Finding Motivated Property Sellers – My Leaflet Campaign Results

In my hunt for motivated property sellers I recently did a little experiment to see which advertising methods worked best for me and which performed the best cost-wise.

To re-cap, the three methods were:

  • 10,000 A5 leaflets (delivered in my local area)
  • 30 Postcards (in shop windows)
  • 3x5mm advert in local newspaper for one month

And here’s how they fared..

Finding Motivated Sellers – Results So Far

My first campaign this year to find motivated sellers is nearing it’s end and I can now reveal how it’s going so far. To re-cap, for those who aren’t aware of what I was doing, my plan was to use three different methods of advertising to find motivated sellers and see which worked the best for me.

Although this was an ‘experiment’ as such, please use it as a guideline only as all campaign results will be varied according to different factors involved such as;

  • The time of year

  • Distribution area

  • Advertising material

  • The property market situation in at the time

  • Length of time the ads run for

The three methods I tested were:

  • Distributing 10,000 A5 leaflets – I designed and ordered the flyers which cost £59.00 for 10,000. These were delivered to my local area by 7 distributors I recruited from ‘Gumtree’. The distribution took approximately 2 weeks to complete and I paid them £30.00 per one thousand leaflets distributed. Cost in total: £359.00.

  • A6 post cards in shop windows – Originally I had planned to use 30 post cards but I found it very time consuming driving around looking for suitable shops, in total I actually used 22 postcards in various shops, Newsagents, Post Offices, corner shops etc. All placed for ONE month. Cost in total: £44.00 (roughly £2.00 per ad per month)

  • Advertising with the local newspaper – I placed a small ad in my local paper (3x3cm) which ran every day for one month. I noticed there were 4 other investors advertising in the same paper at the same time so the competition is tough. Cost in total: £114.00.

22 A6 Postcards

10,000 A5 Leaflets

Local Newspaper Ad’

Totals

Cost: £42.00

Cost: £359.00

Cost: £114.00

Total Cost: £515.00

Calls: 2

Calls: 12

Calls: 5

Total Calls: 19

Deals: 0

Deals: 1

Deals: 1

Total Deals: 2

As you can see from the table above I received a total of 19 calls from the campaign. I reckon I missed 5 or 6 calls which were marked as ‘number unknown’ on my mobile (or the ‘Bat Phone’ as I call it!) due to not being able to answer it for one reason or other – another good reason to use an ‘All Day PA’ !

From this I can conclude that I won’t be using postcards again, it’s not the first time I’ve tried it, I had the same results from a previous postcard campaign….so that is dumped!

I received 12 calls re the leaflets, one of which got me a deal as follows:

A lady called Lynn rang to say she needed a quick property sale because she’d divorced her husband last year and he was pestering her for his share of the property sale because he had a lot of debts to pay off. I won’t tell her whole story (it was quite shocking) or I’ll be typing for a month lol (I’m a good listener!) but to cut a long story short Lynn and her two children were planning to stay with her mother until she was offered a council house – she’d been told by the local council she couldn’t be re-housed until her property was sold.

The property was a 2 bed semi in the LE5 area of Leicester (ex local authority) and wasn’t on the market with an Estate Agent, she said she’d been meaning to put it on the market but hadn’t gotten around to it so decided to call me when she received my leaflet.

After speaking with her for a while (quite a while!) I arranged to go and see her the next day. It was an ex local authority property in fairly good condition, it needed a ‘paint job’ but was a nice little house (brick structure) with a conservatory and a good sized garden. It could’ve done with a new kitchen but for rental purposes it would suffice with a good clean.

Lynn said it had been valued at £95,000 last year by an Estate Agent, I said I’d do some due diligence and get back to her asap with an offer. The good point was that there was no mortgage on the property, and the vendors were going to split the proceeds between them. Rental value is £475 – £500 mth.

After DD I found it was actually only worth around £88k so I called her back and gave my reasons for this and said I could offer her a very quick sale with all legal costs paid for £66k (25% BMV) She said that was too low and would have to speak with her ex husband and get back to me, so I left it at that and thought that was another dead deal. BUT she called me back exactly one week later and asked if I could go any higher, I said I’d speak to my director and call her back ( a chance for me to work out how much more I could offer)

I already had an investor interested in the deal, friend and colleague Anthony, who I’d met a couple of times at the Derbyshire Landlords meeting over a year ago, he’d recently been in touch saying he was looking for deals in Leicester (he lives in Newark) so I called him to see how much he was willing to pay. He was very interested, had the deposit ready and said to offer £68,000 (which was about 22.5% BMV) so I called her back and said this was the best we could do and reassured her it would be a very quick sale.

