Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Self-Closing for Decisions To Live With

Second guessing yourself can be expensive when it involves real estate. Decisions you can confidently commit to can save money and increase profits. Wouldn't you rather be right the first time when buying, selling, or leasing real estate, or arranging financing?

Hindsight reveals which decisions were the wisest, but it should not leave you whining "if only I'd…".

When it comes to real estate, no one knows the future. Some may have better ideas than others about what could possibly happen in the near and distant futures, but ultimately, it's a wait-and-see game. However, if you hesitate to act on opportunity because you're waiting for the perfect time or until you're perfectly sure, you may wait forever and miss out on everything. Telling "if only I'd..."stories about what you should have bought or could have sold, just makes you boring, not financially secure.

To strengthen your real estate reactions and build decision making skills, consider three significant areas where confidence building, goal setting, and knowledge accumulation will reap results:
  1. Real estate is the investment you can live and work in, so buying or selling involves both financial and emotional considerations. This can be why making confident decisions is a challenge. When considering a specific property, the greater your awareness of how you feel about ownership, and which aspects of the real estate hold true value for you, the more confidently you'll decide what the true risks are and which steps to take.
  2. Buy low and sell high is the investment credo. Timing the real estate market to buy at the absolutely lowest prices and to sell at the highest is as challenging a goal as timing the stock market, if not more so. Real estate does not have a national, or even provincial, marketplace. Internet access to listings from across the country has little or no bearing on sale prices. Real estate value is dictated locally. Property values on one street can vary significantly from those a few streets away. Become an expert on what's happening locally to set achievable real estate goals.
  3. Owners gain extensive experience as owners, but they spend considerably less time involved in the purchase and sale of their property. Their accumulated knowledge about ownership and equity management may be considerable, but they are usually relatively less experienced in selecting real estate to buy and in gaining the greatest advantage when selling. When owners and buyers know all the questions to ask, and the implications of the answers, they can make informed decisions and stick to them. When they don't, their skill at enlisting the aid and advice of real estate and financial professionals, whose knowledge fills gaps in understanding, will determine how confidently decisions are made, and committed to.
Real estate and financial professionals study the art and science of sales, so that they can facilitate decision making for consumers and seal the deal to earn commission or fees. The deal-making technique is known as closing. This vital culmination of the sales process can be as simple as asking the consumer for the decision to buy or sell, instead of waiting for the consumer to ask first.

High pressure or unscrupulous salespeople can use closing techniques as powerful manipulators to drive consumers into an inappropriate choices. Understand closing techniques can help you recognize abuse of these communication tools and save you from making a decision you're sorry to have to live with.

Apply these sales communication approaches to yourself to "self-close" and improve decision making. Typical "closing" signals in your behaviour are expressing specific interest, asking questions that related to the transfer of ownership, or visualizing the transaction as complete like wondering where furniture would be placed or considering how you would redo a room. Notice these reactions and you may be ready to choose.

Closing techniques can help you make informed, confident decisions. These indecision eliminators facilitate clear thinking and encourage consideration of relevant factors before signing on the dotted line. Experiment with one of the following approaches to analyse opportunity:
  1. Minor Decisions Before Major Try making decisions about minor issues so you can clear the way to see exactly what the major decision is. For instance, new home buyers may make decisions about whether to upgrade or not, and even make a model choice. This should enable the salesperson to provide details on final pricing, so that issues of affordability and goal realization become clear. If the desired model or move-in dates are not available, there may be no big decision to make. When all minor decisions go your way, you'll clear to determine if true value lies in the major decision.
  2. Ben Franklin Pro vs Con Close This balance-sheet approach, used for decision making by Ben Franklin, remains a useful tool. Compare two properties to buy, two offers to sell, or even, whether to act now or later. Deciding on the features or factors for comparison is part of the clarifying process. Start by drawing a "T" on the page or screen, and labelling each of the two resulting columns with the two sides of the decision: pro and con, yes or no, do or don't do. List the benefits associated with one side of the argument and, then, list the benefits of not making this choice. Next, do the same for the other side of the decision. You can add numeric value to each item if that will help weigh the benefits and risks of each choice. The process is important, not just the outcome. Your reactions to what you consider to complete the comparison, and to what is finally displayed should clarify the decision for you.
  3. "What If" Objection Handling List your objections to making a specific decision right now. Then, seriously consider your reaction if all these objections could be handled, that is, solved or eliminated. If you're confident you'd go ahead, then set about dealing with those objections. In contrast, the exercise may make you sure "no" is the best answer. If, in spite of a clear pathway, you're still undecided, ask yourself some probing questions to uncover unexpressed objections. Until all conscious and unconscious objections, real and imagined, are faced and resolved, uncertainty will feed indecision.
  4. The Time-Tested Ask the real estate or financial salesperson you are working with to share their time-tested tool for decision making. Experiment with their approach, and you'll also gain insight into the salesperson's point of view on the decisions involved. Experience has revealed to him or her the relative importance of key factors or features that you might otherwise overlook. You may also discover why items you have fixated on may not be as important to the decision as you believed.
Aim to eliminate second-guessing and time-wasting worrying. Develop a solid decision-making process before you're faced with time-sensitive choices. Learn how to analyze value in the type of real estate that interests you, and you'll be ready to act with confidence when opportunity arrives.

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