The Short List: Fran Bailey’s Strategies For Finding Clients the Perfect Home

by Peter Thomas Ricci


Fran Bailey is a broker with Baird & Warner in Chicago.

Every week, we ask a real estate professional for their Short List, a collection of tips and recommendations on an essential topic in real estate. This week, we talked with Fran Bailey, a broker with Baird & Warner in Chicago, about her strategies for finding clients the perfect home.

10. Use a buyer-requirements form to document the location, price range and features your clients are seeking.

9. Ask clients to define vague requirements such as “near the Red Line,” “low assessments” or “lake views.”

8. Clarify with your clients what features are a “must have,” a “nice to have” and a “definitely don’t want.”

7. Recognize that as buyers view homes for sale and learn more about the market, their requirements may change!

6. After each showing, ask your clients what they liked and didn’t like to get a better understanding of what appeals to them.

5. Don’t be afraid to suggest a home that may not meet 100 percent of their requirements, but has some other benefits you think they may find appealing.

4. Tap into your agent network to find homes that may not be on the market yet.

3. Automate and schedule your searches on connectMLS so that you don’t miss any new, back on market (or price change) listings that may meet your clients’ requirements.

2. Listing agents don’t always fill out MLS data entry forms completely. You may need to setup searches that are a bit looser and then follow up with those agents on missing details, such as whether the roof deck is private or common, the square footage or if there’s a washer and dryer.

1. Know the market, so that when a great deal comes on market you can recognize it and urge your clients to move quickly!

Fran Bailey is a broker with Baird & Warner in Chicago. A CNE and CREN, Fran was a Top Office Producer 2008 and a member of Baird & Warner’s Chairman’s Club 2008; in addition, she was a “Five Star Real Estate Agent” with Chicago magazine in 2011 and 2012, and was a finalist for “Chicago Real Estate Best Blog” on Zillow in 2010.

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