How to win the game of real estate: Q & A with Matt Hughes

SLP property consultant Matt Hughes is proving that hard work and consistency pay off in the game of real estate. The ex-professional basketball player turned agent sat proudly in Openn’s top ten spot for last quarter’s most successful property campaigns. We chatted with Matt and picked his brain for agent tips and pro-strategies to win those listings.  

Openn: What are the traits of an agent equipped to adapt to the industry, as opposed to an agent who won’t make it?   

Matt: I come from a competitive basketball background. Transferring the hard work and sacrifice type of mentality from sports into real estate has been important for me. I’m quite new to full time real estate, and the reason I got into this game is because I noticed a lot of agents weren’t picking up their phones. The more I learn and grow as an agent, the more I realise it’s crucial to pick up the phone and make those calls. 

Openn: What are some of the biggest ‘time-sucker’ activities that agents should avoid or delegate?  

Matt: Doing the same thing with the same results. If you knock on doors and you keep getting those doors slammed in your face because you’re using the same opener every time, then maybe you should change the wording. Try an alternate avenue of prospecting until you find 4 to 5 aspects that work for you. I’m still learning and often ask myself if I’m wasting time on tasks. Real estate is a progressive industry. 

Openn: When we switch from a ‘nuts to normal’ type of market, naturally sellers often hold onto the prices of yesterday. What do you say to your vendors when the buyer-interest doesn’t support their sell price?  

Matt: It really comes down to the vendors circumstances and their motivation or “why” they want to sell. Being up front in the listing presentation is crucial to educate them on what’s happening in the market. Often, they will still hold on to a price regardless of that conversation; however, when the offers start coming in and they’re in the appraisal range, then you can always reference the initial conversation and move forward from there.  

Openn: What advice would you give to agents struggling to secure listings right now?  

Matt: There’s always anxiety associated with running out of listings. I feel that too. Often, I’ll lay in bed at night asking myself questions like... “What can I do differently? Where can I create an edge? How can I stand out on my social media?” My advice is just to keep working hard and be creative.   

Openn: How does an agent get more personable with a client and create a better relationship?  

Matt: Communication is my number one. I’m always updating my clients on what’s happening via text, phone call or email. The more they know, the less conflict you’ll have if issues arise in the deal.  

Openn: Who are your biggest mentors in real estate and why?  

Matt: I’m a huge fan of confidence over arrogance. I like Gavin Rubinstein’s confidence and the fact he has a lot of basketball references, which I can relate to in his podcasts - and the way he represents on social. 

Openn: What do you like most about using the Openn platform?  

Matt: A lot of agents say they like transparency best.  I just love the Hollywood aspect of it. The sellers, buyers and observers really get into the theatrics of it, especially during the final bidding stage! It just makes my job so much more enjoyable and fun. 

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