It all started with a $30,000 difference of opinion. A past client of Penny Brockways’ called to say she was looking to break even on a quick sale of her home, which was originally purchased for $183,000. Penny thought the property could sell for $227,000 but was outnumbered by her husband and business partner, James (who felt $200,000 was a more realistic list price) and the client who felt both of those prices were “way, way too high.”
Determined to prove otherwise, Penny, a REALTOR® with Brockway Realty, Clear Lake Area of Texas, created an RPR Seller’s Report showing James and the client why she was right about the price. Based on Penny’s input, the team compromised, landing on an asking price of $220,000—nearly $30,000 more than their client’s original purchase price. The property received a full price offer in eight days. In fact, they continued to receive offers that were over list price.
“Since then, we’ve become RPR’s biggest fans,” claims Penny. “It has helped grow our business because it has given us more credibility.”
Leading from the start
Penny specializes in listing presentations by maximizing every RPR tool at her disposal. When potential clients call, she is ready.
“That first phone call is critical,” she said. “I’ll immediately pull up RPR on my tablet and start researching the seller’s home while asking questions at the same time.”
Penny first looks to the Realtor Valuation Model® (RVM®) Confidence Score. “It gives me a level of security as to whether the value is solid. Four or five stars give us a great start.” She then turns to RPR’s map features to see current values of neighboring homes. Next, she quizzes the seller to confirm the home’s basic facts such as number of bedrooms, baths, square footage, etc. Penny then lets the seller know that, together, they will adjust the current value of his/her home using RPR’s Refined Value Tool.
“They’ll tell me they have an addition that’s not on the public record or upgraded a bathroom in recent years. We can adjust the home’s value for a new kitchen, entry doors, roof, and so many other improvements. It’s easy to do and clients are incredibly impressed by the fact that I can do it right then and there.”
Based on what is shared, Penny emails her new client an RPR Seller’s Report, complete with a customized cover highlighting the seller’s name, address, and home photo. The report includes nearly 20 data sets ranging from the suggested list price, home facts and comps to the property’s history, seller proceeds and market activity.
But she doesn’t stop there. “The big thing here in Houston is schools,” said Penny. “We work in a particularly sought after district so the RPR School Report is one of my most important assets.That and the Neighborhood Report are invaluable.”
According to Penny, nothing can be set in stone until she meets the client face to face, i.e., tours the home. “At least 50 percent of the time, that house is different from what you, or even the seller, think it is. After seeing the home, I’ll use my tablet to access RPR and show the client photos of other houses in the neighborhood. I’ll ask, ‘Can you tell me which of these homes is a one or ten, and where your house sits in comparison? And if you’re house is a four, what are you prepared to do to bring it to a level you are most comfortable with?’”
Penny cites how engaged clients become when everyone is working from her tablet. “They immediately start touching the screen and looking around the RPR site to see what other properties have sold for, what’s pending, days on market, or even in foreclosure. They love the maps and the fact that I can continue to refine the value of their home based on what I’ve seen during my listing presentation.”
“I can’t imagine being a REALTOR® right now and not having access to RPR,” concludes Penny.