Welcome to my site! My name is Sean Ronkoske.
I got into Real Estate because I have a passion for business and investing.
Since I opened First Class Realty in 2012, we have closed on over 1,000 deals.
I have learned some intel that I would like to share with you, whether you are
going to sell on your own, with me, or even if you choose another broker.
The info that I am going to share with you on this page is little known. Others
know about this, but they don’t know “how to” do this.
First, you need to understand the 3 fundamentals of a successful deal…
The very most important thing that you MUST do in order to sell your property
in a timely fashion is to price it RIGHT.
Most sellers overestimate what their property is worth… and if you do that, you
are setting yourself up for failure.
Here is why…
Say your property is worth 200k in great condition. But it needs a little TLC so
the market thinks it is worth 170k. But you know how much blood, sweat, and tears
has gone into that property.
You are emotionally attached.
The problem is… your buyer is not.
They are comparing your property to another hundred properties that are on the market.
All they care about is getting the most bang for their buck… and when they see that
you are asking 200k, yet your neighbor is asking 180k for roughly the same thing, they
gloss over your marketing material… because they will feel bad about making a “low-ball”
So you end up getting a fifth as much interest as your neighbor.
Contrast that with a price of 160k…
If you put it on the market below it’s real value, you will get five times MORE interest
than your neighbor.
Now the problem you have is TOO many offers and not knowing which one to pick. This is
also known as “a bidding war”.
Now, because so many buyers are interested and because you can honestly tell them that
you have multiple offers, they perceive your property as a hot commodity.
“If everyone likes this property, it must really be the best one… and i don’t want to have
to ever to go through this process again, so let’s pay a premium if we have to, but we gotta
get this one honey”.
It’s the herd mentality.
The unfortunate part for most sellers is that they over-price the property… and the herd
mentality works against them.
Check this out…
So you decide to sell it on your own and list it at 200k because “that is what it is worth”.
The 1 or 2 buyers that express interest come and see the house and do not make an offer.
Then someone sees your property online a month later…
She says to her husband… “Oh, this one has been on for a month, it must be over-priced honey”.
And then that month, you get 1 more person to come through… but still no offers.
So day 60 days roll around and the next person sees your property online….
“There must be something wrong with this house”, says one couple.
“This must be over-priced”, says another person.
“I don’t like the idea of offending the seller”, thinks another.
Then day 90 days on the market…
“Wow! This one has been on the market a real long time, let’s make them a low-ball, say 120k”,
says one investor to his partner.
“Yikes, this property has been on the market forever. I bet the seller is tough to work with”,
exclaims the rent to own buyer.
“No way! Not even going to waste my time looking at this one! Everyone else in the market has
said no. I want to find something that is priced reasonably”, says the work from home entrepreneur.
Herd mentality can hurt you or help you!
And this is exponentially true if you go with a Realtor…
There are about 20,000 Real Estate agents in a typical MLS system.
MLS stands for “Multiple Listing Service”, which means all the agents put their seller’s
properties into a database that other brokers get priority access to… which means that if you
list your property in the MLS you get exposure to 20k agents…. and if each one represented just
1 buyer, that’s 20k buyers your property get exposed to.
When your property goes on the market and all of the brokers see it, here are the most likely
Have you ever watched those house flipping TV shows?…
The agent takes their buyer out to see 3 houses…
You are #3 on the wise agent’s list.
They will use your property as a pawn.
And they will come traipsing through, making you change your work schedule, dinner schedule, etc
only to “use” you.
It gets worse!
Since you have 100x as much exposure as you can get on your own, the herd mentality is compounded
many times over.
Either you price it low and you get dozens of showings and many offers, or you price it high and
the market “really” believes that this house is over-priced because “it can’t even sell on the
How do you know what the RIGHT price is?
You can go to Zillow and get a Zestimate… but that really only is a clue.
You also want to go down to the court house and look for recent sales. If you call the tax assessor,
ask them how you can get a report on recent sales in your neighborhood.
Then drive around and look at those properties…. with a very open mind & heart.
Just because you think your property is worth x amount because you know what you “have into it”…
does not mean that your prospective buyers will think that way.
Put yourself in their shoes, and then ask how much it’s worth.
Another source of info for you will be Craigslist… look objectively at what all the houses in the
area are being listed at. This should help you confirm your evaluation.
And if you still don’t feel confident, give us a call at 847.833.5566 and we will give you our
Once you get your price dialed in, you need exposure.
Probably four-fifths of property sells on the MLS… so to say that the MLS is important to you is
BUT… what about the other fifth?
Is it worth spending good money on advertising and all the time & energy required to properly
market a property?
Yes! It is worth it… if you know what you are doing.
Most “For Sale By Owner” sellers rely on fsbo.com, as if it was as powerful as the MLS… BIG MISTAKE!!!
Before I just said that, have you ever heard of fsbo.com?
