Summer in Arizona can present challenges unique to our climate for REALTORS® – whether it’s escaping the heat on vacation or focusing on the kids being out for summer, this time of year there is a seasonal decline in residential inventory that continues to increase housing prices in Greater Phoenix.

According to The Cromford Report, the monthly median sales price as of July 1, 2015 was up 8.5% year-to-year and supply hasn’t been this low since August 2013. While this is obviously beneficial to sellers, and a positive sign for many homeowners who were underwater only a few short years ago, it’s can present big problems for buyers and REALTORS® alike.

How can you continue a steady stream of business through the summer? How can you best serve buyers when there are less homes to go around?

Here are a few suggestions from Joseph MaggioreJoseph Maggiore, Designated Broker and Owner of Desert Dimensions Properties in Scottsdale. “When the going gets rough the first thing I advise my agents to do is get back to basics,” said Maggiore. “It’s easy to let those basics slide when you get busy and feel prosperous.”

Start working your natural market, take previous clients for coffee to catch up and ask for referrals. Remember client birthdays and anniversaries – they’re a nice excuse to say hello with a handwritten note and stay top of mind. Don’t forget home purchase anniversaries as well!

Religious and volunteer activities, and community involvement are great ways to meet new people who also might need assistance with buying or selling a home. These activities also make great social media content, allowing friends to experience a little bit of what makes you special. Keep plugging on your monthly newsletter.

If things are really slow and you’re looking for listings, you might consider searching public records for smaller homes bought in the past 5 years to see if the owners are ready to upgrade. Conversely, search for larger homes purchased in the past 15 years to see if the owners are ready to downsize. This is also a great opportunity to educate your clientele on the virtues of getting an annual comparative market analysis.

Decreased inventory isn’t all bad news – this can be an exciting time for buyers who feel the rush of competing for a home. The “fence sitters” get serious and the “tire kickers” tend to disqualify themselves. While multiple offers can be hard on buyers it does force them to get serious.

Set expectations early on. While the home buying process may take a little longer, your clients will meet their goal of finding a terrific place. With a little patience and an aggressive offer they’ll do well – especially since they have a terrific REALTOR® like you.

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