The holy grail of relationship-based negotiation and Seller Relations is when your Seller says—or even thinks—“I can tell you’re my kind of people.” In this episode, Jeff tells the story of a coaching client’s recent deal, in which the coaching client got the deal as a result of successfully building rapport and leading the Seller to the natural conclusion that the buyer was “their kind of people.”
Today I just got to tell you a story is a simple story. But a real life story of just this week in the last couple of weeks, it came straight out of my coaching community. And I think it’s so powerful because it demonstrates an incredibly important point about negotiation, what negotiation really is and how it works, especially when you are focused on building relationship capital and using a seller relations oriented approach. So let’s keep the theme song. Let’s jump right in. I’m gonna tell you the story.
Welcome to Racking Up Rentals, a show about how regular people, those of us without huge war chest of capital or insider connections, can build lasting wealth acquiring a portfolio of buy and hold real estate. But we don’t just go mainstream looking at what’s on the market and asking banks for loans, nor are we posting We Buy Houses signs are just looking for “motivated sellers” to make lowball offers to. You see, we are people-oriented deal makers, we sit down directly with sellers to work out win-win deals without agents or any other obstacles, and buy properties nobody else even knows are for sale. I’m Jeff from the Thoughtful Real Estate Entrepreneur. If you’re the kind of real estate investor who wants long term wealth, not get rich quick gimmicks or pictures of yourself holding fat checks on social media, this show is for you. Join me and quietly become the wealthiest person on your block. Now let’s go rack up a rental portfolio.
Thank you very much for joining me for another episode of Racking Up Rentals. Show notes for this episode can be found at www.thoughtfulre.com/e199. Please do us a big favor by hitting that subscribe button in your podcast app, it does make a big difference in helping other fellow thoughtful real estate entrepreneurs who are searching for a community in a message like this to find it. Alright, so onward with today’s episode.
And like I mentioned, I’m excited to just tell you a story, a simple story, but a real life story that’s just transpired here over the last couple of weeks in my coaching community. And this, this is a story about a woman who I’ve had the pleasure of working with for probably two plus years, I would guess now, and working really closely together. Maybe three weeks or so ago, she let me know and made a post into our group at the deals workshop and said, Oh my gosh, I just got a call back from a letter I sent two years ago now, in our community, those types of things are always appreciated and noted. But not entirely surprising, because the method of marketing that we use to reach out to people has what I call residual value, it’s worthy of saving. And so sometimes we send our marketing to people and they receive it. And they think oh, this is this is good. I like this person. They seem like a real person. But now it’s just not the right time, I’ve got other stuff on my plate. And so they stick it in a folder or a drawer or something like that. And then they call us back months later, or even years later.
So this call comes in two years after the letter is sent. And that always just puts a little bit of a smile on our face to begin with. So my coaching clients, she starts to just communicate a little bit with this seller, she’d been out of town at the moment and said, Well, I’m going to be back let’s, let’s meet up in just a couple of days, it’d be great to meet with you. And so they actually do meet up at the house that this person is the seller is thinking about selling it’s not where they live, it’s a rental property. And she learns that they’re actually doing a little division of the lot are going to sell that existing house, but keep some of the other land. And they have been talking to a couple other buyers. So what’s unique about this situation is a lot of times that people in my community are the only folks with a seat at the table, the only potential buyers but there in this case, were a couple others. In fact, she had shown it to maybe four other people previously. And so the sellers, overall attitude was that they were she was very happy to you know, meet my client and to show her the property and have this conversation. But you know, her position was basically send me an offer.
So my coaching client leaves the meeting, and you know, with pretty clear instructions on send me an offer and starts brainstorming. Okay, well, what is this offer going to be right? And actually in our community, we talk about making proposals instead of offers and there’s actually really a big difference between proposals and offers offers are not that hard to come up with. It’s sort of about me and here’s what I’d be willing to do and what would make me money and would work for me. It’s not really in light of the seller, and that’s what a proposal is all about. A proposal is all about making a recommendation and proposing something to the seller that meets what they have told us they want to accomplish. And so there’s a huge difference And my coaching client, you know, starts trying to come up with a proposal and is feeling like, gosh, I don’t really know enough about this situation yet, I think I could come up with something Sure. But it’s not going to be really all that well informed. And so like in our lexicon in this community, we talk about solving the person, and we have to solve the person before we can solve the deal. And it just kind of felt like cash, we don’t really know for sure enough about this person in the situation, what they’re really trying to accomplish, what matters to them, it doesn’t matter to them, what their worldview is on this topic, and that one, and all this other stuff that is involved with solving the person. So it becomes a decision point at that, at that moment, do we put together some kind of a proposal that’s sort of baseless and just not really, you know, informed by much? Or do we go back and say, Hey, let me let me ask you a couple more questions, can we spend a little bit more time together?
