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Mastering the Art of Selling Real Estate: Fully Revised and Updated Hardcover – August 5, 2004

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 400 pages
  • Publisher: Portfolio Hardcover (August 5, 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1591840406
  • ISBN-13: 978-1591840404
  • Product Dimensions: 9.4 x 6.4 x 1.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.3 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (18 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #121,203 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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About the Author

Tom Hopkins is one of the world’s leading authorities on salesmanship and selling techniques. He has presented his seminars to more than three million people on five continents. He is the author of a number of bestsellers, including How to Master the Art of Selling, The Certifiable Salesperson, and Selling for Dummies.

Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.


Welcome to the wonderful world of real estate! I began my career in real estate in the 1960s. It was wonderful then and has evolved into something even more wonderful today. What a joy it is for people to own real propertyùto have a place they can truly call home. And you get to delight in helping people achieve their dreams of home ownership, while earning a good income for yourself and your loved ones. ItÆs a truly satisfying career choice.

Back in the 60s, real estate was primarily an older manÆs business. There were few young men choosing real estate as a career and even fewer women.

Fortunately for all of us, times have changed. I know of some young people these days who got their real estate licenses while still in high school and had a jump start on their careers on graduation day! Due to its flexibility of working hours, the field has provided excellent opportunities for thousands. IÆve seen many exciting changes over the years and congratulate you on your choice of a career in real estate.

When I wrote the first version of this material, it was actually two separate books. One just covered the listing aspect of real estate. The other, selling. They were first printed in the 1980sù back before computers, wireless phones, pagers, and the Internet. You are so fortunate today. Much of the research you need to do is available with the click of a few keysùand in minutes. I used to invest hours in researching data for Comparable Market Analyses, and reading through the Multiple Listing Service book (yes, it was a book, back then).

While the times have changed, some important aspects of buying and selling real estate have not. These include: the reasons people need your services; motivations for wanting a particular type of home; how husbands and wives relate to each other during real estate transactions; and how you must relate to them. ThatÆs the power of this book. In it are step-by-step strategies for getting started in this business, for finding people who need your services, for helping them like and trust you and your expertise in the field, how to prepare for a listing presentation, what to expect from potential buyers, what to say when they give you the most common questions or objections, how to negotiate offers and counteroffers, and how to close people on either listing their property with you or buying the home youÆve helped them find that best suits their needs.

In this revised edition, I have kept the best of the original books, deleted old strategies that may not be as effective today as they once were, and have added strategies that work phenomenally well in todayÆs marketplace. I cover the use of technology to save you time and increase your appearance of competence with clients. This book is designed to help you achieve a certain level of comfort within the real estate industryùbeing comfortable with the knowledge of what to expect and how to succeed in this truly wonderful career. Treat it as a textbook. Read it with a highlighter, a pen, and a notebook. Let it become your quick reference guide and your study guide as you grow. There is enough material here to help you through many years in this business. And, to help you find the success you dream of more quickly than you would without it. My wish for you is to find as much joy and satisfaction from your real estate career as I did mine.


Chapter 1

Portrait of a Professional
Real Estate Salesperson
If you are reading this book, you may already have had a day that stands out as your worst day in real estate. If youÆre new to the business and havenÆt had such a day, donÆt worry, you will. Just donÆt let it deter you. Perseverance has made all the difference in my life.

My worst day is one I will always remember. I was new to real estate, nineteen years old, and I didnÆt own a suit. So, I wore my black and silver high school band uniform to work. My car was a beat-up, old convertible with holes in the roof and springs popping through the back seat. Needless to say, I didnÆt present the most professional image.

Like most new licensees, I didnÆt know what to do with myself. The training program in my office consisted of the sales manager giving me the thumbs up signal and telling me to ôhang in there.ö I was warm and friendly with all my prospects, but didnÆt know how to close a sale. In fact, I was so nice that sometimes when people didnÆt buy from me, they would send apologetic notes to my broker, saying how nice I was.

Until I discovered that there was such a thing as sales training, my earnings averaged $42 per month. That was for my first six months! It doesnÆt matter how you budgeted, even in the early 1960s, $42 a month didnÆt make it.

My enthusiasm was beginning to fade. In fact, there was a low period during which I decided real estate wasnÆt for me. Three sales had fallen out in one week. One day I walked into my brokerÆs office and said, ôIÆm thinking about quitting.ö He had no answer for meùthe thumbs up signal wasnÆt good enough anymore.

I was so depressed that I went back to my desk and started looking at the classifieds. Then the telephone rang. To my surprise, through the receiver came, without a doubt, the most beautiful voice I have ever heard. It was an absolute melody. She said something that I had never heard before. ôSir, my husband and I would like to buy a home.ö I thought someone was playing a joke on me. Then, she said, ôSir, weÆd like to spend around $200,000.ö This really shook me up because the area I worked in was Simi Valley, California, and then the average home sold for between $18,000 and $20,000.