Again she said she’d have to speak to her husband but called me back the same day to say they’d accept £68,000! I gave Anthony the good news and we agreed I’d get a ‘finders fee’ of £2k , he said he’d get his solicitor to send out paperwork for her to sign the same day (my finders fee would be written in to the agreement and sent to my account by the solicitor on completion of the sale) and appoint a solicitor for the vendors.

The vendors signed the legal paperwork and the sale is now going smoothly. Anthony is keeping me updated and expects to be completing around 15th June. Lynn is happy to finally get her ex husband off her back and has started packing and moving her belongings to her Mums house, she’s planning on taking her Mum and children on a nice holiday. Win Win 🙂

 So… I spent £359.00 in total for the leaflet printing and distribution, on completion I’ll be giving my distributor a bonus of £200 (as promised)  so that leaves a profit of £1,441 , I’d have liked a bigger profit but there’s always the next deal 🙂

Newspaper Ads and a Lease Option

I had 5 calls in response to the ad I put in the ‘Leicester Mercury’ (my local newspaper) one was from a guy looking to sell his one bed apartment, again in LE5, which was almost in negative equity so was an ideal situation for a Lease Option deal.

More about this deal and the versatility of Lease Options tomorrow as it’s 8.15pm and I’m going to relax with a well-earned glass of red now 🙂

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Have a good evening!

My Plan Of Action

If you don’t plan where you’re going then how’re you going to get there?

Right then, here it is, my ‘Plan of Action’. It’s nothing special or clever but it’s a plan which I intend to follow and hopefully reap rewards from. Remember you’ve got to have a plan and act on it if you want to get anywhere, procrastination is the opposite of decision and is the ‘killer of all dreams’ (which I have to admit I’m guilty of at times)

As I’m not currently in a position to buy property I’m looking to trade instead, ie; get an option agreement on a property, use finance from a JV partner to fund the deal and take a finders fee, or an assisted sale- I’ve completed on an assisted sale previously – read about it here:  http://singlemumtopropertyinvestor.com/2010/09/19/how-i-made-more-than-12k-in-7-weeks-using-none-of-my-own-money/

I have a couple of investor friends who’ve agreed to JV with me this way. Or, if an opportunity arises to do a Lease Option that cash flows well then I’ll do this as well.

I’ve spent a lot of money in the past on leafleting, PPC, newspaper and online ads but never measured the results or compared the different strategies to calculate the cost of each lead I obtain or, more importantly the cost of conversion per lead. ie: I may get 16 leads from a distribution of 10,000 leaflets but if only one of those converts to a deal then the cost of that deal is going to be considerably higher. It all boils down to what you want to be paying per deal and is it worth your time, money and effort?   It can be ‘swings and roundabouts’ and its difficult to measure it exactly as there are lots of other factors to consider like:

  • The time of year (Christmas and summer holidays are not good times to advertise)
  • Your availability. Will you be available to answer telephone calls or will you use a call centre? If you don’t answer the caller will immediately call one of your competitors!
  • People skills. Are you comfortable talking with people and making them feel at ease?
  • Negotiation skills. The longer you’ve been doing it the better you will get.
  • Marketing material – What your leaflet or advert says is vital. Is it going to make people want to call you? There’s a lot of competition out there!
  • Your distribution method. Are your leaflets being delivered correctly by your team? (or being dumped?)
  • Your ‘Team of professionals’ ; The people you choose to work with to complete the deals, brokers, solicitors etc, if they’re not doing their job efficiently you can easily lose the deal

I’m intending to use three forms of advertising and compare costs and leads obtained/converted for each method to see which performs best. The three I’m using are:

  • 10,000 Leaflets
  • 30 Postcards (in shop windows)
  • 4 Local Newspaper Ads

I’ve already designed and ordered my flyers, the cost so far for that is £112.00 (for 10,000, they should be with me around 21stMarch.  I put an advert on my local ‘Gumtree’ site yesterday (15/03/12) saying:

‘Owner Drivers Wanted For Leaflet Distribution For Local Property Company. £30.00 per 1000 paid plus bonus of £200.00 (paid on completion) if a lead turns into a deal’

So far I’ve had 19 applicants, well it was 20 but one of them lived inRomania, so I’m not counting him – he sent me his CV, gotta give him credit for trying though lol. I’ve replied to them all saying I’ll be in touch when the flyers are ready for delivery.

