A Better Way To Sell A House (Don't Miss The End)
Lance and Debbie lived in a gorgeous 3BR, 2,100 square foot townhome less than one block to the beach. They enjoyed their private pool and excellent views for a few years but had decided to build their forever home right on the beach so wanted to sell the townhome.
When they called me, they had already listed the townhome for sale for over six months with another real estate company, and it had hardly been viewed much less sold. All of this was BEFORE they started building the gulf front house, but now it was just a couple of months away from completion.
Needless to say, it was crunch time. Lance and Debbie desperately wanted to sell before the new one was finished to make the transition easier.
Recognizing the importance of hiring a real professional, Lance and Debbie interviewed EIGHT agents for the job. They hired me.
Their story ends well. Here is what Lance and Debbie had to say:
"We interviewed eight agents to relist our property and chose Craig... We had four offers in the first month!"
Lance and Debbie certainly made my job easier, having already completed The BASICS almost to the letter. But now it was time for me to get it SOLD.
Your agent can't just send this to a handful of people for this to work. "Advertise" does NOT mean place a few phone calls or send an e-mail or two.
You can do everything else on this list and FAIL MISERABLY if you don't advertise the "coming soon" concept correctly.
First class email marketing to thousands of potential buyers and phenomenal internet/social media marketing to tens of thousands of targeted buyers is what makes or breaks this coming soon approach.
Make sure your agent can comfortably execute ALL of these advanced strategies to give you the best shot at selling quickly, for the highest price and with the least amount of hassle.
Maximum exposure leads to maximum interest, which leads to stronger, cleaner offers from serious buyers.
What I am going to outline for you here is rarely, fully implemented by a real estate agent. Marketing matters. Good marketing can help get real estate sold. Great marketing brings better offers that close faster, with less hassle and ultimately for a higher price.
Consider the following and make absolutely sure that your real estate professional not only understands these concepts but can execute them at a high level. It can make all the difference.
1. SHOOT YOUR 3D/VIRTUAL REALITY WALK-THRU
We live in an instant gratification society. Buyers want to see, and even walk through a house when they want to. They might want to look Monday at 10:00 a.m. or Friday at 1:00 in the morning.
Having a 3-dimensional and virtual reality walk-thru available will let serious buyers experience your property before they even have a chance to step foot inside.
IMPORTANT | The newest 3D/VR walkthrus are NOT traditional virtual tours. They are not a bunch of still photographs stitched together with some bad music.
They are a truly, cutting-edge, modern approach to selling real estate. Buyers can completely control what they see and look through a property at their own pace. They can walk around the inside and outside of a home on their phones, desktops or tablets if full 3D. If they have VR glasses, it is even more amazing.
Make sure your real estate professional knows what these are and has access to this technology. Not all agents can provide. It is expensive and difficult to shoot but worth it in the end. Demand this as part of your marketing package.
PRO-TIP: You still must have professional still imagery. For me, this is an absolute must and as basic as making sure your bathrooms are clean or landscaping looks good. Make sure your real estate advisor not only uses a professional but the RIGHT professional. Not all photographers specialize in shooting real estate.
2. ORDER TITLE WORK
You've prepared the property to sell and have documented this in beautiful images and even 3D/VR.
Now, be sure that you know the property is legally ready to sell.
Don't wait until you have a contract to search the title. You never know what problems/mistakes might be in the title work and you can't complete a sale without clear title. Even a simple mistake that shouldn't be there can take weeks to correct.
Search the title now. You will get ahead of any problems if there are any and have peace of mind if there are not.
PRO-TIP: It costs money to run a title search but an experienced real estate professional will have a relationship with a reputable title company and should be able to get this done for you at no charge.
3. GET A PROFESSIONAL PRE-INSPECTION
Almost every offer from a serious buyer will be contingent on receiving a home inspection. The home inspection usually comes after the buyer and seller have agreed to a contract and often can cause problems.
Inspectors are paid to find issues, so almost every report will have a list of required repairs...even properties that are in excellent condition. A buyer that was excited about buying just a few days earlier now has a list of potential problems...from someone with an official license.
The home inspection report can lead to doubt in a buyer's mind:
"Can I ask the seller for a discount?"
"Can I ask the seller to fix all of this?"
"Is this all? Did the inspector miss anything?"
"Should I REALLY be buying this house?"
None of these thoughts are going to help the closing process. The buyer should be excited about buying so they are working hard on closing instead of questioning the condition, trying to renegotiate or even worse, walking away.
PRO-TIP: By having a professional inspection done in advance, a buyer will have the report when making an offer. Once the buyer and seller agree on a price and all other terms, there is no opportunity for the buyer to ask for a discount or start thinking about looking at other houses.
This strategy is rarely used in our area so works even better than in other markets where it is more common.
4. GET A SIGN UP EARLY
This might sound pretty basic, but if your sign is up days or weeks before the house shows up online, you can create demand. We are all also used to finding out almost anything we want just by pulling out our phones. When a buyer or agent sees a sign and can't find it online, it can cause a stir.
PRO-TIP: Great marketing is all about creating awareness, but it is also about creating demand. All of us love having a "hot tip" or some inside information...it's fun to be the first one in the know!
5. PRICE PROPERLY/ORDER AN APPRAISAL IF NEEDED
An appraisal may or may not be necessary depending on the availability of comparable sales. Your real estate professional should be able to comfortably dig into the details to help you understand the market and be able to defend your asking price.
If comparable sales are few or non-existent, a professional appraisal might be worth the investment. It is necessary to have some sense of market value to set the right price.
PRO-TIP: Your asking price must be defendable. If it isn't, you are unlikely to get any real interest from a bonafide buyer. Don't be afraid to order an appraisal if your agent can't provide you with a sound range of price.
You've prepped the property for sale and gone above and beyond with these five tips. Now, you are ready to take it to another level and experience the difference between good marketing and great marketing!
Set a date anywhere from 5 days to 2 weeks out when your property will be available to view. It is not, under any circumstance to be seen by a buyer or broker until this date.
Now, advertise that this property is "COMING SOON."
It isn't yet available...yet.
You can't see it...yet.
When done right, serious buyers will be scrambling to do whatever they can to find out more information.