Now, the idea of going back and asking for a little bit more time to understand more feels right. But it also in this case feels a little bit risky, because the seller is saying, Send me an offer, send me an offer, send me an offer, and it kind of feels like well, maybe she’s not willing to have these conversations, she’s received a couple other offers, etc. So this decision point, kind of comes down to an expression that came up a year or two ago. And I don’t remember exactly how it came up. But I like it. And I’ve restated it many times, which is you have to play their game or break their frame, you know, when a seller is coming at you with their own clear expectations of how this process is supposed to go, we either need to play their game or break their frame, which means either we have to go with what they are suggesting and what they’re wanting, which in this case is just send me an offer, where we have to break their frame, which is a somewhat assertive move that says, I am not going to play that game. And here’s how it’s going to work. And so we actually chose to do the latter chose to break their frame. And so my coaching client decided to give this seller a call, and have a simple conversation that says, hey, you know, I’m, I’m sitting here with my notebook and a pencil and a cup of coffee, and I’m working on coming up with the offer that you want me to send you. And I’d love to do that. But I feel like I’m flying a little blind here, I don’t necessarily feel like I’m entirely clear on what you’re trying to accomplish. It’s sort of like I’m throwing a dart at a target that I’m not entirely sure where it is. And I know that in the world of regular sort of real estate buyers and stuff, people are happy to make uninformed and sort of baseless offers all the time, but I just can’t bring myself to do that. It just seems too random. And I just don’t feel like it’s a good use of your time, I really want to know clearly what I’m aiming at, so that I can make the best possible thing that you’re really going to like when I present it to you.
So that conversation was a little bit of a risk, because the seller could just say no, whatever I you know, I just I’ve got some other offers, I don’t need to play this game. But she did engage. And so my coaching client said, let’s meet for coffee, if you would mind, let me buy a cup of coffee at this place. And I’d love to just ask you a few more questions and coming out of there, I’m gonna have a much better idea of what will work for you. And I know that the proposal that will come from that will be something that you’ll feel fits a lot better. And you’ll you’ll really like it. And the seller said, Okay, let’s do that. Which is so a huge win right there, you know, huge win right off the bat.
So they met up. And the meeting did produce a lot more insight about the seller and what they’re really trying to accomplish. And of course, it’s more FaceTime over a cup of coffee, and they start to develop this great rapport and in really have a great relationship, and they start to actually come to what seems like a very clear agreement on what they’re going to do. And at this point, it seems like great, we’ve got a done deal. We’ve even handed over a check for a little bit of earnest money. And we’ve got clear next steps. And a day or two later, a surprise comes up, the seller contacts my coaching client back and says, Hey, I’m really sorry to tell you this. I know you put a lot of effort into this and I like you guys a lot. But we got another offer. And it’s at a higher price. So that created another pause, you know, for my coaching client and for us in this community to just step back and say wait a minute. We didn’t think that there was a bidding war kind of a thing going on here. We didn’t think all of this just came down to price we thought we understood the seller in exactly what they wanted and that it was kind of a configuration of things combination of things, not necessarily just all about a number.
So we kind of devised a plan and my coaching call I called her back and said, you know, gosh, I’m sorry to hear this. And I kind of thought we had already come to an agreement. And I thought that we had identified together what was really most important to you, and then come up with a plan that gave you exactly that. So I’m a little, you know, surprised to hear that you’re going in a different direction. If, if we misunderstood what the goals you had were, is there another opportunity for us to talk about this? And the seller said, Yes, I’m sorry. She’s like, you know, what, I can tell, you’re my kind of people. I can tell you’re my kind of people. And the seller said, Yes, I’m sorry, let’s, let’s, let’s get back together, my husband is going to be in town, let’s all get back together. And they did get back together. And they sat down, and the three of them put their heads together and figured out how to revise the plan just a little bit. And my coaching clients had great, let’s do this, and agree to it, officially now. And they did that. And they put the property in contract just a few days ago.