In my experience it’s much better to have lots of distributors delivering small amounts (ie; 1000 each) rather than a couple delivering thousands. Why? Because they might be keen to do a few but get bored after a while (it is a tedious job) and therefore be more inclined to dump them!  I don’t use the mail companies, they’re expensive and tend to deliver your leaflet with 10 others! (which subsequently get dumped in the bin)   Also, make sure the distributors all live near to the areas you want covered as you’ll have to drive out to pay them for their work (after checking to make sure they’ve delivered correctly) and you don’t want to be driving for miles (time is money!)

I’m currently writing the Post Cards and will be taking them out to local shops in the area, there are not many places that let you advertise nowadays but I’ll just have to drive around and find them. The cards will say something similar to my flyers…’Houses Wanted, Guaranteed Quick Sale’ etc

The Newspaper Ads will say something similar, but these ads will be a bit shorter as they’re expensive – around £120.00 for 3 insertions for a 5cm ad – and will be shown for two weeks on three consecutive days each week, ie; Thurs, Fri, Sat.

I’ve designed a Vendor Contact Form which I’ll refer to when dealing with enquiries which also has a field asking where the vendor saw my advert so that I can log which method they are responding to and therefore see which advert has been most cost effective overall.   As I want to start each strategy around the same time I’m currently looking at starting around Thursday 29th March (which incidentally is my birthday!) as by then I will have my flyers back and have all the necessary paperwork etc in place.

I think I’ll give the campaign about a month to 8 weeks then draw up a graph to show comparables for cost/conversion for each strategy etc, as that will be interesting, although I’m rubbish at maths!

Well that’s it for now, I’ll post more as I start the campaigns and keep you up to date. Feel free to ask any questions – or make suggestions!   


The Reason I Stopped Posting And My New Plan Of Action

Myself and friend Betty Masters at the LICN meeting in Leicester February 2012

So, why did I stop posting? Lots of reasons, but I suppose if I’m honest I kind of ‘lost faith’ due to having to go back to work after posting ‘I’ve sacked my job!’ in April last year.  To re-cap, I’d been intending to go full time as a property investor after handing in my notice in at the  NHS.

So, what went wrong? With hindsight I was a tad impulsive…but then i usually am…steam in full speed ahead, then think afterwards, this doesn’t always work for me but I don’t get put off lol! I’m a positive person and not afraid to take risks, however I realise the type of risks I SHOULD be taking should at least be calculated in some way and not ‘pot luck’ lol.

It’s been said many times before but ‘If you fail to plan, you plan to fail’ . I think that sums it up very well. It’s good to be positive and motivated but YOU HAVE GOT TO HAVE A PLAN. PRACTICE WHAT YOU PREACH SUZANNE!

I looked back at all the leads I’d sourced from my leafletting campaigns, there were lots of them, some of them uncontacted because I didn’t have time with working as well. Trying to do everything yourself is NOT a good idea,  I built the website, I designed the flyers, ordered them, advertised for distributors, delivered flyers to distributors, did the spot checks, answered the ‘Batphone’ when it rang, chatted and negotiated with vendors, visited them at home if need be, researched and typed up the comparables and sent out offers, called Estate agents, viewed properties, dealt with mortgage brokers and solicitors, attended property network meetings etc etc…as well as working 4 days a week and running a home!

Obviously this was all costing money and there wasn’t enough coming  in, our properties were cash flowing well but it wasn;t enough,  we had a home to run, bills to pay which were totting up, I got stressed and was forced to look for another job. I was offered a full time post as a Virtual Office Assistant in Market Harborough which I started in June 2011…..I hated it, I was cooped up in a small dark office for 9 hours a day, not moving off my chair with no lunch break, with the travelling it turned into an 11 hour day! I was rarely at home, my house needed a good clean,.

I felt stressed and I was designing more websites for SEO, Website Building, Leaflet Printing, and even one for marketing Gold iPhones (another idea of mine – which I roped my poor colleague into!) www.iphoneingold.com – anyone want one? See me at the end for a discount haha!

So what was going wrong? I was very busy doing ‘a bit of this’ and ‘a bit of that’ but I had no FOCUS.  I spent too much time half-heartedly trying to make money with lots of bright ideas instead of just sticking to what I know and am passionate about – PROPERTY! So that’s what I’m going to do from now on.

