Archive for the 'Selling Tips' Category
With the internet (and in particular the www.realestate.co.nz website) becoming such a powerful tool for buyers to find a house, is it still necessary to advertise in print media?
I think when it comes to marketing your home, it is important not to miss any buyers and especially the one who is going to pay the most for your house! I often ask buyers how they found the house they have enquired about and I haven’t been able to get a consistent answer. For some, (and probably more and more so) it is the internet as it has the most up to date information, but for others they still race down to the dairy first thing Saturday morning to look through the property section with a highlighter and make a list of houses that appeal, while others drive around the area they like and phone of the For Sale sign. So, my advice is that in order to be confident that you have told all the buyers in the market about your house, you need to cover all the bases!
December 12 2008 | Selling Tips | No Comments »
Anyone with their house on the market at the moment knows how quiet open homes have been of late. It is easy to get discouraged when you have spent half your weekend preparing the house for that important 30 minutes, only to come home and find that the agent was the only one to appreciate your hard work. However, it is true that it only takes one buyer to walk through the door and love your home to make it all worthwhile!
So, what can you do to maximize the opportunity an open home offers? Here are my top 5 tips:
1. Ensure the lawns are freshly mown and the garden at the front of the house is tidy. Quiet often I see a car slow down outside an open home and then drive away – make sure you give your home every chance to encourage buyers to park the car and come in!
2. First impressions count. I have had buyers tell me “this is the one” just from the entranceway of a house before they have even seen the rest. Open your front door and pretend you are entering the house for the first time – what do you see? How does it feel? Does it smell nice? Get a friend to do this exercise as well and get their honest feedback.
3. Show your Agent how to work your stereo and have an easy listening CD handy or download some suitable songs to your IPod. Silence is golden but for buyers walking through a house it can feel a bit uncomfortable.
4. If you have a dog, take it with you when you go out for the open home. Even if a dog is tied up, buyers can be put off exploring the back yard and a barking dog doesn’t make people feel at home!
5. If you have any valuable artwork, jewelry or cash in the house – take them with you! While it is extremely rare to hear of a theft at an open home, don’t give thieves an easy opportunity.
November 10 2008 | Selling Tips | 3 Comments »
There is a saying in real estate that “price overcomes everything”. In other words, if you house is on a busy road, has a steep driveway and gets absolutely no sun, if the price is right then it should still sell!
However, I also believe that reducing the price isn’t always the best approach. I am marketing a house at the moment that looked great when the owners will still living there, it really felt like a home and buyers felt emotional attraction to it. However, after the first 2 weeks on the market the vendors moved out of town, taking their lovely furniture with them. It is one of those houses that really lacks appeal when it is vacant. After reviewing the marketing campaign with the vendor and looking at what else is available in their price range and what has recently sold in the area, we decided that rather than reducing the price by $10,000, we would do the following:
- Get the house staged. It is a neat first home for a family so dressing two of the bedrooms as children’s rooms will really set the scene for buyers, and the living area looked much bigger when furnished.
- Invest in professional photography. This will give us a great selection to post on www.realestate.co.nz , www.lodgereal.co.nz and www.trademe.co.nz and use on the open home flyers/signboard/window card
- Order a photo sign – the house doesn’t have great road appeal but is a lovely home inside with a fantastic deck and section at the rear which we need to show off to those buyers doing a drive by.
These marketing suggestions will cost the vendor less than $3,000 and I believe they will give the house the best chance of selling close to the asking price. I’ll keep you posted…..!
July 31 2008 | Selling Tips | 2 Comments »
I am often searching property websites to find houses to show buyers and I have to say I am often disappointed with the photos used on these sites. For many buyers, their first introduction to your home is the photos on a property website or trademe. The desired outcome from this introduction is to convince the buyer to take the next step and arrange to physically view your house. The feeling you want to evoke in the buyer is “wow, this one is worth looking at, I can see myself enjoying coming home to this house” rather than “oh, the dishes need doing…the living area must be too small for all that furniture…I wonder why they don’t open the curtains….” – you get my point!
I suggest that if your house is currently on the market, take a good look at the photos the agent is using to promote your house and if you aren’t happy with them, ask for new ones to be taken. Also, if you feel that a key feature of your house has not been highlighted (eg the sunny deck, modern kitchen, large section, views etc.) then request photos of these features be included in the marketing.
I encourage my clients to use the services of a professional photographer. This costs $90 incl GST and you receive a CD of all the photos taken which I think is a great momento of your home to keep – particularly as your house generally looks its best when you are selling it! The photographer can also “airbrush” the photos if required (insert a blue sky in the background if it is a dull day, remove rubbish bins etc from view).
And if you are looking for a laugh, I suggest you view some photos of houses for sale as some are quite entertaining – I particularly like the bathroom shots where the agent is reflected in the mirror, or where a photo of the house has been taken from the agent’s car and you can see the rain on the dashboard…classic!
July 14 2008 | Selling Tips | 3 Comments »
I am still searching for an answer to why when agents head out to view new listings in the morning it is called “caravanning” – I don’t know of any agents who work from a caravan and with current petrol prices I am sure no one would want to be towing anything extra behind the car!
However, once you have listed your house for sale with an agent, one of the first things that happen is they arrange for the rest of their team will view your house. The purpose of this is for the agents to get a feel for the content your home offers (size, number of bedrooms, outdoor living etc.) and see if it would suit any of the buyers they are currently working with. To make the most of this opportunity and “sell” your house to the agents, here are a few suggestions that come from my own experience:
Make your house inviting – if it is cold, have some heating on. If it is a dull day, leave a few lights on
If you have flatmates, ensure they know we are coming and encourage them to get out of bed before we arrive!
Agents are a bit like pets, we love treats! So a bowl of sweets or even a batch of muffins will ensure we spend more time in your home thus it sticks in our minds
If it is convenient, it pays to go out for a couple of hours while the agents view the house. Sometimes quite a few of us arrive at the same time and it can be overwhelming to have so many people walking through your house at once. If you are home, bear in mind we are there for just a quick walk through the house and won’t stay long (unless there are muffins to eat!).
Ensure your agent has details of your security alarm if it will be on so that we don’t have to run through the house with our fingers in our ears trying to find the keypad!
People often say how lucky I am that I get to look at so many houses every day and certainly I have seen some beautiful homes, however I’ve also seen some really badly presented ones. If I love the house, I am more likely to want to show buyers through it, which increases your chance of a sale!
June 19 2008 | Selling Tips and Uncategorized | 3 Comments »
As a real estate agent, I am looking at houses on a daily basis and the ones that stick in my mind are the ones that have that homely “feel” to them. At least once a week I go home to report to my husband about this “gorgeous house I saw today, I should take you to have a look” – if he wasn’t so sensible we’d be moving A LOT!
So if you are selling your home, how do you create that “feel” that will make your house stand out from the competition, ensuring buyers fall in love with your house and visualise themselves as the proud new owners of it? Home Staging has become extremely popular over the last year with businesses dedicated to presenting your house for sale sprouting up all over the country. I refer a lot of my clients to Impress2Sell where Nikki and John offer services ranging from a full home stage using their furniture to styling of your home using your existing furniture (often this can mean de-cluttering, moving furniture and artwork to maximise space) . As they say, “when your house is on the market, you must think of it as a product on a shelf – in order for it to sell it must stand out.” Given the volume of houses currently on the market, my advise is to ensure your house is presented to its very best potential.
June 05 2008 | Selling Tips and Uncategorized | 3 Comments »