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Dear Walter, It was a pleasure meeting you during your recent event in Laguna Hills, CA. I appreciate the material your covered during the event and wanted to thank you for your generosity on gifting me the "Beating the Competition" sales system. Jose U. Jaramillo, Keller Williams


My Start in Real Estate and Real Estate Investing July 25th, 2016 | Posted in General Real Estate, Other Interests, Real Estate

Many times a real estate agent who has been successful in brokering real estate transactions finds that a property meets some real or perceived investment needs.  They purchase that property, allowing their real estate business to lead them to become a real estate investor.

My experience was flipped.  I first became a real estate investor, based upon a windfall of money that came to me, then became a real estate broker after I lost it all!

Winning a lottery when I was sixteen years old began my investing career.  In the Western states, the government initiated a lottery, which was called the “Simultaneous Oil and Gas Lease Drawings.”  These drawings were prevalent in the early 70s, and these government-sponsored drawings gave the opportunity for an individual to submit $20 for a chance to own an oil and gas lease that may or may not be valuable.

The leases may or may not have had any potential for oil or gas, but the government offered them to all entities including major oil and gas corporations along with private citizens.  Some of these leases were more valuable than others.  There was a private, free, call-in service to determine which leases might be the valuable ones.  Obviously, on the more valuable leases, there were more lottery tickets submitted and a reduced chance of winning.  However, I always lived by one of my father’s credos, “No guts, no glory!”  I called in for the best lease to set my ticket on.

$20 was hard to come by for a sixteen year old.  I mowed a few lawns, and I borrowed $10 from dad.  I mailed in my $20 ticket fee.  Being sixteen, I promptly forgot about the lottery as more pressing matters (cars, girls…what else was there?!) took priority.

Approximately four months later, a man showed up at my home unannounced, saying that I had won a ten-year lease in Campbell County, Wyoming, and he wanted to talk to my father about negotiating a purchase.  This man had a $10,000 check with him to buy the lease that night.  My father, being one of the world’s greatest negotiators, said that if someone makes an unsolicited offer and flies unannounced from New Mexico, maybe that offer could be bettered.  He promptly asked the man if we could get back to him.

My father researched the oil and gas leases surrounding my winning piece of ground; he contacted the owners of those properties around mine.  He negotiated the sale to Atlantic Richfield (ARCO), who owned other leases in the area.  ARCO gave us $36,000 for the rights to this oil and gas lease.  My father also negotiated a percentage of any oil and gas found on the property over the next ten years.

My sixteen year-old response to all of this excitement was versed in the classic 70s vernacular, “COOL!”  I could actually see my car – a Porsche, of course.  I could see myself driving down the coolest of all college campuses and attracting the most beautiful co-eds!

Hopes were diminished when my father, who loaned me $10 of the $20 initial investment, mentioned ownership rights to the lease, thus cutting my proceeds from $36,000 to $18,000.  In the 70s, you could still get an excellent used 914 for $18,000!  I presented this game plan to my father.  His response – “You need money for your future, seed capital for business, and a savings account for college!”  I felt nauseous.

I explained how necessary it was to have a car.  He calmed my anxieties and said that he had not forgotten about buying a car for me.  However, his priority was to obtain a growth vehicle for our money, and in the 70s, real estate was said to be a fast-moving vehicle.

A family friend and real estate broker helped us find a four-plex in El Monte, California.  Upon seeing the four-plex, my father explained that I would be the new manager for this property and that I would be learning tricks of the trade as an owner.  This sounded all too boring to me – and none of it included the part where I got my car!

From the proceeds, my dad graciously held out $400 for my first car.  This allowed me to get a USED Mazda!  It was not a chick magnet.  I made the best of it with my father’s advice.  He told me to take the young co-ed by the four-plex.  He said to point out the investment potential, then she would understand my investment prowess and income potential.  This would help me achieve great success with her and life!

At this time, the real estate agents said that listings were scarce.  An agent caught me on the front lawn of my new building.  We listed the four-plex and received offers almost immediately.  We took the best and sold it.  At the closing, I realized that I had more than doubled my money!  Upon inquiring how this could happen so fast, our real estate agent said, “This always happens!  Real estate is an amazing investment.”  I had to agree because our savings account balance proved it!

