Evenings and weekends are sacred to me. They are time for me to spend time with Gary and the boys, relax, and spend time with friends.
The nature of being in Real Estate, though, is that often times I still need to meet with clients in the evening or on the weekends. The reality is that there will always be some appointments that need to happen during those times, but I have been on a mission lately to reclaim as many of these hours as I can.
So what’s the secret?
1) The first one is probably no surprise ~ it’s planning. The key is that you have to start on Thursday with getting your week wrapped up. If you wait until noon on Friday to tie up all of your loose ends chances are you haven’t left yourself enough time to fit is all in. So on Thursday morning take a look at your client list and determine what action steps need to happen by the end of the day on Friday, next take a look at your calls list. Have you connected with the people that you wanted to this week? If not, do that on Thursday, not Friday. Finally take a peek at Monday for the following week. Is there anything that you need to prep for that you can do now versus Sunday night?
2) Set realistic time frames. If you have deadlines that expire at 9pm on Friday call everyone and tell them that they expire at 2pm. Yes, I have been know to tell my clients that a time frame expires at 2 even though the contract says 9pm. Of course I would not push anyone to make a decision without first having all of the necessary information, but if we are just talking logistics, then yes, I shorten the time frame. This way you are not frantically trying to fax things around when you should be starting to relax and kick into weekend mode. (Hint: Your clients will actually appreciate this. They have lives too and would much rather do other things on the weekends than chase around a fax machine.)
3) Understand the benefits of doing it during the week. If you are working on the weekends, chances are you are out with Buyers looking at properties. Did you know that you will pay less for a house on a Wednesday or Thursday than any other day of the week? It’s true! When a Seller gets an offer on a Friday or a weekend they are reluctant to negotiate because they know that they have other showings scheduled (most Buyers do look on the weekends) and one of the other Buyers may be willing to pay more. On Monday and Tuesday they are still feeling confident about the weekend showings and wanting to wait to see what the other Buyers decide. By Wednesday they realize that another offer is not going to materialize and that they can’t count on the next weekend and so they are more likely to negotiate. So you see there is a benefit to you AND your client to get it done during the week.
Give it a shot and see if you can’t reclaim some of your weekend this week.