You are viewing our site as an Agent, Switch Your View:

Agent | Broker     Reset Filters to Default
Staging Tips for a Virtual Open House
Virtual home tours exploded in popularity during the pandemic, even being recommended by the National Association of Realtors to remain safe. Most places have lifted pandemic restrictions, but virtual tours remain popular, especially for far away buyers looking to relocate. As always, planning and preparation is critical for making the best impression. Staging for Your Virtual Open House or Video Walk-Through In many locations, it won't be possible to stage homes in the traditional sense while social distancing is in place. For a virtual open house or video walk-through that you record yourself, you will need to work with homeowners to help stage the interior of the home before your scheduled arrival. Focus on decluttering and making the interior spaces feel as large as possible for the video. Ideally, see if you can ask the owner to send you photos of each room and meet with them on the phone or through online video conferencing to provide suggestions for improvements. If there is storage space available in an attic, basement, or garage, ask the homeowner to consider putting items that are causing clutter in these spaces temporarily. Curbside Appeal Make sure you capture the exterior from the street with the approach to the entrance and front door in your virtual open house or video walk-through. Your goal should be to simulate the experience of attending an actual open house in-person for your viewers. If attention to the yard and landscaping is needed, you might be able to find landscaping contractors who are operating and practicing social distancing guidelines. Virtual Staging for Photos Thanks to technology, you can apply very effective virtual staging to your interior property photos. Similar to traditional on-site staging in a home, this can make a dramatic difference when it's done well. This option can be quite inexpensive and well worth the cost. Visualstager is a DIY service that lets you upload your photos and make the staging choices yourself using their virtual staging tools. The following articles provide a number of reviews that will help you start exploring virtual staging software options: The 13 Best Virtual Staging Apps and Software for Real Estate How to Stage Your Home with the Click of a Mouse To view the original article, visit the iHomeFinder blog.
MORE >
RPR: Your Open House Secret Weapon
So far, the 2022 housing market is a sequel to 2021: inventory is still low and listings are tough to come by. However, a million or so homes are still actively for sale, and every state has lifted pandemic restrictions. That means everything is open! If you're thinking of holding an open house, this article is for you. We'll tackle the basics of prep and planning, and tips for how to promote and host. We'll also cover important ways that using RPR (Realtors Property Resource) can help you sell this listing (and hopefully line up some new prospects). The open house prep Once you and your client decide to hold an open house, there are a few basics that need to be taken care of and thought out ahead of time. Here are few ways to prep and plan to find success: The Date: Most open houses are held on Saturdays or Sundays, starting in the late morning or early afternoon, and scheduled for three to four hours. And of course, that's because people tend to have the most spare time on weekends. However, you might also want to consider other days and times. For example "Happy Hour" open houses are quite popular nowadays. Pick a weeknight, Thursdays are great because the weekend is close, and hold it from 5-8PM. Promote it as a casual, after work, happy hour with beverages and snacks. Working singles, and moms and dads who have busy weekends, will find it especially appealing. The House: This is common knowledge for most agents, but in case we have some new agents out there… Before you open it, the house needs to be presentable! Decluttered, depersonalized, cleaner than a whistle, and perhaps even staged. Crank up the curb appeal by having the gardener come the day before, too. You'd be surprised how much a freshly mowed lawn does for first impressions. Also, any little nagging repairs such as paint touch-ups, squeaky doors, carpet stains, pet odors, etc. should all be taken care of in advance. And, of course, no owners or pets in the house on open house day. The Promotion: These days, social media is your best friend and a great way to add some sizzle to your open house. It's called emotional storytelling and it can do wonders. Take two to three pictures of the home, or one really nice one, and create a post for your Facebook feed. Include some anecdotes and observations about certain features of the home, and of course, the address, date and time, and your contact information. (Be sure to also do a quick Facebook livestream the day of the event, as well.) You should also consider conducting a video walk-through on your Instagram Story a few days before the big day. And, you might even want to try TikTok. It's the fastest growing social media platform and it's not just for dancing teenagers anymore. Do a search for "TikTok real estate open houses" and you'll see what we mean. Any or all of these social media tips are highly encouraged. Be sure to also include open house dates in your newsletters, emails and website, as well as use door hangers in the immediate neighborhood a few days before. Neighbors know buyers and word-of-mouth works! The day of the open house Signage! This is another obvious tip, but you have to put out signs. Cover as many corners and high traffic areas as you can. Some agents use 10, some use up to 30. Doing a drive-through of the neighborhood the day before is a good way to plot out where to plant your signs. It's a little tedious, but well worth it. Arrive early: You don't want to be the second person to show up and have someone waiting. Come at least a half hour in advance, get your clients out the door, and then conduct a walkthrough of the home to make sure everything is clean and no personal items are on display. Then set out your refreshments and snacks, and any takeaway promotional items, such as flyers or brochures, etc. Baking cookies is cliche, but it works. You can also use a deodorizer or air freshener in high traffic areas and in each room. Home base: Find a good place, near the entrance, to post up and greet your guests. If the kitchen is close to the front door, kitchen islands or tables work great. Somewhere to welcome people, answer questions, and ask them what they thought of the house when they're done touring it. This is also a strategic place to get some contact information after they've toured the home. (More on that below.) Wrap up: When you go from open to closed, do one more lap around the home and pick up any brochures or water bottles or anything that may have been discarded. Gather up all of your promotional materials, and then go retrieve your signs. Some agents leave the refreshments behind for the owners, others keep unopened items to use again in the future. Be sure to make some kind of contact with the owners to give them a summary of how the showing went. RPR open house tips Those were some general on-site tips and things to keep in mind when hosting an open house. Now we'll share some ways that using RPR can really help and add to the experience, for you, the guests and your client(s). The RPR app: Where it all comes together On game day, lean on your open house secret weapon: the RPR mobile app. Make sure it's downloaded to your phone and with you at all times on open house day. The reason? Ahead of time, you can run a variety of different reports on the home and the area. Everything you do on the RPR website syncs with your phone app. So when you create the reports for your property address, all those reports will be one touch away. You can also create reports right there in the house, on the fly, and instantly send them to open house goers. These reports will arm you and prospective buyers with data and information so you'll be ready to have conversations about the home itself, the neighborhood, the schools and the market. Here are the reports you should run ahead of time: Neighborhood research The Neighborhood Reports you can generate in RPR will give you a summary and details about the people, economy, quality of life, and charts and graphs on local market activity. Data and info such as this can help you prepare to handle all types of questions and position you as a local expert. For prospective buyers, they're a great digital, branded takeaway item. They can also help agents get familiar with a neighborhood, in case it's out of your usual area. Schools For people with children, schools are at the top of the list when it comes to relocating. And you'll get an "A" from these parents when you keep the RPR mobile app handy to help them with school related questions. Just ask them the age of their kids, and you can create and then text or email the school report directly to them. RPR School Reports provide a wealth of information on schools, including student populations, testing outcomes, reviews, ratings and school zones. You can also compare schools within a district or a specified radius, and/or include up to 20 nearby listings. Market Activity Market Activity Reports are a perfect way for prospective buyers to see what's moving in the market. Having this information also positions you as a local market expert. RPR's Market Activity Report can help you discuss what the local market has to offer by presenting recent price changes, as well as active, pending, sold, expired and distressed properties. Mini Property Report/Property Flyer Before the open house, run an RPR Mini Property Report. These scaled down versions provide just enough data to give buyers a solid understanding of the property, including price, value, comps, home facts, taxes, photos, and neighborhood information. An even more scaled-down version is the RPR Property Flyer, which is a one-page promotional piece with the most basic of facts. Plus, you can write your own headline, and include your own photo and contact info. They're perfect for open house promotions. Having these reports at your fingertips during the open house goes a long way in positioning you as THE local real estate expert. Delivering the reports and collecting contact information is a solid way to gain a warm lead. You simply have the property in your app, hit Recent Activity and all of your reports for that property are displayed, then you hit Share, and your new prospects receive it within minutes, maybe even seconds. Pro Tip: Here's another way to use the reports: print out one copy and leave it in a high traffic area. Then, when a guest starts reading it, you can break the ice and say, "Isn't that Property Report great? Unfortunately, it's my last copy. But I can send you one directly. I just need your number…" This conversation-starter is a keen lead generation tactic that helps you connect with prospects without coming on too strong. RPR open house tips wrap-up With the right amount of prep and planning—and RPR at your side—your next open house is sure to be a success. A solid game plan and the reports you create in RPR will no doubt impress your client and those that tour the home. That can help you go from open house to closed deal in no time. Download the RPR app today and hold a memorable open house tomorrow. Good luck! To view the original article, visit the RPR blog.