A twelve unit property was available down the street from the original four-plex.  Based upon my almost super-human abilities as a real estate advisor, we negotiated and purchased it.  Within months, we had a buyer who wanted it much more than we did.  This time we tripled our down payment investment!

Our next purchase was 91 units in downtown Los Angeles.  The miraculous quick-turn of a hot Southern California market, once again, left my savings account brimming over.

I now realized that I knew everything there was to know about real estate and I did not need my father’s advice in investing and constant nagging to slow down.  So, I nicely bought out dad and started investing my own money.  The first “investment” went to a new, European delivery Turbo Porsche Carrera direct from Stuttgart, Germany.  This super car was a pre-mature bucket three investment.  The day that it arrived – I showed it off to everyone by parking it at my new college fraternity house, Kappa Alpha at the University of Southern California.  There was no one bigger than I was!

Anything that I bought in real estate seemed to turn to gold!  I had advanced my “empire” to include other states including Arizona and Washington.  Since real estate seemed to always go up unabated – I foolishly bought properties without even looking at them.  I hired individuals to paint and repair the properties so we could generate higher incomes thus higher sales prices, believing the only way to properly repair a property was to clear it of tenants.  Negative cash flow was not a concern because of high appreciation rates and the quick turn, short holding periods.

Then came 1979….

18% mortgage rates changed my real estate world.  I was caught with many vacant apartment buildings in numerous states.  I had brokers telling me that the equity I had expected to receive was not available; in fact, some of the properties were actually worth less than the high leverage loans that I had on them.  Losing a property in foreclosure or selling in a distressed market is one of the worst experiences that a real estate investor could ever have.  I graduated from USC with a diploma in real estate finance and a life lesson in real estate speculation!

It was at this time that I decided to make up with my father regarding my past arrogance and to once again seek his advice.  My father thought that I was young and smart and I could be at the top again; however, neither of us realized that when you lose everything, you can actually go way past zero!

I had to make a huge sum of money each month before I could even buy groceries.  I was left with no seed capital and had only a checkered past of real estate experience.  I asked my dad what kind of job could help me make enough money to get out of trouble.  He suggested real estate sales would be good for me.  He said since I had lost more money than most people would make in a lifetime, that it would probably provide a valuable frame of reference to anyone that I represented.  It seemed to make sense to me.  With my experience, I found that I had a leg up on the competition.

I went to Long Beach, California to start my new real estate career.  Long Beach was the location of one of my unsold real estate investments that I could actually move into!  It was a large 1930s California Mission style home.  Nothing had been done to the home since World War II!  Upon moving in, there was a ton of work that needed to be done to make it acceptable to a new wife who was used to my “mucho dinero” days.  The only way to get enough money to refurbish the home and pay off my extremely large debt was to become a very successful real estate agent.

My dad, once again, intervened with some sage advice saying, “You can become anyone you want to be by just doing what they did!”  With that advice, I took many real estate agents out to lunch and arranged meetings with the top agents from all over the U. S. and Canada.  From this information, I put together the wisdom necessary to become a successful real estate agent.

Today, I coach real estate agents on the systems and strategies that were developed to gain the majority of market share in my region and update it often.

It was at this point in my life that I found that earning real estate commissions was a business that I had to pay attention to every day.  My real estate systems are based around pro-active, seller lead generation systems, which allow broker/agents to acquire a larger percentage of listings in my neighborhood.

Once I had the listing leads as an agent, I developed a better listing presentation to gain a larger percentage of signatures on listing contracts at the correct price.  When that happened, I had a larger percentage of signs up to create more buyer phone calls.  With the systems in place to eliminate the non-profitable buyers and work only with the profitable buyers, I found that I could close transactions in less time than a majority of my competitors.  Good systems and checklists coupled with monitoring by an assistant, allowed me to “duplicate” myself and delegate some of the responsibilities that I was not excited about doing.  This allowed me to better utilize my affiliates in teams and free up more time to conduct pro-active seller lead generation.  As a single-man office, I was able to do the production level of most full offices and still find time to invest with a lot of net proceeds.

While earning money as a real estate broker, I was actually able to view the best inventory for free.  As I was creating pro-active, seller lead generation, I found that I was actually able to find “off-market” inventory.  Some of this inventory was available to me for purchase.  The only problem was finding the down payment….


