Selling Homes for Top Dollar: 3 Key Ingredients
Amber McCulloch
July 26, 2022 — Read in 6.1 mins · 1225 words

What makes the difference between a property that attracts hundreds of showings, multiple offers and a quick sale…and a home that lingers on the market for months without any activity? 

In our minds it all comes down to having an effective marketing strategy. In this post, we’re going to focus on three key elements that are essential to drive interested buyers to homes with on point asking prices (note: no marketing can make up for a poorly priced home :/ ).

1. Only use fantastic photos

Today’s buyer is savvy and spoiled for choice when it comes to researching houses. Since 43% of buyers begin their home searches online, it’s your job to make sure your listing photos will stand out from the hundreds of homes they are perusing on major consumer listing platforms. 

Photos make or break a listing — you only have a few seconds to catch a buyer’s attention and get them interested in the property you’re selling. Poor lighting, bad angles and messy interiors sink chances of securing a showing faster than anything else. 

Using a professional is a given, but keep in mind that not all real estate photographers are created equal. Some are very new to the game and do not understand the mechanics of capturing rooms to their best advantage. The angles may be off and the room may look distorted, which can turn potential buyers off. Or perhaps the pictures leave some questions unanswered…like where’s the closet? Where’s the door? Is that bathroom on the second floor or in the basement?

Grade your photographer with the same critical eye that your clients will apply to you. 

Work with them to take your photos to the next level. Here are some tips to take your photos from lackluster to blockbuster.

  • Lighten the photos so they feel open, airy, and bright.
  • Switch out boring, flat blue/grey skies with beautiful skies with clouds. 
  • Consider adding a nighttime or dusk photo that shows the exterior lighting. Don’t have a twilight photo? BoxBrownie can convert one of your photos for $4!
  • Make the grass a little greener, and the colors more vibrant.
  • Use multiple exposures to capture the views from the windows.
  • Get the best angles of rooms – make sure they aren’t stretched and distorted.
  • Consider getting empty rooms virtually staged to show the possibilities of using the space.
  • 2.  Write an amazing property description

OK, so you’ve attracted some interest thanks to your stunning photos – but we’re looking for more than just attention here! 

Your listing description will determine if your listing and the buyer have a future together.

The Internet is filled with basic and boring descriptions. Don’t let your listing get overlooked just because you didn’t have time to add some personality to your property description.  

You want your listing description to be narrative and talk about the features of the home in the best possible way. Paint a picture; set a scene. Show the buyer (or buyer’s agent!) the possibilities and help them envision how they would use the space to enrich their lives. 

Here are a few ways you can add personality to your listing descriptions to captivate buyers and prompt them to set up a showing:

  • Write a strong headline that grabs some attention! Follow it up with a statement that mentions the home’s best-selling feature first.  
  • Make your description longer. Data shows that the average listing description is only 60 words, but the optimal length is 250 words. Keep it narrative, but not too wordy.
  • Tell a story. Use your words to really paint a picture for the buyer. How would they utilize the extra loft space upstairs? What would they be doing in the backyard? 
  • Use descriptive (but accurate!) adjectives to spice up your text. Mention whether a kitchen has “granite” or “quartz” countertops, or if a fireplace is “wood-burning” or “gas.” Describe the hardwood floors as “gleaming” or “red oak.”
  • Be precise, but positive. Don’t stretch the truth or leave out important information. If the home is being sold as is, buyers need to know that up front.
  • List any newer updates and improvements. New roof? Newer electrical or HVAC? This will immediately show the added value of the home and will give it an edge over similar properties in the buyer’s mind. 
  • Mention well-known name brands and any customizations. Mentioning name brands like Sub-Zero refrigerators, custom shaker cabinets or Kohler fixtures can grab a kitchen-oriented buyer’s attention.
  • Highlight privacy, outdoor spaces and natural light. Today’s buyer is craving private, outdoor space and abundant light. Be sure to highlight these features in your listing.
  • Call out the assets of the location/neighborhood. But don’t violate fair housing laws! Avoid descriptions like the “best schools” and “family-friendly.”
  • Don’t! Use! Too! Many! Exclamation! Points! (OR ALL CAPS).
  • Be sure to proofread your listing. Buyers are willing to overlook a simple typo or abbreviation, but too many mistakes will turn them off. Reading the listing out loud will help you identify any problem areas.

3. Use the latest technology to pull everything together

Agents know that when prospective buyers start dreaming of decorating a home and are imagining their lives in a space, an offer is usually right around the corner. 

Here are a few tools that you can use in your listings to make a home come alive for interested buyers – before they ever see it in person: 

  • Fusion Photography: High definition, fusion photography blends multiple exposures to create a perfect picture. Colors pop and the views out of windows are captured. This is best practice in the real estate industry and gives buyers a truer sense of what the home looks like. 
  • A 3D Matterport Virtual Tour: The Matterport is an industry-leading camera that uses an array of sensors to create a 3D model of a home. It is accurate down to one inch and is VR compatible. This allows buyers to truly experience the space and start imagining their lives there.    
  • 2D Floorplan: A floorplan helps prospects understand the layout of the property and allows them to start laying out their furniture and décor! That’s when they truly fall in love.
  • Video: Adding an engaging video set to music will draw viewers in and bring the property alive. It’s like having an open house available online 24-hours a day! 

By incorporating the latest tech tools into your listing, you are dramatically increasing the chances that your listing will stand out among the competition. 

More interest = more showings = more offers!

A great property listing is the difference between a quick sale (with multiple offers) and a home that lingers on the market through multiple price reductions. It’s the single most important piece of your marketing, and it’s the hub from which everything else flows. It’s one of the most important and valuable services that you offer your clients, so it pays to get it right!

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