MORE >
An Open House Is a Great Idea During the Holiday Season
MORE >
Using Facebook Live for Your Real Estate Open House
The idea of using Facebook Live for a real estate open house is nothing new. Marketing-savvy agents have been using Facebook Live for some time to promote listings, create brand awareness, and attract business. It helps them reach busy potential buyers who can't attend many open house events, as well as those who are out-of-town and planning to relocate. Facebook Live brings your narrated property tour directly to their screen, at home or while they're on-the-go. They don't have to make any time commitment other than setting aside time to watch your property tour. Agents are even finding it can help them close some clients. This article will show you how to get started taking advantage of this powerful marketing tool which will continue to serve you into the future. Creating a Facebook Business Page If you don't have a business page on Facebook, you'll want to set that up first. This guide from Facebook will help you set it up. You'll need a personal Facebook page to do this, so set that up first if you don't have one. It's really important to put your best foot forward on your business page. Much more than just an online brochure, you need to maximize opportunities for capturing new leads, engage your visitors, and have a solid platform for advertising. You'll find some tips and recommendations here for putting together a real estate business page that has the right professional polish. Preparing Your Online Real Estate Open House Promotional Posts In the days leading up to your live event, you'll want to publish posts on your business page to get the word out. These posts will need a quality photo of the property which could be anything that will make a good impression on potential buyers – interior or exterior. Once you've chosen a photo for your promotional posts, you need to use a graphic editor to add the date and time to the image. Canva is a free tool that's perfect for this task. Canva even offers free templates for creating social media graphics. With your graphic ready, you just need to write a quick blurb for your posts that will get potential buyers excited to see more about the property and attend your online open house. If you want to reach more people in your area outside of your followers on Facebook, you can try using Facebook ads to promote the virtual open house to a much wider audience. Since you can spend whatever you want on Facebook ads, there's very little risk in experimenting and Facebook ads are simple to set up. Planning the Property Tour Preparing for your tour of a property is very important. You don't want to just improvise on the spot. Plan the flow of the property tour and identify the important points and features you want to speak to and share in your broadcast. You might even want to write a script for yourself to make sure you don't leave anything out and do a practice run or two before the event. In your narration, make sure you include the same information that you normally would in an in-person open house, such as insights about the community and local schools. You'll get better at doing these over time, but the important thing is to start! Get (yourself) in your videos. It allows us to showcase who we are as people and build a "know, like and trust" and that's what clients are looking for. I always do 30 minutes because 30 minutes will allow you to give a 15-minute walk-through and 15 minutes to answer any questions. Typically, I'm getting 600-900 views. I'm engaging the audience. Jesse PetersSales AssociateRE/MAX Executive RealtyWinnipeg, Manitoba, CanadaUsing Facebook Live for an Open House – REALTOR® Magazine Go Live Using Facebook Live is very easy. Start with learning the basic features and controls on your phone or tablet, then do some practice sessions to get comfortable with it. Having the confidence in operating the features will make your first online open house go much more smoothly and you'll be less nervous. After the event, you'll even have a link in Facebook for sharing the recorded video to your website or social channels. The biggest hurdle is building the confidence in yourself that you can do this. Pretend it's just like a normal real estate open house. After you have done a few, you'll wonder what you were so nervous about. You'll be really excited about the added exposure as you watch your audience size start to grow over time. Practice makes perfect! To view the original article, visit the iHomeFinder blog.
MORE >
Must Haves for Your Next Open House
MORE >
Homesnap Officially Launches Showings Platform
Homesnap has launched Homesnap Showings, an agent-friendly, easy-to-use real estate showings tool. Homesnap Showings is a new, modern showing management tool that is included with your free Homesnap Pro account, courtesy of your MLS*. Showings features a sleek interface that makes it easier to navigate than other, more outdated showings software, but it's not just the look that makes it unique. Homesnap Showings is also different because we're your partner, not your competitor. We surveyed thousands of agents asking what they wanted most out of a showing management tool, and used their feedback to help build Homesnap Showings. We don't believe that agents should worry about showing management platforms sharing data with a competitor. With Homesnap Showings, you don't have to worry about that. We've created a showings management platform that we believe both listing and buyer agents are going to love. Listing agents will enjoy that Showings is fast, easy-to-use, and provides them the ability to manage approvals from anywhere. Buyer's agents will be able to utilize instant bookings and seamless client communication. Check out the biggest benefits that Homesnap Showings provides both listing and buyer's agents and learn why Homesnap Showings will be the go-to showings management platform for you, your colleagues, and your clients. Benefits of Homesnap Showings for Listing Agents Fast, easy-to-use setup Each agent has a unique schedule, each seller has unique expectations, and each listing has unique requirements. With Homesnap Showings, you can easily customize your listing to meet those needs. Set up a listing's rules in just a few clicks. First, select the showing type that is right for you. Whether you need approvals from everyone, one person, or no approvals needed, you choose. Then, add who you want to be an approver or notified of requests and select available times. Add access and special instructions (for agents-only or public viewing). Go live in one click Once you have customized your showing to your preferences, simply click the "Accepting Showings Requests" toggle to tell the world your listing is available! If you've accepted an offer and want to turn off showings, simply turn off showings in one click. If you have future showings scheduled, you can choose to keep or cancel them. Manage approvals from anywhere Being flexible has never been more important to agents. Whether in your car, at a showing, or at your desk, you can approve or decline showing requests directly from notifications. Simplify your daily workflow by setting your communication preferences and approve or deny requests directly from SMS, push notifications, email, or all three. Manage approvals with ease With Google calendar integrations, you have the power to see all of your requests in one place. When you have a pending request or a confirmed booking, it will automatically populate your calendar. Spend less time managing your schedule and more time doing the things you love. Less follow-up. More feedback. Ninety percent of agents interviewed and surveyed by Homesnap emphasized the importance of receiving feedback from buyer's agents after a showing. Listing agents also expressed how they spent countless hours sending follow-ups to buyer's agents to get feedback. Homesnap Showings handles those follow-ups for you. Strategically timed, automatic reminders are sent following the showing and increase responses from the buyer's side. Once feedback comes through, you will be alerted instantly. You can view all your organized feedback on your listing report. You decide whether to share that feedback with your seller. Not all feedback is created equal, so you get to choose. Streamlined reporting Easily understand the outcome of your showing strategy, whether you have one or 100 listings. Keep tabs on your listing and showing trends over time. With easy-to-read reports, you can get a complete picture of your listing performance. Glean better insights to continuously evolve your listing strategy and set new best practices. Benefits of Homesnap Showings for Buyer Agents Instant bookings With Homesnap Showings, there's no more need to make calls or wait to schedule a showing. Preset by the listing agent, all available times are presented for you to quickly and seamlessly select. If the property requires approval, the listing agent will be immediately notified upon your submission. Homesnap Showings will hold the calendar reservation even before approval to avoid double bookings. Seamless agent communication With Homesnap Messages, Showings keeps agents in-the-know. Once you submit your request, the listing agent will receive a notification — and as soon as they approve your request, you will be informed immediately! Life can be messy. If you have an issue, need to reschedule, or just have a quick question, you can use Homesnap Messages to send the listing agent a note directly within the Homesnap app. Customized itineraries Use Showings to plan the optimal day for a buyer. With itineraries, you customize the best experience for your client. Whether you plan a day to see one property or 10 properties, you have full control over your itinerary, even if one of the properties on your itinerary is managed with a different showing management tool. Your whole schedule, access details, and agent contact info will be in one place. You can easily share the day you planned with your client, and even add non-showing related stops such as coffee or lunch to make sure that your client is having a positive, enjoyable experience. Smart routing Once you have built your itinerary and booked your showings, Homesnap Showings will automatically map out the best route to take. You can adjust and set the path you wish to take and share it with your client — no more fumbling for directions or getting lost. Easier feedback, better client collaboration Within your itinerary dashboard, you can access easy-to-use feedback forms to let the listing agent know how your client felt about the property. Once your showing ends, you will receive automatic notifications that give you the option to work with your client and provide comments or interest level in the property. In this way, Homesnap Showings is designed to help you partner with your clients to close deals, and helps ensure that you won't lose contact with your most valuable leads. Click here to check out Homesnap Showings. *Homesnap Showings is available for free to Homesnap Pro agents in participating MLSs. To view the original article, visit the Homesnap blog.