Invest in your business, invest in your future, invest in real estate!  Insider Trading for Real Estate Agents is a thick manual full of Walter’s personal investing strategies, forms, checklists, and letters with the data CD (digital copy for easier implementation.  It also includes audio CDs for you as a real estate investor and audio CDs for your investor clients.   

Check out the details:  Call 800.792.5837 and ask for the $50 blog special on this system!



The Greats Know What to Say July 22nd, 2016 | Posted in General Real Estate, Other Interests, Real Estate

In my seminars and even here through a blog format, I’ve been able to share some of my best ideas regarding seller leads, which will then result in buyer leads.  However, a lead is just that until it is actually memorialized in ink.  There can be a lot of objections between the discovery of a potential client and asking for their commitment.  I wanted to make sure that you are clear on answers to some of the most common objections.

One of the biggest problems comes in talking with a client for the first time.  Your only goal in the first phone call is to determine motivation and make an appointment.  When the client says, “But I will not pay a full commission!” then your answer should be, “I don’t know of any transactions I have handled that haven’t been completed because of commission.  What would be the most convenient time for us to meet so we can discuss how to increase your net proceeds and help you to achieve your goal of getting closer to the beach (or whatever their core goal of selling)?”

Put off all discussions regarding price, market, marketing, commissions, and anything else until you are able to take them through the best listing presentation, which is detailed in our product Beating the Competition Every Time.  This product will not only give you a video of my listing presentation, but it will also take you through the audio of why I do what I do.  Also included are the documents to use in the listing presentation in book and data CD format.

Occasionally, you might have objections prior to getting that appointment.  These objections come about whether it is a good or bad market, but unfortunately, you will find more of them when the sellers are not as excited about selling.  Here are some objections that my coaching clients have most recently received:


  1. “We are not going to sell any longer.”

“I understand, but may I please impose upon you for two more questions?  (wait for response)  What caused you to put the property on the market in the first place?  (wait for response)  What has changed about that?”

Obviously, if there is something that has changed to affect their motivation then putting the property back on the market again is a realistic objection.  If nothing has changed, let them know that you can provide a customized marketing plan to achieve their goals and try some new concepts that were most likely not presented on the first marketing effort.


  1. “We are just going to rent the property.”

This objection usually stops most real estate agents cold in their tracks.  The reason is because they often do not understand investment property.  Let’s cover some basics.

Most rental properties will have an approximate 40% expense factor.  This means that without considering the principle and interest payments, there will be taxes, insurance, maintenance, vacancy factor, utilities, advertising, and a myriad of other expenses.  If you are able to say to them, “Many of my clients have mentioned that, but once I show them the true net that they can expect in this market, many of them allow me to achieve their goals by way of a sale.  Would it be okay if I could show you the numbers you talk about when you mention renting?”

Your job is to simply show them the numbers.  First, you will need to come up with an agreeable market rent amount.  Next, deduct a 40% expense factor.  You will be deducting the principle and interest payment.  Add back the equity pay down portion of that payment.  Figure the amount of equity the client would receive on a sale using your services, and agree upon a safe amount of return, should it be delivered to their pocket.  This amount of lost opportunity cost on their equity is then once again deducted from the rental amount.

Explain the concepts of buying up in a down market that will motivate someone to make a purchase in an unforgiving market.  Subtract all those numbers from rent, and the negative can be substantial.

If the market is at the beginning stages of a down market, you can let them know that they might have a number of years with further deflation in their price.  Please don’t forget to mention that real estate markets don’t turn on a dime.  If they think it is going to get better next spring, what they are actually saying is the market might actually stop going down next spring.  Explain to them that it might take years for them to achieve the same price they could have had in the previous year.

Your job with any seller is to find their motivation and goals then create a customized marketing plan to achieve that goal.  Show them how expectations regarding renting may get in the way of achieving those goals.


  1. The next objection you will hear is some sort of a put-off for a certain amount of time, maybe because of a holiday, maybe they are not ready yet, or maybe they just want a break. These objections can usually be handled by asking when they want their goal to be accomplished.

By working backwards, you can let them know that an appointment might soon be appropriate.  For instance, if their property had expired in December, they might want to wait until March to put the property back on to give themselves a break and hit the hot spring market.

