Times are changing and you can now expect much more to happen when you list your home for sale than just a sign on the front yard and an advert in the local paper. Real Estate agents are now playing a large part in helping to market your property and bring it to the attention of as many potential buyers as possible.
So what can you expect to happen when you choose your agent and list your home?
A good real estate agent will want a great result for your property. They will care about showcasing your property's value. They will have been into many homes and know the strong sale patterns for good results, so they can recommend immediate fixes or changes, staging or decluttering that can help people feel ready to move in.
If you have chosen your real estate agent carefully they will want the best outcome for your home.
It’s important not to choose your agent based on their estimated price for your property. You want someone who will be active in marketing your property and showing its full potential.
Now that your property is looking its absolute best, professional photographers will come to capture as many striking external and internal pictures as they can.
These images will be displayed:
- on the For Sale board at the front of your property
- inside real estate magazines and brochures
- in the window of the real estate office
- as a big part of your online listing
- as well as possibly posted as fliers in neighbourhood letterboxes
Light filters, touch-ups and strong light contrasts will be used to enhance the photos and make images of your property as enticing as possible.
If you have a look at images of listed properties online or in real estate magazines you will see patterns for lighting techniques and staged highly appealing images. Take note online of which properties have a large number of photos available and which only have three or four and notice what this means for how you view the property.
Photos create a sense of trust and excitement. Look for ways you can make every aspect of your property an enticing photograph.
Your online listing is a very important part of your property sale. Online markets are where the majority of people browse, discover and compare properties to buy. That opens up property sales to a huge market, outside the local area, state, or even country.
There are plenty of stories of overseas buyers, laying down enormous sums of money for a property they have never seen in person.
As well as being a fast and convenient way to hunt for homes, the internet is highly visual. That means the images posted here will potentially make, or break your sale.
Agents are looking for more and more ways to open up the online platform to create user engagement and give people a feel for the property.
A trustworthy and engaging online listing will include a
- detailed property listing that includes all the features and highlights
- open times
- large offering of professional photos
- virtual walkthrough
- floor plan
- map of the local area that may include which schools are within that zone.
Your agent will work with you to decide the best days, times and frequency of opens. While it may be tempting to work them around your schedule, it is important to allow the agent to have a say as they will want to target times when the highest number of people will be available to walk through. That typically means after office hours and on the weekends.
It is best to be away from the property during openings as it can be a stressful experience for you and the buyer if you are present.
As well as leaving the house make sure you also get your pets out of the house and pack up any pet toys, pet beds and litter boxes. It is important to do whatever you can to provide a clean and tidy home. Pack away anything you are working on, have all the beds made up to look like hotel stays and clean and polish just as you did before those staged photos took place.
You may want to have fresh-cut flowers or bread baking to bring more life to a room.
Most property inspections happen around the same times, so you can use the time to go to local open house inspections and see how other properties are presented.
In a good market, like the one we are seeing now, you can expect 20 to 30 people attending a property open. If you are only getting six or so people through each time then your agent will need to discuss ways you can enhance your listing or marketing strategy to gain more interest.
While it is possible to make changes to staging and room presentations between opens, you won’t be able to change your professional property photos. So take the time to get the look and feel of your property perfected before your home is listed. Don’t make it a trial and error activity.
Your agent will go over options for negotiations and what strategies to put in place when you are interviewing them, or when you first sign on. They will give you the standard operating procedure for contracts, deposits and settlement periods and you can arrange changes to these with them if you need anything to be different. That way they know how to proceed and what actions to take when talking with potential buyers well before the first offer has come in.
Your agent will handle all the offers and negotiations on your behalf.
While the agent can advise you on how to respond to the offers that come in, the final sale is your say.
Your conveyancer can also help with any questions you have about the terms of your sale contract and any changes a potential buyer has requested as a condition of sale.
The marketing campaign your agent uses will be well covered in the sales strategy information before you sign on with them. You will be paying them for this experience, it’s not usually part of the fee taken when the sale is done.
You will still be required to pay the agent their marketing fee, even if your property does not sell, or you change your mind and take it off the market.
A cheaper marketing campaign will typically mean fewer marketing services offered. Do ensure you have a strong online listing and that your property details are listed in real estate magazines and the office window, these are the places that those in the market for a property will be looking.
You can reduce your costs by having a for sale sign without any property information or images. You can limit the number of places that your property will show. Just be aware that means fewer people will have an opportunity to see your listing and respond.
The more interested parties in your property the more competitive buyers will be with their prices and the faster your property will sell.
When it comes to managing a residential investment property, like many aspects of modern living, you have the option to pay for a professional to do the work for you, or roll up your sleeves and do-it-yourself, with property management, this is known as a private rental.
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