Friday, September 27, 2013

Selecting the wrong listing agent can (cost you dearly) (bruise your bank account) (ruin your chance of profit) (destroy your profits) (be a very costly mistake) etc.

The Wall Street Journal recently published results of a study showing experienced agents sell homes for an average 12% more than their less experienced counterparts. According to the article, this amounts to an average sales price gain of about $25,000. You can find that it here if you're interested.

But selecting a poorly qualified listing agent can cost you much more.

Earlier this year, I represented a buyer who wanted to find a home on Chattanooga’s thriving South Side. She mentioned she had driven past a house and seen the For S
ale sign, but could not find the listing in the Multiple Listing Service (MLS).  My research discovered that the listing agent had entered the wrong zip code for the property, and therefore potential buyers did not find it on searches of the MLS, Zillow, Trulia or similar web sites.  In addition, the listing agent had only posted one (very sloppy) photo and had significantly understated the actual square footage of the property.

During phone conversations, the agent demonstrated little insight into new construction, failing to recognize the term “C.O.” (certificate of occupancy). As a result, we were able to negotiate a sales price for the buyer approximately $50,000 below the actual market value of the home, creating $50,000 of instant equity for the buyer (and that amount of lost profit for the seller).

Picture is not unrelated.

In the Wall Street Journal article, Bennie Walker, Professor of Finance and Real Estate at Longwood University, points out “the more experience you have, the more likely you are to sell the properties that you list, the more likely you are to sell it at a higher price and the less time it stays on the market.”  

Experienced agents have greater knowledge of neighborhoods, a larger network of buyers and sellers, and well developed relationships with home inspectors, appraisers and mortgage brokers. These connections can also really make a difference, and should be considered when you are deciding on who will represent your interests when it comes time to sell.

Friday, September 20, 2013

Selling Your Home? Here's a Few Tips

*This article was originally published by Simon Campbell on, and you can find it here.
Long gone are the traditional ways of selling a home. It used to be that placing a sign in the front yard of your home and a small classified advertisement would be good enough to get the job done. Times have changed, though, and the process of marketing your home for sale have, too.
Hiring a real estate agent can certainly assist you in the marketing process, but there are some tricks that go underutilized even by their standards. Here are a few tips of ways to market your home that may just be outside of the box. Consider these into your budget, and there can be a lot of success that go into selling your home.
Facebook has easily become the most popular social networking site in all of the world. Everyday, hundreds of millions of people log on and check what’s going on with the people in the lives. There is, however, much more use to Facebook than that. Companies are beginning to utilize the site as a marketing tool, and there’s no limit on to what can be marketed, including real estate.
Listing your home on Facebook is a simple and cheap process that only takes mere minutes to get your advertisement seen by many of the people in your social network. You can set a daily advertising budget on the site and how many people worldwide will be able to see it.
Since you will obviously be looking to advertise to those that are within a short radius of the area, this will save a lot of money focused on just a couple of cities.You can also set what type of customer that you are looking for, all the way down to the age of the viewer. The budget should be around $7 to get started and you can input your credit or debit card to make the payment. It’s that simple (and effective).
Individual Website
While a realtor is able to provide a listing for your home on their website, why not try a dedicated website to promote your listing? For a year of having a good looking website with technical support, it should only cost around $100, which is not bad for a marketing budget.
This will certainly set your home apart from the other listings in the area as you can showcase every glorious detail of the property and home, something that the realtors have limited capability of doing. It doesn’t have to be a fancy website that was created by a state of the art graphic designer, but a basic knowledge of aesthetics will go a long way.
Creative Staging
Having your home look identical to a model home that a realtor is selling can be nearly impossible. However, if you are willing to spend a little extra money to improve the look of your home, it can garner a lot of positive attention. This will help you to sell your home even faster than normal.
If you rent furniture that is a dramatic improvement over the furniture you currently have in the home, it will give it a more decorative and positive feel. People pay attention to details like that, and will appreciate the effort of upkeep the home has had. Not many people consider renting furniture just for the aesthetics, but it can go a long way in helping the sale.
Now that you have considered some of the “out of the box” ideas, it may be time to put them to good use. It’s a lot cheaper than listing your home the traditional way, but still gets the point across beautifully. If you don’t feel comfortable using these ideas, then a realtor will be able to answer any questions you may have. But try it out to see if it works, and you just may be pleasantly surprised.
For more information on selling your home, head on over to, our website dedicated to helping you sell your home!