Before you decide to make that transition into the luxury market there are things you need to know…things that may save you a lot of heartache, time and money. In this video, Michael Krisa shares some ideas from some seasoned real estate professionals that are already there! Or, you can read the story here.

Michael Krisa has a unique style that demystifies video marketing and helps brokers and agents alike implement this powerful strategy into their marketing mix, using nothing more than their mobile devices. Michael received his real estate license in 1989 and is a licensed real estate broker, a syndicated columnist and a freelance internet marketing consultant. As a sought-after speaker and trainer, he is best known for helping to utilize video and video marketing in a way that actually works to make Realtors money! With over 400 interviews to his credit, Michael has become recognized as “That Interview Guy”. Send him an email.


  1. The Luxury Home Market

    It’s all about carriage: yours; and demeanour, as much as it is about marketing the property.

    Everything in the article is true. But even more important, in absolutely all price ranges, is to understand the psyche of the owners(s). And likewise, that of the would-be buyer.

    You have to achieve this without overwhelming everyone with questions that are not absolutely pertinent, and without the awful ooohing and awwwhing that some agents are prone to, that speaks volumes that they are not regulars in the luxury home market.

    Keep your personal feelings and comments to yourself at all times and in all circumstances. Absolutely stick to the knitting (Tom Peters).

    Marketing the property of course is necessary. Unless the agent is also independently wealthy, he or she likely will not be able to afford to spend 1% or anything like that amount on marketing. Email me personally to find out how I historically handled extensive, expensive marketing of high-end homes.

    Are you aware that CRA allegedly used to pay people to drive the streets like Google does to take photos, to look for new for sale signs that hadn’t yet reached the MLS system? Careful with those “coming soon” signs.

    If your seller is reluctant to have a for sale sign, it might be for more than one reason, that he might not be keen to share with you; anything from outstanding property taxes to income tax personally or business-related. And his neighbours will know soon enough once they cotton on to the traffic.

    I had a high-end well-known residential restauranteur seller, where within minutes of installing the sold rider I received a call from CRA wanting details. I was shocked. I referred the caller to the owner and refused to answer questions.

    I believe I was within my fiduciary duty to my seller. The sale was not even reported yet. I hadn’t been back to the office. Not part of my job description, I didn’t think, although I was politely businesslike. Although the caller appropriately identified themselves, questions such as why the owner was selling, sold price, closing date, and others similar in nature gave me the feeling I was being interrogated. As best I could figure, my legal duty was to my seller.

    The sold information would be public knowledge the following day, but I didn’t feel obligated to discuss particulars with the caller. The seller thanked me and explained a little of his situation. Due to how I handled that sale, I subsequently did business the following year with his sister and family and their luxury home.

    Sometimes agents should get seller-signed permission to let the listing agent use the “tell-20” system to market or look for a buyer. The public often doesn’t understand the MLS system. Especially if they are immigrants new to the country. Or if the sellers have lived there for many years and have not bought and sold in recent years.

    Open houses at luxury listings are not a good idea, unless by invitation only to a select group who arrive simultaneously, with a purpose, knowing they are there simply to do a temporary (guided en group) timely walk-through only, with the concept being to book an extended detailed private visit to discuss details if sincere interest is there. It isn’t easy to weed out the sincere ones even if they are financially qualified.

    This offers would-be buyers that you know qualify and that the home matches up with their own lifestyle the opportunity to preview only. Your sellers don’t want and won’t appreciate looky-Lou’s traipsing through their private residence, even so the property is on MLS.

    Some of these properties have their own staff available in standby to be there at your service: the butler, the maid, and such. But still keep your concierge at your beck and call. Safety first. We live in a totally different world in recent years. Doesn’t matter if you are a man or a woman, safety first requires due diligence.

    Your procedures, discussed ahead of time with your seller will cause you to stand out in the crowd. Likewise use your concierge service when you make your initial listing presentation. You are not doing this procedure to show off.

    Your personal carriage throughout the procedure will speak volumes. Never rush. Take notes. Reassure the seller that they will always have your personal attention and not be turned over to an underling at any point during the selling process.

    That every would-be buyer, it has been established: they can in fact afford the property. There will be no clause contingent upon financing being arranged; although a professional appraisal might be required.