But I want to come back to this idea of I can tell you’re my kind of people, that, my friends, that is negotiation, if you can make the seller feel like you were like them, if you have a similar spirit to them, if you have a similar set of values to them, and a similar compass or barometer of integrity. When somebody says you’re my kind of people, you have one at that moment, you have accomplished what you’ve needed to when you’ve gotten them to say you’re my kind of people you have put the relationship in contract. And now putting the property in contract is just an almost inevitable downstream thing that comes after that. Getting to the point where the seller feels like you are their kind of people. That is negotiation. That is what the building of relationship capital is all about. That is what the seller relations approach and solving the person is all about. And when we look at this story, my kind of people, you’re my kind of people that came through in the initial letter that my coaching clients sent this seller two years ago. That’s why she chose to keep it because she got a vibe from it in that moment. That said, this sounds like my kind of person the sound like my kind of people. timing isn’t right, just right now, but I’m going to hold on to this for when the timing is right, because these seem like the kind of people I would like to work with. They’re my kind of people.
It’s the my kind of people that led to the ability to have the second coffee meeting with the seller when she was just wanting to receive an offer. It was the these are my kind of people that led her to be willing to maybe divert and depart a little bit from the process she was trying to enforce. It’s the thing that allowed my coaching client to break her frame because it was a person who was her kind of person who was breaking the frame and offering this coffee meeting. And saying I’d really like to understand better what you’re trying to accomplish to the euro as happy as possible with my proposal. Ultimately, it’s the you’re my kind of people aspect that led to her being able to resurrect what looked like a dead deal. Towards the end, after she got that phone call saying hey, I’m really sorry, but we’ve received an offer with a higher price. If that seller didn’t perceive my coaching client as being a my kind of people person, there would not have been another conversation, they would have just moved forward with the other offer. When the seller feels like you are their kind of people. This is your tiebreaker, all the time. All else equal, you will always win when they feel like you are their kind of people. And in fact, being their kind of people actually hardly ever creates a situation where all else is equal because you already have a head start you already have some preference and priority in their mind. But when it comes right down to it, you get the benefit of the doubt when they feel that you are their kind of people.
This is what the process of seller relations is all about. And this is what we’re building relationship capital is all about. And the little cherry on top of this story I love is that when they sat down all of them together to actually sign the purchase agreement just a few days ago and put it everybody’s name on paper and to officially go into contract. After they signed, the seller said, Hey, can we can we buy you dinner? Will you come to dinner with us? And so they all went to dinner. And to me that is just such a great example of when somebody feels like you’re there kind of people, not only are you getting the deal, you are making friends, you are building relationships, we can only guess at this moment how much more possible business and friendship and relationship can come down the road in completely different situations from this type of relationship because we, my coaching client focused on being there kinds of people, not just a transactional, here’s some numbers. Let’s buy some dirt sticks and bricks, but a Relational Approach. These are my kind of people that is the holy grail of what you what you want your sellers to think and feel about you.
That is it for today’s episode of Racking Up Rentals. Again, show notes for today’s episode are at www.thoughtfulre.com/e199. Please do us a big favor by hitting that subscribe button would be so appreciated. And if you would rate and review this show just real quickly, doesn’t have to be long or eloquent. Just a rating there and a couple words would be super, super helpful and very appreciated.
Did you know that we have a Facebook group for Thoughtful Real Estate Entrepreneurs too? We do and you should be a part of it. It’s called Rental Portfolio Wealth Builders and we would love to have you join us there. Just go to group.thoughtfulre.com and you will be taken right to that page we can hit the Join button. If you liked this episode, please take a screenshot of that and post it to Instagram and tag us; we are @thoughtfulrealestate. I will see you in the next episode. Until then, this is Jeff from the Thoughtful Real Estate Entrepreneur signing off.
Thanks for listening to Racking Up Rentals where we build long term wealth by being win-win dealmakers. Remember: solve the person to unlock the deal and solve the financing to unlock the profits.