Don't sell yourself short!
Not all Naples real estate listing agents are created equal and for a good reason. Some are getting too comfortable and resume their work to snapping a few pictures and put it in the MLS, waiting for someone else to do all the work and sell it. Next time you receive a cheap postcard in the mail, check out their website and see the volume of work they dedicate to real estate. When you list a home you are selling a lifestyle, an area and a valuable product... and you should approach it with the dedication and commitment expected from a professional. That includes having professional photographs of the property and the area, maps, links, videos, a FULL PAGE dedicated to that listing in particular in addition to the open houses and other local advertising. Click HERE or on the photo below to see what a listing should look like.
Naples Real Estate Seller's Market
Not all real estate agents are equal. That is why 10% of the Naples real estate agents do 90% of the business. Listing a house in Naples FL is all about marketing and pricing. There are two main mistakes people make when hiring a listing agent: choosing the one that promises the highest listing price or the one that charges the lowest commission. Pick one that does both and your house will probably be a common sight on the MLS. Pricing a home requires finesse, timing and knowledge. You have to be very aware of what sold recently, what your competition is priced at and how your home compares to other listings in the same area. Then, you have to know the current market: low inventory, scarcity, a lot of activity (pending sales, showings), season, etc... all these are factors that could come into play in determining value.
It's always amazing to see high-end listings with low quality, poor pictures that don't do them justice at all. It's a mystery how one of the most basic, important tools in marketing a home is overlooked: the visual. You have to remember, people these days don't check newspapers or real estate magazines anymore, that era is long gone. Internet is in the palm of everyone between 6 and 85 years old. By the time the ink dries up on a "Homes and Land" magazine ad, the property could be under contract with a buyer that signed up on NaplesFinder. Internet marketing is king. If I were a seller I think I would prefer my house being displayed in bright, high quality pictures on thousands of computer screens in the US, Canada, England and Germany rather than in the hands of a bored tourist on Fifth Ave.
Almost all the sales in Naples FL take place with buyers from out of town. Before they even step foot into an open house or pick up a real estate magazine, buyers of real estate have been online for 6 months to a year in advance, looking at every listing, every area of interest, watching every sale and receiving every new listing on the market. They already have a short list of homes to look at, know exactly which one they'll place an offer on and have all their financials ready.
Imagine, you can get updates from a Realtor after he/she "proudly" reports 25 people through your open house (half of which were neighbors or tourists), or have your house presented with gorgeous photos in the "FEATURED LISTINGS" on NaplesFinder, where tens of thousands of people go through EVERY MONTH. In the end, sitting on the market longer because of unrealistic high pricing and poor marketing will reflect in a loss greater than that 1% saved on a wrong listing agent's commission. Ask yourself, why would an agent be willing to drop their commission? Should you work with a desperate agent? Once you start collecting DOM's (days on market), buyers will start thinking there's something wrong with your home and your listing becomes "stale".
Beyond the expensive car and professional attire, a good listing agent lives and dies by marketing. That's why his homes sell, that's why he is succesful. Here are some of the minimum things you should expect from your listing agent:
- Professional brochures with HQ photos and helpful information about the listing, area and floor plan.
- Lockbox (optional). In luxury real estate listings, ALWAYS have "listing office accompany".
- Great communication with the seller. Updates with showings, activity, feedback.
- For high-end listings, organize broker previews, brokers "open house".
- MLS impact by producing high quality photography, virtual tours and intelligent description.
- Internet exposure to ALL major real estate websites, both in the US and internationally.
- At least 3 open houses in prime time season.
- High Quality postcards sent to the neighborhood. People feel more confident buying in areas where their friends or relatives live. Plus, your neighbors will always recommend their area first to anyone looking to move to Naples.
- Quality, preofessional yard sign with direct agent information (not the office number). You want your agent to answer calls even on weekends, when most offices are closed.
- Email professional flyer to ALL Naples real estate agents and to thousands of contacts (the latter applies to NaplesFinder agent).
- Market updates every 30 or 45 days. Direct comparable sales or new listings in the same neighborhood or building should be immediate.
As always, there is no single method to sell a home. It is a combination of all those things, latest technology, knowledge and experience that get the job done. Having great communication and negotiations skills are also very important to be able to bring to fruition any opportunities that arise.
If you are thinking about selling your home, or know someone who is, please do not hesitate to call Andrei Apostu at 239-455-5554 and request a personal listing presentation or a CMA (Comparative Market Analysis).