MORE >
3 Open House Themes to Sell Your Listing This Halloween
MORE >
Friday Freebie: Open House Guide to Getting More Offers
After being socially distanced out of existence for a year, open houses are back, baby! No longer do your events have to be livestream only--it's time to break out the signs, balloons, and snacks for that good ol' in-person experience. That said, maybe your open house technique is a little rusty after a year off, or maybe you're a brand-new agent, or maybe you just want to reevaluate and make your open house strategy better than ever. Whatever your reason, in this week's Friday Freebie, we're highlighting a guide to hosting better open houses and getting more offers. Read on to claim your free copy. Free download of 2021 Open House Guide: How to Get More Offers, courtesy of Zurple An open house isn't strictly about finding a buyer for a home—for many agents, it acts as a way to build in-person rapport with the community and build your contact database. That's why open houses are often a starting point for new agents—it helps them build their book of business. Whatever your level of experience, this guide from Zurple breaks down the preparation, marketing, and hosting of open houses step-by-step: Step 1: Get a listing Step 2: Choose a date Step 3: Prepare the home for market Step 4: Marketing your event online Step 5: Marketing your event offline Step 6: Prepare your client Step 7: Prepare the home for the open house Step 8: Engage guests Ready to rock your open house strategy in 2021? Download your FREE copy of the 2021 Open House Guide now!
MORE >
5 Reasons You Should Use a Showing Service
MORE >
Open House Ideas That Bring in Leads
With Memorial Day behind us and the country easing back to normalcy following more than a year of shutdowns and social distancing, open houses are set to be a big--and we mean big--part of the summer of 2021. You're probably gearing up to host plenty of them in the near future, so why not make sure you're taking every opportunity to delight prospective buyers and win as much future business as possible? Leverage Waze in Your Open House Marketing More than a year since the pandemic began, many people are still opting to use their cars over public transportation and ride-sharing services. So like any good marketing strategy, go where your audience is. Think of Waze — the largest community-run navigation app, with more than 140 million monthly active users — as the digital equivalent of roadside billboards and top-of-neighborhood yard signs. Just as those are intended to lure in passing drivers, so too is Waze. Only Waze has a much, much broader reach—meaning you'll attract far more interested prospects to your open house. In short, it's a much more efficient use of your marketing spend. It works like this: You advertise your open house on Waze during open house hours. As drivers use Waze to navigate around town and monitor traffic patterns, they'll get a notification to attend the open house when they pass within a specified radius of your advertised property. If interested, they can click on the advertisement and get step-by-step directions to the open house. Read this article for a more in-depth look at setting up a Waze advertising campaign. Optimize Your Open House Sign-in Sheet We covered this topic in a previous post, which we encourage you to read to get a more thorough account of what an optimized open house sign-in sheet looks like, but here's the general gist: Too many agents throw a piece of lined notebook paper on an end table and hope it's enough to farm potential prospects. But, it's not. Every open house sign-in sheet should include the following: Address Ask a question Leave a comment or provide feedback to the agent and/or seller What do you like most and least about this home? Real estate needs: Want to buy ASAP Want to buy within the next 12 months Want to sell Just looking Are you working with a real estate agent? What type of property are you interested in? __ beds __ bathrooms Single-family home Condo/Townhouse Specific features: ___ Have you been pre-approved for a loan? Would you like me to send you a free home evaluation for your home? If yes, home address: ____ Do you want to receive a free market report to learn about homes in this area? If yes, zip codes of interest: ____ Make Instagram and Facebook Stories of Your Open House If 2020 taught us anything, it's that we were all pretty efficient at switching to digital equivalents of in-person events. Even as we try to put the pandemic in the rearview, a proportion of prospective buyers remain reluctant to attend open houses. So why leave them out? Why not give them the opportunity to see what happened virtually? With Homesnap Stories, you can add unique, engaging marketing content right to your active listings through the Homesnap Pro app. Add text, emojis, and even use augmented reality to create one-of-a-kind marketing content that you can also share on Facebook and Instagram. Record a voiceover or add music to personalize your Stories even more. Then, once complete, you can push these stories directly to your Facebook and Instagram. Want to get more exposure? Put a little ad spend behind either type of Story on Instagram or Facebook easily with Homesnap Pro Ads. Use Video Ads to Generate Buzz About Your Listing You can also take those video tours and walkthroughs and turn them into Video Ads on Facebook and Instagram. This is a great way to gin up buzz for your open house, show your listing in a more interactive light, and give prospects a taste of your personality. Uploading your videos from your computer or phone and turning them into Video Ads just takes a few minutes. Or, Stream Your Open House Live If you'd rather host a virtual open house live rather than after the fact, it's possible with Homesnap. Using the Homesnap platform, you can promote video tours of a property and schedule and host open houses virtually, much in the same way you would an in-person one. Once complete, scheduled virtual open houses will appear as a purple-colored pin within Homesnap's map view, and property card banners will display the date and time of the virtual open house. Potential buyers can simply click to attend. Read more about how to set up a virtual open house here. To view the original article, visit the Homesnap blog.
MORE >
What to Include in Your Open House Sign-in Sheet
MORE >
Hosting a Virtual Open House? Here's a Checklist
Vaccination is underway, but virtual tours are definitely here to stay. It may be months before travel restrictions and social distancing rules are relaxed throughout the United States, and in that time, virtual home tours are continuing to gain traction. Although they started as a safety precaution, buyers and sellers alike are realizing the benefits. Open houses have long been among the most effective ways to show off any home. They generate excitement and provide opportunities to meet qualified buyers. Virtual open houses have the potential to be just as effective. Plus, they have some advantages all their own: Since it means no travel, more people can attend a virtual open house. Sellers can hold more open house events without disrupting their lives. In many cases, attendees can go back and review open house footage. Buyers from out of town or out of state can be included more easily. Participants can ask questions and zoom in on key home features. Agents Open the Door to Success When They Master Virtual Open Houses The virtual open house has been an unexpected hit with agents, too. Giving a virtual tour draws on the skills you already have, but it also calls on you to grow and stretch. More agents are getting comfortable both in front of and behind the camera. This, in turn, equips them with more fluency in video marketing, one of the most powerful methods for promoting any practice. While there are a few different ways to set up a virtual open house, live streaming video has become more popular than video filmed ahead of time. While static video offers more control and a strong environment for practice, live streaming video is the gold standard thanks to its interactivity and personal touch. But how can you overcome the learning curve quickly? Use these tips to get it done the right way: Get Familiar with Your Hardware and Software You don't need a fancy camera to give a great virtual open house. However, you should know exactly how it works and how to get the most from it. Get plenty of practice with your camera and streaming software before you plan your first event. Stage the Home Before Your Tour Begins Yes, most of your favorite home staging techniques still apply. It's crucial to de-clutter, but no fresh-baked cookies are necessary! When staging, be sure lighting conditions in each room are ideal for your camera. This may sometimes mean bucking old wisdom — use a little less natural light to reduce glare. Experiment with Tripods While many real estate agents are comfortable carrying their phone, tablet, or video recorder from room to room, some feel that this provides an unsteady and incomplete picture. Try using a tripod to stabilize panoramic shots of each room. You can carry a lightweight one or set up inexpensive tripods in each room. Promote Your Virtual Open House Early Virtual events can feel less urgent than in-person ones. With that in mind, you want to leverage every tool at your disposal to begin promoting early. Start with the local MLS, but don't stop there. You can automate email messages and target social media updates to prospective event attendees. Make Time for Your Tour You should schedule at least as much time for your virtual open house as you would for a face-to-face event. Pencil in additional time to tour each room. Leave ample time to answer questions both during and after the tour, too. These conversations are crucial for building buyer enthusiasm. Use Your Tour Footage for Video Marketing Not everyone interested in a property necessarily has the time to go to your event. That's fine: through the magic of video editing and platforms like YouTube, you can make it all available to them. Use your real estate CRM to quickly send out a post-event email linking interested subscribers to the videos. Follow Up With Your Attendees While your no-shows review your video and get up to speed, be sure you reach out to those who had a chance to tune in live. Delta Media Group's Open House Connector is a great way to capture, centralize, and act on participant information. Find out what they loved about the home and keep the conversation going! Remember: You Are the Co-Star The home may be the star in your virtual open house, but you are the co-star. It may take a few tries before you are comfortable, but always strive to bring all of yourself to the presentation. Whether it's your winning sense of humor or your unbeatable market expertise, build relationships by bringing your unique energy. Promote, manage, and follow-up your virtual open houses with DeltaNET 6. RE Technology readers can try it 6 FREE for 30 days. To view the original article, visit the Delta Media Group blog.
