While 2020 wasn’t the year anybody really expected in the real estate world, demand didn’t go down by much. Even with the financial uncertainty due to COVID-19, plenty of buyers were looking for the right place to call home.
While demand remained steady throughout 2020, inventory was much lower than originally expected. Many local real estate markets became low inventory markets with a lack of real estate listings.
For an agent, this spells trouble as it means more competition to land real estate listings. While an inventory shortage isn’t a new concern, 2020 exaggerated things a bit. Many real estate agents have started their biggest challenge is finding real estate listings due to a lack of inventory.
While a low inventory market might get you down, good real estate agents understand this presents a unique opportunity. If you can find home sellers, you can benefit as buyers are creating bidding wars and driving prices up. Let’s look at a few ways you can find real estate listings in a low inventory market.
6 Ways to Find Real Estate Listings in a Low Inventory Market
1. Speak with For Sale By Owner Homes
You can search online and in the newspaper to find For Sale By Owner homes and go have a conversation with them. Don’t be afraid to knock on their door and ask them if they would like some help selling their home. Sure, they might say no, but if they say yes, you get a new real estate listing and they get professional help.
Try not to become a pressure salesperson when using this strategy. Instead, offer your help and ask if they would like to sit down and talk. Of course, make sure to follow COVID-19 guidelines so everybody feels comfortable.
2. Find Sellers on Social Media
You can search Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and other social media sites for people looking to move or sell their homes. While some of the people you contact might be renters and others might just be dreaming, you never know where you might score that serious sellers looking to put their home on the market.
3. Become an Expert Buyer’s Agent
It might seem counterintuitive to become a great buyer’s agent if your goal is to find real estate listings. However, most home sellers start looking for a new place to live before listing their home for sale.
If you become a great buyer’s agent, you might be able to get buyers to list their current home for sale with you. This requires you to become an expert problem-solver for the buyers.
Make sure you provide good advice to help with bidding wars and educating them on the financing options they might not know about. You can even show them a new neighborhood that fits all their needs, but they were unaware even existed.
4. Canvass Smaller Homes
Yes, smaller homes sell for less, but they still need to be sold. When it’s difficult to find real estate listings in a low inventory market, you have to get creative.
If you canvass smaller homes with a mailer or with flyers, you might just land a few listings. According to BoomtownROI.com, more than 75% of home sellers in 2017 were married couples moving about 12 miles from their current home. They were moving due to outgrowing their home.
If you canvass smaller homes, you might just have that perfect timing with a few. Maybe you end up with a few home listings for families expecting another child or those just looking for more space.
5. Find Withdrawn and Expired Listings
The MLS often has homes in your local market that were listed but never sold. This could be due to many possibilities, but more often than not, it’s due to the price being too high.
Find these listings and contact the owner of the home. You can show them how your expertise can help get their home sold faster and what the past listing was missing. Maybe you can help them understand how the listing was priced wrong or a few things they can do to improve their chances of attracting buyers.
6. Contact Rental Listings
Rentals are found all over the internet. If they are listed by a private individual, there’s a good chance the owner is renting because they couldn’t sell the property or they didn’t think they could sell it for enough money.
You might be able to help them and gain a real estate listing in the process. If they really prefer to sell, you can show them how you can get their home sold.
There are many ways to find real estate listings, even in a low inventory market. Sometimes, you have to get creative, but the listings are out there and good agents will find a way to find them.