I’m surprised at how many views I’ve gotten on my blog over the past year considering I haven’t been posting and I also get a lot of new property investors contacting me asking questions (which I’ve been happy to answer) so this has given me a proverbial kick up the butt I need to carry on!  Plus, I’ve done all those property courses too, what a waste if I don’t use my knowledge, so, I’ve started regularly attending property network meetings, mainly the Leicester meets – East Midlands Property Meeting with Parmdeep Vadesha and the Leicester Investors Curry Night (LICN) with Rajesh Gohil. They are all great guys and very helpful, I’ve  realised how vital these meetings are to keep me motivated and on track, so thanks guys 🙂

I now have a ‘Plan’ in place and have started implementing it this week.  I’m going to do an EXPERIMENT and hope to get a couple of good leads as a result. I’m just off to my ‘Zumba’ class now so I’ll tell you all about my plans next time. Watch this space 🙂

Now THIS Is What I Call Job Satisfaction

Yesterday I got a surprise text from a guy I’d helped with an Assisted Sale back in August last year.

 At the time, I was selling his house through an Estate Agent because the guy was on the brink of having his home repossessed for non payment of his mortgage and owing around 5k in arrears , this was due to an accumulation of circumstances.

 The guy (we’ll call him John) was estranged from his wife, lived by himself and had lost his driving job as a plumber due to a drink/drive offence (drowning his sorrows)

 From then on he ‘buried his head in the sand’ stopped making his mortgage payments and let himself (and the house) go until he couldn’t ignore the letters he was getting from the bank any more because they were threatening to take him to court to recover the debt.

 That’s when he called me, after receiving one of my leaflets through his door which basically said ‘Do you need to sell your house fast?’

 If you missed my previous post about the Assisted Sale you can read it here:https://suziebates88.wordpress.com/2010/09/19/how-i-made-more-than-12k-in-7-weeks-using-none-of-my-own-money/

 What I didn’t say in my previous post is how depressed John was at the time. I’ll be completely honest about why I didn’t elaborate on it…. I felt guilty because although I was helping him to sell the house I felt I could’ve offered him a greater share of the profit.

The Download Music Festival

 I spent a lot of time chatting with him because he seemed lonely, he told me about his teenage son and his love of  rock music and  the ‘Download’ festival, which he’d attend every year with his son (it’s a heavy rock festival which goes on for days and everyone camps out in tents) There were photos everywhere!  

Apparently this was the first year he’d missed because of his financial difficulties, so his son had gone without him.

 He also talked about his Dad, who he missed and hadn’t seen for years due to an argument they’d had years ago. I had to ‘push’ him a lot to get paperwork signed and sort things out in the house, I felt like I was always ‘nagging’ at him to get things done!

 At the time we agreed that I would…

  • Pay off his arrears
  • Pay the mortgage until the house sold
  • Speak to the bank about giving us some time to sell the house
  • Put the house on sale with an Estate Agent and conduct the viewings
  • Pay all his Estate Agent  & solicitors fees

 Then he would get £1000 (which he owed his ex wife and wanted to pay back) and 15%  from the profit of the sale, and he was happy with that.  I know I could’ve offered a bit more and  didn’t want to advantage of his situation,  so on completion of the sale I gave him a cheque for an extra £500 on top of what we’d agreed as with hindsight I felt a bit ‘greedy’.

 As part of our ‘agreement’ I also said I would pay for his ticket to the ‘Download festival’ the following year which he was really pleased about.

 When the day came for him to move out (he was moving in with a friend) his ex wife called me saying he’d been taken to hospital because he’d attempted suicide, I had no idea he was feeling that low and I was beside myself with worry for him.

 I went straight to the hospital to see him, he did look a sorry sight and I felt so guilty at selling his home, but the alternative was losing it anyway and being left with a massive debt which he couldn’t pay. It’s a terrible, hopeless situation for anyone to be in and it made me think about others in the same situation who HAD been taken advantage of by unscrupulous companies.

Rather him than me!

 I spent ages talking to him about his life and how being more ‘positive’ would make a difference to him.

 I gave him a copy of ‘Rich Dad, poor Dad to read! and suggested he contact his Dad, which he did, and to cut a long story short he went to live with him in Wales for a ‘new start’.

 Anyway, last week I bought him his festival ticket, plus camping for 5 days and a return bus ticket from Swansea so he could get there and back. I sent it to his Dad’s address in Wales.

 Yesterday John sent me a text, here’s what he said:

 “Sue thanks so much for sending the ticket and for all your help. I’m more than happy here, getting on great with my Dad, I have a job, a new girlfriend and now my Download ticket, life doesn’t get much better than this. Thanks again for sorting me out, John x”

 I can’t tell you how much that meant to me, knowing that he was happy and settled, a far cry from the sad, sorry soul I’d first met.

Although I made a good profit on the sale of his house,  knowing that I have actually changed his life for the better has given me the most amazing sense of satisfaction that money could never buy, and that’s what makes it all worthwhile 🙂

When Things Go Wrong

Inevitably there are times when things just don’t go to plan.