MORE >
Virtual Showings and Open Houses: Before, During and After COVID-19
MORE >
How to Stage a Great Virtual Home Showing
With the current state of the world, virtual home tours are increasing in popularity due to CDC social distancing recommendations. Selling and showing a home virtually is a great tool to use while the world is limiting face to face contact, and be more personal than what many expect when utilizing the right tools. Some benefits from virtually showing a home other than limiting the spread of COVID-19 are:
MORE >
Is Sight Unseen the Future of Selling Homes?
MORE >
8 Secrets for Stand Out Virtual Showings
To stop the spread of COVID-19, the real estate industry is pivoting away from in-person events and embracing virtualization. But buying or renting is a big decision--how is a buyer or tenant supposed to choose the right home without stepping foot inside? Enter: virtual showings. Real estate agents are leading stand out virtual showings--either by FaceTiming their client or recording a comprehensive walk through--to keep real estate running as usual. Scroll down to see eight secrets of virtual showings for real estate agents.
MORE >
Cleaning Checklist for Open Houses During Covid
MORE >
Guidance for Open Houses During COVID-19
We are living in an unprecedented time. To say it can be difficult to know what steps to take right now when it comes to holding open houses during COVID-19 is an understatement. It's no secret: open houses can make all the difference when it comes to closing a sale, so it is understandable that you and your clients are still inclined to want to have them. The question of this era: is it still safe to have them? This question is plaguing agents across the country. So we have gathered some of the best guidelines we've encountered for hosting open houses during COVID-19.
MORE >
8 Ways for REALTORS to Get Home Safely
MORE >
Restream for Real Estate: How to take a home showing live everywhere
Real estate is a corner of the economy that has been largely spared from the economic impact of the COVID pandemic. Low interest rates, federal economic support, and the spirit of wanting to be a homeowner in uncertain times have led to massive expansion and record setting transaction volume. But we must think of safety first. Many buyers are purchasing homes subject to viewing and inspection. In other words, buyers are submitting offers sight unseen. The belly of homebuyers today are relying on livestream showings. It's a simple concept. An agent turns on their camera phone and walks through the house talking and pointing the camera.
MORE >
Tips for Launching a Virtual Open House
MORE >
Open House Attendance Down? 6 Ways to Attract Interested Homebuyers
The number of in-person open houses hosted by agents continued to climb in July, rising 5.8% from June and nearly 145% since May, according to Homesnap internal data. Yet, attendance hasn't appeared to recover at the same rate. According to a recent report by the National Association of Realtors, 35% of surveyed would-be open house attendees plan to hold off on attending in-person open houses. Fifteen percent indicated they would not attend unless a viable COVID-19 vaccine or treatment became available, and 20% indicated they would do so only if local medical or government authorities assured them there was no imminent threat to their health.
MORE >
Real Estate Technology to the Rescue: iGUIDE Virtual Showing is a Free Tool to Assist with Physical Distancing
MORE >
Your Guide to Hosting Virtual Open Houses
Real estate agents have successfully been throwing open houses for decades, but virtual open houses are a different ball game. The freedom of the internet allows you to be more flexible and creative with your showing, which can lead to amazing results without inconveniencing your clients. It can be hard to know where exactly to start, though. So we have prepared some easy guidelines for you to follow. Who knows? With some practice, virtual open houses could become your new favorite marketing tactic.
MORE >
Real Estate App Makes Open House Profitable
MORE >
3 Ways to Make Open Houses One of Your Most Valuable Marketing Tools
Open houses have always been a powerful marketing tool, but they are evolving in new and exciting ways to help you succeed. Aaron Kardell, CEO of Homespotter, joined me on a Coffee Chat to share some simple, but powerful, insights about the best ways to take open houses to the next level. Here are three key takeaways: 1. Open House by Appointment Instead of pushing for a ton of people to attend your open house, focus on quality, not quantity. You can do this by setting specific 15 to 30 minute appointments for potential buyers after pre-qualifying them and understanding the seriousness of their interest in the property. Setting appointments allows you to spend quality time with each of the prospects, explaining all of the most positive features of the home and giving them the personal attention they need to answer their questions thoroughly. Spending time with each visitor also allows you to provide specific feedback to the seller to help improve curb appeal, remove clutter, gain pricing feedback, etc. 2. Capture Info on Virtual Open Houses by Replacing the "sign-in" sheet When scheduling a virtual open house, make sure the system you're using requires every visitor to register so you can capture them for follow-up afterwards. While Facebook Live is a nice format, for example, it is much more anonymous. Tools like GoToMeeting, Google Hangouts and others are better at capturing information for those that register and those that attend live. Tools like Spacio, for example, allow you to capture visitor information and then automatically load the information into CRM tools like Contactually and Follow-Up Boss so you can begin a dialogue with consumers you met at live or virtual open houses. 3. Promote Virtual Open Houses on Social Media Today, there are tools that make it easy for you to automatically post new listings online. These tools, like Boost from Homespotter, have expanded to allow you to promote live virtual open houses as well. You can promote virtual open houses on Facebook, Instagram and even Waze now. Just think how many people you can attract to a listing if you can use the power of social media to accomplish it! Also, virtual open houses will encourage consumers to look at more houses virtually and then narrow their requests for live showings only to those homes that are most interesting to them! It's a great way to save time and money for agents and their clients. Don't Miss These Upcoming Coffee Chats! Friday, June 5 What Are the Likely Effects of COVID-19 on the Rental Market? with Cameron Paine of Apartments.com If you would like us to sign you up for all upcoming coffee chats, email [email protected] and she will get you signed up. If you would like to get notifications every time a Coffee Chat recording is published, subscribe to our YouTube channel, RETechnologyInc. Then hit the bell next to the Subscribe button and receive notifications every time we publish new educational videos. Get Recordings of All Coffee Chats If you would like to binge watch all of the Coffee Chat recordings, click here. If you would like a FREE 3-month trial of RE Technology, go to retechnology.com, click Create Account and then use one of these coupon codes: COVID-19A COVID-19B COVID-19M
MORE >
Simple, Proven Tips for Breaking through with Virtual Open Houses
MORE >
Everything You Know About Open Houses Is About to Change
From its invention more than 100 years ago and until recent events, the open house has remained much the same. While agents rushed to provide virtual showings to fill the immediate void, "open houses" are starting to return, but they are not the same. In fact, everything you know about open houses is about to change again with an innovative new service: Open House Every Day. Randall Standard, CEO of VoicePad, who parlayed nearly 20 years of experience in the wireless industry into the creation of the VoicePad platform, has applied his penchant for innovation to creating a new kind of open house. Open House Every Day is safer for sellers and one that buyers can schedule from the curb. And it asks this basic question: Why wait until Sunday? And while Standard admits he didn't invent the concept of holding an open house every day of the week, the new out-of-the-box service he is offering real estate agents is innovation and iteration at its finest. The result is a solution tailored to our times that can help agents and teams win more listings. How it works Open House Every Day is driven by the same well-proven call-to-action process that VoicePad has perfected for its core platform. Standard notes that for all real estate tech, great ideas are defined by the processes behind them. "Good processes always make their way to the bottom line," he says. "Open House Every Day has taken a good call-to-action message and improved it with an exceptional process." Like all traditional open houses, it begins with the yard sign, which is amplified in online listings and social media posts. VoicePad provides an agent with a custom, text-enabled phone number for the agent's Open House Every Day yard sign or yard sign hanger. When a potential home buyer calls the phone number on the sign, up to 10 agents' mobile phones will "ring" simultaneously. This assures that someone is available to take a call. The first available agent to answer the phone gets introduced to the potential buyer. Agents called are limited