I felt like saying, ôMaÆam, would you like half of the valley, a quarter of the valley, or what?ö I didnÆt though. Somehow I kept my composure and set an appointment for 2:00 p.m. that day. To say I was nervous after this phone call would be a terrible understatement. I didnÆt even know of a home that was worth that much in Simi Valley. After driving around for a few hours, I finally found the right home on the top of a hill. It was absolutely perfect! It had a phenomenal view. It was a $187,000 mansion. My career finally looked like it was turning around.

On the way back to the office, they announced on the radio that it was the hottest day of the yearù105 degrees, 75 percent humidity. I didnÆt care, though. My enthusiasm was zooming off the charts! Back in the office, I pulled out a piece of paper, like any starving real estate person, and figured out what 6 percent of $187,000 was. People around me could hear me say, ôAll right! IÆm going to make some big money here!ö

Right at 2:00 p.m., in walked this gorgeous creature. She had on a $300 outfit and diamonds everywhere. Her hair was beautifully styled, her makeup exquisite. It must have taken at least two hours to put it on. I jumped up to meet her.

Being such a nervous wreck, I donÆt even remember how I got her into my car. As we drove down the street, I couldnÆt think of a thing to say to her. I was embarrassed by my car and nervous about the possibility of selling such a high-priced property.

All of a sudden, my car started to jerk. In my excitement about finding the right home, I had forgotten to check my gas tank. It was empty! Rolling the car to a stop at the side of the road, I turned to my potential new client and said, ôMaÆam, IÆve never had anything like this happen before. Please forgive me. ThereÆs a gas station only half a mile away. IÆll be right back.ö

There I was in my newly dry-cleaned, wool band uniform jogging down the street with my gas can. I wish you could have been there when I got back to that car. Not only was I a sweaty wreck, the woman had sat in that closed car at 105 degrees the whole time I was gone. Everything that had been on her face was now on her chest. Her hair even looked like it was melting. ôMaÆam, IÆm so sorry,ö I said. ôIÆve never had this happen. You can have all the air.ö I turned all the vents on her and drove on to the house.

By the time we got to the house, I had decided nothing could be worse than selling real estate as a career. Trying to regain my composure, I thought IÆd show her the beautiful view from the patio. She would have to be impressed with it and might forget what had happened with the car.

Walking over to the sliding door, I said, ôMaÆam, I think youÆll enjoy this view.ö I held the curtain back for her to see it. Well, she thought the sliding glass door was open and walked right into it. She hit her head hard and was obviously stunned. She looked at me for a split second with an expression I cannot describe and ran to lock herself in the bathroom.

Luckily, the sellers were gone. But now I had to get her out of the bathroom. I began knocking on the door, pleading with her to come out. Upon hearing a noise behind me, I turned to see that the sellers had returned ahead of schedule. Needless to say, they wanted to know what was going on. With the help of the sellers, the lady came out of the bathroom, and I got her back to my car. Not a word was spoken on the trip back to the office. When we got there, like a zombie, she got out of my car, walked to hers, and drove away.

I went into the office and took some aspirin. This was definitely the end of my real estate career. Nothing could be worse than what IÆd just gone through. Out came the classifieds again. Then, there was a phone call for me. When I answered, the man on the other end said, ôYes, Mr. Hopkins, you just showed my wife a home. I just canÆt believe what sheÆs told me. I want to see it, too.ö I felt like fainting dead on the spot!

They were both coming to the office right then. This time I had a goal for when they arrived. My goal was to get them from the front door to my ...

More About the Author

Tom Hopkins is world-renowned as The Builder of Sales Champions. His selling skills and sales strategies have helped millions of sales professionals and business owners in industries from A to Z to serve more clients, make more sales and earn millions in income.

Tom got his start in real estate sales when he was just 19 years of age. After an initial period of abject failure, he started learning the communication skills that made him the #1 real estate agent in the US within 7 years.

Since 1976 he has been teaching others his simple, yet powerful strategies and tactics through live events, books, CDs and video. Millions have turned their cars into classrooms, listening to Tom's advice on the way to appointments with potential new clients.

His client list includes the likes of AFLAC, 24 Hour Fitness, Best Buy, State Farm Insurance, Kavo, Eli Lilly, REMAX and many others. He also offers live public seminars in cities throughout the US and Canada on a regular basis.

He has authored 16 books including: How to Master the Art of Selling, Selling for Dummies and his latest release, Selling in Tough Times (February 2010).

