How to Tell if a Seller Is Motivated

August 20, 2021
How to find Motivated sellers

A key factor in becoming a six-figure earning real estate investor quickly is to learn how to tell if a seller is motivated. A motivated seller is going to be much more likely to work with a real estate investor than someone without a timeline. 

A motivated seller is someone who has something that is requiring them to sell their home quickly. This can include a pending foreclosure, job loss, divorce, a death in the family, or a variety of other things. However, they aren’t just going to come right out and tell you they need to sell quickly. 

I like to remind my students that you can’t say the right thing to the wrong person. When a seller isn’t motivated, they will not work with you no matter what you say. On the flip side, you can’t say the wrong thing to the right person. Motivated sellers will be open to you when you have a solution to offer and they will be ready to sign on the dotted line. 

Questions to Ask to Gauge a Seller’s Motivation Level 

You can understand how motivated a seller is by asking them specific questions. Try and put the questions into a natural conversation, and not like you are just reading a list of questions. The more comfortable they are, the more likely they are to be forthcoming with honest answers.

  • Why are you selling?
  • How long have you lived here? 
  • Have you had the house on the market before? 
  • Is the house on the market now? 
  • Do you have a new house already? 
  • How far away are you moving?
How to Tell if a Seller Is Motivated

And remember, them sharing their pain points is what can help you in the negotiation phase. Be empathetic and show them that you really are to help them.

Signs a Seller is Not Motivated

Sometimes it will be easy to tell if a seller isn’t motivated. They might just come out and say, “I don’t need to sell my home for another two years, but am looking at options now to get prepared.” Nope. They will not be your deal. 

A seller who is not motivated will nitpick everything you say and will have objections for everything. A motivated seller can also have objections, but if they aren’t motivated nothing you can say will change their mind. 

Actions speak louder than words. I can’t tell you how many students say to me, “Oh man, they’re really motivated. They really need to sell. They need to move in two weeks. They’re super motivated! But, the house is only worth 250 and they want 275, all cash. They aren’t willing to budge. But they’re really motivated.

I say, no way they’re not motivated! How can you tell?  Because they want more than what the house is worth and aren’t willing to negotiate. They also want all cash. Now, if the house is worth 250 and they’re saying, “Hey, if you can give us 200,000, we’re out of here.” That’s motivated! 

Identifying motivated sellers is one of the major keys to success in the real estate investing world and so it is something you need to learn. I can teach you how I find motivated sellers and lead them to closed deals in my live event or in my free online Investor kit. Get started on your path to financial freedom with real estate investing today!

Marko Rubel
Marko Rubel is a bestselling author, self-made millionaire, and master real estate investor. He immigrated to the U.S. from Croatia as a champion boxer in his 20s without speaking English and having little money.  He has been named a real estate expert by the National Real Estate Investing Association that represents over 40,000 investors nationwide. After years of trial and error in wholesaling and rehabbing, he created his own strategies. He is now considered one of America’s leading real estate experts— helping others on their real estate investing journey.