I hate to break it to you, but there is no single magic bullet for getting your Walnut Creek home sold in today’s real estate market. A few years ago, sure, stick a sign in the ground, slap an unrealistically high price tag on it and wait for a buyer to show up. But, even though many agents haven’t changed their behavior, this doesn’t work today. Nope. You deserve better than this. Now, it takes a well thought out game plan that is executed with specific timing and in the utmost professional manner.
The steps below outline just such a game plan; however, the steps alone are not enough to be successful in selling your home. You need to flawlessly execute each one or risk adding time (as in weeks or months) and losing money (as in tens of thousands of dollars) before your house is sold. This applies to selling a Walnut Creek home, a Danville home or a home anywhere else in Contra Costa County.
Prep the House
There are inexpensive (and expensive ) things that everyone can do to make their house more appealing to home buyers. We’ll cover everything from sprucing the curb appeal to improving the buyer’s ability to envision your house as their new home. This preparatory process will be pivotal for the next two steps. Failing here is a result of nothing more than being lazy. Think it doesn’t happen and isn’t important? Check out how it gets negatively magnified in the photo shoot…
The old saying goes, “a picture is worth a thousand words.” Well, in Walnut Creek and the rest of Contra Costa, a picture can easily be worth tens of thousands of dollars. If you’re thinking of selling your home, you’ve probably also started looking for a new place to live … and what have you learned during that search process? You’ve probably started to realize that a lot of homes on the market, either to be sold or for rent, have terrible pictures. What do you do when that happens? How hard do you still try to envision yourself in that place? Let’s be honest – you don’t. If the photos suck (or there aren’t any all together), you move on to the next property. At SPARRproperties, we will never let photos be a reason someone passes on your property.
Photos and price are the de-facto standards by which homes get ranked online by prospective buyers, but it’s video that will truly set you apart. All of us have special little reasons why we’ve come to love the place we live – the proximity to walking and hiking trails; the other families on the street; the 5 minute walk to the farmers market on the weekend; the ability to stumble home from a great night on the town with friends. Whatever it may be, you surely have some reasons … and those reasons can’t be conveyed in photos. However, a video gives you a platform to go beyond the specs of your house and truly sell the home and area to buyers.
We know from research that barely 1% of all real estate agents currently use video. Of that 1%, I’d venture to guess that the majority are simply panning through the rooms of the house … barely accomplishing anything better than the static photos they took; in some cases, doing a disservice to the property because of bad equipment, unsteady hands and poor editing abilities. By working with SPARRproperties, though, we like to think that you’ll be taking advantage of our being in the 1% of the 1% category. We use video. We love video. We’ll use video as it’s meant to be used – showcasing the great aspects of your home and neighborhood. Video sells and we’ll make it happen.
Spread the Digital Word
Getting something sold isn’t rocket science. You need to connect with a buyer that can justify to themselves spending the amount of money you are asking for your home. It’s the job of your real estate agent to attract that buyer, and one of the ways we accomplish that is by creating as large of a digital presence for your house as we can.
With photos and video complete, we let the world know that you’ve arrived. We do this through all means possible. We cover the basics – the MLS (Multiple Listing System) and the primary real estate search portals (Trulia.com, Zillow.com, Realtor.com). We branch out to the intermediate locations – videos go up on YouTube, ads are placed daily on Craigslist, we syndicate your property out to way too many smaller real estate search sites . Finally, we add in the advanced elements – a unique website dedicated solely to your home, multiple blog write-ups posted on different community sites, a social media blitzkrieg that includes Facebook, Twitter and Foursquare elements.
We should probably warn you now … we tend to geek out on technology. It stems from Brian’s computer science background and days spent as a software developer. We apologize
Introduction to the Market
At SPARRproperties, we’re not fans of holding an endless string of open houses. They are an inconvenience to you, and, truthfully, they do a better job of attracting new clients for us than they do in getting your home sold. With that being said, though, we make an exception to the rule for what is locally referred to as the “brokers tour.” This is a special version of an open house that is meant to introduce new properties on the market to agents and brokers. It is with rare exception that we allow one of the houses we are selling to skip out on being a part of the brokers tour the first week it’s on the market. Beyond this, we work very closely with you to ensure our selling process disrupts your daily life as little as possible.
If you remember from the video portion in our marketing plan, we had you wax poetically about the great qualities of your house and neighborhood. Well, here in the lifestyle targeting section, we take that information and use it to get laser-focused on our ideal group of buyers. This is where we hone in on who is going to drool over the opportunity to live in your house. We determine who they are, where they hang out and what their buying triggers are going to be … then we go into action and ensure they know about your property. But, it’s more than just making them aware – it’s about positioning your house correctly to invoke the correct triggers that will result in a purchase. It’s as much an art as it is a science, but, luckily for you, we’re pretty good at it.
There you have it – 6 aspects to getting your Walnut Creek home marketed and sold in today’s real estate environment. Some are obvious and have been around for years; others are unique to a very select few real estate agents across the country. Properly executing each step along the way takes knowledge, creativity and effort – 3 qualities we feel are exemplified by SPARRproperties (but then again, we’re a little biased! ).
If you’re interested in talking to us about how we can help you sell your Walnut Creek (or Contra Costa) home, let’s talk – 925-817-8428 or brian@SPARRproperties.com.