. Don’t press agents for business. Instead, flatter them and ask for their advice and opin-ions. Seek information. “Of course, look for openings in which you can follow up and keep the relationship going,” Hershman advises.

4. Ask questions that result in positive answers. You’ll likely get a “no” if you ask, “Do you have a deal for me now?” But not if you ask, “What’s the best way for me to help Realtors with their business?”

5. Prepare for the meeting. Don’t ask questions about things you should already know, such as whether the person is a listing agent. Those answers are available online.
Review the agent’s website and do a Google search.

6. Talk about their interests. They’re interested in selling more houses, not in mortgages. “Don’t talk about your service, prices, and products—they’ve heard it before,” Hershman says. “How will you help them sell more homes?”

7. Network while you meet. Does the agent know someone else you should meet, such as another real estate agent, vendor, or certified public accountant?

“The right approach,” Hershman says, “will make all the difference in the world.”