If a Listing Agent Isn't Willing To...
Let's talk marketing. It is the single most important element to getting the absolute highest price and best terms for a seller. As a Top Bristow Listing Agent, the first step to great marketing is having an honest conversation with my sellers about listing preparation. In most cases, it doesn't take too much elbow grease to polish a home for market. Decluttering, cleaning and touch ups are essential to setting the stage for listing success. Of course, not all listing agents are ready to "tell it like it is" and get the importance of listing prep across to sellers. Then again, maybe there are agents that just don't understand the importance themselves. The thing about a seller's market is that even crappy marketing goes under contract rather quickly.
Next, it's my job to help you arrange your furnishings in a way that shows the optimal use of your floor plan. Or, if a home is vacant, do some light staging to warm up the master bedroom, kitchen, and bathrooms at a minimum. THEN, it's time for professional photography.
Do you know how many little nit picky items I have manipulated at a photo shoot to make sure my listings are showing their best face online? Eletrical cords, wrinkled bed spreads, kitchen counter clutter, refrigerator magnets. You get the idea. Come photo day, fluffing is a must. And this is what brings me to my biggest nit pick of all time...
Why aren't more listing agents willing to pop a cover off a working hot tub and sell the sizzle? Show the water and bubbles. It's certainly more appealing than a brown hot tub cover that has a layer of outdoor filth on it.
If a listing agent isn't willing to go to the very minimal effort of taking off a hot tub cover for a photo shoot, what other marketing short cut are they willing to take? How much is that going to cost you?
I still remember when I took a listing that had been on the market for two and a half months with a previous listing agent. The listing photos were never updated to reflect the springing to life of the grass, flowers and so forth since the change of seasons happened during the listing period. The photos were so drab, I knew immediately I could do better.
At the time, I was doing my own listing photography. This particular listing had a hot tub cabana. Above is the the shot the former agent had taken. Below is the staged/cover off photo. The difference is obvious. Those sellers went under contract in a week after listing with me. They had also done a lot of the listing prep the other agent didn't tell them to do. It paid off.
So maybe a question sellers should ask is, "How do you market a hot tub?" Even if the seller asking the question doesn't have one, the asnwer the agent gives you says a lot. Do they mention it in the listing or go the whole nine yards and sell the sizzle? You'll notice in my listing photos, you don't even see the folded cover in the background. It is well out of the photo.
Know you are getting the best marketing when you hire to sell your home. I take pride in making sure my listings are a notch above the competition. THAT is what gets you under contract quicker and for better terms.