It happens to all of us as we all make mistakes but as long as we learn from them then that’s fine.  After all, there is no success without failures.

Anyway I’ve  had a bit of a set back 😦 If you’ve been following my posts you’ll remember me talking a while back about the ‘Assisted Sale’ I completed on and at the end of the post I said I had another one in the pipeline?

The 3 bed semi

Anyway, a retired couple had cotacted me (through my leaflets) saying they wanted to sell their 3 bed semi (in Leicester) as it was too big for them.

It was a non standard build property (BISF – steel construction) which can be difficult to sell (and get a mortgage on as some lenders don’t like them) however I’d spoken to my broker and he assured me there WERE lenders happy to lend on it depending on the buyers criteria.

There was no mortgage on the property, they just wanted to sell it, rent a small flat and live off the money as they had no relatives to leave it to. They’d been thinking about it for a while and decied to do something about it when they read my leaflet 🙂

It had a good sized garden

They were a lovely couple and I spent a lot of time with them finding out what they wanted to do and how etc. Eventually we came to an agreement. I would find them a nice flat in the area they wanted, pay all their legal fees, solicitors, Estate Agents etc and they’d sell the property to me for £60,000, market value was around £90,000.

They didn’t want the hassle of dealing withthe EA, showing people around, legal issues etc so I was going to do all that.

I found them a gorgeous flat exactly where they wanted and to their specs, one bed, ground floor, central location, that was being advertised by a letting agent. I picked them up, took them to see it, they loved it and wanted to move in asap but wanted the rent a bit cheaper.

So I negotiated the price with the landlord via the agent and got it at the price they wanted. They were delighted and decided to move in within a couple of weeks so I put the house on the market with an estate agent.

They didn’t have a lot of money behind them so I offered to lend them £2,000 so they could move into the new place (to pay upfront tenancy fees etc, and this amount would come off their share on sale of the house. (This was all written up in the T&C’s on the Option Agreement)

I’d already had it valued at 90k (by the EA) but was marketing it at 85k as I wanted a quick sale. I figured that if I could sell it for about 75k I’d still make a good profit after the legal fees were paid. I luckily made 12k on my previous assisted sale and was hoping I could repeat it! If you missed it You can read about it here

So to save a bit of money I thought we’d hire a van and move them ourselves, so my hubby Mike and son Nick and I got there early to start loading the van! It was a nightmare, I’ve never seen so much stuff and they’d packed most of it into black plastic bin liners…they were everywhere!!

There was Mike dismantling their electrics beds and Nick heaving the washing machine & fridge into the van while I was piling up a sea of black bin liners and going back & forth in an attempt to get as much as possible into the first load.  I don’t know how the hell they thought all that stuff was going to fit into a one bed flat haha.

As the old couple weren’t very moblie and the guy had a bad hip I didn’t expect him to do any lifting so I took them to the new flat in the car with a couple of chairs and made them a cup of tea while I went back to carry on with the loading.

We had to make two trips so it was a total of 40 miles in the van and a couple of car trips to pick up the last few bits, my car was covered in mud from all the bloody pot plants in the garden :/ but after 6 hours we’d done……or so we thought!

They then wanted help to put the beds back together, the washer needed plumbing in and they needed help to unpack the heavy items and make up the beds, plus I went to the local shop to get them some chips as they were hungry!!

Then we had to go back and start taking up the old carpets, stripping walls in the lounge & kitchen and re-painting it . There wasn’t a lot of work to do but it still took us another couple of days to finish it. we were knackered by the end of it but thought it would be worth it in the end.

The area where the property was situated was a ‘bit rough’ and we had a couple of problems, we visited the property regularly to make sure everything was ok and one time someone had stolen the bark and plastic underlay from the front garden, so it looked a righ mess,  and someone else had thrown a door and broken furniture over the fence into the back garden. So obviously we (Mike) had to clear this up!

Then there were the phone calls from the couple “Can you please do this for us” “Could you please come and show us how this works” “the Alliance & Leicester is shut, what can we do” etc etc! They were always pleased to see me though and treated me like part of the family bless em!

Initially there was a lot of interest in the property and we had an offer of 72k but the guy couldn’t get a mortgage (because of the build). The estate agent said people were put off because of the type of property. Two months later we had another offer of 70k from a guy who’d come from London to view it, he wanted to buy it to let.