Customer Reviews

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This book is AMAZING!!!
Being new to real estate this book is a great tool to help me understand what it takes to be successful as a real estate agent.
Donald T Erdmann
Heard MASTERING THE ART OF LISTING REAL ESTATE--written and read by Tom Hopkins.
Blaine Greenfield

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

71 of 72 people found the following review helpful By T. Villarubia on August 12, 2004
Format: Hardcover
I read alot of Real Estate Sales books and I really enjoyed this one. This book also takes into consideration many tools that people use today to make Real Estate agency more efficient. Tools in everyday life such as computers, email, and the like. What I like most about Tom Hopkins book is that he gets down to the nitty gritty of the thought process of your potential customer.

Im a Real Estate agent that has gone under many Real Estate training seminars and read many books. Most of these training sessions focus more on scripts and handling the most common objections you'll come across as an agent. They focus on a particular way to prospect, present, and close. Thats fine and there's nothing wrong with that. However unless you understand the reason behind why those scripts work, or the reason your asking or responding in a certain way, then you wont know how to respond when you have a more aggressive customer that is also familiar with those same scripts that your blurting out and has built up defenses against them.

Tom Hopkins book gives you the tools, ideas, and a deeper understanding of the Real Estate sales process so you can adapt more quickly to adverse sales situations or create your own style of salemanship that works with your personality. Many Real Estate Sales books and seminars fail at this by telling you exactly what to do and when to do it, not taking into consideration if whether or not their particular style fits your personality. I've seen many very successful agents with completely different styles of prospecting, presenting, and closing. Some styles are even contradictory to each other but both Real Estate agents are very successful. Why is this? Because beyond the obvious differences in style, the successful sales process all share the same things in common. Tom Hopkins shares those characteristics in this book.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Blaine Greenfield on September 1, 2008
Format: Hardcover
and read by Tom Hopkins.

Don't be misled by the title; this program is appropriate for
anybody in any field of sales.

Hopkins, author of one of my favorite books on selling (HOW TO MASTER
THE ART OF SELLING ANYTHING), is considered one of the nation's
top sales trainers . . . I've had the privilege of not only reading his
books and listening to his CDs, but also hearing him speak . . . he
really knows his stuff and what's more, he presents it in a way that
is easy to digest.

I picked up many valuable tidbits from this real estate program;
among them:

* The very great listers--and salespeople--do very little talking.
The do lots of intensive listening.

* You can measure your desire by asking yourself this question:
How much pain can you endure before you quit?

* Leave the office and meet more people.

* Bring a small piece of danish to an Open House. Put butter on it
and keep it on low in the oven to have the smell permeate the house.

* When they tell you what they want for their house, show no emotion.

And this favorite of mine:

* A top seller gives people a quart of ice cream to get them off the street.

fact that much of it was taped before a live audience . . . there was
much role-playing, and it never felt contrived . . . also, there's an
excellent accompanying CD that provided all the workbook
materials that Hopkins would give out at a live seminar.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Bradley S. Smotherman on July 25, 2006
Format: Hardcover
I've actually read this book 3 times and I'm currently memorizing the scripts. This book is great at offering answers to the common objections such as "It costs too much" and "This bedroom is too small". The FSBO section is amazing. I've cold called FSBO's before with little it's a breeze.

I understand that marketing is huge in any real estate career, but if you dont know the commmon objections and how to handle them, you're finished. Become an owner of the book, it's priceless.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Brian O on March 25, 2011
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I have read 3 quarters of this book treating it like a text book that means taking notes high lighting sentences, ear marking pages and I have started using about dozon different tatics and they do work I have had great results with this. Also my company provides alot of extra training and alot of what I read in the book was brought up more than once in the seminars and classes so I know it does work but just like you'll see in the book that even with alot of people telling you stuff there are few agents that actually use these tactics that is why I plan to become the top lister and seller in my office.

Thanks Tom Hopkins for taking the time to write this book and share your knowledge with the rest of use who want to succeed in this market.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Sarina on June 25, 2011
Format: Hardcover
I bought 7 books about R.E. choosing them by reviews, but this is worth a years of every day experiences on the fields, day by day of R.E work and explains in a huge amount of hidden nuances about THE WHOLE MECHANISM of R.E in very logical and smart order! This book is grate, but not only for beginning but for mapping the success in R.E industry FROM beginning! He explains in details many problems that newbie will not know how to ask so broker would not answered..(sorry for my broken English).He talks about psychology of people- as a sellers, buyers and of course R.E agents and about the correlations of this with the business matter ! I could not put this book down! All other books that I bought explain about 1/8 of what he has to say!And he has a lot! This book is AMAZING!!! I would give 10..because I feel lucky to find such book on the market!
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