If you were to ask them when they would like to see their goal accomplished and property sold, they might say “End of the summer before the kids go back to school.”  By working backwards, you can make a case for the fact that they should be seeing you potentially “now.”  The reason for this is that many buyers buy with the purchase subject to the sale of their property.  A transaction like this could easily take 90 days, which takes us from September 1st back to June 1st.  The marketing time in many markets has been at least four to six months, taking you back to January 1st.  The remaining thirty days will be for designing the marketing materials, getting the house ready for the market, and designing the media mix.  The goal of any conversation with a motivated client is to obtain an appointment.


  1. “We are going to list with a family member or a friend.”

Regarding their listing with the same agent again, I believe that it is easy to overcome this objection by offering them a win-win situation.

You can offer them the following: “I can certainly understand loyalty.  Let me run an idea by you.  What if I was to present my marketing plan, discuss with you all of its benefits, and share why it has been so successful in the past with clients like you.  At that time, you can decide whether or not you believe my plan might be able to achieve your goal of getting you closer to the beach.  If you still believe that your previous agent has not done everything that they know how to do at this point, then you can stay with them and offer them any good ideas I bring to you.  The benefit is that you can go back to your previous agent with some new ideas.  I get to understand your motivation and see your property so that I can show it to any buyers should you choose to list with your previous agent.”

This will usually get you an appointment.  If your presentation is cutting edge, you will find that because you have counseled the sellers better then you will be showing up with better solutions, which usually leads to a commitment and a listing presentation.

Sometimes they just have a family or a friend in the business, and they would like to use his or her services.  In dealing with this concern, it is important to point out that in any business decision you want to maintain the reigns of control and the ability to hold an agent accountable.  Explain that sometimes it is hard to put pressure on a friend or family member to achieve their very important business goals of getting their new residence.

You can explain to them how important it might be to have an agent who would not be offended if the client/seller wanted to see different marketing priorities implemented in a different way.  They might still think that their friend or family member is the cat’s meow, but they might begin to see the advantage of having a real estate agent they can more aggressively control.  You can mention that based upon the stats over their family member or friend, the days on market, or the list-to-sale ratio just how this is a much better business decision as demonstrated in net proceeds or in time saved.

If this second reasoning does not affect them, then they must be extremely close to this friend or family member.  However, at this time, they might be thinking about the fact that you might be a better alternative, but they are trying to figure out how to save face with that friend or family member.

As a last alternative, you might consider to offer them a referral fee.  As unhappy as it makes me, that might be enough for the client to save face with the family or friend.  You could say something like this:

“I think that tonight we have brought to light the fact that possibly my marketing plan might achieve your goals in a shorter amount of time with higher net proceeds to you based upon the figures I have shown you.  I do understand the fact that blood is thicker than water.  How about I offer your friend/family member a 25% referral fee based upon my gross listing commission?  Therefore, they would receive the majority of their profit without spending any money or time on the project and more than likely would be netting you more results.”

It is always amusing when they bring up the fact that they will just take the 25% off the commission they pay, which means that you probably offered the referral fee too soon!


  1. A lead is either worthy of the trash can, a newsletter list database, a calendared call back date, listings in the “A” class, or maybe an immediate appointment.

If you have any objections that you cannot figure out, let me know.  I will be happy to give you a cutting edge answer so you can continue the conversation to achieve the client’s goals.


For dozens more ways to attract leads – buyers and sellers, we’re offering a blog special duo!

You can get two of our top systems – Grow Your Leads: Just Add Wa(l)ter and  Beating the Competition Every Time for a combo price of $80!

Call 800.792.5837 and ask for the $80 blog due special on these systems!



Get an Itch to Niche July 21st, 2016 | Posted in General Real Estate, Other Interests, Real Estate

I was always excited to tell my prospective real estate clients why they should consider my services!  To elevate my message above the din of numerous competitive agents, I constantly sought groups of clients with special needs who were grouped using specific criteria.  As the criteria became more unique there was less competition!  If the criteria were specific, I could custom design services for these special potential clients.  For my thirty year career, I loved finding groups of people that needed me.

Many niche-marketing agents use geographical criteria for grouping their clients and their needs.  These “farmed” clients were easy to research, but they did not have many special needs except those shared by being within certain geographical boundaries.  The competition from other agents was fierce in some “farmed” areas!

