Marketing a home

I put much thought into using the words “Selling a home” on this top menu.  To sell an item, it needs to be marketed…

Most agents will speak of “listing” your home.  A “listing” is a static page.  It is information, photos, and sometimes a video (which cannot be under rated, and always included when you choose to work with me).  It sits in the MLS and other sites (realtor.com, zillow, trulia, etc…) pull information from it.  An agent posts a listing, perhaps hosts a few open houses, maybe even creates a website for you (please tell me how this webpage adds value to this $890,000 Longmeadow, MA listing, it adds nothing new – couldn’t you have done a video tour instead?) and waits for a buyer to submit an offer.  If a buyer doesn’t come along the agent suggests that seasonality, or [gasp!] too high a price might be to blame.  And meanwhile your home hasn’t sold.  Their goal was to list it.  Not to sell it.

To sell a home, you need marketing, and marketing to today’s busy, tech-savy audience requires a plan.  Some agents get this.  Most do not.  I strongly recommend you interview multiple agents and at that interview ask them what plan they have for marketing your home.  There will be differences in their responses.

Some agents, mostly of the larger more corporate brokerages, will tell you that the size of their brokerage permits them to get your “listing” out in front of more audiences.  Quite frankly that’s bullshit.  It used to be true, back before the internet became ubiquitous.  Most buyers, no matter if they live in the same town as you or across the globe, will type a town, price range, and maybe the number of bedrooms into a search engine and start considering the results as a good place to start shopping for their next home.  They do this in the safety of their own home, on the comfort of their own couch, without so much as thinking about any of those larger more corporate brokerages.  Gone are the old days of listings being in a book kept at a Realtors’ office.  Information flows freely.

These larger brokerages will talk about their networks, and tout the quantity of agents they work alongside.  Again, this assertion harbors back to the day when all of the information was centralized.  The MLS (which is the most current source you can use), and other sites (of varying degrees of accuracy and punctuality) permit a buyer to be alerted the instant a home comes on the market that meets their stated criteria.  All the networks and agents in the world can’t dial a phone faster than an email notification can appear on a smartphone.

They will even speak of “pocket listings” where although you haven’t officially placed your home on the market, they will be sharing information about it to their “sphere of influence” so that buyers will get excited, and possibly delay making an offer on another property until your’s becomes available.  They forget that the place for people to get excited shouldn’t be limited to their contacts.  It should be placed boldly in public, and the MLS has a procedure for that (although hardly any agents use it).

In my opinion, all of the advantages that larger brokerages used to have have been decimated by technology.  A tech-savy agent can do everything that they do, and because they don’t need corporate branding approval, more, for less.

I could have joined any of the larger brokerages.  As a licensed Certified Public Accountant, with a MBA in Management Information Systems everyone I interviewed with wanted me on board.  But they all wanted me to sign long contracts, and restrict my marketing to activities that were corporate approved.  Hence I went with a local boutique firm.

I believe that no two transactions are alike, and that a cookie cutter, corporate approved, checklist of activities should not govern how a home is marketed.  My choices allow me to be free to do what I want, as long as it doesn’t violate the rules & regulations that govern ALL the Realtors.

If you want to know what my plan would be to sell your home, contact me to set up a no obligation appointment.  I can be reached at 413-564-9468 or by email at ejeffreyklotz@gmail.com.