Beating the Sale Fail in a Shift

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Shifting Markets Demand Shifting Minds and Actions

On this Friday’s Partner Call, Xperience CEO Chris Suarez dug into sale fails. While studying the trend reports for Xperience, Xperience’s partner mega agent teams and the five Keller Williams brokerages he owns, Chris noticed a trend, sales fails -- the  percentage of deals that fell apart in May increased. What Chris realized is the best training he could provide is how to reduce the number of sale fails. 

Best piece of advice? Pick up the book Shift.

Get Real Get Right:  Mindset and Action

The first Shift Tactic is: Get real, get right in mindset AND action! 

In Shift, Gary Keller quotes an excerpt from The Traveler’s Gift,  "Our lives are fashioned by choice.  First we make choices. Then, our choices make us."  

We are what we decide we will be, and we do what we decide we will do. We become our choices. The shift involves 12 choices...the chapters in the book. The most important one and the one that will directly impact your career is to Get Real about your situation and Get Right about what you are doing. That is why it is mindset, then action. No matter where we are or where we are going, we get there because of choices. We have 100% control over that. 

A shift usually brings with it confusion. Confusion In the marketplace, in your mind, in your business.  We start to question, “What am I supposed to be doing right now?” We slow down because things become fuzzy. 

We are either running towards what we want or running away from what we most fear. Success is not about the chosen few, it’s about the few that choose. There are wildly successful agents who do not have natural gifts, yet they chose to get real and get right in mindset and action. And their success followed. 

Get RIGHT into action and into the RIGHT action. We know exactly the right action to take. Then, at this moment, it is less about knowing and more about doing. 

In a shifted market there is little room for mistakes and that is the real challenge.  The margin for error is so thin. Where there once was latitude there now is not. You must be focused on the right tasks.

Overcoming Buyer Reluctance

When diving into the recent sale fails, the trend shows that the majority are attributed to buyer reluctance. 

Right now, we only have 4 ½ months of inventory which is not a lot but still has been double what it has been. The majority sale fails happen after inspections. Because there is more inventory, buyers think the house should be perfect. The start to question what they are paying and what they are receiving for that price. There is fear about what else is coming up on the market, will it be perfect or more perfect than the house I have under contract? We are either running towards what we want or away from what we most fear -- our buyers are running towards what they want (a house, becoming homeowners) or they begin running away from what they most fear (a better house, overpaying, interest rates declining).

It’s our job to create urgency and overcome buyer reluctance which is another tactic in Shift

We talked about the three things we need with every buyer:

  • Able: The capacity they have such as cash in the bank or they are pre-approved/can be approved for the loan

  • Ready: Circumstances in their lives are right for them to move forward with their purchase; their wants and needs combined 

  • Willing: Sense of urgency 


It is about the buyer mentally and emotionally making a choice about when they will buy. Willingness often depends on the buyer’s market expectations. That is why we are seeing sale fails. It is our job to dialogue through the buyer’s market expectations which leads to their willingness rating to 90 or above. 


All three must be there, but in a shift, willingness is what gets your attention. Willingness must be there in the beginning and has to be checked on regularly to make sure it remains in tact. A willing buyer can become unwilling. 

Bulletproof The Transaction

Communicate like never before. If you are just using email, stop and pick up the phone. You do your deals heads down but you save your deals heads up! This communication goes for clients, lenders, inspectors, the co-op agent. 

Shift says, “No news is good news is NEVER an option in real estate.” Do not allow your buyer to not have news. If you don’t have something to tell them, call and tell them you don’t have anything to tell them. 

Act Your Wage 

Think and act the wage you want before you earn it. Live the calendar of the person who earns that. Show me your calendar and I will tell you how much money you make. Thoughts plus actions, then results.  

We have seen the shift. It is here. This should be good news for the skill-based. If you are willing to show up every day, then you will emerge on the other side of this market having gained market share. The expectation for our team is to increase their business while most are decreasing!