only to those the listing agents know and trust to show the listing. When an agent's phone rings, they immediately know it's an open house lead calling about scheduling a showing — so the call gets answered. The system delivers the potential buyer's contact details to the agent who was first to accept the call. The system also automatically assigns the caller to the agent in the system's CRM. The Open House Every Day mobile platform allows the agent to schedule the appointment instantly with the buyer, offering available times that are pre-determined by the agent and the seller. The dealmaker feature The Open House Every Day yard sign has a dealmaker feature: an auto-scheduler via text. With millennials comprising a growing share of home buyers, this text feature stands apart in the Open House Every Day offerings. The mobile web schedule interface is attractive, intuitive, and very easy to use. A potential buyer texts the keyword "Open" to the agent's Open House Every Day number. The buyer gets a return text with available showing times. The location of the request is geo-located, so an agent can see where the showing request was initiated. Listing agents control appointment availability as well as the last appointment time of the day, all from their mobile phone. Potential buyers are prompted for additional information (best phone number, name, and email address) to complete the scheduled request. This information is collected and added to the appointment request notification. It just might be the safest open house ever An additional — and essential — benefit to agents using Open House Every Day is the enhanced level of security and safe viewing that it provides. Because of how the process is designed, an agent or team can limit the number of people visiting the home to one client at a time. Safety is increased as agents can vet potential buyer candidates before they enter their client's home. The automatically captured contact information can run through agent safety systems, ensuring the protection of everyone involved. Open House Every Day can also optionally be set up to record agent-client phone conversations automatically. The voice prompt alone is likely to deter someone with evil intentions: It notes, "This call is being recorded for safety and training purposes." Consumer-focused Open House Every Day addresses the elephant in the room when it comes to the "why" when buying any real estate technology: It makes home buying and selling easier for consumers. "Agents and teams suffer from tech fatigue," Standard says. "But agents and teams still desperately want technology that significantly improves the consumer experience while keeping more income 'in-house.' It's also an excellent way to generate additional referral income from agents who show your listing." Agents can win more listings Open House Every Day is available at a flat rate of $39 a month. That makes its benefits-to-investment ratio remarkably attractive. Agents can offer a better open house for sellers as it maximizes the exposure of their home. It's better for agents because it eliminates wasted time that comes with house-sitting. Agents can win more listings by offering sellers what nobody else will: "an open house every day." Agents receive the best leads as the system is designed to capture ready-to act-home buyers. The auto text feature gives consumers — and especially millennials — what they want, when they want it. Plus, that text feature captures contact details automatically and delivers it to the agent's CRM. And Open House Every Day follows the rules of real estate. It can filter out buyers who are represented by another agent — because friends don't hand out buyer leads when they already are working with another agent. Open House Every Day asks the caller if they are an agent or represented by an agent. With Open House Every Day from VoicePad, leads can be answered in real-time, helping customers avoid what they dread most: voicemail. With Open House Every Day's "simul-ring" technology, buyers' calls are answered by an agent, which is what buyers want. Standard says early adopters have found another way to leverage Open House Every Day by using it on existing listings that are not selling. "It's a great way to avoid a conversation about a price reduction, refreshing an otherwise stale listing." This can be the go-to option when an agent's digital strategy fails. Open House Every Day is today's way to hold an open house: it's better and safer than ever. The days of sitting an open house while juggling groups of prospects touring all at once apparently are gone, but most agents will tell you that's a good thing.
MORE >
Detecting Thieves Posing as Buyers, Part 3
MORE >
Detecting Thieves Posing as Buyers, Part 2
Have a buyer who's flirting with you during a home tour? How about a buyer who complains about their spouse? If your buyers are a couple, and one wanders off into the house while the other distracts you, they may actually be a couple of thieves. In part one of this series, we showed you how to look for signs that buyers are actually criminals casing the listing they're touring. This week, we look at a common scam—The Couple's Play—that thieves use to outright steal during a showing, or to plan a future burglary. Watch the video above to learn: Why couples who separate during a tour may actually be thieves The common behaviors thieves display to distract you What you can do when you suspect your buyers are actually burglars Stay tuned next week for the final part of this series!
MORE >
The Essential Open House Checklist for Agents
MORE >
Safe Selling: Reading the Predator, Part 2
What are the signs that a prospect is gearing up to attack you? It's all about the adrenaline, and the physical and verbal signs that adrenaline is surging in a would-be attacker's body. So why are the signs of rising adrenaline important to look out for? Because it's the body hormone that's released when a predator is preparing to attack--and if you see the signs of an adrenaline surge, it's time to get out NOW. Watch the video above to learn: The nonverbal changes to look out for How a predator's voice changes prior to an attack, and why What to look for when a predator is trying to cover up adrenaline surge symptoms Next week: How to show a vacant property safely.
MORE >
Safe Selling: Showing Prep Tips for When You Can't Arrive Early
MORE >
Safe Selling: Stay Out of Outbuildings!
It's one of the simplest, yet most crucial of safety rules to follow when showing a home: Stay out of outbuildings! Even though plenty of properties have structures like detached garages and sheds--and even though many buyers will be interested in seeing them--NEVER go in. So what should an agent do instead? Check out this week's Safe Selling video to find out! Watch the video above to learn: Why outbuildings are a hazard for agents and an opportunity for predators How to physically position yourself when showing outbuildings What to say to clients when they want to see an outside structure And more! Next Week: What to do to prepare a home when you can't arrive early for a showing.
MORE >
Safe Selling: Opening a Lockbox and Door
MORE >
Safe Selling: Dealing with the Dangers of Master Suites
Last week, we talked about how easy it is to get trapped in a bedroom by a dangerous prospect during a showing. We also showed you how to protect yourself when showing standard bedrooms--but what if you're showing an irregularly shaped master suite? In this week's Safe Selling video, we tackle exactly that issue. Watch the video above to learn: What to do when a prospect has a question from the en suite bathroom. How to protect yourself when you have to enter the bedroom to speak to the prospect. How to use the door jamb to protect yourself--and what side of the jamb is best to stand by for an easy escape. A diagram possible escape routes when showing a master bedroom Next week: How to open a lockbox and door without putting yourself in a vulnerable position.
MORE >
Safe Selling: Why Bedrooms Are a Danger Zone During Showings
MORE >
Safe Selling: How to Keep a Safe Distance from Prospects at a Showing
Let's talk about safe spaces--and, no, we don't mean that kind of safe space. In this case, a "safe space" is a healthy amount of distance that you should keep between you and prospects during a showing. As we know, a certain amount of distance makes good safety sense. But how close is too close--and how can you tell if you're far enough away to reduce your risk of being attacked by a predator posing as a prospect? In this week's Safe Selling episode, find out a quick and discreet way to make sure you're staying a safe distance away from a client. Watch the video above to learn more! Next week: Why bedrooms can be a danger zone during showings—and how you can navigate them safely.
MORE >
Safe Selling: How to Maximize Your Visibility During a Showing
MORE >
Tips to Ace Your Next Open House
An open house is a powerful way to attract qualified and serious buyers in your local area. While some open house visitors are just "curious," the majority of people willing to attend a showing are serious about purchasing soon. Some of them might even be ready to do so in the next few weeks--ideal for your seller. Not only does an open house get a listing much more attention, but it also helps buyers do part of the work of "qualifying" themselves. If something about a home doesn't meet a buyer's needs, then he or she can find that out at the open house – saving time for everyone in the process.