Therefore, finding groups of prospective clients based on their use of real estate or their social leanings allowed me to design custom services that really excited them to pick up the phone or click my site plus there was no competition!  Also, rather than telling them how great I thought I was (feature selling) I suggested what I could do for them (benefit selling).  Groups have similar needs and hot buttons, so my phone button lit up when we provided answers to their needs.

In researching special groups and offering them services my competition did not, my research allowed me to minimize my contact cost because I had fewer contacts or numbers in my sample.  I increased my closings because I had better quality leads from that sample.  When I delivered on the needs of my clients, my relationships were more appreciated and sincere!

Some examples of my niches and the respective benefits I provided are as follows:

  1. Mature Homeowners in homes over 2500 square feet system (previously mentioned this week). I researched them by using a combination of list brokers and the local tax records.  Their hot button was buying down into a more secure home, with smaller yards at lower interest rates and freeing up some equity to re-invest.  The list broker had everyone over 65 and then I cut that list by applying the tax records of all the homes over 2500 square feet.  This gave me mature people in big homes, which sell in a frequency seven times greater than normal.  Sending them a postcard with the benefits above really made my phone ring!
  1. Four-Plex Owners. Their owners have all the challenges of management and have values as high as those compared to 5 unit properties because of preferential financing available on 4 units that is eliminated at 5 units.  If I move them to larger sets of units (i.e. a 12 unit building) the economies of scale of larger buildings come into effect.  This means it costs less per unit to take care of a building, the more units you have.  This can be accomplished via a 1031 tax deferred exchange so that gain on the four-plex building is deferred.  The owners are easily researched using the tax records.  Send them a letter today regarding these benefits.
  1. Your church or service organization. These potential clients are easy to find, they are familiar with you and are very happy to see that 20% of the commission earned on every transaction you do goes to the church or a local school project or whatever the organization that sponsors you as their real estate agent.  I told them about my giving attitude by advertising that was offered by the organization and I also helped them!  An example of this would be the back of the church bulletin, special program flyer, or at the organizations’ sponsored events.
  1. Attorneys in your town are listed in the phone book. They love your free lists of comps, inventory, rental value estimates, forms, investment advice for their clients, fast-price evaluations, and the impartiality offered to divorcing clients.  Contacted with a high value letter, they will then accept your phone call.  Also, you can also let them know you are available as an expert witness.
  1. Colleges have housing problems and if they are enlightened enough to sell or give you their student’s parent’s addresses or E-mails you can solve those problems. Suggest to the parents the advantages of buying an inexpensive condo or home.  IE:  The tax benefits, appreciation potential, sub-leasing to roommates and the free real life course in ownership 101 to their college bound child.  I have had parents pay for the college education after the sale from four years of appreciation!


Whether you choose to phone them, E-mail them, send them to your website or send a simple postcard, you will be talking to an interested group that needs your assistance.  Contacting potential clients with real help to real problems is fun and less tiring than cold calling, door knocking or any shotgun approach.  I imagined the demographics I could help.  I would personalize the values offered to that demographic.  Then make sure it was profitable, perfect the approach and then delegate the system to someone that would work for less than I was earning.


Lead generation is what builds your business and keeps your pipeline full, no matter what the market says!  Grow Your Leads: Just Add Wa(l)ter is a thick book full of detailed and complete prospecting systems, and it includes the data CD (digital copy).  This is also a great manual for an assistant. 

Check out the details:  Call 800.792.5837 and ask for the $50 blog special on this system!


Vacation Prospecting July 20th, 2016 | Posted in General Real Estate, Other Interests, Real Estate

It is a fact – some REALTORS® do not have lives…lunch on the run, missed recitals of your prodigy in training, and fewer “date nights.”  So, you sit down on January 2nd and promise your family that “things will be different.”

My suggestion is to get a democratic vote on the location, date, and duration of your vacation this year and then PAY FOR IT IN FULL!  This always seems to make the vacation more assured, even if the week before your vacation is the busiest week of your career.  Over the years, I have developed “separation anxiety” techniques for the vacationing agent that’s “gotta go” but feels the pains of guilt.

My favorite technique is the foreign destination owner solicitation system.  Here is how it works: after a vacation or seminar destination has been selected by the agent’s family, research is started by the real estate agent.  Tax records are searched on-line, in person, or through a title company team member.  The agent looks for all the residents from the vacation destination that own property in the agent’s geographical market.  If they own property in the agent’s town and get the tax bill sent to the vacation destination then they are a match.