I went to see the old couple to give them the good news and was astounded when they said (very matter-of-factly) that they’d had a nice time at the flat but had decided they wanted to go back home as they missed the neighbourhood,  ‘pottering about in the garden’ !and they didn’t think their BUDGIE liked it there!!!!!! Grrrrrrr

It’s a good job I’ m a patient person or I would’ve strangled them and buried them under the patio! After chatting with them for a while it seemed they were adamant that they were going back so I had to accept that, but also told them we had incurred fees which would have to be paid back (the £2000, van hire, EA fees etc) which they agreed to pay by getting a loan 😦

SO……they ended up moving back (with their own removal van this time) we had to tell the guy from London he couldn’t buy the property and the landlady of the flat wasn’t pleased as the 6 month tenancy was only in it’s 3rd month. And this is cutting a long story short lol!

We wasted a lot of time on this project but at least we recouped our costs, which made me feel very guilty as the old couple had to get a loan to pay us back. I’m a big softy and was thinking of letting them off but Mike quite rightly said “We’re not running a charity”.

They were fine about it, and said “Well at least we tried it out”  and asked me to keep in touch as they’d miss me!

Anyway, a valuable lesson was learnt, don’t mess with pensioners or non-standard builds again, and I have to ‘man up’ and stop being so soft! 🙂

How To Design A Flyer/Leaflet To Attract Motivated Sellers

I recently talked about using flyers/leaflets to ‘find’ motivated sellers. If you can contact the seller BEFORE they contact the Estate Agent you have a much better chance of getting a good discount on the property. I have used this method several times and can honestly say IT DOES WORK!

If you’re a new property investor looking to source bargain properties you need to be able to find motivated sellers and distributing flyers/leaflets is a great way to do this!

I had a ‘motivated seller’ contact me because he needed a fast sale as his house had been on the market for over a year and not sold. As he’d moved out of the property and it was standing empty he just wanted to get it off his hands. One of my leaflets was given to him by his daughter who’d received it through her door and he called me to discuss selling his house quickly.  

What Should The Leaflet Say & How Should It Look?

Anyone can write an advert on a piece of paper, but if you want yours to stand out from the competition it has to attract attention. I am not saying you must design your leaflet this way, or that my way is best. I’m merely stating what I have learnt from  my courses, others experiences and trial & error!  It’s up to you to  make your own decisions and  use whatever information you feel will be of benefit to you.

Basic Layout

A5 is most commonly used (approx 21cm x 15cm) horizontally or vertically, whichever suits your design best.

 You can use one side of the leaflet or both. It hardly costs any extra to have double-sided leaflets printed so you may as well use the extra space.

Use a relevant heading: The heading is THE MOST IMPORTANT!

It’s no good slapping your company name across the top as ‘Joe Bloggs Property’ isn’t going to mean anything to someone who’s looking to sell their property fast.

Make it big and bold so that it stands out.

It has to offer something that your target market ‘wants’. It has to be ‘to the point’ and provide a solution to their problem.

A good tip is to ask a question, ie; ‘Do You Need To Sell Your Property FAST?’   ‘Are You Looking For A Quick House Sale?’ ‘Do You Have Property Problems?‘  These are questions that motivated sellers can identify with and will make them want to read further to see what you can offer them.

Let the reader identify that he needs what you are offering: ie:

  • Are you stuck in a chain?
  • Worried about repossession?
  • Having debt problems?
  • Are you relocating and need a quick sale?

State the main benefits: Don’t be tempted to go overboard and write dozens of points, it will look messy and overcrowded.  Stick to the main points that the seller is going to benfit from. It usually looks better and tidier if you use bullet points for this, ie:

  • Property bought FAST with  no cost to you
  • No Estate Agent fees
  • No Solicitor fees
  • No more waiting for a sale
  • Get an offer in 24 hours!

Offer something FREE:  People love to get something for nothing! So the word ‘FREE’ tends to get noticed.

  • FREE house valuation
  • FREE consultation with property expert
  • FREE ‘sell your property fast’ guide

Use photos and testimonials: People feel reassured if they can see that someone else has used your service and was happy with it. It’s obviously much better to use genuine tetimonials, however, I appreciate that it’s difficult when you’re first starting out to have ‘genuine’ quotes, but you could use a testmonial from anyone you’ve helped in the past who can vouch for your character ie; a friend that you’ve done a good turn for.

When using photos, if you can’t use real pictures of people you’ve helped, then use photos of friends or family (with their consent) and make sure they’re looking directly into the camera as they’re seen to be more ‘genuine’ (this isn’t my opinion, it has been reasearched!)

Psychology: Use photos of houses with a ‘SOLD’ sign outside. People will associate this with their own house being sold.