MORE >
The New Agent's Guide to Open Houses
MORE >
Maybe It's Time to Add New Homes to Your Showing Schedule
The National Association of REALTORS released its June 2019 Housing Snapshot for Existing-Home Sales. Here is what they shared on the NAR Instagram account: Living outside Orlando, I know the new home market is very strong. Checking locally, I see 397 new home communities with 3,502 new homes and 1,008 quick move-in. After reading the NAR announcement, I wanted to see what June looked like for new home sales nationwide. Here is what I found:
MORE >
6 Effective Real Estate Open House Ideas for Today's Real Estate Agent
MORE >
A-Z Open House Tips
Successful REALTORS are quite often successful open house experts. It may seem old school, or even cliche, but open houses are a tried and true way for agents to meet potential clients, break the ice, and gain their business. It's a perfect setting to start a conversation about real estate, without seeming intrusive or pushy. A fine-tuned open house strategy can help you engage, capture and retain leads. Whether you're a seasoned pro, or haven't closed your first deal yet, this complete open house guide from RPR offers proven tips and strategies. You'll learn how to plan for, orchestrate, and follow-up on lead-generating open house tactics that will get results.
MORE >
Dealing with Squatters: How to Ask Them to Leave
MORE >
Dealing with Squatters: How to Calm an Agitated Person
So the home you're showing has a squatter, and the squatter not only won't leave the property, but the situation seems to be headed toward a confrontation. What can you do de-escalate the situation? Watch this week's episode of "Real Answers" to find out: The body language to use to show squatters that you're not a threat Why you should validate the squatters feelings, even if you don't agree with them A sample script to use to talk down an agitated squatter Once you've calmed the squatter and de-escalated the situation, it's time to take the next step. What's that? Find out in next week's episode of Real Answers!  
MORE >
Dealing with Squatters: Avoiding Confrontation During a Showing
MORE >
How to Show a Vacant Property Safely, Part 2
We know that vacant homes are convenient to show--but they can also be dangerous if occupied by squatters. Last week, we learned how to check for squatters around the exterior of the house. Now, it's time to go inside. What should you do if you know (or are unsure) that squatters ARE present? It's all about psychology! Watch the video above to learn: What to do when you first open the door Why respect is the name of the game, even if they're there illegally A script for speaking to squatters and defusing a potentially tense situation How and why you should offer squatters ample time to leave before a showing--and even a gift!  
MORE >
How to Show a Vacant Property Safely, Part 1
MORE >
Safe Selling: Reading the Predator, Part 2
What are the signs that a prospect is gearing up to attack you? It's all about the adrenaline, and the physical and verbal signs that adrenaline is surging in a would-be attacker's body. So why are the signs of rising adrenaline important to look out for? Because it's the body hormone that's released when a predator is preparing to attack--and if you see the signs of an adrenaline surge, it's time to get out NOW. Watch the video above to learn: The nonverbal changes to look out for How a predator's voice changes prior to an attack, and why What to look for when a predator is trying to cover up adrenaline surge symptoms
MORE >
Safe Selling: Showing Prep Tips for When You Can't Arrive Early
MORE >
Safe Selling: Stay Out of Outbuildings!
It's one of the simplest, yet most crucial of safety rules to follow when showing a home: Stay out of outbuildings! Even though plenty of properties have structures like detached garages and sheds--and even though many buyers will be interested in seeing them--NEVER go in. So what should an agent do instead? Check out this week's Safe Selling video to find out! Watch the video above to learn: Why outbuildings are a hazard for agents and an opportunity for predators How to physically position yourself when showing outbuildings What to say to clients when they want to see an outside structure And more!
MORE >
Safe Selling: Easy Tricks for Navigating Stairs
MORE >
Safe Selling: Opening a Lockbox and Door
Never turn your back on a client... and we mean that literally. To prevent finding yourself in a vulnerable situation with a prospect, we know to never physically turn away from them. But what should you do in times where that seems inevitable--like opening a lockbox or door? In this week's Safe Selling video, we talk about just that. Watch the video above to learn: Precisely how to stand so that you can open a lockbox while still being able to see the client How to open a door and walk through so that your back is never to the client How to come off as warm and welcoming when opening door or lockboxes, rather than awkward or standoffish.
MORE >
Safe Selling: Dealing with the Dangers of Master Suites
MORE >
Safe Selling: Why Bedrooms Are a Danger Zone During Showings
As an agent, you've heard it a hundred times: don't go into the basement or attic during a showing because you can easily get trapped and assaulted by unsavory prospects. While that seems like a no-brainer, there's another place in the house that you need to be cautious about--and for very similar reasons. That place? Bedrooms! In this week's Safe Selling video, we break down why bedrooms are a danger zone for agents during a showing. Watch the video above to learn: The two major reasons that bedrooms are unsafe for agents Why bedrooms are ideal for carrying out an attack What to do when a client has a question about a bedroom Where to safely stand when a client is viewing a bedroom
MORE >
Safe Selling: Quick Hack for Keeping a Safe Distance from Prospects at a Showing
MORE >
Safe Selling: The 'No Influence' Sales Strategy
Here's something you can try on your next showing: the 'No Influence' sales strategy. It's a showing technique you can use to keep yourself safe from potential predators--all while making legitimate prospects feel like a million bucks. From childhood, we're taught to make others comfortable in our presence, and as Realtors, a certain interpersonal ease is important in building a thriving client base. Because of this, too many agents ignore their gut instincts to protect themselves during in-person interactions with new prospects. They fear alienating a prospect by making them uncomfortable. The No Influence technique lets agents seem every inch the gracious guide during a showing. Meanwhile, behind the scenes, this strategy actually allows agents to subtly position themselves in a protective manner during showings. Check out this week's Safe Selling video to learn more about this technique. Watch the video above to: Get a script to use with prospects during the home tour Learn why this technique pleases legit buyers and deflates predators
MORE >
Safe Selling: Why You Should Take the (Literal) High Ground
MORE >
Safe Selling: How to Maximize Your Visibility During a Showing
The appointment is set, and you've just arrived ahead of your prospect for a showing. Beyond previewing the home to learn its layout and features, this is the perfect time to prepare the listing so that you're safe during the showing. How? As we've learned, the first step is to open all the blinds and turn on all the lights so that neighbors can see in. The next step? "Blocking" your presentation. "Blocking" is a theatrical term that means planning where you're going to stand. In the case of real estate, that means planning where you're going to stand during different segments of your showing presentation. Watch the video above to learn: Why windows are your key to staying safe Why it's important not to stand somewhere you can't be seen from the outside of the listing The red flag that predators may display when you've denied them an opportunity to attack
MORE >
Safe Selling: 4 Times You Should ALWAYS Have a Showing Buddy
MORE >
Safe Selling: The 3 Things You Should Do to Prepare a Home for a Showing
All the world's a stage--as should be the home you're showing to a new prospect. We don't mean a "stage" in the sense of everything being picture perfect (although that helps). Rather, we mean that, for safety purposes, a listing should be treated like a stage where the outside world can see inside in case something goes wrong. As we know, predators who target real estate agents aim to isolate them where agents can't be seen or heard. By increasing visibility into a listing during a showing, you increase the odds of staying safe and even deterring an attack. Watch the video above to learn: The three things you should do to prepare a listing for maximum safety during a showing Why it's important that neighbors and passersby can see or hear you during a showing How doing the three things above help to foil a predator's plan
MORE >
Is Real Estate Foot Traffic Disappearing?
MORE >
Safe Selling: Is Your Prospect Actually a Thief? How to Tell
 Did you know that a prospective buyer who 'dust checks' a window may really be a thief who's planning to burglarize the listing later? That's just one of the many behaviors thieves display that--if you know what to look for--can give them away as criminals. Last week, we touched briefly on how to identify thieves during a home tour, and we showed you a scam called "The Couple's Play." This week, we're diving deeper by highlighting some of the most common behaviors thieves display during a showing. Watch the video above to learn: Why single buyers are more likely to be burglars How thieves use a 'dust check' to unlock windows for later reentry The type of photo a prospect takes that fingers them as a likely thief Questions to look out for that indicate your prospect may intend to burglarize the home later Tune in next week when we'll learn more about staying safe on the job!  