I personally used this with great success on trips from the general area of Long Beach, California to destinations as close as Catalina Island, California; Big Bear Mountain, California; and Palm Springs, California.  I also had success from my Long Beach starting point to destinations in Nevada, Wyoming, New Mexico, Florida, New York and even Europe!

Once I determined my vacation destination and found owners of local property that live in the destination, I would send the following letter:




City, ST  ZIP


I have written this letter as an introduction of my real estate services in Long Beach, California.  By the tax records, I believe you own real estate located at (address, city, state).  I found this information using the property tax records that are public knowledge.  If I am incorrect in regards to your ownership and you know who owns this property, please forward this letter to the correct party.  If I am completely off the mark, please accept my apologies and deposit this letter in the trash.

If I am correct, then I wanted to let you know that I will be in (the vacation area where they live) soon.  I sometimes take working vacations with my family.  If you have ever considered talking with a top real estate agent from the town in which you own property (insert town name), I will be in your town from December 10th through December 23rd 20__.  I am staying at (the hotel or condo).  Call my office here in Long Beach by December 7th at 800.792.5837 so that I can complete the research for our meeting.

I am one of the top agents in Long Beach and I have many services that I can offer the out-of-town owner.  A sample of what I can bring with me follows:

  1. The current price value of your property supported by comparable sales just like an appraiser would do.
  2. Counseling on IRC 1031 tax deferred exchanges should you want to sell and defer the income taxes at close by buying another property closer to where you live in (vacation destination).
  3. Referrals to the best property managers in (town of investment property) to cut your expenses.
  4. The latest copies of the Apartment House Association rental agreements and applications to make sure you are protected.
  5. Lists of my personally approved handymen, electricians, plumbers, and other professionals you might need for the best quality and lowest costs on repairs and upgrades.
  6. Lists of other investment properties to purchase in Long Beach, if you are considering more property or a larger property to take advantage of the management you already have in place.
  7. My own “personalized fair rent guide” that will tell you what other properties like yours are renting for in Long Beach so you can adjust your rents.
  8. A complete update on the market showing trends in price and interest rates to help you make decisions.
  9. Introductions to the best lenders in town should you be considering a refinance to lower your payments or pull out investment funds.
  10. If you are considering selling, a complete marketing plan to maximize your price.

As you can see, we have many services that will help you maximize your investment.  I always appreciate face to face meetings in your town of residence more than the telephone.  I will be happy to meet at a location convenient to you.  If there is any interest on your part to be updated on your Long Beach property, do not hesitate to call me toll free at my office or E-mail me so that we can meet while I am in (vacation destination) between December 10th and 23rd, 20___.


Walter S. Sanford

Sanford Systems

P.S.    To review some of our buyer and seller services or view testimonials, please to go

I would send the letter approximately six weeks prior to my vacation.  The results: I always added a new “convert” to my database and sometimes two.  Every other time, I actually met with an interested seller.  CAUTION: over-work on vacations can cause spousal problems!

Another favorite vacation/seminar strategy was sending postcards to my database post-marked from my vacation/seminar location.  I would explain how much I was learning from the “seminar” I was attending.  I’d also mention that I was staying in touch with the office on a daily basis.  It is just another way to show my clients how seriously I took my business and their business.  Letting them know that they can still converse with me by E-mail also calmed their nerves.  There must be a minimum of intrusion on your time off so proceed with caution.

I trust that these vacation strategies will allow you to take more vacations and make more money.  If it isn’t fun, why do it?  I hope you didn’t miss the genius of this whole system.

Does this make your vacation tax deductible?  Contact your tax professional on that one.


Lead generation is what builds your business and keeps your pipeline full, no matter what the market says!  Grow Your Leads: Just Add Wa(l)ter is a thick book full of detailed and complete prospecting systems, and it includes the data CD (digital copy).  This is also a great manual for an assistant. 

Check out the details:  Call 800.792.5837 and ask for the $50 blog special on this system!







Old People, Big Homes July 19th, 2016 | Posted in General Real Estate, Other Interests, Real Estate

If you know me well, you know that I was always seeking great demographics.  One of the areas that even the National Association of REALTORS® agrees with is that empty-nesters move more often than almost any other demographic group.

