Kosta: In this episode, I’m speaking with Matti Saran, a real estate broker with Royal Lepage Matti’s been in the business now for over nine years. She’s a multiple sales award winner and definitely has a passion for providing genuine and honest value to her clients. We’re discussing how she books 1 to 2 sales appointments per day through door knocking and how she’s on pace to close 60 plus transactions this year alone. So definitely an insightful interview I don’t want to miss and I hope you enjoy it.
Matti: Matti, thank you so much for coming on the Top Agent Podcast. Really appreciate your time. No, thank you for having me. Awesome. Um, if you just want to get started, maybe tell our audience a bit about yourself, your background, and how you got into real estate.
Matti: Oh, okay. I basically, someone actually I was in hospitality and someone recommended me that I would be really good in real estate and I never thought I would, I would take it on. But with my background with clients servicing as well as, negotiation skills, they saw some potential, in my skills and that I, you know, I looked at more in, deeper into it and investigate it, and I thought, yeah, this is a good fit for me at the time and didn’t realize what it all meant at the time as well. So, I said, let me try it and a new change in my life and started to take the courses and really enjoyed it. And then basically my corporate experience helped me into the real estate in because it’s your own business and you have to have a mindset of professionalism in, in real estate because you’re basically your own boss. So that, that’s where it just took off then.
Kosta: Amazing. So, how long now have you been a realtor?
Matti: Nine years. Yes.
Kosta: Okay. And so I see now you’re a multiple, master sales award recipient for Royal Lepage. Congratulations on that. First of all, thank you. Thank you. From my understanding, correct me if I’m wrong, but that recognizes agents in the top 11th, the 20th percentile in residential sales. That’s correct. And that’s, you know, quite a, quite an achievement in such a company like royal a page. Are you on track to match or beat that target this year in 2018?
Matti: Yes. I think I’m going for a Gold next step up from, from this category. What’s the gold? So it’s a, it’s a gold. Yeah. Yeah. So I think I pretty much I targeted that award.
Kosta: Okay. So, so if the sales master sales target is the top 11th, the 20th percentile, what would the goal be considered?
Matti: Um, I don’t know the numbers off hand completely, but I know that it’s higher than the masters and you have to do a certain amount of sales. So I think this gives you about 30, 35. That probably gives you about 65 to over 75 sales per year.
Kosta: Okay, perfect. Yeah, so I know like results change obviously year over year, depending on the state of the market, home prices, transactions and all that. But, approximately how many transactions did it take to reach that level in 2017? The master sales or word?
Matti: I’m about 20. Twenty five approximately. Yeah.
Kosta: Okay, perfect. And this year you’re on track to do plus 30? Yeah. So it’s nice. Yeah, it’s a good feeling. Yeah, that’s big time numbers. Congratulations.
Matti: No, thank you.
Kosta: You said you’ve been in real estate now, nine years. What would you say are some of the biggest challenges that you’ve had to overcome or even currently facing as a realtor?
Matti: I think a major challenges our emotions of people, um, it’s, it’s understanding the two different, you know, especially when it’s a husband and wife, one might be stronger than the other and a lot more attached or emotional. So that’s trying to balance the two. but once you understand that, then it’s the challenge you’ve crossed the hurdle. But the initial stages, that’s where it’s more challenging and also, um, you know, uh, the perception of buyers and sellers of what an agent does, um, you know, to get the sales and to educate to provide the knowledge and the skills. Some buyers and sellers are not really aware of what’s behind the scenes completely. And I think that’s, that’s a perception like a lot of buyers and sellers don’t realize the background research, to get to the results. And that’s, again, it’s educating and giving them enough of a communication and information saying, this is where I got to to get you what you know, to advise you and guide you. I think that’s really important and you have to do your homework, do your background, check on everything. I think that’s really key.
Kosta: Absolutely. I interesting perspective there about human behavior because I want to ask this question. Um, you know, a lot of times people tell me, you know, the challenges of, you know, marketing and current state of the market and what have you. But I like what you said there about human behavior because at the end of the day, obviously real estate is still, you know, it’s a sales job, it’s a, you know, you’re interacting with people and just understanding I guess human behavior and being able to deal with different personalities, almost chameleon like I think is very important. Did you have any past experience in that regard and with your, your past corporate work, work setting or.