MORE >
Amazon Automates the Open House
MORE >
How to Narrow Your Buyer's Choices and Reduce Showings Before Even Leaving the Office
Tired of driving drudgery? We've got the buyer's agent tips you need to put a stop to those endless showings. Clients may love looking at houses, but you deserve to live a life outside the office. How Can You Cut Down on the Property Parade? We'll look at common scenarios, and workarounds that are friendly but firm for putting an end to unnecessary showings in these real estate buyer's agent tips:
MORE >
Realtor Safety: Preparing a Home for a Showing
MORE >
10 Must-Read Ideas for Your Next Open House
It's open house season! It's exciting and traumatizing all at once. So much to do, so many shoe covers to put on. It also means it's time to think outside the box when drawing people in and forcing them to stay. And by forcing, we don't mean tying them to the chairs, that would be illegal. We mean enticing them to stay so well they'll want to buy the home and stay forever. Here are 10 wacky, awesome ideas for your next open house:
MORE >
3 Must-have Handouts for Your Next Open House
MORE >
Are Your Open Houses Just Seller-Pleasing Tools?
Take a survey of Realtors asking their attitude about real estate open houses and you'll get responses across the board from "hate them" to "they're great." It's really the wrong question to ask. More appropriate is, "Do you get new business from your open houses?" Statistics show time and again that only a tiny percentage of homes sell because of an open house, so what are we trying to accomplish other than to make our sellers feel good?
MORE >
Quick Tip: Pair These 2 Tools to Automate Showing Feedback Requests
MORE >
Real Estate Lead Conversion: 6 Tips for Getting More Appointments
As a real estate agent, there are two paths you can take to grow your business: As a marketing professional, you can increase lead spend or change the source to generate more leads.  A pile of leads is not a goldmine, however, until you convert your leads to appointments. As a sales professional, you can grow your business by improving conversions or by leveraging your existing sphere of influence.
MORE >
The Ultimate Open House Strategy
MORE >
Open House Pros and Cons for Real Estate Agents
"Should I host an open house for my client?" It's a question that nearly every real estate agent asks at some point in their career. Yet, there never seems to be a clear answer. Open house pros and cons have been debated among industry experts for years, and both sides have valid points. Many factors should be considered, including your client's needs, where the house is located and your marketing plan for the home. But to help make your decision, here are some open house pros and cons.
MORE >
The Benefits of Home Staging: An Influential Tool to Decrease Time on Market
MORE >
Friday Freebie: Brandable Property Showing Checklist for Your Buyers
So your buyers (mostly) know what they want in a home—but do they remember which homes matched their criteria after they tour them? After seeing a dozen or so houses, it may all start to blend together in your clients' minds. Which house was it again that had the great master suite, but an underwhelming kitchen? Or was it a great kitchen but an underwhelming master bedroom? Whatever the case, it sounds like your clients need a little help with keeping all the properties they see straight. This week, we're highlighting a free checklist, brandable to you, that can help. Brandable House Hunting Checklist, courtesy of Homes.com
MORE >
How to Win More Leads at Your Next Open House
MORE >
3 Steps to Hosting the Best Open House
It's no secret that hosting an open house is one of the keys to selling a home – the more people the see it, the more exposure, and better chance that'll someone will grab it. But have you thought about how important it is for you, the Realtor, to host an open house? Not only is this a crucial chance for the younger or greener agents to get a shot at getting into the real estate game, but it's one of the best ways to start building up relationships with buyers and potential leads on the market. Just an open house in itself can be a daunting task, let alone having to worry about capturing every lead and building a relationship with everyone who steps through the front door. Don't worry, it's a far simpler task than it may seem; it will be well worth it in the end. Don't forget, 48 percent of home purchases come about because of an open house, and agents on average get about 50 percent more business from open houses than online leads—both excellent arguments for mastering the art of the open house. Your best open house starts here... Ask any Realtor, the most important aspect of holding an open house is capturing leads—that is, outside of selling the home, of course. More often than not, the people that come to open houses aren't necessarily ready right then and there to write a check, and may not be for a while. So, why even pay attention to those obvious cold leads at your open house, right? Wrong! Keep it personal As with any sale in your pipeline, you can probably break out the visitors to your open house into the three categories of hot leads, warm leads, and cold leads. Hot Leads - Picture your hot leads as the just-married couple who walk into the house like they already own it. They're taking measurements and planning where to hang their favorite painting and what the best place is for their TV in the living room. Warm Leads - These are the folks that are ready to make a purchase. They may have recently been approved for a loan or mortgage, but they're not quite sure of what they want yet. They're coming to your open house an in effort to figure just that out. Cold Leads - Here's the group you may be quick to disregard, but we urge you to treat them as equals to that hot lead! The thing is, 48 percent of buyers or leads are going to open houses purely for the informational aspect. You need to maximize your engagement with them into something that'll last well beyond the open house.
MORE >
The One Thing You Need to Know About Open House Signs
MORE >
SentriLock Adds New Mobile Agent Safety Feature
Lockbox provider SentriLock's mobile app now offers an agent safety feature. Officially launched in October, the new update to the SentriSmart mobile app alerts others when an agent is in a potentially dangerous situation. How It Works When an agent uses SentriSmart to open the lockbox, the application begins tracking the time and sends a request for a status update every 15 minutes. The Realtor has the option of clicking on their mobile device to either reset the next status request for 15 minutes later, stopping the status requests, or sending an alert. If the agent doesn't respond at all, an automated emergency safety alert goes out to designated contacts, including colleagues, family and friends to inform them of a potential problem so they can provide assistance. "The key difference in the functionality of the SentriSmart safety application compared to others is that it requires no other action by the agent to have the alert set. It goes automatically when agent opens the lockbox," explains Greg Sheldon, CEO of SentriLock. Sheldon also notes that the app feature is a free add-on benefit for Realtors who are already using the SentriSmart application. Realtors can update their mobile application to the newest version, which includes the new safety feature, through either the Apple or Google Play stores online.
MORE >
Spooky Encounters of the Real Estate Kind: 6 True Tales of Terror
MORE >
Using RPR® to Ensure a Successful Buyer’s Tour: Preparation is Key (10/10)
Monday, October 10, 2016 at 12:00 PM PDT There are several, simple yet highly rewarding steps a REALTOR® can take to ensure a successful buyer's tour. From complete and accurate preparation, to mapping out the tour, and finally following-up with decision-prompting data, RPR® has all of your business-building bases covered. Join this free workshop to learn how to use RPR to create and manage a productive buyer tour. You will learn how to: Establish buyer need and expectation, and then confidently educate him/her on what the local market brings to bear Conduct a thorough property search by active, pending and sold listings; distressed properties, neighborhoods, schools, distance, and more Generate an attention-grabbing report for each of the properties on your tour, complete with your contact information, photos, and basic facts about the listing Create a follow-up email strategy using advanced RPR reports for enhanced information sharing Scope out those last-minute property sightings using the RPR app, including FSBOs Register now!
MORE >
New SentriLock and Homesnap Integration Helps Agents Shine During Showings
MORE >
6 Proven Steps to Set Up More Appointments by Phone
Sometimes gaining new clients can be difficult by phone since you can't always get the same connection you do in person. Fortunately, Coach Tom Ferry is back with his secrets to wowing everyone you speak to by phone and getting them to come in for a meeting. Tip number 4 will change everything for you!
MORE >
10 Actionable Tips for Booking More Real Estate Appointments
MORE >
Using RPR® to Ensure a Successful Buyer’s Tour: Preparation is Key (7/19)
Tuesday, July 19, 2016 at 8:00 AM PDT There are several, simple yet highly rewarding steps a REALTOR® can take to ensure a successful buyer's tour. From complete and accurate preparation, to mapping out the tour, and finally following-up with decision-prompting data, RPR® has all of your business-building bases covered. Join this free workshop to learn how to use RPR to create and manage a productive buyer tour. You will learn how to: Establish buyer need and expectation, and then confidently educate him/her on what the local market brings to bear Conduct a thorough property search by active, pending and sold listings; distressed properties, neighborhoods, schools, distance, and more Generate an attention-grabbing report for each of the properties on your tour, complete with your contact information, photos, and basic facts about the listing Create a follow-up email strategy using advanced RPR reports for enhanced information sharing Scope out those last-minute property sightings using the RPR app, including FSBOs Register now!
