expired listings

Hey folks,

Yet another newbie here, how many of you have had any success with direct mailings to owners of expired listings?

In my area there is a lot of houses on the market and 40-50 listings that expire per month.

90% of listings expire due to 1) price or 2) condition. Statistics show they’re usually listed within 7-10 days of the expiration if they actually want to sell. It can possibly be a good niche, but you have to move quickly.

I’ve been able to get pretty good response to my expired listings mailings. I have access to the MLS and here is what I focus on. Listings that expired after 90 days or more, Vacant properties (sometimes it tells in the MLS), properties where the listing indicates motivated seller, and properties where you see large price drops. I think it’s a great strategy because they have been trying to sell, and many are quite motivated when their listings expire.

Many are fast to sign new listing agreements so you do need to move fast. I send out my mailing the day they expire.

Thanks for the responses so far. I have no personal access to MLS (My realtor does this for me) so I am not always getting them on time. I like the idea of “filtering out” the most motivated sellers. by looking at price drops and days on market. Right now I have asked my Realtor to send me (on a weekly basis) listings based on the following criterias:

  1. Expired and/or listed for over 120 days
  2. Zipcodes x,y,z etc (My farm areas where I know the comps fairly well).
  3. Any listing with the words, Fixer upper, handyman special etc.

So far I have noticed that I am getting outbid quite a bit by other investors, maybe I am bidding with too much of a cushion for my "
rookie mistakes" but sometimes it seems like people pay almost FMV for really poor houses.


Stick to your price. You should remember that the vast majority of new investors fail. They fail because they pay too much and therefore don’t have enough cash flow to stay in business. Finding great deals is not easy when you are first starting, but is absolutely necessary if you want to be part of the small minortiy that succeeds.

Good Luck,


Thanks Mike,

I will, I try to follow the formula most of you experienced people seem to follow (70% of ARV minus repairs)… I am in no rush to buy a property just because I have too.

I have to admit that it is frustrating sometimes to watch properties being taken away from you for a price that you know they can not make a profit on, I know some of the people are probably going to live in the house but the majority of the houses I have looked at require too much work for a “regular” homeowner to buy.

I guess I can always comfort myself with the fact that I know my deals will always be profitable even if I don’t make that many a year.

I guess I can always comfort myself with the fact that I know my deals will always be profitable even if I don't make that many a year.

That is exactly right.

I would MUCH rather not do a deal than do a bad deal!

I would MUCH rather have a vacant rental unit than one filled with a bad tenant!

The newbies who you are watching pay retail for these properties will FAIL and then be out of the business! If sanity hasn’t returned to your area yet, it will. Hang in there!

Good Luck,


Rehabber, you are on the right path, don’t lament. Just like stocks, you have to keep emotion out of the equation… When others are buying, it’s probably time to sell and vice versa.

Run the herd, Don’t let the herd run you.

Thanks for all the responses, feels good to know that I am not completely nuts :slight_smile: You all provide a lot of inspiration and great information…

I just gotta say that it might be a good idea to see how long the house was listed in the first place. I had my house listed for 1 day in June of this year but we decided not to sell (before the sign even went up). 6 mos later I got 2 letters from investors wanting to buy. With only 1 DOM, why would someone think I was a motivated seller? I have to think they didn’t look at the DOM numbers, but just blindly mailed out to all expired listings. What a waste of a .39 stamp IMHO

And by the way, both letters were ok, but neither was very powerful or persuasive. Now, I don’t know WHAT they should say but I can tell you it sure is important to nail down a kick ass jump off that couch and call that investor NOW, right NOW letter.

my .02