Matti: Yes, but it was on a different level because it’s not personal, right? It’s more professional. Um, if it wasn’t as personal where, you know, you’re, this is a large, a large tickets financially. So it is, it’s, you know, people are lot more emotional at this point because it’s their home.
Kosta: Absolutely. And any tips or advice you’d give to other realtors to enhance their, their people skills are like, you know, more specifically with like human behavior and just understanding personalities.
Matti: I think it’s, more than anything, patience, it’s really patience and under really getting to know the client and um, and if it’s a husband and wife, it’s the two partners and really understanding what they’re too strong strengths are and um, and enhancing those. I think that’s. Yeah, that’s, that’s, that’s the key.
Kosta: I think that really goes along way in real estate for sure. One hundred percent. One of the other big challenges I hear a lot of realtors face is time management. So, you know, a realtor obviously doesn’t really have a fixed schedule and your day to day. So, you know, are there any daily rituals or routines that you have that help get started on the right foot and just help you plan your days a bit better?
Matti: Yeah. I would say, uh, you know, you’re always want to prospect and you always want to get more business because that shouldn’t be on a standstill. Everything else can probably be more, a lot more manageable rather than like if there’s a deadline on her all for something, but I think we get bombarded with a lot of administrative tasks and what I found is, okay, you know what, that’s not, it is important, but at the same time I’m getting business and building up your of clients is, it is very crucial because that’s your bread and butter. So yeah, so that’s where I try to focus more on and it is, it is a definitely a balancing act.
Kosta: Yeah. So how do you combat the though that necessary at Admin work that’s required?
Matti: Again, it’s time management really have some kind of a focus, you know, set an hour or two for administrative and marketing and then you’re out on the field. I think that’s key. Yeah.
Kosta: Do you use any particular tools or apps that help you with that?
Matti: I’m just Google and I’m a crm system. Yeah. And that’s, that’s basically it. You keep it simple as possible.
Kosta: Okay, perfect. Yeah. I’m switching gears a little bit, like what are some of your favorite and most effective marketing strategies to help you generate new leads and new business? That have given you the most ROI that you’re able to share with our audience.
Matti: From my experience, it’s basically door knocking, simple and door knocking as well as, your marketing material that you’ve door knocked ’em. Keep it consistent so, you know, if you’re doing newsletters, make keep them consistent, consistent every month just because they need to familiarize you with your face and your and your information, um, the homeowners and go back into your farm area and knock again. Um, it, it really helps.
Kosta: Let’s dig deeper into the door knocking because I think that’s very important. Um, so, so first of all, how often do you door knock is like a daily thing?
Matti: Daily. Every single day. Yes. Every single day. And depending on the weather, depending on the.
Kosta: Yeah, especially in the winter, you know, depending on winters, we know that.
Matti: Yeah. So really? Yeah. So it’s really depending on the weather. So my, my, um, my daily routine actually is, is planned according to the weather.
Kosta: Makes sense, makes sense to me. Why there’s great. Like you’re out there every single day.
Kosta: How long usually or how many doors do knock every day?
Matti: I would say about an hour and a half. Um, is good and that’s the average and I would do about least a street and a half, which is can be ranged from, you know, 25 to 30 homes.
Kosta: And do you focus your efforts in a particular farming area or are you moving around?
Matti: Yeah, I have to. Farming areas that I try to focus on.
Kosta: Okay, perfect. How do you go about choosing a farm area? Is it like an area you live in, grew up in?
Matti: Um, it’s a combination of, um, the activity in the area, something that I’m familiar with, um, and I think also living in the area helps as well. So it’s, it’s, it’s, it’s because one of one of my farming area is an area that I live in and then the other one is where I grew up in. So yeah, I would say something that you’re familiar with and also where we try to capture them where there’s not a lot of realtors in that area as well. A lot of signs.
Kosta: Makes Sense. Makes Sense. Yeah. And you mentioned a marketing material while you door knock. Can you expand on that sort of, what’s your game plan when you’re actually at the door or speaking to someone?
