Marketing Plans Play Key Role in Selling Homes
The first step after you make the decision to sell your home is to find a REALTOR® to market the property for you.
There are any number of ways you might do this. Maybe you will choose a REALTOR® recommended by neighbours or co-workers, friends or family. Or you might have noticed a particular name or photograph on "For Sale" signs in your area, which suggests that the REALTOR® specializes in your neighbourhood. The same name might also have shown up in newspaper or TV ads or on flyers delivered to your door.
If you choose a REALTOR® through any of these methods, you will see the value of a well thought out marketing plan that brings REALTORS® - and the homes they have been asked to sell - to the attention of the public.
The marketing plan starts when you sign a listing agreement with a REALTOR®. He or she will tell you about the option of selling your home through the Multiple Listing Service, or MLS®, which offers maximum exposure of your home to potential buyers and other REALTORS®.
Once you have agreed to work with a particular REALTOR®, it is time to set a realistic asking price. If you ask too much, you could hinder the REALTOR®'s marketing efforts before they even get off the ground. Set the price too low and buyers might wonder what's "wrong" with your home, and the proceeds from the sale will be less than they could have been.
When your home is ready to be sold, the "For Sale" sign - the most direct marketing tool of all - will go up in front of your property to catch the attention of people walking or driving by.
People who enquire about your home after seeing a "For Sale" sign are likely to be interested in your neighbourhood and already like the look of your home. A "For Sale" sign also lets your neighbours know you are selling and they may know someone who is interested in the area. Your neighbours might even be interested in buying themselves; plenty of people move on to bigger and better homes in the area they have lived in for years.
Soon after your house is on the market, an open house may be organized for REALTORS® who stop by the check out the potential of matching the house to one of their customers. An open house for everyone else is sometimes held on a weekend afternoon, when many buyers make a point of walking or driving around neighbourhoods they are interested in.
The REALTOR® you have chosen to work with will set up the open house and you can make plans to be elsewhere for the two or three hours when visitors wander through. This lets people have a good look around without worrying about disturbing you or offending you with questions about the property they feel are pertinent.
As part of the marketing plan, the REALTOR® will be familiar with all types of advertising - from classified ads in daily and weekly newspapers to ads in specialty realty publications. REALTORS® also sometimes send mailers - around the neighbourhood to let people who may be thinking of a move know what is available nearby, to former customers who may be ready for another move, and to clients who already have their homes up for sale but might not have found a new house yet.
The day-to-day contacts REALTORS® make are an extremely useful word-of-mouth type of advertising. A successful REALTOR® is often very involved in his or her community, and gets to know plenty of people. It could be one of them who decides to buy your house.
Multiple Listing Service, MLS®, REALTOR® and REALTORS® are registered trademarks of the Canadian Real Estate Association. REALTOR® identifies a real estate practitioner who is a member of the Association.
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