Jim Gross Albuquerque real estate photographySubscribe: Marketing Homes Blog
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This is the 3rd in our home selling series. We have been discussing balancing staging, marketing and pricing for an offer. Unless location is a factor, then finding the delicate balance will usually lead to an offer on your listing. So we talked about staging. While traditional staging is best and generally returns the cost, many buyers simply cannot fund the extra $2,000-$5,000 staging generally runs. This is where virtual staging comes into play. For 10% of the cost a virtual staging company will add furniture, pictures and plants to your listing pictures. This has been proven to increase showing activity by up to 75%. Just post a comment in the remarks section of the MLS that the photos have been “virtually staged.”

The second phase is marketing. This is where many agents need to come out of their comfort zone and find creative ways to get the marketing seen online. There are two ways to promote online: One is through real estate search engine sites such as Zillow, Trulia and Realtor.com. While the first two will pick up your pictures and virtual tours directly from the MLS, Realtor.com is more expensive giving preferential placement to “Showcase Listing” holders. While these can be very expensive some virtual tour companies are approved to publish their tours for a $20 fee through the back-door of Realtor.com. This is not widely publicized, but tour companies may offer this to their customers with no mark-up.

Marketing needs to encompass several strategies ranging from pointer signs and brochures, title and agent tours, open houses to social media and a comprehensive online listing with professional pictures, a virtual tour and property website. They should be combined to hit people searching on a mainstream search engine like Google for key words like a street or subdivision to people using the real estate search engines like previously mentioned.

The next section will get more into the pricing end of the process, completing the balance.