Matti: Basically just introducing myself. I don’t, I’m not aggressive on would you like to sell or, or what not, just introducing myself in the neighborhood and then um, after uh, you know, depending on the communication and how open they are, um, if they give me their emails, their telephone numbers and if they agree on having a newsletter, um, you know, I thank them for that and send them a thank, you know, the next day in that week. Okay. Yeah. So very personalized.
Kosta: Yeah. Yeah. I’m just a curious question. Lastly with the door knocking. So in a street, for example, that, that you canvas, uh, do you have any conversion numbers, like how many appointments you book after a day’s work of door knocking for example?
Matti: I would say I target about least one to two. Yeah. Wow, that’s good. Yeah. Yeah. Sometimes one to one or two per day. But the average is one or two sometimes. Well actually it really varies because in the summer and spring, depending on the season as well. So you might get a little bit more leads or during like the summer and spring season and of course winter very, very slow.
Kosta: Okay. But you average it out to a one, one or two. Nice. Nice. Okay. And that’s your. So door knocking. Just to wrap up that in terms of your marketing, you’d say is, you know, a significant part of your marketing strategy. Would you say that’s a, we’re all your leads come from or do you do any online stuff as well to compliment that or?
Matti: Um, not really. Not as much. No. I mean I’ll do facebook and I’ll do instagram and all do, but not as aggressively. And not as consistently as I would like. And of course I do newsletters to my database. Yeah.
Kosta: Okay. So That’s interesting. So that’s a good lead off to my next question is, um, you know, technology, uh, and how, how you see technology changing real estate in the next five to 10 years, whether it be the way buyers search for homes or do the research or your sellers are tiny and in social media as well to that.
Matti: I think it’s less wording, more pictures is his instagram has just taken off. I think people love that. They don’t want to read a lot on the internet because they’re bombarded with their own emails and, and others, um, work related things on the net. So, um, I think it’s more visual, less wording. Um, I don’t know what the next, um, you know, how facebook is, or instagram or, or other avenues. What’s the next big thing? I, I couldn’t say it’s hard to say.
Kosta: Yeah, for sure. It is impossible to predict really. Do you see yourself getting more active on social media?
Matti: Um, I would like to, yes. I’m probably more, um, towards something like instagram where it’s, you know, you’re giving them more visual stuff.
Kosta: So yeah, it’s interesting. You’re, you’re, when you’re first the answers to my question, how you answered with um, you know, people skills and human behavior, right? And personalities and stuff. I see social media tying in like, you know, a lot to that because if you know, to be good at marketing with anything, you got to understand people and you know, people’s behaviors and nowadays like you look around, you know, go to a coffee shop, walk around the mall, like people’s behaviors are on their cell phones, on their mobile devices. So you’re not as a marketer, you’re, you’re understanding how people behave nowadays. Um, you know, it’s a question advocate if people are or times are consumed on their devices and what can I do as a business to get in front and capture some of that person’s attention at least for, for a minute or a few seconds. So that’s where I think social media comes in and you know, effective social media, you can penetrate some of that and then be at the forefront.
Matti: Yes. That is definitely, I think you, it’s more personalized in this, especially when you’re dealing with a home, um, and it’s, you know, they can put a face and get more information that way and I think that’s more important. That’s more valuable.
Kosta: Yeah, absolutely. What are some, have you ever received any bad advice or recommendations in real estate? Um, you know, even maybe when you’re starting out, for example, that you wouldn’t want to repeat to anyone?
Matti: I think more of trying to know as much as possible on our deal and covering all aspects. I mean, I’m still learning, um, you know, every transaction, every deal is different. Um, and I find that every time I’m learning something or the other that just to protect my clients or even just some clauses or this should be put in or that should be put in depending on the dynamics of how a buyer and seller are thinking. Um, so I can give you an example is, you know, a simple name change of an amendment on, on, uh, on no agreement and purchase and sale. You would think that’s pretty open in today’s market because depending on, you know, when you get, they might want to change their name from the husband to the wife where, um, I experienced just recently that some sellers will question that and saying, wait a minute, why are you guys changing it?
