Real estate agents have a very real need to work on the fly, in the field and at a moment’s notice.
Over the years, I have discovered something. Keeping a library of canned responses ready to go in my email makes it so much easier to respond and provide information to prospects and clients — even when I am out showing property or on appointments.
Of course, your process might look a bit different than mine. But if you find yourself copying and pasting emails fairly regularly — or, even worse, creating the same content over and over again — then you should think about creating a canned response.
If you use Gmail, these are easy to set up. Go to “more options,” then “canned responses,” then “new canned response.” I am sure other email platforms have some version of this tool as well.
Here are the 11 canned email responses that I use most frequently:
1. Thanks for reaching out!
Whether someone registered on your website, filled out a home valuation form, called you about a property or reached out to you for some other reason, this email should be at the ready. Simply thank recipients for their interest and offer to help with whatever they might need. Make sure to provide all of your contact information and link to your website.
2. Lender referrals
My brokerage’s policy is to send three recommendations when someone needs a lender referral. This email is ready to go when I first start working with a new buyer or when someone I know contacts me looking for information about available refinancing or lending options.
3. Ready to start your home search?
This email launches my buyer intake process. It asks several questions about what the client is looking for in their next home and also explains how our automated home search emails work. I can then use their reply to set up their home search and pull their first home tour.
4. Ready to sell your home?
This email is the first step in my seller intake process. It is a series of questions that helps me prepare for a listing appointment, and I use the reply to customize my listing presentation and collateral before meeting the seller.
5. Congratulations! We are under contract!
As soon as I have a fully executed agreement in place for a buyer, I send this email, which outlines the next steps in the homebuying journey — and also congratulates the client on having made it to this point in the process. It also includes three inspector recommendations and contains the questions that they should ask when deciding which inspector to hire. (I also have a version of this email for sellers.)
6. What to expect during an inspection
Once an inspection has been scheduled for my buyer, I send this email to let the client know what to expect on inspection day, how to prepare, what to bring with them to inspection, and so on. (I also have a version of this email for sellers.)
7. Time to order an appraisal — what’s next?!
As soon as we are through a buyer inspection, I send this email and copy the lender. It explains how the appraisal process works, outlines the possible outcomes and solutions, and acts as a trigger for the lender to order the appraisal. (I also have a version of this email for sellers.)
8. Loan conditions — stay on track to close on time
When we are through appraisal and headed toward the closing table, I send this email, which reminds the client and lender of the loan approval and closing deadlines. It also encourages the client to be diligent about lender requests and requirements so that we stay on track for an on-schedule closing.
9. Closing time
I send this to both buyers and sellers. I let them know what to expect at the closing table, remind them of the final walk-through, and also set the celebratory tone that I like to have at my closings!
10. Handymen I know and love
I’m constantly being asked for referrals for handymen and contractors, so I have this email ready to go with a list that I can send people immediately when they ask. It saves me from having to search for names and phone numbers. (I also have plumber and electrician versions of this email.)
11. If you love me … please show me a little online love
We all know how important online testimonials and reviews are to our future business. I like to have this one ready to go when someone asks me how they can thank me for a job well-done, for good advice or when I have helped someone out with whatever they needed. I like to say that the perfect way to thank me is to show me a little online love!
You probably already have many of these emails, or other emails that you frequently send, in your “sent” folders. Taking a few minutes to create some canned responses with them will save you priceless time when you need them on the fly!
Do you have other emails that you have created and sent again and again? I would love to learn about them and add them to my arsenal!
Stacie Staub is a broker associate and the director of marketing for Live Urban Real Estate in Denver.