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Real Estate Technology News for Agents

Business Tips for Agents

Business Tips for Real Estate Professionals, Part 2

A real estate business is essentially a small business. As a small business owner, there are several things you can do to effectively build your business while keeping yourself from financial debt or from losing yourself in your business and neglecting other areas of your life. The following business tips for real estate professionals might help …

Last  week we discussed the importance of having a business plan in place, of creating a budget and of keeping life-work balance.

Here are three more business tips for realtors:

1. Find a mentor. If you’re just staring out in the real estate space, you could learn a lot – and avoid making costly mistakes – if you can find an experienced agent who would be willing to teach you and help you survive the first year.

2. Add everyone you know to your contact list, and keep in regular touch with them. Your goal is to be top of mind when it’s time for them to use a realtor. An automated email drip marketing tool can be very helpful and enable you to keep in touch with prospects and with former clients easily.

3. Explore cost effective ways to be visible in your community. You should definitely have an agent website. In addition, a great, affordable way to build a name for yourself is to use social media tools, including a blog, Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.

One of the most important things you can do to build your real estate business is to keep learning and developing as a professional. Read books and publications, attend seminars, and then share your knowledge via social media. Over the course of a few months, this is a great way to build a name for yourself and to establish yourself as a real estate expert.

Business Tips for Real Estate Agents, Part 1

Business Tips for Agents Part 1

Building a real estate business is tough these days. We should know! We are in the real estate business too. Competition is fierce – fiercer than it’s ever been it seems, and the number of realtors seems to be growing by the minute. Combined with a prolonged recession, these are tough times for realtors. But a business, any business, should be built for the long term. And if you do it right, you should e able to survive the tough times and benefit from the good times.

Three tips for building your real estate business (three more in the next post):

1. Create a business plan. Very few realtors do this, but creating a written business plan is vital. This need not be complicated – your plan can be fairly simple and short. You should basically see where you are now, where you want to be, say, ten years from now, and list the steps that you need to take in order to get there (such as taking classes or starting a blog).

2. Create an annul budget. Include your projected marketing costs, any additional costs you expect to incur such as education, and your projected income. None of this will be 100% accurate, but you should still have at least a general plan.

3. Remember work-life balance. Just like any other small business, your real estate business could easily take over your life. Any small business owner will tell you that if they are not careful, they can find themselves working around the clock. Don’t let it happen to you! Make sure to spend time with your family and friends, and to have some alone time too.

Please stay tuned for our next blog post, where we will discuss three more business tips for real estate professionals.

Real Estate Flyers That Work

These days, a big chunk of your real estate marketing activities is done online. Savvy agents are using agent websites, single property websites, blogs and social media to market their services and their listings.

These days, a big chunk of your real estate marketing activities is done online. Savvy agents are using agent websites, single property websites, blogs and social media to market their services and their listings.

But offline marketing is still important. In fact, marketing is never about just one medium. A good marketing campaign utilizes many different mediums to generate many different leads, then nurtures them until they are ready to become clients.

Which brings us to the topic of real estate flyers. No doubt, real estate flyers, when done right, can be a low-cost and highly effective real estate marketing tool. Follow these tips to get the most out of your real estate flyers:

1. Full color flyers on a glossy paper look significantly more professional than black and white flyers. It’s also important to use high quality images in your flyers.

2. When designing the flyer, try to convey the look and feel of the house through the flyer’s design and colors.

3. Each flyer should include easy-to-read bullet points highlighting the benefits of each property. You should always highlight benefits rather than features. For example, instead of “large grassy yard” say, “the large grassy yard is great for children and perfect for outdoor entertaining.”

4. A single-page flyer is almost always preferable to a multi-page one.

5. Make sure your contact information is easy to find, and include a way to directly track flyer performance, such as a specific phone number or a code.

One of the best ways to distribute real estate flyers is to print them in bulk and insert them into local newspapers. This is more affordable, and at least as effective, as direct mail.

Home Staging Tips

Staging your home prior to showing it increases the likelihood of a sale, even in a buyers’ market. It reduces the time the home spends on the market, helps to justify the asking price and it can also prepare you to the move, because a big part of home staging is organizing and decluttering.

Whether you do it by yourself or hire a professional, here are a few simple home staging tips. These are basic tips – in a buyers’ market you may need to go through more trouble, including some basic remodeling.

1. The most important home staging tip is “look at your house through the eyes of a potential buyer.” Your beloved knick knacks will be no more than clutter to a buyer. A little grime in the bathroom? HUGE turnoff for a buyer. And that red dining room wall that you love so much? Remember that most buyers prefer neytral colors.

2. The exterior of the house needs to be staged too. This includes painting if needed, mowing the lawn, and in general making sure the house has great curb appeal.

3. Entryway needs to be open, well lighted and free of clutter. A simple way to immediately transform your entryway is to replace the worn welcome mat!

4. Clear the living room and dining room of family photos and personal items. These convey a message of “I live here, you don’t” – but you want buyers to be able to imagine themselves living in the house. If the room is too crowded, move some of the furniture into the garage. You want it to look spacious and inviting.

5. The kitchen and the bathrooms absolutely have to sparkle. Any hint of dirt or grime in these rooms is a huge – HUGE – turnoff. Make sure counters are completely bare except for a few decorative items. Place al personal items in drawers and place fresh plush towels and flowers on counters. If your bathroom fixtures are outdated, replace them with sleek and modern fixtures

6.  To make bedrooms appear spacious and comfortable, remove any furniture that clutters the room and most personal items such as photos and knick knacks; remove at least half of your clothes from the closets and pack them (you’ll need to do this soon anyway!) and make sure the bed is perfectly made with high-quality linens.

Generally, when staging a home, you need to keep these words in mind: VERY clean, uncluttered, well lighted, spacious and comfortable. If you can manage to do this in every room of the house, your chances of selling it quickly, for the asking price or more, will be significantly higher.

What Buyers Like

Creating a dedicated, one-stop Internet destination for those buyers is one of the best ways to grab their attention and make them truly explore a property. Many homebuyers are simply typing a home’s address into their browser’s URL field or into the search engine’s search box. When a property has an individual website with the property’s address as the URL, search engines typically index that property website as the most relevant search result. This means that creating a single property website is the best way to ensure that homebuyers can easily find online information about a property.

What buyers deem “Very Useful”

What-Buyers-Value-blog

Creating a dedicated, one-stop Internet destination for those buyers is one of the best ways to grab their attention and make them truly explore a property. Many homebuyers are simply typing a home’s address into their browser’s URL field or into the search engine’s search box. When a property has an individual website with the property’s address as the URL, search engines typically index that property website as the most relevant search result. This means that creating a single property website is the best way to ensure that homebuyers can easily find online information about a property.

Once those buyers browse the property website and learn everything they need to know about a property, they often call the agent to schedule a private tour. At this point, the agent knows that they’re dealing with highly qualified buyers – buyers who saw the house online, know everything they need to know about it, and actually LIKE the house.