- About David [2:07]
- About David’s books [4:07]
- How writing a book can help your real estate career [9:00]
- Why so many real estate agents fail [14:24]
- Where agents drop the ball with client communication [16:04]
- David’s strategy for staying in touch with clients via Whatsapp [17:37]
- The importance of client education [24:43]
- How David generates real estate leads [26:55]
- David Kurz’ Real Talk Conference [28:59]
- David’s parting advice for agents [31:47]
- How to break through your goals.
- Plus so much more.
- Grow Your Real Estate Profits with Our Agent Success Toolbox
- Get 6 Steps to 7 Figures by Pat Hiban for FREE
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- David’s Facebook
- David’s LinkedIn
- David’s YouTube
- David’s Instagram
- The Blueprint by David Kurz
- Take Action by David Kurz
Matt: Good afternoon, Rockstar nation. This is Matt Templeton, your host of Real Estate Rockstars. Today, we have David Kurz on. I’m super excited to introduce you to David Kurz because he’s built some amazing businesses from small brokerage to big brokerage, from real estate conference, to writing books, to recruiting a number of agents. He’s got a huge amount of value to bring to you today around building real estate teams, real estate businesses, and servicing clients at a high level. I want to introduce you to David Kurz. David, fill in a few of the blanks on what I might have missed in that intro.
David: [laughs] Thanks, Matt. Thanks for having me. I really appreciated it. It’s a great– You were telling me earlier you’ve got over 800 episodes. It’s an honor to be on the show. I really appreciate it. Great invite and looking to bring a lot of value in. I’m a Bronx, New York kid. Spent a long time in the Bronx. Moved to Miami as a teenager. Absolutely hated Miami, so I did what any sane teenager would do if they hate where they live, I moved out. I went to the Marine Corps. I was in the Marine Corps for nine years.
After the Marine Corps– While I was in there, I earned a Bachelor’s degree. After I earned a Master’s Degree in International Business, I thought that that was the path to becoming a millionaire and having my corner office somewhere in Manhattan. It wasn’t. I got introduced to real estate by a cousin-in-law. Since then, I’ve been at four companies in my 15 years. It’s actually five but one of them I was there for 60 days and then I ran away as quickly as possible. [laughs] It just wasn’t me.
I built a conference, I built a coaching platform. I do coach a very selected group of agents and written a couple of books just because I wanted to. Somebody challenged me to it and said that it would change my career. It has. I love to speak on stages. That’s another great thing. I opened up a brokerage and we were one of South Florida’s fastest-growing brokerages. In three years, we had three offices and 200 agents. It’s just been an amazing ride, honestly. It’s been a great career, a great opportunity and so much more ahead of me.
Matt: Awesome. Tell us about your books. I know a lot of people talk about writing a book. A lot of agents have thought about it. Some agents have considered using it to either get clients or to network with other real estate agents. What were your books and how did those affect your business?
David: The first book that I did, we did Q&A style. What that means is that I brought on a friend, business partner, and buddy of mine, Rudy Hernandez. Rudy and I were interviewed by someone. We designed all the questions, obviously, to fall within certain standards that we wanted to talk about. The first book was called, The Blueprint: Strategies to Building a Real Estate Business. I came from the real estate side. Rudy, he owns a title company, one of the largest title companies in Florida.
We came together with ideas on how to build a business. Yes, it’s strategies to build a real estate business. Obviously, Rudy knows a lot of realtors and he sees the good and the ugly, and he sees these transactions. I think last year, there were 3,000 transactions in Florida. We got together and created this book to give agents strategies on how to stay afloat in this business. Then how to build foundation work and we talked about marketing. We talked about thinking outside the box, things that initially–
The purpose when I wrote this book, I want you to think about the timing, I just opened my brokerage. The purpose of this book was to educate realtors to become more productive. It became my new business card. When I was interviewing agents to come to my brokerage, I would hand them a free book and say, “Hey, man, here you go. Here’s a free book.” Whether they joined me or not, they walked away with a free book and, God-willing, I forever made an impact on that agent’s life. Over time, I started to realize that agents really liked the book but they weren’t implementing it, which I think is the biggest problem for a lot of real estate professionals.
