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Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Boy is this the Truth!

Five Listing Description Deal Killers (and makers)

Guest Author, Michael Corbett, is host of NBC's Extra Millionaires & Mansions and author of the national best-selling book "Ready, Set, Sold!"
Every aspect of a listing’s marketing can impact its sale price, even the word choice. For agents,  making sure descriptions capture a serious buyers attention is key to getting your sellers the most money.
When describing a home, the details matter.  In the bestselling book Freakonomics, authors Steven Levitt and Stephen Dubner explain that “An analysis of the language used in real-estate ads shows that certain words are powerfully correlated with the final sale price of a house…. A ‘fantastic’ house is surely fantastic enough to warrant a high price, isn’t? What about a ‘charming’ and ‘spacious’ house in a ‘great neighborhood!’? No, no, no and no.”
Levitt and Dubner say, “If you study the words in an ad for a real-estate agent’s own home…you see that he or she indeed emphasizes descriptive terms (especially, ‘new,’ ‘granite,’ ‘maple,’ and ‘move-in condition’) and avoids empty adjectives (including ‘wonderful,’ ‘immaculate,’ and the telltale ‘!’).” Also, Don’t make it appear that your clients are desperate to sell, as in “Must Move Quickly.” You’re going after the buyers looking for their dream home – and willing to pay for it—not the bargain hunters!
Words that kill deals or decrease profits
  • Fantastic
  • Spacious
  • “!”
  • Charming
  • Great Neighborhood
Words that make deals or improve profits
  • Granite
  • Energy-Efficient
  • State-of-the-Art
  • Maple
  • Gourmet

The Smart Words Philosophy

When it comes to writing descriptions, the smart thing to do is to be very specific. Don’t be vague and use words like “fantastic,” “spacious,” or “charming.” Boring! Avoid sweeping adjectives.
Give specifics using descriptive, straightforward terms that tell the physical attributes of your home, as in “Marble,” “Spiral Staircase,” “Gourmet Kitchen with New Viking Appliances, and “Solid Bamboo Flooring.”
Remember, home buyers are interested in the facts not your (possibly biased) opinions.

Descriptions Matter

This time of year, there are many new listings hitting the market. Pay attention to these key power words that can help your listings get the right attention and ultimately the best prices. What power words are working in your market that might be missing from the list?
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About the author

Michael Corbett is Trulia's real estate and lifestyle expert. He hosts NBC's EXTRA's Mansions and Millionaires. In additional to his regular segments on ABC's The View and Fox News, he is a national best selling author with three critically acclaimed real estate books: Find It, Fix It, FLIP IT!; Ready, Set, SOLD! and Before You BUY!

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Week of January 16 2012-What's on the Market in FoCo?

It's already the second full week of 2012 and the market is really starting to hop.  What can you get in South Forsyth County for between $450,000 and $550,000 today? 52 homes are on the market - and in neighborhoods such as Windermere, Laurel Springs and St. Marlo (all golf) to name a few.  Click here to see what is available!

Forsyth County, Georgia, is one of the most sought after residential counties to live in in the Atlanta metro area. Close to Lake Lanier and in the foot hills of the Blue Ridge Mountains, our recreation and schools are hard to duplicate!

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Real Estate Photography..the good, the bad, and the ugly....

You have one chance, ONE chance.  To stand out in the crowd of homes for sale in today's real estate market.

While consumers are trolling the internet for great deals and great homes, they are staying on a particular listing only a few short minutes.  Whoosh, they are gone to the next.  What can you do or your agent do to make them stick around for a while?

Check out this virtual tour by a Keller Williams agent in Hollywood CA - wow-outside the box and fantastic is what this tour is all about:

Pacific Hills Drive

People are VISUAL - if you are having photos done of your home for a magazine, what would you do?  You should do the same thing if your agent or a photographer is coming over to take pictures.
DE CLUTTER, open all the window blinds, turn off the fans (they show too much blur in a photo) turn on all the lights, even the ones in your hallways, over counters, by the beds, EVERYTHING!

I had a customer once who when she was searching on the internet for her home to purchase, if the photos were dark, she assumed the house was dark and would not even look at it.  I even tried to talk her out of that explaining that most photos are not that great.  But she held her position.  You could be missing buyers.  She spent $600K on a home. 

Great photos of great listings turn up on TV on shows like the Today Show.  Make sure your agent is staging the property and taking the photos that will get you there. I sure do!