The most difficult objections that agents have to face happen when the seller is very emotional. Emotional objections are most likely to be triggered by money issues.
Both sellers and buyers are concerned about money. The difference is that sellers want to get as much money for their home as possible, while buyers want to pay as little as possible. Therefore, it is important for listing agents to learn how to address seller concerns early on in the negotiation process.
Here, you will find out how to predict the most frequent emotional objections sellers may have before they come up, and how to deal with them early, so that you and the seller can have a hassle-free real estate deal.
Keys to Handling a Seller’s Emotional Objections
Salespeople who are good at their job learn to predict how their clients will feel about various topics. It’s common knowledge that any discussion involving money will usually result in some type of emotional reaction. If a salesperson isn’t prepared to deal with this, they may get caught off guard and have an emotional reaction of their own.
The three key strategies to handling objections are anticipation, preparation, and presentation:
what the seller is thinking about in each stage of the listing process and being aware of what conversations and situations could trigger an emotional response from the seller and when these conversations are likely to happen in the course of the deal.
If we can identify the emotions that commonly trigger objections, and when to expect them, we can be prepared with how to best handle them, resulting in a better experience for the seller.
The art of selling is uncovering the objection early, long before the situation has arisen that will trigger the seller’s emotions. Probing questions and a well-crafted presentation will shed light on the seller’s emotional hot spots.
There are three seller conversations that can make your seller angry if not handled correctly.
Lack of budget
Price is the most important factor that influences customers’ purchase decisions. If people can’t afford to buy something, they can’t purchase it. This makes budget-related sales objections very difficult to overcome.
The key to overcoming this sales objection is to determine which category a prospect falls into:
- They truly can’t afford it. Pushing this type of shopper toward a purchase is irresponsible. You don’t want to make someone go into debt to buy products they don’t need.
- They have money to spend but aren’t sure whether a product is worth the price. Nudge these shoppers to overcome price objections through social proof, validating their concerns, and explaining how a product is worth the investment.
Lack of urgency
Lack of urgency is the most common sales objection that Rakhi Oswal, founder of EDRIO, comes across. Customers tend to postpone the purchase by saying either they need to think about it or consult their significant other before purchasing the product.
When confronted with this sales objection, Rakhi says it is best to communicate with the potential customer directly, without seeming pushy. Start by saying “no problem” to make them feel more comfortable. Once they are relaxed, try to address the issue by asking questions and taking the appropriate action.
5 common sales objections
- Is it worth the money?
- I need to speak with my partner first
- I’ve never heard of this before
- We already use a competitor’s product
- I’m too busy
There are many different types of sales objections that you may come across. Here is how retail store associates can properly handle some of the more common ones.
What are sales objections?
A sales objection is an obstacle that a customer has to overcome before purchasing a product. Most of the time, these obstacles are related to price, product, or time.
What is objection handling?
Objection handling is the process of overcoming a shopper’s objections to make a sale.
Retail sales associates will help shoppers who are undecided about a purchase by explaining the benefits of the product, how it can improve their daily life, and how long it will take to see results.
Importance of objection handling
If your retail team is better at handling sales objections, they will be more likely to convert shoppers into paying customers, which will result in more profit for your store.
Types of sales objections in retail
- Lack of trust
- Lack of need
- Lack of budget
- Lack of urgency
There are four types of sales objections: a lack of trust, a lack of need, a lack of budget, and a lack of urgency. Let’s see how to deal with each one.
Lack of trust
Trust is multifaceted, with customers evaluating retail stores on whether they can be trusted with:
- Credit card information
- Personal data, such as names, email addresses, and shipping addresses
- Achieving the results promised in a sales pitch (e.g., does this skin care product really clear up acne like its packaging says it will?)
If you want to build trust and overcome sales objections, it helps to show how previous customers have trusted you. You can do this by showing how their decision to trust you paid off. This can be really helpful, as people are often willing to spend more money with brands they trust.
Lack of need
People are afraid of making bad decisions, which scientists call “decidophobia.” This irrational fear can cause shoppers to avoid purchasing in your store, purely because they don’t want to choose the wrong thing.
People often delay making decisions because they are afraid of making the wrong choice. This can lead to a lack of commitment. If people don’t feel like they need something, they may be more likely to delay making a decision.
How to Anticipate, Prepare for & Address Your Seller’s Emotional Objections
Next, you’ll learn to identify and handle the three emotional money triggers your seller will have, prepare for them, and finally, craft your listing presentation to address these objections before they become emotional later in the deal:
1. Anticipate: Learn the Seller’s 3 Most Common Emotional Triggers
A doctor prescribing medication without doing a full diagnosis is an analogy for an agent answering an objection without fully understanding the real issue.
The three most common objections about money in a deal will be commission objections, pricing objections, and price reduction objections.
One of the emotional triggers that will result in objections is not a surprise to any agent.
Although sellers may not directly state that they object to an agent’s commission rate, their feelings on the matter may be evident in other ways. For example, a seller may express a need for more money, inquire about whether the agent can do any better commission-wise, or mention that another agent offered a lower rate.
The seller’s objection to your commission is not the real issue at hand. There is a proverb that states “people do not react to your reality, they react to their own.” In order to properly deal with commission objections, we need to find out the emotion that corresponds to the objection and the possible real-world circumstances that are causing it. We need to find out what is causing the seller to have an emotional reaction in order to create a great experience in real estate.