A lot of real estate agents- and let’s take away the word “professional” for a minute, a lot of realtors, a lot of real estate folks, they just think that this business is easy. They think that they just get on social media and just say, “I’m a realtor,” a lot and accidentally, some buyers and sellers are going fall on them. Yes, that’s true to an extent, but you’ll never reach the level of success that you’re trying to reach or see other people reach if you don’t put in the work.
So, I wrote a second book. This one was very different. It wasn’t Q&A style. It was me pouring my heart out to agents and letting them know you have to take action in your life and business if you want to succeed at a higher level. The name of the book is Take Action. The purpose of that book was for me to let people know you could have all the foundation, all the plan, you can have it all figured out, but if you don’t put any of it to work, it’s not going to make a doggone difference.
For me, that was a way better business card by the way. I’m in love with that book. Now, I’m in the process of writing a third book. What these books had done for me, number one, it’s helped me tremendously with recruiting. Agents feel like I am the subject matter expert, the SME right, on real estate because I wrote a book about it. If I’m the subject matter expert, why wouldn’t they want to work for me or with me? If I’m charging $1,000 a month for coaching, why wouldn’t you come work with our brokerage and get it for free?
All of this started to work and really come together and Take Action got me on a lot of stages, which for me was phenomenal because a lot of agents are still living in this old world where people were still telling them that real estate is local. It’s not. Real estate is so far past local. As soon as the smartphone and the internet was created, real estate became international. What I found was that my business started to blow up at a whole ‘nother level as soon as I started hitting stages and meeting quality people in other states. That changed my entire life. This book helped me get there.
Matt: Let me–
David: You want to say something? Yes.
Matt: Yes. I want to unpack all that because you just gave a bunch of amazing points. You wrote a book that you use as a free book and you said it became your business card. I heard that before. I don’t know if our listeners have heard that before, that the first book that you write or a book that you write is actually most valuable as a really valid business card to prove to the person you want to be in business with or want to do business with that you are someone that is valid or credible. You’re the subject matter expert. Listeners, members of the Rockstar nation, I want you to think about who do I want to be valid with, who do I want to be the subject matter expert to, who do I want to be my clients.
Then I need to figure out how I go create content and maybe it’s even a book that then appeals to those people and proves to them that I am the person they should go work with. Now, that can even be if you’re a real estate agent. If you’re a real estate agent and you’re not looking to add team members like David used it as a way to attract talent in his organization, you can use it as a way to attract clients into your sphere, into your database, into the people that are going to work with you to buy and sell homes as well. The other thing–
David: Look. Listen, this is the thing. I’m going to chime in here because I preach this to real estate agents all day long, all day every day. “Write a book. Go write a book. Go write your book. Pay somebody to ghostwrite for you. There are companies out there that I’d be happy to share with your listeners that would write it for you just interviewing you for an hour. This is the most insane stuff. When you do this, if you’re a real estate agent and you’re trying to attract sellers, write a book that teaches sellers how to sell their own house. I know it sounds crazy, but write a book that teaches sellers how to sell their own house and take the 10 steps.
There’s a lot more than 10 steps to selling your own house, but come up with the 10 major steps to selling your house. Now, you’ve got 10 chapters. Now, you go in on each one of those. Make it a 90-minute read so people are not like– You don’t go to a potential seller and say, “Here’s this novel I want you to read about, selling your house.” A 90-minute read, 200 pages, 150 pages, 120 pages. Keep it short, keep it simple. Hand it to them and say, “It’s available on Amazon, but I’m giving this to you for free. I’m going to help you sell your house.”
If you do that and you were to stop at every for-sale lot owner, knock on their door and say, “Listen, I know it’s frustrating to sell your own house. I’m a real estate agent. Here’s a free book on how to sell your own house”, you know what’s going to happen half the time? By the way, the entire last chapter would be all about me. It really would be. I would call that chapter, Are You Frustrated Yet? I really would.
