May 12th 2022

How to Use Expired Listings Scripts to Generate New Leads

expired listings scripts

Good expired listings scripts help you make the most of a great lead-generation opportunity. These homeowners need to sell their houses as soon as possible but haven’t been successful thus far. Maybe the expired listing is an FSBO or maybe the seller’s contract with a previous realtor lapsed without a sale. 

While these listings present a lucrative opportunity to secure a new client, you still need to convince the sellers to work with you. That’s where expired listings scripts come into play. Here’s what you need to know about using scripts to secure these listings.

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The 411 on Expired Listings Scripts

Expired listings scripts help you initiate a conversation, offer your services, and start building a relationship with the owner of the listing. An effective script is usually written for a phone call with the seller’s mindset into account. This homeowner is likely stressed and they may also be frustrated and anxious to get their home sold.

This is why it’s so important to earn their trust and establish yourself as the clear solution to their problem, without coming across as pushy. These homeowners need a gentle touch of empathy, combined with reassurance that you have the expertise to help them succeed where previous efforts failed.

When choosing a script to keep you on track, or making your own, make sure you look for these elements:

  • A compassionate foundation: The conversation you’re having should be based on compassion. You want to validate their frustrations and show that you care about providing a better experience for them. According to Alex Vasquez, real estate broker and owner of Rhino Realty Property Management, when you demonstrate emotional intelligence, you make the potential lead feel comfortable enough to lower their defenses and be receptive to you.  
  • Data-backed conversation points: Show that you understand the market factors, as well as how the listing plan or prior agent’s mistakes led to this outcome. Use this to present yourself as a qualified neighborhood expert who has the knowledge, resources, and proven track record to help them close the deal successfully this time.
  • A clear incentive: Great expired listings scripts build in the opportunity for you to offer an incentive—a clear reason to choose your services. The incentive could be monetary, like lowering your sales commission rate, or tactical, like outlining a plan to attract buyers.
  • Opportunities to re-connect: You may not convert on the first call. Make sure the script you use provides you with an opportunity to re-connect with them again. For example, the script might include the verbiage, “When would be a good time for me to reach back out?” Or, “‘What’s the best way to contact you with potential next steps?”

No matter what the script says, it’s important that you take the time to customize it for the potential client. Use the information you have to make it as specific to them as possible. This shows that you’ve done your research and can also help you provide solutions specific to their particular challenge.

Keep Reading: 5 Client Referral Email Strategies to Boost Listings

How Expired Listings Scripts Help

Many expired listing owners are frustrated, skeptical, and maybe even defeated. This is why expired listing scripts are so useful. A pe-crafted script will give you a clear framework to steer the dialogue in a productive, efficient, and strategic direction, regardless of their emotions.

When you know what you want to say in advance, you’ll be less prone to awkward pauses, defensive reactions, or questions that catch you off-guard. You’ll enter the discussion feeling more comfortable and confident than if you had not taken the time to prepare.

Expired listings scripts are especially helpful on a phone call, where you need to respond quickly. While challenging, research from the University of Texas Austin reveals that talking on the phone nurtures a stronger emotional bond than text-based communication. Don’t ignore calling expired listings to avoid the challenge. Instead, set yourself up for success with a script. 

How to Locate Expired Listings

Expired listings scripts are helpful, but you need to find the right leads to call before you can use them. Here are a few strategies you can use to target expired listings for your lead outreach.

  • Use the Multiple Listing Service (MLS): Log into the MLS database for your state and search for expired listings in the targeted location. All you have to do is enter a city or zip code followed by the expiration date. Focus your search on expiration dates within the next four weeks to find listings that are about to expire. As soon as the expiration date arrives, you can be one of the first agents to reach out before the seller gets too many other offers or starts looking for someone new. 
  • Be targeted on social media: According to recent NAR statistics, social networking is one of the top five channels that FSBO sellers use to promote their home. Attract FSBO or expired listing homeowners with an ad campaign specifically targeted to them. You can also target these home buyers by using hashtags like #expiredlistingspecialist or #FSBOtips. In those posts, offer compelling data on hard-to-sell houses that you’ve sold, showing how you can do the same for them.
  • Check your location’s public records: Visit your targeted location’s city hall or county courthouse and request access to the public records. In this archive, you can search for a wealth of information about the expired listings in your area. You’ll find the owner’s contact details, home’s purchase price history, estate references, and amount of time on the market. While this can be time-consuming, it’s also free and comprehensive. 
  • Tap into your current referral network: Reach out to previous clients, friends or family members, and local business owners for connections to expired listing sellers. More research from the NAR found that 67 percent of sellers choose a realtor who was referred to them, so use these contacts as a resource to attract new leads.

Keep Reading: How to Build a Strong Referral Network for Your Real Estate Business

An Expired Listings Script Template

Use the template below as the foundation for creating your own expired listings scripts. Remember to customize this based on your area, the specific listing, and what you know of the potential client. Tailoring the script will ensure that you connect and show that you’re prepared to help.  

Hi, is this the homeowner of [address]? 

(Wait for their response.)

Wonderful, I’m [Your Name] with [Your Business]. I work in the neighborhood where you live and noticed that your home is no longer for sale. Are you planning to put it back on the market soon?

(Wait for their response.)

[If yes]: That’s great news! Do you have an agent you plan to work with?

[If no]: Why is that? I know it can be so discouraging to think about trying to sell again.

(Wait for their response.)

[If they have an agent already]: I’m so happy you have the support of an agent. If you’re still struggling to sell your home, I have worked in your neighborhood for [number] years. I know this area well, and I have a successful track record of selling homes here. I would love a chance to help you sell this home or at least take a tour to see what might have held it back.

Are you open to meeting this Saturday at [time] so I can share some feedback that could help you close the deal this time around?

[If they don’t have an agent OR say they don’t plan to put it back on the market]: I have worked in your neighborhood for [number] years. I know this area well, have a successful track record of selling homes here, and would love a chance to help you sell this home or at least take a tour to see what might have held it back.

Would you mind if I came by this Saturday at [time]? I’d love to share some feedback that could help you close the deal this time around.

This script is just the base of what you’ll say during this conversation. As you can see, depending on the responses, the conversation can go in many directions. However, as a foundation for your call, a script like this helps you achieve a few main goals: 

  • Establishes you as the neighborhood expert.
  • Shows that you empathize with the homeowner’s situation. 
  • Creates incentives by offering professional feedback.
  • Presents the homeowner with a clear, actionable next step. 

Generate New Leads From Expired Listings Scripts

Expired listings are just one method for generating new leads and closing new clients. Get it right by using expired listings scripts to make sure you hit all the important points. Use these tips and strategies to make the most your expired listings outreach and develop a script that helps you sell with confidence and clarity to new potential clients.

Chris Scott

Chris Scott is a real estate digital estate marketer and shows real estate practitioners how to market themselves to get recognized in their local markets for the service they provide. He hosts weekly webcasts to an audience of 4000 real estate professionals every month, manages social media accounts with over 200,000 followers, runs a team that generates over 5000 leads per month, and manages marketing for his real estate firm in Austin, Texas. Chris is co-author of the real estate business book Blueprint: The Agent's Guide to Building a Thriving Real Estate Business.

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