8 Different Ways To Locate Motivated Sellers

There are several things you can do to locate motivated sellers.  We’ll touch on a few right now. Depending on your personality and time commitment, you’ll gravitate towards some more than others. That’s totally fine! There’s no one way to do this.

Here are 8 Ways To Locate Motivated Sellers

Direct Mail

Direct mail is the tried and true method when it comes to generating real estate leads and motivated sellers.   Great direct mail campaigns have the ability to capture a recipient’s attention, get them to read and process content, commit to the message, then execute a specific call to action. Here are some tips to help make your real estate marketing campaign a success.

  • Have a goal and target audience in mind for each campaign (right audience + right message = success)
  • Make an impact with a strong headline and bold imagery (get to the point, keep content and design simple)
  • Be simple, clear and concise with direct mail messages (use only one idea per piece)
  • Include a compelling promotional offer to promote responses such as a free property value assessment  (time-sensitive offers work to elicit immediate response)
  • Include relevant contact information such as company logo, name, phone number, web address and links to social profiles


Flyers are a fantastic (and inexpensive) way to spread the word.

Use neon paper (orange, yellow, or green) that draws attention from a distance. Hand it out to neighbors, post it at public bulletin boards, drop it off at laundromats, bus stops, coffee shops, etc.

Business Cards

You should pass out business cards to everyone you meet, leave them at restaurants, put them in your bills that you send off when you pay them, etc. Try setting a goal of handing out 5 business cards per day.

Feel free to design and print your own business cards or use a service like www.vistaprint.com. The message on the card should be similar to the message on the flyer. It’s basically your flyer in pocket form. Remember that all it takes is one card to put cash in your pocket.

Internet Scanning

Websites such as www.craigslist.org, www.forsalebyowner.com, and www.backpage.com have motivated sellers posting their houses all the time! Look for key words such as motivated, must sell, and FSBO.  How about setting up your very own real estate investor website system and generate leads with inbound marketing.

*NOTE: Agents sometimes post on these sites, look for a watermark on the photo that says MLS – that’s most likely a listed property. A good way to save time is to make a quick call and inquire if they’re an agent or the owner.

Social Media

You can run targeted ads on Facebook, or just consistently post (videos do great) about what you’re looking for. Someone might know someone who knows someone who needs your help. Don’t underestimate the power of social media.

Newspaper Scanning

You already read the Sunday paper (or maybe your parents do), so just take a few more minutes to scan the houses for sale. Again, look for key words like motivated, must sell, and FSBO.

Driving for Dollars

Do you know of any vacant* or “distressed” homes on in the area? They are often owned by people who would rather sell than shoulder the burden.

*NOTE: Some vacant homes are bank owned. There is no way to know for sure, but if there are papers taped to the windows, that property is bank owned. Do not submit bank owned properties. They will either be on the MLS or not listed at all.

Do you drive the same route to work every day? Try alternative routes and stay on the lookout for houses that match our ideal property profile! Some common symptoms are overgrown yards, rusted cars in the yard, FSBO signs, broken windows, etc.

If ALL the properties in the area exhibit the above symptoms, it’s not a good sign. But if it’s a single house surrounded by several decent houses, you may be looking at a deal. The common rule in real estate is to find “the worst house in the best neighborhood.”

How about garage sales? These happen every weekend and often signify that the homeowner is moving. Simply stopping by and asking if they’ll be selling their house – or if they know of any neighbors who may be interested in doing so – can result in some solid leads.

AMP (Auto Message Pro) –

AMP is a service that allows you to generate leads via phone by advertising for motivated sellers. They call the number and enter your extension to listen to a pre-recorded message. Then they can leave a message, or choose to speak directly with us. Your extension is yours alone, meaning you get credit for every single lead that comes in as a result of your advertisement.

What’s better, you don’t have to talk to anyone!

As you can see there are a TON of things you can do to start locating motivated sellers. It’s a numbers game, so the more you’re out there, the more chance you’ll have of finding a great deal.

how to find motivated sellers