MORE >
4 Tips to Ensure a Successful Open House
MORE >
Friday Freebie: How to Save 25+ Hours per Month Scheduling Showings
"I'm just too busy," is the mantra of the harried professional, and it's often the excuse some of us employ to avoid the gym or some other aspect of taking care of ourselves. Rarely is this ever strictly the case; one can typically shuffle things around to make time for the things that are truly important. That said, we all need a little assistance in reclaiming our free time. Often, it's the tools we use that can help the most. Today, we're looking at a tool that purports to save agents up to three workdays every month by simplifying a common time-consuming task. Free 30-day Trial of Showing Scheduler TourSimply TourSimply is a showing management solution that saves its users six hours every week, according to the company's own market research. This is made possible via a shared digital calendar that lets sellers and their agents note the times a home is available to show. Buyer's agents can consult this calendar to schedule and confirm showings right from its interface in under one minute. Real time alerts on new showings, cancelled showings, and changed times are sent to all parties via text and email. This lets all parties avoid the time-consuming back-and-forth between sellers, their agent, buyers, and the buyer's agent when scheduling (and rescheduling) showings. TourSimply also handles feedback requests after a showing is over. Listing agents can select questions they'd like to ask buyers, and the solution will send the request (and subsequent reminders) to the buyer's agent. The company has some neat data-centered upgrades to this feature, and others, that are expected to launch later this year. In the meantime, you can take this solution for a free 30-day test drive right now. Try it today!
MORE >
A New, More Efficient Way to Schedule Showings
MORE >
Is Your Communication Style Outdated?
Like a shot of adrenaline in the arm, technology has invigorated the real estate industry by accelerating the time it takes to list, show and close a home. Think about it--buyers no longer need to look in the paper or troll neighborhoods looking for "For Sale" signs; they can find homes for sale from wherever they are, right from their mobile phone. Agents no longer have to meet clients to sign papers; today, everything can be signed electronically. However, if you think about how information is communicated between agents and clients, the model we use is still very linear. For example, let's say a couple found a home online that they're interested in viewing. First, they tell their agent that they want to view the home. Their agent then contacts the listing agent, who, in turn, contacts the sellers to propose a viewing time. Then the communication reverses and goes back through the listing agent to the buyer's agent and, finally, back to the buyers. That's five touchpoints just to schedule a showing--and we're assuming the buyers are available at the proposed time! If not, the process starts all over again. As you can imagine, the touchpoints in this linear model add up pretty quick. The more touchpoints, the slower the process becomes and the greater the chance for miscommunication. The image below from showing solution TourSimply illustrates this well:
MORE >
6 Tips to Increase Your Real Estate Feedback Response Rate
MORE >
What Successful Agents Do Before, During, and After the Open House
Open houses are important to agents for a number of reasons. Hosting an open house offers agents the chance to showcase their seller's listing, build relationships with prospective clients, and maybe even net an offer on the property. The most successful real estate professionals know that getting the most from your open house requires more than just cleaning the house and placing an ad in the paper. It's important to have a strategy for each phase of the open house: before, during, and after. Before: Promotion and Presentation Your "Before" open house plan should cover all of the bases by focusing on the advertising of the event, as well as preparation and presentation of the property. Promote online and off Cover all your bases when it comes to the promotion of your open house. Sure, Twitter and Facebook are all the rage right now, but newspaper ads, flyers, and open house signs are still powerful tools to let the neighborhood know about your upcoming event. Keep up appearances This one is pretty obvious, but it bears repeating. A home that isn't sparkling clean can really deter visitors from buying. Make sure your property is scrubbed down, the lawn is trimmed, and any pet-related items (dog beds, litter boxes) are hidden away. No buyer wants to see a soiled litter box when they're trying to imagine their own life in a home. Secure all valuables With multiple strangers filing through a property, theft is always a possibility. Make sure to keep an eye on all visitors, as well as preemptively store and secure all valuables. This includes checking with your sellers to make sure that any expensive or potentially dangerous pharmaceuticals have been properly locked away.
MORE >
You Say You’re "Always Available" -- Is That Really True?
MORE >
Hosting an Open House? Don't Forget Your iPad
Refreshments, flyers, business cards--the list of open house necessities goes on. Does your list include an iPad or other tablet? If not, consider it incomplete. Tablets are the Swiss-army knife of digital tools, and they can help agents wow potential buyers and capture more leads. Here's how. 1. Replace the Paper Sign-in Sheet. Toss the paper and pen and let visitors sign in on your iPad. Mobile apps like Open Home Pro, BrightOpen, and AM Open House make this a snap. Even better, they simplify capturing lead information and automatically send follow-up emails to prospects. These apps can also sync with your CRM or export contact data. 2. Help Buyers Visualize Living in the Home. Ever had visitors who love the kitchen but hate the wallpaper? Virtual reality apps like Paint Tester let prospects change the paint color of any room. Just snap a picture, pick the desired paint color, and voila--your potential buyers are one step closer to picturing themselves in your listing. Paint companies like Behr and Sherwin Williams offer similar apps. Homestyler goes one step further. This app lets you show visitors how furniture, light fixtures, rugs, and items would look in the home.
MORE >
Open House Ideas That Even Pinterest Would Approve Of
MORE >
4 Reasons Why Selling a House is Like Dating
Selling a property is a lot like looking for a spouse – nobody is sold by just seeing a few pictures. How you present yourself matters. Real estate marketing takes time and effort. You want the first impression to be a good one because a lot of times, that's all people pay attention to – how they feel in the first few minutes. You want to put your best foot forward – just like in dating. Highlight your best features and hook them. The good parts might then outweigh the bad if they are already falling in love. You want to look your best and make sure you are available. How to put your best foot forward: 1. Pique someone's interest. What are the best qualities of the house? You want to market those first and grab the buyers' attention. Highlight the most liked and endearing parts of the home that make buyers take a second look. 2. Go on more than one date. It's a numbers game. The more at bat, the more likely you are to find "the one" – every once in a while finding love at first sight. So in showings, you want to try to get as many people as you can in to see the house. The key to that is good real estate marketing. You want your listing in as many places as possible. Look into online advertising such as social media and ads.
MORE >
#RealtorProblems That Only Happen in Winter
MORE >
Best of 2014: 11 Staging Tips to Get Your Listings Sold
We're continuing an annual tradition of counting down our top 10 articles of the year. The following article was originally published back in October and is #8 in our countdown. See #9 here. Sometimes a few interior tweaks are all you need to help your stagnant listings fly off the market. We've rounded up successful real estate agents, professional stagers and interior designers to share staging secrets so you can focus more on closings and less on staging! 1. Virtual Staging: 92% of homebuyers search online during their home search, so your first step should be staging your listings appropriately for photographs. Lisa Reinecke and Lois Marris, RE/MAX North Central, shared a must-follow list of virtual staging tips: Remove decorative items from tops of cabinets; they can appear as clutter in small photos. Never show an empty space. If you have a vacant listing, invest in a whole-house staging to highlight how the space can be used with furniture that is appropriate for the size of the room. 2. Digital photo gallery: If the homeowner has digital photos of the exterior (gardens, outdoor entertaining areas, pool area etc.), set up a photo slideshow in a digital photo frame and play during showings. Buyers will be able to see the full potential of the home's outdoor space, said Charlene Storozuk of Dezigner Digz. This tip is especially useful for homes listed during the off-season or in inclement weather.
MORE >
Best of 2014: 11 Questions to Ask Buyers After a Showing
MORE >
11 Staging Tips to Get Your Listings Sold
This post comes to us from the HomeFinder.com blog: Sometimes a few interior tweaks are all you need to help your stagnant listings fly off the market. We've rounded up successful real estate agents, professional stagers and interior designers to share staging secrets so you can focus more on closings and less on staging! 1. Virtual Staging: 92% of homebuyers search online during their home search, so your first step should be staging your listings appropriately for photographs. Lisa Reinecke and Lois Marris, RE/MAX North Central, shared a must-follow list of virtual staging tips: Remove decorative items from tops of cabinets; they can appear as clutter in small photos. Never show an empty space. If you have a vacant listing, invest in a whole-house staging to highlight how the space can be used with furniture that is appropriate for the size of the room. 2. Digital photo gallery: If the homeowner has digital photos of the exterior (gardens, outdoor entertaining areas, pool area etc.), set up a photo slideshow in a digital photo frame and play during showings. Buyers will be able to see the full potential of the home's outdoor space, said Charlene Storozuk of Dezigner Digz. This tip is especially useful for homes listed during the off-season or in inclement weather.
MORE >