    Even in the luxury market, the listing agent or any MLS agent will talk with a caller who wants to see the property; ideally right now, or as fast as possible. Saw the sign. Saw an ad. Just happened to be in the area. Meet at property now. Sitting outside house, waiting in car. WOW! It happens that way.

    Agent drops everything. Even cancels another booked appointment elsewhere maybe and goes running off at the drop of a hat at the possibility of that caller being “the one.” First mistake (in any price range). A vacant property? Extra-special attention required as a must-do!

    Like with any other listing, it is an absolute must to meet the caller first at your office. Book a proper sit-down appointment to evaluate the likelihood of this caller being the perfect buyer for this particular property. (Seller’s instruction!) I cannot stress strongly enough how important this process is.

    Long gone are the days when an agent can meet up with an unknown caller at a property, much less at the drop of a hat. Verboten! Yes, forbidden! Not just not practical but outright could be dangerous. Could be fatal if working alone. You must take someone with you, if only to wait in the car.

    Have on standby: Arrange with a corporate concierge company to always have a 4-door limousine car available at your service. Do not order a stretch limo. That’s just showing off. Serves no purpose. Order a service that will wait at the property with you, an hour or two if necessary while you show the property.

    The visitor will never know what car you drive personally even if it is a Benz or a Porsche that you are proud of. Or even your Ferrari. For as little as $350 you could have the concierge service assign a private driver from their fleet, to you for the whole day. The purpose is not to have the visitor, or the owner, in the concierge car with you at any time.

    You could arrange for the driver to wait inside the house in the foyer if it would make him more comfortable, especially in cold climates. His instruction is never to leave the property grounds. Not for any reason. You will build up rapport with a repeat privately assigned chauffeur if your name becomes known as the go-to area luxury specialist. Or hire your own private concierge, a staff member.

    Arrive ahead of your appointment. Have a paid staffer (not a team member) arrange to have the house ready. All lights on, soft background music, and a jug of ice water on a tray in a strategic location near the entrance or in the kitchen. You do not want someone carrying a coffee cup around your seller’s home. Dispose before entering.

    Regardless of how well-behaved children of any age are, they are not permitted to be at showings at your listing. Let it be known initially so that there will be no misunderstandings or offence taken.

    Let your seller know this is one of the ways by which you take good care of their property. Children are naturally inquisitive and older ones relay inside information to their friends; a perfect set-up for inviting a break-in.

    Say good-bye to your visitor at the door, and have your standby staffer at the ready to close up every access and egress. And instruct that they should double-check. No lock boxes and instruct the owner to change the alarm security system code at least “daily.”

    This staffer is an ideal job for a retiree who wants to stay active. Must have criminal background check available.

    Then you leave with your concierge driver. Often a local airport limousine service will make private arrangements with you, providing carte blanche service. These vehicles have smart phone charging devices and plenty of rear-seat room for you to work. You’re not looking to hire a taxi-service.

    This will also free you up to return calls from the rear seat while en route. Make arrangements if your showing has any possible buyer interest, for a second viewing. Carry out your second viewing using the same procedure.

    If you are confident, it is perfectly fine for your seller to be available to take questions at the viewing, but only with discretion. Some luxury homes require detailed systems explanations that no agent can ever wrap their head around about sound systems, indoor pool function, and or spectacular or unusual landscaping. Many need to be queried before an offer is made. Details of course once a transaction is consummated.

    Make lists of questions that might need answering after the fact. Do not permit the public to use their smart phone to take pictures unless you have permission from the seller, in writing. This applies to all listings, yours or other MLS properties, luxury or not.

    If your office is not nearby the luxury property, have your concierge driver meet you at a nearby brand name hotel and leave your own car at the hotel parking lot; with the valet if they have one.

    You could arrange a private main floor small meeting room to be at your disposal by making acquaintances and arrangements with hotel staff. I did this locally many times. Don’t forget to bring “them” flowers or a small corporate gift and another one at Christmas. Likewise your concierge service.

    Believe me when I say this procedure is a must. And doesn’t just apply to luxury homes. Although some might consider it part of marketing, it’s just really showing your own professionalism. It’s very different than showing off. But your procedures will be noted and will be well-rewarded by referrals.

    Many owners of luxury homes are very private professionals in their own right, owning or managing businesses locally and or out of town. Many are not big talkers, so be ultra cautious in your discussions and reassure them of your intent to keep their private business private. This is one of the absolute most important issues to reassure both sides.

    Carolyne L ?

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