Matti: They, they think of it as a red flag, but financially we’re not advisable way we don’t give that advice. And, and that was something that there is a, there is a clause that you can put in and saying that the buyer has the right to change the name. Um, so yeah, it’s a simple thing like that, especially with mortgage mortgage, um, when new mortgage rules and whatnot and if they need to change the name, it should be a simple as possible, but it’s, we had a challenging seller that didn’t feel comfortable and um, it, it was quite the challenge to change that.
Kosta: Oh, that’s interesting. I imagine are a lot of little fine details and nuances such as that, that you don’t make a difference between, you know, someone who really knows their stuff and providing that good quality service compared to someone who’s, who’s not
Matti: Correct. Yeah. So I would say, you know, the more, the more protection and, and covering all aspect is important, but you know, you’re still learning at this stage. I mean, even when I first started and the confidence builds a lot, a lot more. So when I first started, my confidence wasn’t there as much. For now I’m pretty confident. Um, and, but there’s always a, you know, there’s always a curve sometimes when you’re like, oh my God, I thought I covered everything.
Kosta: I think absolutely. As with anything, you know, any profession you’re in, I don’t think the learning ever stops. Even in my business. I’m learning something you literally every single day and I think you have to be that way. I mean, just really perfect your craft and be the best at what you do.
Matti: Yes. That’s so true. That’s so true. Yeah. Oh good.
Kosta: So let’s, maybe, I do want to be mindful of your time. I do end off each chapter with what I call the top three. Right. Okay. Alright. So number one, your top real estate or a business book,
Matti: Top real estate or business book? I would say, um, I had come across a book on negotiations and it was one of the best, um, the. Yes, the secrets of real estate. I think it was the secrets of real estate. We’re build
Kosta: About negotiation primarily?
Matti: Uh, yes, primary I believe so I have to double check. Um,
Kosta: so send it to me, I’ll added to the show notes for sure. Think negotiation in real estate as a side is probably one of the most important skill sets to really master.
Matti: Yes, I, I, you’re absolutely right. I think that that is a primary skill that you have to have in, in real estate and if, if it’s little tips that you can learn from, you know, I’m reading something about someone’s experience, uh, in, in when they were in the business, it really helps.
Kosta: Absolutely. Yeah. I’m going to check out that book. I think, um, provide a lot of value to customers as well.
Matti: Yeah, no, I’ll definitely send you the title and the author’s name.
Kosta: Yeah, please do. Yeah. Number two, your top vacation spot.
Matti: Um, Greece.
Kosta: It’s nice being Greek myself. I’m glad you said that.
Matti: Yeah. Oh yeah. Oh yeah. I didn’t experience the, um, the city, but definitely the islands.
Kosta: Which islands did you go to? Santorini, beautiful. And I actually got married there a couple of years ago.
Matti: Oh my gosh. Wow. That’s beautiful. That’s really nice. Oh, that must have been.
Kosta: It was incredible. Absolutely stunning. Stunning. Yeah. And uh, last question, uh, if you can go back, what do you wish your 20 year old self knew?
Matti: Um, I think it’s probably, I wish I knew how to. I wish I knew that I was good in real estate. I wish I’d found my, um, my profession earlier on an earlier stage.
Kosta: Interesting. Okay. So get started earlier.
Matti: Yes. Yes. I think that would have. Um, but I guess you have to go through certain steps in life to realize that is where you want to be.
Kosta: For sure. Yes. And uh, if, if anyone wanted to get a hold of their reach, oh, where’s the best place to find you?
Matti: I would say my email is [email protected]
Kosta: Alright, perfect. Will add in the show notes. Matti, thank you so much for doing this. I had a blast. Thank you so much. No, thank you. Thank you. It was great talking to you and I’m always a pleasure. All right, appreciate it. Thanks Matti. Okay, bye.
Kosta: Thank you so much for listening to the Top Agent podcast by Web4Realty. By the way, we’re providing exclusive promos to our listeners, visit web4realty.com/topagent and get your first month on us. And that’s web4realty.com/topagent to get your first month of service completely free until next time. Over and out.
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