There’s no denying that how people search for real estate has changed over the last 18 months or so—accelerating trends that had already been developing for a while. As you consider which agent to tap for selling your home this fall, getting top dollar from your sale should include evaluating how your prospective agent is addressing some of those trends.
• One of the latest trends leverages that fascinating new technology: drone shots and videos. Forget the “hero still shot.” Today’s buyers are responding to the “hero video shot”—which often will have been videoed from a drone in motion. It’s not surprising that an enhanced cinematic experience serves to capture a prospective buyer’s interest, drawing them into your listing. If your agent doesn’t consider the possibilities that drone photography offers, that eliminates the real possibility that it might determine whether a potential buyer clicks on your listing…or a neighbor’s.
• According to the Real Estate Staging Association, homes that are staged before going on the market sell 73% faster on average than their non-staged counterparts. The longer a prospective buyer looks at a property, the greater the chance they’ll write an offer for it. Whether or not a professional stager is part of your campaign, the same principle explains why many real estate agents do things like bake cookies for open houses. It’s because the mere act of standing to eat a cookie at the kitchen counter lengthens the prospect’s time at the property.
• Not all sellers can afford a full staging package, but anyone can virtually stage a property at a fraction of the cost (check out www.boxbrownie.com). The effect is similar: it helps buyers spend more time connecting with a property, this time online. Image enhancements are also available inexpensively—and where useful, and often a part of a top listing agent’s marketing plan.
One side effect of having the vast array of media and digital tools at buyers’ fingertips is that they have developed decidedly short attention spans. If a prospective buyer is interested in your listing, he or she will want answers to their questions right away—or they may just swipe right onto the next listing. Your agent’s marketing plan should include clear access to them via email/phone/text—or via a website dedicated to your property.
Whether it’s by responding promptly to a text inquiry, creatively staging a home, using the latest technology available (or even baking cookies!) to pull top dollar, your agent should be one who keeps up with the buying trends that are moving properties today.