The identification of empty-nesters is sometimes difficult because of how the tax records are kept in some cities in the United States.  If your tax records are digital and carry with them the home’s square footage then we might be able to have success with this demographic in your area.

Here are the steps:

  1. Contact a list broker or mailing list house in your area. Give them the area that you want with either map coordinates or zip codes.  Obtain all homeowners in that area and then match that to the people over the age of sixty-five from another database.  If they happen to have square footage records then we can take care of it in one activity, but usually they do not.
  1. Take your over sixty-five year old home owners to the title company or you might have to do your own search in the digital tax records. Match your list of over sixty-five year old homeowners to all homes over 2,500 square feet.  What you now have is a focused mailing list for your area of interest with all the people who live in that area over sixty-five years old and own a home over 2,500 square feet.  This group is filled with prime candidates for downsizing or moving.


It is important with all solicitation programs that you do not get overwhelmed with the follow-up phone calls after the letters are sent.  If your database is large, I suggest that you break it down into a manageable list.  For instance, let us say that you are going to be taking ten names on Monday.

I would suggest using the following letter for the solicitation of this demographic:




City, ST  ZIP


In servicing of the area of (location/region), I have found that some of my most satisfied clients have been homeowners who were thinking about retirement or downsizing.  Many of my clients have had a larger home such as yours at (address).  These homeowners are delighted with the opportunities they have in the current market. 

Some of these opportunities include the following:

  1. Being able to get top dollar for their home because of the low interest rates.
  2. Planning a sale around the homeowner’s schedule. This means if you need to take twelve months to make the transition that can easily be accomplished.
  3. Freeing up a large amount of equity that can then be used to invest for retirement, vacations, or even helping with the grandchildren’s college education. This is important because if the homeowner is going to buy a smaller home or a home in a different area, they can actually buy at such extremely low interest rates that the homeowner might want to use their equity from the sale for other purposes than a down payment.
  4. Taking advantage of deals on recent construction in the smaller, guard-gated, security-minded, newer developments.
  5. Utilizing the help of a financial consultant from (name), which as you know is the most prestigious financial firm in the area. We have arranged a free one-hour appointment so these professionals can show you how to properly re-invest your equity that was freed up by the sale.
  6. Learning how the proceeds from your sale might be income tax free.
  7. Buying two properties with the equity is easier than you think! Many homeowners choose to use their equity to buy a vacation home and a home closer to family.  I can help with that investment by introducing you to the top agents in virtually any city in the world.


I hope that you can see there is a great benefit in considering the sale of your property with someone who has done this for many others.  I am happy to direct you to to read the success stories from some of my clients.

You might be in the decision stage, which I certainly understand.  This market requires a substantial amount of pre-planning.  I offer something that I call a pre-listing consultation.  This consultation will allow you to discover the small changes that we could make in obtaining top dollar for the sale of your property.  It would also allow me to learn your exact goals so that I can customize a marketing plan to achieve those goals.

If you are considering a sale in the next twenty-four months, please do not hesitate to call.  Let me give you an insight into some of the other things that I have done for other couples who want to leverage their hard work into a possibly more convenient lifestyle and leverage their money more effectively for the future.

Please accept my phone call in the coming days and let me know if there is anything that I can help you with.


Walter Sanford

Sanford Systems

P.S.    We have many other people on our team including home inspectors, lenders, and handymen who can help you with any area of concern.  Please mention in the phone call if you need referrals to some of the top vendors in town.


All that is left now is a phone call within the next five days mentioning the letter and some of the services that you offer.  It is an easy phone call when you are asking people if they would like to receive any of the free services mentioned in the letter they just received.

Obviously, you will need to have your “listing leads A” set up for those who want to do something soon and your database with calendared call back dates for people who have longer time plans.  You will be talking to some of the best seller demographics in your area.  As always, we do not want to ask anyone for anything.  We just want to offer them services to help achieve their goals.


Lead generation is what builds your business and keeps your pipeline full, no matter what the market says!  Grow Your Leads: Just Add Wa(l)ter is a thick book full of detailed and complete prospecting systems, and it includes the data CD (digital copy).  This is also a great manual for an assistant. 

Check out the details:  Call 800.792.5837 and ask for the $50 blog special on this system!


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