Every seller that’s frustrated out there, they’re going to read the chapter about you and what you’ve done and your resume, the company that you’re with, and et cetera. Now, you have potential people that are going to say, “This person knows what they’re talking about. They’re obviously the subject matter expert when it comes to selling houses. This is the person I want to hire to sell my house.” It’s so simple, so simple.
Matt: The other thing that you said that I really want them to hear is that you became and validated that you were the subject matter expert around what you wanted to speak on and be in front of people for. In order for us to do more business, we have to establish ourselves as subject matter experts. Many times, if you’re one of the newer agents listening to podcasts, and a number of you do listen, you might have to go build some knowledge so that you can be a subject matter expert.
Then there’s some of you that are out there and you’ve been doing this for 10, 20 years and now, it’s time to go and take that knowledge and package it in a way that you can then increase the influence you have over people that you’re wanting to influence. Subject matter expert, I really appreciate that. The other thing that was so good, and obviously, you named your book after it, is take action. So many times, the issue that we have is that we’re not able to implement because we choose to get caught up in the ideas, we choose to get caught up in the visions, we choose to get caught up in the distractions, and we don’t go implement.
If there’s anything that I want our listeners to take away from every episode we do, it’s, “What’s my one piece of implementation based on?” It’s not my 50 things of implementation. What’s my one thing that I’m going to go do so that I can go get that done and see the progress of building my business? I appreciate that. Thank you for that.
David: What’s that stupid quote? “How do you eat a whale?” or something like that, “One bite at a time,” or something like that. I really think that agents need to really get it through their heads. I host a business planning seminar every October. In that seminar, I usually get an attendance of about 100 to 150 agents in a room. I’m very honest with everybody in the room.
I go, “Half of you are not going to build your business plan. Just know that leaving the door. The other half of you that do actually build out the business plan, only 10% of you will implement what’s in that business plan. I do the math. There’s 100 people in this room, 5 of you will have a successful business plan with implementation. It’s sad, guys. This is your business. No one’s going to do it for you. No one’s going to do it for you.”
If you’re going to put the plan together, you’ve got the dream, you’ve built– “Oh, my God. This is what I want. This is what I want to build. I need a Ferrari 488 sitting in front of my 10-bedroom house.” Whatever the dream is, it’s very easy to come up with a plan to get there. Numbers don’t lie. I need this X amount of units at X amount of price with X amount of commission to make X amount of dollars. It’s so simple. Now, go do it. People accept mediocracy.
Matt: Totally. Now, I want to talk about the real estate transaction and I want to know about the real estate transaction. What are you seeing out there that real estate agents need to change or do differently in how they service real estate clients? What are you seeing out there?
David: Holy crap, dude. Pick up your phone. Let’s start with that. I used to think it was a Miami thing only. Then I started traveling the country and I found out that no one picks up their phone. It’s insane to me how you could be a real estate agent running real estate ads and paying for the leads and having signs in yards and getting listings and doing all this stuff, and then getting upset when your phone rings. Like, “Ugh, another phone call came in.” “For real? Is that what you’re mad at? Pass me your phone, I’ll take that phone call.”
Honestly, start with that. Just pick up the doggone phone. Service your client that way. Service your people better that way. The other part is, and I’m big on this, is communication. I think most agents don’t communicate well with their buyers or sellers. I think the number one thing that you hear when you go to an expired listing is what? “My agent sucked.” That’s the number one answer you get. “I’m here at this meeting with you. Matt, why didn’t it work out with your previous agent? I want to know so that way, I don’t make the same mistakes.” The number one answer is, “The agent sucked. They didn’t do anything.”
What’s sad about that is that it may not be true. It may be very true that that agent really did work hard to try and sell that house, but he never told the seller what he was doing. Massive communication for me is huge. I’ll give a tip. One of the things that we did is every time we have a client, we start a WhatsApp group with that client. If we’re not under contract yet, the name of the group is, let’s say, The Johnson Purchase. That’s the Johnson family. All the decision-makers are in there. I’m in there. The team manager’s in there and whatever team member of the deal that came out with the deal is in there. There’s five or six people in this WhatsApp group.
