Six Strategies for Enhancing Stale Property Listings
At some point in every agent’s career, they will list a property that sits on the market for a prolonged period. There are many factors that play a role in why a property doesn’t receive immediate interest – pricing, location, home features, etc. But when a property sits on the market for several months, it’s time for an agent to make some proactive changes to refresh the listing.
Here are six strategies to help refresh stale property listings.
Change the Primary Photo
The first image that buyers see of a listing on the MLS or in marketing materials can help create interest for a property, so it’s imperative to lead with the most impactful photo. To revitalize a listing, consider updating the primary property photo seasonally. You don’t want an exterior home photo showcasing snow outside if it’s summertime!
Utilize Social Media to Determine Top Photos
Social media is a great tool to identify which photos should be presented in a refreshed listing. You might find that an interior shot of a fireplace or a photo of the home at dusk gets the most engagement. By taking this feedback into consideration, you can determine if new photos are in order or if you just need to switch out the property photos online. In addition to photos, a stellar property video can also help invigorate a listing.
Change Interior Layouts and Staging
While re-arranging furniture and interior layouts can make a property more appealing to buyers, most sellers are sensitive to change. Try this technique - offer to move the furniture to get a new set of photos and then move it back when you are done. I’ve found that nine times out of 10, the seller will prefer the new layout. For homes without furniture, staging the property using augmented or virtual reality, such as the Curate by Sotheby's International Realty (SM) augmented reality app, is a great solution to consider if the listing needs a refresh.
Switch the Lead Agent on a Co-listing
If you work on a team, it can help to change the lead agent to freshen up the listing on MLS. A new lead agent can evaluate the listing with a fresh set of eyes and bring different ideas to the table. While the property listing still sits with the team, a fresh perspective and approach might help attract a potential pool of new buyers.
Divide Large Properties into Separate Listings
In the case of a property with large acreage and multiple parcels, it might be beneficial to divide the listing into two separate offerings. For example, if you have a property with multiple parcels and 100 acres of land offered at $4 million, consider selling the home on one parcel for $2 million and the raw land on the other parcel for $2 million. By creating two separate listings, you can attract a wider swath of buyers.
Broaden Property Exposure
Finding ways to expose the property to new audiences is critical. Yes, adding new images and utilizing the above strategies will help with the presentation, but it’s also imperative to expose the property through various channels. For example, if the home has a 10-car garage, pitch the press a story about homes with amazing garages for coverage, or collaborate with the local racetrack to feature the home in their marketing materials to reach car lovers. Get creative!
Finally, don’t forget to communicate with the seller throughout the entire process. It can be an emotional and stressful process for a seller, and it may take longer than they anticipated. Therefore, it’s important to continue to communicate regularly with clients by both phone and email.
Mark Madonna is a real estate sales professional at William Pitt Sotheby's International Realty in Washington, Connecticut. With a vast global network, positive energy, and an unparalleled commitment to his clients, Mark has established himself as a top agent in Litchfield County's real estate industry. He is a member of the National Association of Realtors, the Connecticut Association of Realtors, and the Litchfield County Board of Realtors. His primary areas of focus include Washington, Roxbury, Litchfield, Kent, Warren, Cornwall, and Goshen.
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