I’ve got a killer opening script to set more appointments. 

As much as we talk about having more conversations, most real estate agents are afraid of picking up the phone and making those calls. After all, if you don’t know what you’re going to say when someone answers, dialing their number is like pulling onto a busy freeway with no clue where you’re going or even which lane you need to be in. 

The stakes might not be quite as high, but the stress? Pretty close. 

“I don’t even know what to say. Why am I going to keep calling these people? All I’m going to do by calling is irritate them.” 

If that’s your thought process, it’s easy to fall into the trap of paralysis, which leads to not doing anything—not calling the leads that you have or the folks you’ve been in touch with. 

And ultimately you lose more business than you close. 

So I’m sharing a script opener—and a couple of variations—to help you really get engaged with your clients. 

Why you need an opening script

When you dial a number for a lead, and someone picks up, what do you say instead of, “Hey, I’m checking back in,” or,Hey, I’m following up again”? 

Following up is not a bad thing to do. But you want to have value-based follow up

We talk about this all the time. I’m a big believer in the Phil Jones OFQ script, which stands for:

  • Opening
  • Fact 
  • Question

Everyone should write this down and start using it as soon as possible. 

Scripts for buyers and sellers

For starters, let’s say you’re calling a potential buyer. The fact you’re leveraging is the recent drop in mortgage rates. Here’s a simple OFQ script to open that conversation:

“Hey Brian, it’s Tom Toole here with RE/MAX. I’m following up as promised. Rates just came down to 7%. And I’m not sure this will be for you, but have you thought about exploring what 7% rates and a lower payment might do for your home search?” 

Now, let’s flip it on the seller side:

“Hey, Brian. It’s Tom Toole here with RE/MAX. I’m following up with you as promised. I’m not sure if you saw, but we just had the single biggest drop in rates over the past 12 months, meaning buyers can afford more than they could have just a couple weeks ago. Would that change your plans regarding selling your home or making a move?”

That’s all you need to do. That’s the script. The key here is you want to stop talking and listen to what they have to say—and then respond based on whatever they tell you. 

Use the fact to highlight an opportunity

Now comes the “Question” in OFQ. For a seller, you want to ask questions like this— 

“Hey, are you still planning on moving to X? Knowing that buyers can afford more, have you rethought your own home purchase? So we can maybe strategize a little bit and have a planning meeting about how to take advantage of these lower rates in the first or second quarter or the first half of 2024.”

On the buy side, here’s the bonus hack. Have a mortgage calculator with you calculating the exact difference in a monthly payment from 8% to 7%, and say— 

“Hey Nick, you know what? This means you would be saving over $230 a month on your monthly payment. Is that something that would impact how you’re looking for homes right now?”

These are simple questions. But instead of just calling and checking in or saying, “I’m here to follow up,” deliver value in terms of what you’re telling people. 

Scripts as text messages

You can also turn these scripts into text messages:

“Hey, it’s Tom Toole here with RE/MAX following up as promised. Did you see that rates came down to 7%? How would a lower monthly payment impact your real estate plans?” 

Here’s another one: 

“Just out of curiosity, have you been following the housing inventory trends over the past couple of weeks? The good news is the supply of homes has increased by 18.5% year over year since last November. That means there are more options out there to find the home that you want. I’m not sure if this is going to be for you, but would you be open-minded to a quick call to discuss what more housing options could mean for your real estate plans?”

The more you know, the more value you can deliver

Know your market and leverage any opportunities you see for potential clients. Right now, for starters, you can talk get specific statistics for your market, and discuss housing inventory, interest rates and/or price adjustments. 

Here’s an example: 

“Hey, I don’t know if you saw that more homes have been adjusting their price than we’ve seen for a long time now. Would you be open-minded to touring some homes where the seller is going to be more negotiable?” 

All these are questions. You’re just asking questions here, but using facts to follow up with them. 

You can leverage— 

  • Increase in price adjustments
  • Changes in inventory
  • Decrease in rates

And know exactly what that means in terms of a number for their monthly payment

This is the easy part 

These scripts are not difficult. What’s difficult is having this conversation enough to turn it into appointments and being disciplined enough to hear a couple of nos. 

So we’ve got all these OFQ scripts: 

  • “Have you seen what’s happened with rates?”
  • “Have you seen what’s happened with inventory?”
  • “Have you seen the increased number of price adjustments?”

And if they say yes or no, 

Would you be open-minded in talking about how that could impact your own real estate needs? 

Simple, easy, effective. The winners are going to use these scripts as a way to leverage those conversations into more appointments. 

I challenge you to do the same.