I mean, i know you know what a FSBO is, but have you ever been to that website, or at least heard
someone talk about it?
Therein lies the problem!
The MLS has thousands of brokers and their buyers looking for opportunities every day… not so much
But one thing you could do is list on fsbo.com, list on craigslist, even list on eBay… and any other
marketing method you know of.
But think long & hard about that…
Stop & think about this.
What will your days, weeks, and months ahead look like if you are managing this process?
Do you have the time & patience to…
See with “FSBO” style listings the owner sells the property themselves.
Are you really qualified to do that?
Do you have sales skills?
Do you have marketing skills?
What if the property doesn’t sell, can you stomach the marketing costs?
Do you know how to follow up with potential buyers?
How often should you follow up? What should you say? What if they ask you questions that you don’t know
the answers to?
Can you look your spouse in the eye and be OK with failure?
There is a reason that brokers exist!
And I REALLY, REALLY, REALLY believe that I am the best broker for you.
Here is why…
After closing on over 1,000 deals in 5 years, i have created a system.
I have a process that will take your property from no exposure to “SOLD!” with VERY little hassle on
Because I am willing to allocate $1,000 of my own cash, on YOUR property… which means lots of buyer
I will not only expose your property thru the MLS, and hire my copywriter to write compelling content so
that any prospective buyer who sees your property will be “persuaded” to see your property, but I will also
expose your property to little known crevices of society.
Just because someone is not in the market to buy right now AND is not working with a broker, does not mean
that your property is not a great fit for them.
We (meaning my team & I) will dive deep in market research to find the most likely buyer for your
Then, we will place ads, send mailers, and promote your property all around the web.
Let me give you an example…
Say you own a property zoned for horses…
Who would you suspect is most interested?
Horse people, right?
So how do you get in front of horse people?
#1 – I would check out the zoning at the courthouse and find out where all the horse properties exist in
#2 – I would send the owners of that property a mailer.
#3 – I would find out when their next trade show, horse race, or any other event is.
#4 – I would advertise the property in that bulletin.
#5 – I would look in Google Keyword Planner to see what types of searches are being used on Google and
place ads around them.
#6 – I would cold call horse businesses in the area and ask if they know anyone.
#7 – I would keep track of every lead and followup with every solid prospect, once a week until it
And if you have a commercial property, same idea.
If you have a waterfront property, same idea.
If you have a luxury property, same idea.
The problem is, you likely don’t have the time, money, or energy to do all of this.
So let ME!!!
AND my team!
This is Nick Graff…
He is my advertising wizard. He has forgotten stuff about marketing that most agents will never learn.
He specializes in lead generation and he will be the one responsible for finding the RIGHT buyer for
YOUR property. You will have his contact info and you can pick his brain during the process.
Not only will we do all of this fancy marketing stuff for you…
I will also bring my dealmaking skills to the table to negotiate the best price & terms on your behalf…
and I will put my money where my mouth is.
I am running a special program right now where I will spend $1,000 of my own cash on your property, even
if it doesn’t sell… and never ask you for a dime unless it does.
And this does not mean that I over-charge for my service.
This is why I REALLY believe that I am the best option for you.
You get the MLS, you get off-market exposure, and a finely-tuned process to help you with dealmaking, due
diligence, qualifying buyers, and the whole enchilada.
Without paying extra.
In fact, because everything is dialed in, you will net more money at closing.
More exposure = higher price
Dealmaking skills = higher price
Higher probability of getting to closing = less bills to pay
And don’t forget… if you do it on your own and the deal falls apart, all of your other plans will get
affected and you will have egg on your face.
Let’s say you are selling by owner…
You have had some showings and an offer.
It’s lower than you hoped but worth making a counter offer.
So you go back & forth with this buyer for 2 weeks and you end up settling on price & terms.
You are not excited, but it’s the best you can do.
The buyer asks for 5 business days to perform due diligence on your property before the earnest money
deposit “goes live”.
The home inspector finds $5,000 worth of problems and the buyer asks you to split it.
Now you are AT break even.
You are going to sell the property and walk away with virtually no cash at closing.
But it is not worth going through all of the hassle you have gone through to get to this point all over
again so you begrudgingly accept.
Now the appraiser comes out and says the property is worth less than agreed to.
So the buyer asks you to lower the price by $5,000.
Do you walk or do you accept?
Now you have to dip into savings and bring $5,000 to closing… and that is crossing the line so you give
the buyers their earnest money back and start over.
How could this have been avoided?
Process AKA transaction coordination…
The process of taking a contract to closing.
This means that when a buyer and seller agree to price & terms, each task gets handled so both buyer &
seller show up on closing day?
The vast majority of sellers do not handle this well.
First of all, they are emotionally attached to the property. So they get offended when home inspection
issues come up… which turns off the buyer.