Use Scarcity: How many times have you responded to an advert because there was a ‘time limit’ on it? People don’t like to think they’re ‘missing out’ on something good, so if they think there’s a bargain on offer but it will be ‘sold out’ if they don’t act quickly then guess what, they’re more likely to act immediately.

ie; ‘Call before the end of November and get a FREE valuation’ or ‘Get all your legal fees paid if you call before the end of the month’

Colour or black & white? There’s been a lot said about this aspect and as I’ve never used black and white leaflets I’m not in a position to advise what’s best. It’s been debated that it doesn’t really matter as it’s THE CONTENT that matters most. I think you should try both and see whether it makes a difference, however I like to use colour as it looks ‘nicer’ and stands out better.

If you’re going to use colour, don’t overdo it, it will end up looking fussy. You don’t need to use more than three colours and primary colours work well as they ‘stand out’ better. This goes for fonts as well, try to stick to the same font in not more than three different sizes.

I use Photoshop to design my leaflets, in fact I use it for lots of things! You can just as easily use ‘Word’  or ‘Paint’ or if you’re not feeling very confident about designing your own, most printers will design one for you at a small cost.

One of my previously used flyers

Terminology is important. Personally I prefer to use the words property or house rather than home.

The word ‘home’ is emotive, it’s personal and refers to a place you have ‘made your own’ with your family.

You’ve heard the expression ‘turn a house into a home’, they are two different things and people can be defensive if they think you’re trying to ‘take away’ their home or suggesting it’s worth less than they think.

 

Call to action: (your contact details) This should contain your telephone number, email address and website details (if you have one) and needs to be clear and prominent. Apparently it’s better to use a female contact name as these are seen as being less agressive and more approachable.

If you can use a photo of yourself (or your partner) this is good as the person the seller is contacting is seen to be more ‘real’. Hence why I’ve used my own photo on most of my leaflets. I’ve actually had people call me and say “Is that you on the leaflet then?” or when I’ve gone out to visit them at home they’ve said “Oh I recognise you from the leaflet”. This promotes trust 🙂

Should you use an 0800 number? Again this is debateable. An 0800 number is free to call from a landline but you are charged if you call from a mobile, so it would depend where the seller was calling from.  Some people feel it’s more personal to have a ‘local’ number on their leaflets or a mobile number. You could use both.

Well I think that’s about it, if there’s anything I’ve missed or you’re not sure of then please contact me and I’ll do my best to help 🙂

Happy Leafletting!

Get  quality, cheap Flyers HERE

Best Wishes until next time,

How To Find Motivated Property Sellers Using Leaflets

If you’re looking to generate leads from motivated property sellers then leaflets are a must!

There are thousands of people out there who need to sell their property quickly for various reasons ie; financial reasons, repossession, stuck in a property chain, relocating, bereavement, divorce/seperation etc.

Distributing leaflets looking for motivated sellers (people who need to sell their property FAST) is a great way to get to these sellers BEFORE they actually call the Estate Agents. 

 By the time they’ve called the Estate Agent and got the board up it’s too late, the agents have already called their list of regular investors and the deal is gone.

It takes a long time to build up rapport, credibility and get a few completed deals under your belt with your local Estate Agents before you become worthy of being on their investors list.  Until you’ve done this you have no chance of getting the ‘juicy’ deals.

So what can you do? You find them yourself of course!

It’s a known fact that most people need to see something visual to encourage them to take action. So they may have been thinking about selling their property because they’re struggling financially but haven’t actually gotten around to doing anything about it yet.

So when a leaflet comes through their door saying “sell your property now for cash”  this may be all they need to kick start them into action. So YOU get a call before the Estate Agent does. It’s as easy as that!

This actually happened with more than one of the leads I’ve generated. One guy I went to see said he’d seen a programme on the TV about selling property and he started to discuss selling his own home with his wife as they’d been thinking of downsizing as they couldn’t afford the large house they were living in and were having financial problems.

As they were discussing it one of my leaflets came throught the door and they called me straight away! (obviously it was fate, wasn’t it?!)

Then there was the guy I helped with the Assisted Sale recently. This guy hadn’t paid his mortgage for almost a year and had ignored all correspondence from the bank, even though he knew he was in trouble and would eventually get the property repossessed.

The reason he didn’t take action was because he believed he’d have to pay Solicitor and Estate Agent fees to sell his property and he didn’t have enough income to do this. Again he received one of my leaflets saying “Financial problems? Repossession? Help is around the corner, call now and we will pay all your legal fees”  so he called me right away and I helped him to sell his property and also made a tidy sum myself at the same time.

I’ve had people call me from areas I haven’t even distributed to. This is because people may not need the service themselves but they pass the leaflet to someone who does. ie; a family member or friend, who may be on the other side of the city.