The chart below compares the seller’s objections to your commission with the emotions they are likely feeling and the circumstances that are triggering those emotions.
Asking the seller what their asking price is can be a sensitive conversation. Many agents avoid this conversation because they feel it is delicate. The data and the agent’s experience may suggest a different asking price, but the agent allows the seller to price the property where they want.
If a seller does not take their real estate agent’s pricing advice, it is a huge mistake that could mean the difference between just closing a deal and winning a lifelong client. Oftentimes, sellers are disappointed later when they realize that not following their agent’s pricing advice prevented them from achieving their goal.
The endowment effect is when someone places a higher value on something they own than what it’s actually worth. This often happens when people are trying to sell their property. They may dismiss comparable properties as being inferior to their own and overestimate the features of their own property.
We can prepare for objections from sellers by looking at the emotions behind them. This will help us respond in a rational way when the objection comes up.
Here are the most common pricing objections along with the emotions and circumstances driving them:
Price Reduction Objections
The fear of what? The fear of having their home on the market longer than necessary. Many listing agents believe that the fear of leaving money on the table is the main driving force for the seller’s objections when pushing back on a price reduction. However, they are wrong. Although there is still a occasional real need to net a minimum amount, there is another hidden emotion that is driving the seller’s objection: fear. The fear of what? The fear of having their home on the market longer than necessary.
The seller’s fear may cause a change in your good relationship that can hurt the unprepared agent. The fear is that the seller will be taken advantage of–by you! This may be seen in objections like “Why haven’t you done more open houses?” or “Why haven’t you shown the house to more buyers yourself?” This is a shift where the seller blames the price of the property for not selling instead of your marketing plan.
2. Preparation: Ask Probing Questions Before Your Listing Presentation
You can ask probing questions over the phone, on Zoom, or during your listing presentation. Like a doctor testing for early signs of illness, you are testing for specific circumstances that, if not dealt with early, will become emotional seller frustration later. Set up the objections early by creating a list of probing questions specifically designed to uncover the seller’s circumstances.
You can create your own list of probing questions by looking at each of the seller’s circumstances and turning it into a question. For example, if the seller is motivated, you might ask why they are selling or what their timeline is. If the seller is unmotivated, you might ask if they are open to counteroffers or if they are willing to do repairs.
3. Presentation: Prepare an Objective & Proactive Listing Presentation
We can better understand our sellers’ emotional states and needs so that we can address them before they reach a point of distress.
A good listing presentation will anticipate objections and give you a chance to address them before they become a problem or ruin your deal.
6 Pre-objection Handlers to Use in Your Listing Presentation
You should be prepared to handle objections from emotional sellers before you even receive them; this is known as “pre-objection handlers.”
You will quickly learn to love using comparative market analysis and listing presentations once you realize how helpful they are.
The emotional seller circumstances are:
- A seller who’s in a time crunch
- A seller who’s in a time crunch may feel: anxious, frustrated, or overwhelmed.
- A seller who is worried about their home’s condition
- A seller who is worried about their home’s condition may feel: worried, anxious, or even embarrassed.
- A seller who is worried about not getting their asking price
- A seller who is worried about not getting their asking price may feel: anxious, stressed, or even panicked.
- A seller who is worried about making too many repairs
- A seller who is worried about making too many repairs may feel: frustrated, annoyed, or even angry.
A good listing presentation will cover each of these emotional seller circumstances and provide pre-objection handlers for each one. This way, you can be prepared to help your seller no matter what their emotional state may be.
Pre-objection handlers are just slides or triggers that remind you to address an emotional objection during your presentation.
Here are some common pre-objection handlers you can include in your listing presentation:
6 Pre-objection Handlers for Your Listing Presentation
|Seller believes the market / appraisal / Zillow says different than your data.||“You may be concerned why Zillow says differently than my CMA.”||Explain why other sources like Zillow may come up with a different value than your CMA, prior to presenting your CMA.|
|The seller believes their home is nicer than the comparable homes.||“You may believe that your home is better than the other homes in the neighborhood.”||Explain how sellers may have an emotional connection to their property that creates a perceived additional value.|
|Seller believes they have invested more into their home than the comparable homes.||“You may feel that you have invested in features, like windows, that have dollar for dollar increased the value of the property.”||Explain why some upgrades, like new insulated windows, do not increase that value dollar for dollar.|
|Seller wants to test the market.||“I would like to review my pricing strategy and marketing plan with you so you understand how I get qualified buyers to your home.”||Explain in detail how your marketing plan and pricing strategy will net them more money.|
|Seller believes it is customary to negotiate commissions.||“Allow me to explain how commissions are divided up.”||Sellers don’t understand that we are independent contractors and that we carry all the expenses. Explain in detail and transparency the costs to manage your real estate business.|
|The seller doesn’t understand your pricing strategy.||“Allow me to explain my pricing strategy and weekly market update conversations.”||Explain to them that you don’t create the market, you just interpret it. You will review with them each week how the market is responding to their price and you may need to make price adjustments to find the price the market will accept.|
Bottom Line: Prepare to Win
If you don’t prepare to address emotional objections from a seller, you’re essentially setting yourself up to fail. Benjamin Franklin’s quote is relevant here. Many salespeople don’t take the time to address these objections early on, before they become heated.
You should try to think of any objections the customer might have before you present to them, and have a plan to overcome those objections. Doing this instead of letting emotions take over will help you be more successful.