Bring home sellers up to speed on real estate’s new normal

    “Pivot.” I’m reading that word a lot lately. The “experts” are admonishing business owners to pivot, to adapt to the “new normal.” It’s an especially popular theme in real estate right now.

    Seems to me that most real estate professionals adapted very quickly. You had to, right? It was either adapt or perish. In fact, the average agent could probably give lessons on pivoting.

    The poor real estate consumer, however, has been left behind. So, just as you pick up slack for lenders when explaining the mortgage process to buyers, it’s now up to you to bring buyers and sellers up to speed on what’s changed and what they might expect from America’s “new” real estate industry.

    Let’s start with your listing clients and listing prospects.

    Post Pandemic Series
    How has the selling process changed?

    Aside from local market conditions, this is most likely every prospective home seller’s most burning question. After all, much of what they’ll learn online no longer applies.

    Ensure that all of your listing leads are aware of and comfortable with the changes. Don’t let them delay their sale because they’re nervous or confused.

    The listing presentation is the ideal time to walk them through the process. Make it sound as simple as possible.

    Sure, they’re still curious how you’ll go about marketing their home, but how will they and their family be kept safe after showings? What precautions will buyers’ agents take?

    Will you hold open houses? If so, how will those work without exposing both the buyers and the seller to the virus?

    Stage it to sell for top dollar

    While the process of preparing the home for the market remains pretty much the same, staging is not.

    Hunkered down for months in their homes while they took on new hobbies and spent more time with family has caused a shift in what homebuyers are seeking in a home. Suggest to your sellers that they stage a spare room, study, finished attic or basement as a home office or gym.

    Outdoor spaces are more critical aspects of home sales post-lockdown. Sales of inflatable pools, inground pools, patio furniture and décor and even trampolines have spiked.

    One of the most popular backyard amenities is a large garden, or the space to create one. “Gardening supplies and egg-laying chickens are becoming hard to find as people search for both new hobbies and reliable alternatives to bare grocery shelves,” according to Hillary George-Parkin at Vox.com.

    “Anything that keeps kids entertained — and offers parents a chance to take Zoom calls in peace — is, predictably, flying off the shelves,” George-Parkin adds.

    Let your listing clients know this. Help them come up with ideas to stage their backyards for maximum appeal:

    • Kid-friendly space
    • Gardener’s dream space
    • Activity center

    Create a kid-friendly space with a croquet set on the lawn, a swing set and slide, treehouse, trampoline hangout (see photo number 17 at HGTV.com), sandbox or any number of other things that will appeal to parents of young children.

    Post Pandemic Series
    There are many ways to stage a backyard to pique a gardener’s interest, including:
    • Building attractive raised beds
    • Adding trellises along the wall
    • Create a potting bench
    • Adding gardening beds in lieu of raised beds

    Even if you have limited space in the backyard, or just a patio or deck, potted plants and planter boxes will create appeal for the green thumber.

    Swimming pools also gained in popularity during the lockdown. It’s a worldwide phenomenon, with manufacturers in Spain claiming that sales have increased 400%. In New Zealand, searches for homes with swimming pools have increased 70% and manufacturers and retailers claim that sales have tripled since before the pandemic.

    If your client’s home features a swimming pool, of course you’ll want to hit that fact hard when marketing, but encourage your client to stage the pool area to wow buyers even more.

    For those leads and prospects who are dragging their feet (meaning there is no listing appointment), start an education campaign on your blog and share your posts on social media. Back them up with a direct mail piece that updates them on real estate news.

    Sellers have questions and you have the answers. Walk them through all the processes and how they’ve changed, from home inspections to appraisals to closing and staging.

    Post Pandemic Series
    Send the Home Values postcard from the Post Pandemic Series to an area where you’re focusing on more listings.

    Need help targeting a specific niche of buyers or sellers? Use our Demographic Search Tool to create the ideal list (it’s easy). Or call our support team for assistance at 866.405.3638!

    PLUS: When you have time…here are some helpful resources we’ve made available to support your success.

    1. The Free Real Estate Mailing List Guide

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    The Real Estate Mailing List Guide outlines the top tools for generating targeted prospecting lists including Baby Boomers, Empty Nesters, Investors, Lifestyle Interests, High-Income Renters, Move-Up Markets, and more. The Guide also defines done-for-you marketing campaigns to match these markets. –Click Here

    2. The Free 12 Month Done-For-You Strategic Marketing Plan

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    The Real Estate Marketing Planner is a powerful 12-Month-Guide that strategically defines what marketing to do when. Four key market segments are included, Niche Marketing, Get More Listings, Geographic Farming, and Sphere of Influence. –Click Here

    3. The Free One-Page Real Estate Business Plan

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    Treat your business like a business it is vital to long-term success in this industry. Some agents may put together elaborate business plans, yet there’s something powerful about keeping it simple. Check out our one page Online Real Estate Business Plan.  – Click Here

    4. Become a Listing Legend Free eBook 

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    Ready to take a vertical leap in your real estate career? If you’re looking for inspiration…and the tools and methods to dominate a market and go to the top in real estate…you’ll find them in this free book. – Click Here

    5. The Market Dominator Branding System

    Become branded in a specific neighborhood with a Mega AMrketing piece sent automatically each month to an exclusive carrier route. Watch this excerpt on the Market Dominator from a recent Q&A Todd Robertson (Director of the Market Dominator) did below.

    For additional questions, you can reach Todd at 866-405-3638 or Todd.Robertson@prospectsplus.com or go to Market Dominator for more information.

    6. The Free Online ROI Calculator

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    Consistency and automation are the keys to success. Discover how effective direct mail marketing can dramatically increase your bottom line. Enter your statistics in our Free online ROI Calculator and click the ‘CALCULATE MY ROI’ button to see your results instantly! –Click Here

    7. The Free Real Estate Marketing Guide “CRUSH IT” 

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    The “Crush It” Guide includes easy steps to launching an effective direct mail marketing campaign, how to create a targeted prospect list, the perfect way to layout marketing materials for success, seven opportunities available to target in your area right now. –Click Here

    Lisa Gray
    Lisa is an accomplished marketer with years of expertise in direct response marketing, digital marketing, data analytics and business development working with both B2C and B2B.