This happened to me when a guy called me saying he’d been given one of my leaflets by his daughter who lived in an area I’d recently distributed to. The guy wanted to discuss selling his house quickly because it had been on the market a long time. He had moved out to live with his girlfriend and just wanted to get rid of the responsibility of  paying the mortgage and have some extra cash available.

To cut a long story short, the house (a three bed detached Dorma in a nice area of Leicester) had been on sale for almost a year and had been reduced to £159,950. After negotiating with him for a week on and off I managed to get the house for £105,000!

The guy was happy to sell it and get his cash quickly and I got a bargain! It just needed a quick paint job which my hubby and I did ourselves then it rented out immediately. So not only did we make made over £50,000 in equity, we also get a cash flow of £245 per month. Nice one 🙂

How many leaflets should you start with?

It’s best to start with 5 to 10 thousand leaflets. The response rate isn’t great, but remember you only need ONE lead from the distribution to get your costs back and get a bargain property.

I usually distribute 10,000 at a time. It’s best to try and do this once every month, or at least every other month to be consistent. This way you can ‘measure’ your results better.

What’s the best size to use?

The best size is an A5 leaflet, which is half of A4. The leaflet can be single or double sided. I think it’s better to have them double -sided as they don’t cost that much extra and you can get more information on them.

How much does this cost?

Five thousand A5 double-sided leaflets can cost anything from £85 up to £165. Ten thousand can cost from £150 up to £290. (or more)

Note: The prices quoted are based on you supplying your own artwork. If you want the leaflets designing for you this costs extra. (Please ask me about this if you’re interested) I design my own leaflets using Photoshop, I actually enjoy it!  Or you can just use ‘Paint’ or a word document.

Samples of leaflets I’ve used (please feel free to copy and use for your own purpose)

                           

Who should you use to distribute them and how much does it cost?

I tried a few different methods. I used online delivery companies a couple of times but didn’t find them very reliable or cost effective. Also they mostly want to deliver your leaflet with 3 or 4 others at the same time. This isn’t a good idea as I’m sure you’ve had a stack of leaflets pushed through your door at some point and you’ve thrown them away?

It’s much better to have them delivered ‘solus’ (on their own) and delivery companies charge extra for this so it can work out expensive.

I just put an advert on my local ‘Gumtree’ site which is FREE saying something like ‘Leaflet Distributors Wanted. Great Cash Bonus Paid’ and I got LOADS of replies! Of course you have to be prepared to ‘filter out’ the time wasters etc. I send them an aplication form which is purposely quite detailed, because if  it’s too much trouble for them to fill in the form then they obviously wont be bothered to deliver the leaflets properly.

I’ve also put postcards in shop windows which is cheap and effective.

I’ve recruited leafletters in my own area when I’ve seen them actually delivering other people’s leaflets. One morning when looking out of my bedroom window I watched an old guy deliver leaflets to every house on the road at 7.30am in the morning. I thought to myself  “now this guy’s obviously dedicated and reliable,” and when he got to my house I had a chat with him and he’s become one of my most reliable distributors!

It’s best to have three or four distributors in different areas that don’t overlap so you know who to pay a bonus to when you get a lead that completes. I give them ‘log sheets’ to keep a record of what streets they’ve done and they also write down any houses that have a ‘For Sale’ or ‘To Let’  board so I can send ‘follow up’  letters to them later.

I’ve written up an agreement which I ask them to sign which says that they wont be paid if they are found to be ‘defrauding’ us! It also states they are delivering at their own risk and must be responsible for their own tax & insurance payments. (to cover me) If someone loses a hand as a result of being attacked by a large canine you don’t want to be held accountable do you!

I pay them £30 per one thousand leaflets they deliver and a bonus of £500 on completion of a lead. The bonus keeps them motivated and therefore they’re less likely to ‘dump’ the leaflets. It’s possible to deliver a thousand leaflets in a day depending on the type of property you’re delivering to.

Presently I have a few distributors, 3 or 4 of them are very reliable (one of them I recruited after he called me re selling his house and he’s become a good friend too) I’ve only had one so far I had to ‘sack’ because I found out he wasn’t doing the job properly. My husband Mike carries out ‘spot checks’ to make sure they’re done correctly BEFORE they are paid.

So it’s a relatively simple process  that anyone can follow. Obviously your leaflet has to be written in such a way that it looks like an ‘attractive offer’ to a would be vendor but I’ll talk more about this in my next post. So stay tuned!

If you’re thinking of distributing your own leaflets I can supply you with quality leaflets at a great price here: https://suziebates88.wordpress.com/quality-leaflets-at-a-great-price/

Happy Distributing Folks!

Take care,

Suzie 🙂

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