Guess what? Every single thing that happens during that portion or that sale goes through that WhatsApp group. If it’s a listing and I have a request to see the house, it goes in that WhatsApp group. I set the expectation in advance and I let them know, “Anything that you have that has to do with this, don’t text me directly. Put it in the WhatsApp group. Allow my whole team to be in the loop and we all know what’s going on at all times.”
“Hi. Matt, is it okay if I show your house today at 2:00 PM?” “Sure, Dave. No problem. You know where the key is.” “Great.” I go show the house. “Hey, Matt. I’m at the house. I’m getting ready to show.” “Hey, Matt. I just showed the house. Fantastic showing. I think they really liked it. I’ll follow up with them later.” Four hours later when you do your follow-up, which most agents don’t do as we’ll get to that, but when you do your follow-up with your other agent, give the feedback. “Hey, it turns out they really did like it, but they saw another house that had a pool, so they went with that house instead. Don’t worry, we’ll keep it on the market. We’ll keep pushing.”
“Hey, Matt, I ran an ad on your property today. Here’s a copy of the ad, here’s a screenshot of it.” “Hey, Matt, look, here’s the video.” “Hey, here’s a copy of the photos.” “Hey, here’s a link to the website. Can you share this on your social media?” “Hey, by the way, here’s a PDF of the flyer we created. Would you like me to drop off 100 to you? Should we take them by your office, kids’ school, and everything else?” Communication is key. If you don’t sell the property effectively in, let’s say, the six months you have the listing, chances are, you get an extension on that because you’ve been 100% pushing, and they know it because you won’t stop telling them what you’re doing. That communication will go a really long way.
Then, here’s a tip. Once you’re under contract on the house, like let’s say you’re going into a contract on 123 Main Street, right? Change the name of the group to 123 Main Street Johnson. Now they know that address. They see it all the time, they’re excited. The process has begun, oh, my God. Add the lender to the group. You know what I mean? Just go insane with it. Most of you have a preferred lender. Add your lender to the group once they’re under contract. That’s on the buyer side. Add your lender to the group so that they can chime in as well.
For me it’s, “Hey, Jennifer, have you heard anything on the appraisal?” Now that everybody’s in the loop, it’s not me sending a secret e-mail to Jen. “Hey, have you heard on the appraisal?” My client’s thinking I’m not even checking up on the appraisal. That generates back, “Hey, we did get it. About to send you an email. We’re at value. We’re good.” “Oh, great.” Clients chime in. “Oh, that’s fantastic news, guys. What’s next?” Creating that kind of communication is huge. Number one, start the communication by actually picking up your phone. Number two, stay in communication through the whole process.
Matt: I always ask what is the best piece of technology that an agent could add to their business and get better at?
David: For me, WhatsApp.
Matt: This WhatsApp idea is genius. I was taking notes furiously. We’re going to implement this right away in my team. Why haven’t we already done this? I absolutely love that. Here’s the crazy part. It’s the simple things, right? It’s just a texting platform. It’s just getting everybody on the same page. It’s just communicating. Good old-fashioned communication, right?
David: That’s it.
Matt: That changes the whole experience.
David: For me, the biggest reason we use WhatsApp is because you can create the group names, you can add people, you can remove people. Not everyone has an iPhone, so you can’t bank on the iMessage platform. Guess what? Your sellers are in India on vacation for a week. You still communicate with them. It’s huge.
Matt: That is so cool. I’m literally downloading WhatsApp right now. This is quick action, quick implementation.
David: That’s it.
Matt: Pause the podcast, download WhatsApp. Go add your right now. That’s how this works. I think the other thing that I love is that you can name the group, so you can go search for them again. In iMessage, always lose track of group messages.
Matt: It’s like, I can’t figure out what was that one that we were doing? Then you leave somebody out, and the lender got left out this time. In WhatsApp, it keeps track of that better. I’m so pumped to go implement that. I’m literally going to go teach team members right after this.
David: Since you’re a leader in the industry, we’ve got things like– I don’t know if you can see my screen, but we’ve got groups for real estate. I’ve got the Straley Purchase Group. That’s obviously a client of mine, Straley Family, who’s purchasing a property. We just changed the name to that because their appraisal didn’t come through, so we released and canceled, took away the address.
