The Buzz About Inventory

What’s the word on the street about the 2014 Spring Market? It’s all about the inventory.

This time last year in Brookfield there were over 20 more Single Family homes listed than there is today. While there’s no definitive answer why, we can speculate a few things:

1) We have lived through the winter that just. Won’t. Quit. There are STILL piles of snow in my yard, no buds on the trees, few birds chirping outside, and I’m driving the kids to the bus stop in the morning, not to mention I’m STILL looking for matching gloves, hats, and zipping heavy coats. By April 5th last year (which is NEXT WEEK), I had the flower beds mulched and the deck furniture out of the shed. There’s a photo on my phone of my husband standing on the deck wearing shorts and flip-flops during a particularly warm spring day. Now? Well, see aforementioned hats, gloves, and heavy coats.

2) Sellers still aren’t confident in the economy. And, well, that makes sense since it’s been a little, uh, shaky in the last couple of years, BUT! Facts are that interest rates are rising and buyers are getting antsy. Should we rebound like everyone is anticipating (and hoping!), buyers could start to retreat. There was a time not too long ago where rates were in the double digits! Now, anything below 6% is still VERY good. There are plenty of mortgage products out there that work for buyers. People are getting pre-approved (not just pre-qualified) which means that if all the planets align, closings in 30-45 days are a strong possibility. What motivated seller wouldn’t want to see a pre-approved buyer and a quick closing appear in their offer?

3) Realtors are running out of stuff to show buyers. I’ve spent the last few weekends with three sets of (pre-approved!) buyers that have a broad spectrum of “Must-Haves” from multiple towns to multiple style homes to varying square footage. They’re simply looking for a place to settle and raise their families. While their price range isn’t very broad, being open to seeing multiple towns and not being hard set on the tough-to-find center hall colonial, I have showed these three families more than 35 homes combined in just three weeks. I have nothing left to show them.

During today’s office meeting, our manager spoke about the lack of inventory and how it’s low in so many area towns year-over-year from 2013. Her analogy was impressive. If our Real Estate business is a shoe store, our customers are coming to us looking for shoes. It’s our job to service our customers. What happens when the shelves are bare? Our customers might move on to find a new store, or they might keep wearing their old shoes, but either way, we aren’t servicing them like we ought to be. We have to go get more shoes to put on our shelves. Then it’s up to the customer to find the one that fits.

Sellers should know that the market has changed. If you’ve tried to sell your home in the past and were underwater in your mortgage due to the economy, things could be really different for you right now. Why not try again? Contact me for your complimentary, no obligation, Quality Home Assessment! This might just be the time for you to add your inventory to the Real Estate shelf. The buyers are waiting. After all, when the shoe fits…

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Allyson Kane is a certified professional Realtor(R) and is licensed in the State of Connecticut. Having lived in the area for nearly 20-years, Allyson brings hometown knowledge together with her corporate marketing background and passion for the real estate industry to provide her clients with the best professional service in northern Fairfield and southern Litchfield counties. If you’re looking to sell your home,contact Allyson today.

Allyson M. Kane, Realtor
“Your Digital Expert in Real Estate”

Getting My Feet Wet With Video Marketing

Before I began my career in Real Estate, I worked for nearly 15-years in the field of marketing. My job titles varied and therefore, so does my experience. Coming into the working world in the late 90’s, I was right at the beginning of the Dot Com bubble (but luckily, had the sense to stay out) and the early part of my career was filled with print campaigns and fax blasts (fax blasts!). Email was used as a replacement for Office Memos, but no one had discovered the power of email marketing just yet.

Over a few years, the paradigm shifted and online marketing launched with gusto. Digital ad campaigns, email blasts, website redesigns, user generated content, blogging, Social Media(!), viral videos and more. Social Media is at the top of search results right along with video.

When I’m working for sellers, I’m always looking to get the property in front of the most people; casting wide nets on social media networks and in advertising campaigns. I always offer my sellers tailored marketing plans specific to their listed property. While a Visual Tour video might make it to the top of search results, it loses a viral component. Buyers want to identify with the property. They want to see someone point out the positives and unique property features before they can really begin to envision themselves in that home. By being in front of the camera, I’m able to engage my audience, bring them up to speed on exactly where we are with regard to nearby roads, the neighborhood itself, as well as the actual property details. I’m hoping this is what would cause someone to ‘share’ the video.

Personally, this is a big deal for me. As someone who has always hated the sound of her own voice and feels much more comfortable scripting from behind a computer screen (with the luxury of a delete key), video tends to be off the cuff, quick thinking, real time, and consistent eye-contact. I launched out of my comfort zone and gave it a shot.

My first Property Listing Video is currently in production and I’ll be happy to share it with you here as soon as it’s complete. Here’s a sneak peek still shot taken by my seller while I was recording.