(and they always do… even at brand new houses)
Second, they are emotionally attached to the price. The seller knows how much time, energy, and money has
gone into the property and they feel they need to get that back out. When a buyer asks the seller to
accommodate them on price or terms during the due diligence process, the seller feels like they are being
taken advantage of… when in reality the buyer is trying to see the deal through… they just don’t want to
feel cheated either… which is why they tend to ask to split the difference.
Put yourself in their shoes…
If you found out that there was $5,000 in problems with a house that you were seeing through rosy glasses,
would you be surprised? Most buyers are. Yet they really want the house and they know that no house is
perfect so they hope that the seller will work with them and split the difference.
If you found out that you over-paid for the house (probably because you bought on emotion), would you
ask for a credit so that you can just pay fair market value? Of course!
So the buyer is not unreasonable to ask for these things, but the seller almost always feels like the
buyer is reneging.
So what is the solution?
Transaction coordination or in my words “Process”.
You need a process to think pro-actively about these problems.
You are an emotional seller.
The buyer is an emotional buyer.
But deals get done on logic, not emotion.
So let’s think this out logically…
Buyer needs/wants to buy a property.
Seller needs/wants to sell a property.
Both parties are aligned in their interest, assuming they are both reasonable & fair.
So then what reason could there be for a deal to fall apart?
Money could be 1 reason… but if you find the RIGHT buyer, it rarely IS the problem.
Timing could be another reason… maybe the market rates have changed and the buyer can no longer afford
the mortgage payment.
Maybe the appraiser says the property is worth less then the parties agreed to.
How about circumstance… maybe a deadline needs to change because of a circumstance that happened to
And there are other possibilities, but what it REALLY boils down to is emotion.
Either the buyer gets emotional, the seller gets emotional, or both.
So…. just like in real life outside of Real Estate, a counselor is needed.
You could hire a therapist to help you process your FSBO and make sure you are making good choices…
or you could hire me… and therapy is free.
Really! I am trained in negotiations… and one of the biggest factors in the success of transactions is
This does not include manipulation.
It means reminding you of the logical decision you made in the beginning, and how the current plan
matches that goal.
But further than that…
The buyer has to be coached as well.
And what happens if one of the 20k agents is the one who brings the right buyer?
You can’t control the agent…
Or can you?
What if i told you that I can?
What if you hired me to handle this for you?
This is an included part of my service.
If the agent has no experience, I train them on what to say to their buyers.
If the agent has experience, I ask them questions to find out how they are handling that… and if i
don’t like the answers… i coach the agent… or i coach to not take the deal in the first place before
the property goes off the market and makes the next round of buyers wonder what’s wrong with your property.
Most sellers don’t think this through.
But when you hire me, I do.. on your behalf. That is what we are known as “representatives”. I do this
full time, I have closed over 1,000 deals, and when you list with me, I represent you… not the buyer…
i work on your behalf to help you get the best price, the best terms, and the increase the probability
that we actually get to a closing.
I manage the whole process from beginning to end, with each stage being taken care of be an expert on
Meet Alissa Francke:
She is my expert transaction coordinator. She has been with me at First Class Realty since day 1. She
has worked with countless buyers and understands their perspective well. And she has coordinated several
hundred transactions. When you get me, you get her… she is on the Sean Ronkoske Team.
But we are really just getting started…
Yes, price, promotion, and process are the 3 keys… but there is a whole lot more that goes into it.
We have a whole team to support you.
Meet my Office Administrator, Monica Niskala:
Monica is the heart of the Sean Ronkoske Team. She is the glue that holds us together… the bridge that
helps us get to the other side. She is a master at relationships. She is innocent like a dove, but shrewd
like a snake. Mess with her and you mess with me. The good news for you is, if a buyer messes with you,
they mess with her. She is 100% on your team, on your side, and will do everything in her power to make
sure the deal is handled well and your needs & expectations are met.
What happens when you spend $1,000 on targeted ads?
You get alot of interest. So we make the most of it and we have dedicated sales reps just to work with buyers.
This means that if we get a call and they want to see your property, my sales reps coach their emotional
buyer, following my principles.
Meet our buyer specialist, Susan Cesek:
We can’t forget about the marketplace…
We keep an eye on market cycles, price fluctuation, and marketing trends to ensure that we are staying on
top of the market.
Meet our research analyst: Rebekah Espino
Rebekah is our full time research geek. She loves diving deep, solving problems, and coming up with creative solutions.
And how about Advertising…
I can’t share any details about this person.
This is our secret sauce… our vaulted algorithm… our key to the castle.
If our competitors knew who this person was, we could quickly lose our ability to move markets and provide you with mass exposure.
I think this is a no brainer. Is there any other Realtor who could do all of this for you?
What do you think?
If you agree, call us up at 847.833.5566 and we will hold your hand thru the difficult process of finding a buyer,
negotiating the best deal, coordinating the deal to closing, and the myriad of storms and fires that have to be put out in between.