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Why We Really Should Be ‘Marketing Executives’

Much of what Realtors do is perceived as Sales, but when I think of a salesperson, I think of 1960 when men in suits traipsed door-to-door with gigantic vacuum cleaners or suitcases full of Encyclopedias. These were real sales people. These were unique skills that persuaded folks to purchase items they didn’t necessarily need. This is much different than what I do.

Once I list your home, I have a checklist of mini jobs to perform. I’ll be advertising the property in the local papers, scheduling Open Houses and Broker Tours, developing print campaign mailings, utilizing my social media and web outreach, and maximizing the Prudential name. By doing this, I am working to get your property the biggest and best targeted exposure that I can. Each of my listings has a personalized marketing plan based on demographics such as first-time home buyers, unique homes, commuters, etc. I am marketing your property, not selling it. I can’t force the buyers to be interested in your home. Perhaps it only has three bedrooms and they need four. Perhaps it boarders a main road and they’re insistent on a neighborhood. Perhaps they need a two car garage for their motorcycles and boat and your home only has one. Remember, you can lead a horse to water, but you can’t make them drink.

The selling part comes into play when the buyers show interest. Once a buyer starts to envision themselves in your home, Realtors are able to reach into their sack of sales skills and start selling. That’s when I would point out the benefits your home has to offer – for example, how the pool is great for those hot summer days or the fact that there are so many kids in the neighborhood, the local elementary school can only send one bus to the neighborhood. I’d mention how low the taxes are for such a great house or how the home is wired for a generator. This is our time to shine and get the sellers the best possible market value dollar for their home.

When you hire me to represent you as a seller, we become a team. I’m out there looking out for your best interest. You can trust that I’m working daily to make sure your house is getting market exposure through every possible avenue I can access. My passion for this job is unlike any other role I’ve ever had and I want to help you meet your goals while also meeting your expectations.

Working With Buyers in the Age of Information

Have you ever used your smart phone to settle an argument? To find out that little fact nugget that you’re blanking on at the moment? To look up what the name of that actor was is that movie? We all know that in the digital age, everyone seems to have answers to everything at their fingertips. This is especially evident in the Real Estate industry where there are multiple apps and websites that are free to any user that knows how to navigate a smart phone, tablet, or the internet. Back in the days where the Multiple Listing Service put out bound paper books, the only people with access to these books were agents. Now, we have the same information that everyone else does (but we get it sooner and it’s more accurate).

Third party websites such as Zillow and Trulia and Realtor.com get property information from a multitude of sources including Public Records. My husband and I bought a home in October of 2012 and the public record town website still does not have us listed as the homeowner. It’s March. Public Record is a little behind. This is why you still need a Realtor. *wink*

Buyers call us up with a tremendous amount of knowledge. They know what they want (for example, a 3 bedroom house is a nice neighborhood with a flat back yard and a pool. And, oh! We need it for under $250,000) and chances are they’ve already searched the internet and done research on their town(s) of interest. Buyers may have been watching a house in their neighborhood waiting for the price to drop or for the perfect moment to make an offer. Often, buyers call us with a list of homes they want to see and don’t even give us a chance to show them others that we think they might be interested in based on their criteria. I was this buyer. I drove our agent crazy (and she reminds me of that daily!) with email after email saying things like, “Drove by this one today! There’s a sign! Can we go see it?” or, “Did you know this just came on? I saw it on Zillow.” (Yes, she knew. And she knew a week ago.).

Buyers are educated and hold their cards close to the vest. Realtors may need to have carefully worded discussions about how we’re on their side. We are a team. And we took an oath to put the needs of our clients ahead of our own needs. My clients are important to me. I don’t have set hours. I work nights and weekends. You can email me any time. I make sure my clients are getting the best possible service and when we part ways after a successful closing, I want you to have had a positive experience, remember me in a positive light, and tell everyone you know that your home-buying experience was stress free and easy. I want you to think me when it comes to real estate services and if you can’t do that, then I’m not doing my job correctly.

If you’re thinking about buying, now is the time to do it. We believe the market is heading back up. The low of the low has arrived. If you want to take advantage of the low market, start your search today. And if you don’t believe me, here’s a link to an article on that thing called the internet that tells you so.

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Allyson Kane is a certified professional Realtor(R) 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 in the market for a new home and are ready to take the next step in your search, contact Allyson today. 

“Well, Zillow told me…”

Whether I’m meeting someone for the first time or gathering at a family function, the topic of Real Estate these days always surfaces for conversation. It often starts with, “Oh you’re a Realtor? Tough market, huh.” or “How’s business, Allyson? I hear it’s just a bad time to sell.”

My question back is, “Where did you hear that?” and most of the time the answer is “From Zillow (or Trulia, or some other third party website).”

Zillow and Trulia and other sites are fantastic resources for people who are just beginning their search as buyers. They help provide a lay of the land so to speak – a 100,000 foot view of what each town is producing as far as home sales. They know what sold last month versus what sold that same month last year and they can provide a nice visual graph to illustrate that.

These websites compile their information from public record. They know what a home is assessed for (which is the amount the homeowner pays their taxes on, NOT the market value of the home), they know the price it was last sold for and the date it was sold. They are able to compare your house to your neighbors house or any other house on your block or in your town. They know how many bedrooms you have, how many bathrooms you have, how many acres you have. They know if you have a pool.

Here’s what they don’t know:

They don’t know if you just updated your kitchen with granite and top of the line appliances.

They don’t know if you have beautiful crown molding or other unique architectural flair.

They don’t know if the barn on your property has a legal in-law apartment above it.

They don’t know if the neighbors house has an easement in place allowing the other neighbor to use part of their property to access their own.

They don’t know if you have a shared driveway or own the private road leading to your house.

They don’t know that you just put on a new roof, put in new windows, replaced your boiler, or resurfaced the driveway.

They don’t know that the square footage on the tax record doesn’t include your finished basement that also includes a pool table and wet bar.

And more…

Yet they give you an estimated market value price without this knowledge; without the whole picture. These prices are very skewed from the REAL market value of your home.

When I come to your home to give you a complimentary Qualified Home Assessment, I want to hear all about your home. I want to know about the updates and changes you’ve made while you’ve lived there. I want you to point out the fresh paint, the new molding, the new windows. These are all things I will take into consideration when giving you a list price range and a sales price range. I will also take into consideration all the recent home sales and which were foreclosures, short sales, or flip homes. This is another factor that third party websites can’t figure in with their numbers.

If you are a homeowner that’s thinking of selling and you are waiting for Zillow to tell you when the time is right, you are missing out. Give me a call or send me an email. I’d be happy to meet with you and discuss your needs. Now is the time to make your move. I’m here to help.

 

Allyson Headshot

Allyson Kane is a certified professional Realtor(R) 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.

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