The next group is Let’s Talk Real Estate. That’s a group of 200 real estate agents in the area all sharing information and asking things all day long. Simple stuff. “I’m looking for a licensed commercial painter at the shopping center.” “I recommend this company.” “Hey guys, I have this tenant who has their privacy issues on blah, blah, blah.” Everybody chimes in. Not only are there real estate agents in here, but there are also vendors in here.
In this particular group, the vendors are not allowed to pitch themselves. They’re only there for informational purposes. If somebody has a question about an inspection, the inspector in the group could chime in on that information. If somebody has a legal question, there’s five attorneys in the group. They’ll chime in. Simple stuff. It’s such great stuff, like this 2085 se 17th Homestead. That’s another client. 7400 Northwest First Court, that’s another client. It’s such a great tool, such a great tool.
Matt: Now, one of the things that I love talking about is the customer experience. We’re moving into an experience economy. There’s this conversation around goods and services and how they’re becoming commodities. Everyone keeps talking about how real estate agents are all the same. That’s what the expired for sale by owner don’t want. They don’t want to overpay because they think that we’re a commodity, like oh, all you do is put a sign in the yard and put it in MLS, and you’re done, and you’re the exact same as everybody else.
What you just described for me is a completely different process than what the real estate agent, Joe Schmo does. Part of that’s differentiation, but it’s also about the experience that client receives. What experiences are you trying to create for clients? Communication is one piece. Are there any of those other things? I’m a student of real estate customer experience. What else are you seeing out there? What else are you doing for your clients?
David: I think the biggest thing is continuous education. I think that’s what really, really separates us from regular Joe Schmo, because regular Joe Schmo is trying to get the job done, which, there’s nothing wrong with that. I get that. That’s why you do this. You want to get the job done. You know what I’m saying? There’s something to be said about doing the job, and then explaining it to your client at a very high level. Explaining to them why you have an appraisal contingency or explaining to them what an appraisal is and how it’s done. Whatever it is, like the lien search, going through a lien search with them, spending time with your clients.
I think that a lot of agents are doing a good job. They call their clients and they say- the ones that are good with communication, they call them up and say, “Hey, John, Jane, appraisal’s back, looks good, everything’s wonderful or moving forward.” “Oh, great. David, what’s the next step?” “The next step is this.” How many of them are saying, “Hey, listen, we’re going to have the appraisal. This is how an appraisal works. This is a third-party company. They’re not really tied to the lender, that’s actually illegal”?
You know what I mean? Really digging and explaining to them the process. I’ll tell you if you can do that, that’s a little golden nugget. If you can do that throughout the entire process, I promise you, because you’re spending so much time with the client, the client is already referring you to other people, and they haven’t even closed yet. I’ve had clients that the deal has fallen apart, and they’ve become disenchanted with purchasing and they need like, “I need a break right now. I just re-signed my lease for another six months. I need a break.” In those six months, I’m getting 10 referrals from them.
David: They didn’t even buy.
Matt: It’s like servicing the client. That actually brings me to my next question which is, so you’re providing an amazing customer experience, you’re getting more referrals which are leads. Where else are you generating or what else are you saying to generate leads? Either a strategy for what you say or a place that you’re finding leads. Where can we go lead generate? Where can we find business?
David: Man, I use so many different avenues. First of all, we’re on BoomTown, Chime, Zillow, Realtor, Facebook, Instagram. We use all those platforms for lead-gen, to be very honest with you, and in different ways. We use our Zillow profile by posting it. We don’t have to consistently ask or pay Zillow for leads. We’ve got a great profile. The team’s got a profile. We’ve got a ton of reviews. We share that out with people and we post it on social media. We’re always posting on social media. I’m very heavy on social media. I’m posting easily six to eight times a day. I just did a story right now while we were doing this.
It’s constant communication. People want to know what you’re doing. People naturally are, by human nature, nosy. That’s why Facebook is such a fantastic and profitable program. You know what I’m saying? It’s such a great program because everybody knows you. They want to know what’s going on. You know what I’m saying? It’s so huge. Being able to do that at a high level, I think, is consistent branding for yourself.
If you can get on a stage– When I get on a stage, my last slide is “Follow me at David Adam Kurz.” I want you to go to my Instagram and follow me. I want you to see what I’m doing. I want you to see me when I go to the gym with my wife. I want you to see when we go to dinner. I want you to see when my kid has a recital. I want you to see if I sold a house, if I’ve got a new client, what’s coming soon, what I’m having for lunch, if the rest of my staff is sitting in the room right next to me laughing too loud while I’m doing the podcast. I want you to know all this stuff.
Matt: Totally. That’s awesome. We’ve dug into the lead generation. We’ve dug into the customer experience. We talked about your book building, but the other thing that you’re known for is your real estate conference. Tell us a little bit more about how that came to be and what the purpose around that was.
David: I think I got tired of going to the same old conferences all the time. I feel like year after year, you go to the conferences. It’s not that they are bad conferences, but they’re just so similar year after year. What we did was we did something a little bit different. We created the Real Talk Conference. The people that hit the stage at our conference have to come with real talk. What I mean by that is, you actually have to be in the business doing the business if you’re going to coach people on the business. That was big for me. We had a coach come on this last year, and the coach got on stage and talked about some strategies.
We also talked about if you’re an experienced agent, this is how you become a great coach. I think that was phenomenal, taking somebody who is running Facebook ads all day long and putting him on the stage to talk about how Facebook lead generation works. Taking somebody who runs a team that’s doing $150 million to $200 million a year and having them get on the stage and talk about appropriate team development, that’s what the conference was for me or is for me.
Now, we’re on our third year. We’re going to be in Denver in April, and then the main conference here in Miami in October. Now, the other part was Miami, that’s Asian area and we don’t have any big conferences like that. I found it great because we got a lot of people from around the country that want to come into the conference, and then they enjoy a weekend in Miami with their families. If they’re single, no better place to enjoy [crosstalk].
Matt: [laughs] Awesome. David, if our listeners have referrals to Miami for you guys, where can they reach out to you? How can they connect with you?
David: Two ways, you can go to my website davidadamkurz.com. David Adam Kurz, that’s K-U-R-Z. Or, you can go onto any of my social media platforms, David Adam Kurz. I’m on Instagram, I’m on Facebook, I’m on LinkedIn, I’m on YouTube. I’ve got 300 plus YouTube videos and 180 plus podcasts. There’s plenty of stuff to find, but if you go to davidadamkurz.com, you’ll have links to every single thing, the conference. We started a new show called The 10 Percent Miami Mansion Edition. There, each episode is about six to seven minutes, and we go walk around the great house there in Miami. We are hoping to extend that show.
Next season, the show is going to be out of Northern Virginia and the Metropolitan DC area. We are going to go through some mega mansions up there and have some fun with it. We’ve been doing the show. The show has been very attractive to a lot a lot of people. If we can leave one more tip for agents- I’m only supposed to be giving my out, but one more tip for agents, get in front of the camera.
Dude, just get in front of the camera even if that means that your arm is the tripod, carry on the unipod. Get in front of the camera and talk about something real estate-related, or talk about something you ate in your farm area, or a restaurant that you went to, or an event that’s happening, or a festival that’s coming up, or a house that’s selling. Just get in front of the camera as much as possible. People look at me and they go, “Dave, you’re good on camera. You’re a natural.” I tell everybody the same thing, “Go to my YouTube channel. There are 300 plus videos. I promise you, just scroll all the way down and see what I looked like when I first started. It is hilarious.”
Matt: [laughs]. You have got to start somewhere, right?
David: [laughs] It is hilarious. It took 300 plus videos to feel good in front of the camera.
Matt: That’s amazing. Well, guys, send David your referrals to Miami. Check him out online. I just followed him on Instagram. He’s got a bunch of followers on Instagram.
David: I will follow you back right now.
Matt: Sounds good. Yes, follow me. You can follow at templeton.m on Instagram or on Facebook as well. Guys, we really appreciate you. Thank you so much for listening today. I hope you got a ton of value. We’ll talk to you next time.