Northern Virginia Real Estate: Our Online Marketing Matters More

The rules of marketing a home for sale are not changing. They have changed, done, game over. If your online presence is not top notch then you are not winning in today’s market. Sure you may be found, but when that buyer walks up the driveway are they calculating their low ball offer, or are they expecting to be wowed because of what they have seen online. Are you being looked at as a potential opportunity (ie, discount), or as a great home that the buyer is anxious to see before someone else snags it?

The Second Showing

Contrary to popular terminology, a buyer’s initial real life tour of a home is actually the second showing, not the first. The first showing is the full array of online marketing for the home with photos, your home’s Facebook page, and the video tour. Notice that was not “Virtual Tour”, but Video Tour.  First of all, this is full transparency.  The buyer will not likely assume you are trying to hide something like they would if you don’t have any photos, or perhaps only have photos of the exterior and the Metro sign, which actually says less than subtly to the buyer “this place is rough, but hey, it’s close to transportation!”. For the record, the place may, in fact, be rough. Show it! Plenty of buyers are looking for just that sort of opportunity and they are going to be the ones who find you anyway, so why hide? Second of all, people want these things when looking for homes online.

It Matters More in Northern Virginia

So, why does all this matter more in the Northern Virginia and Washington, DC areas than almost anywhere else? Because Washington, DC is consistently one of the best job markets in the world. This means that many would be home buyers are doing their initial home shopping from afar because they are relocating to the area. They come for short trips ahead of their move, and often only spend a portion of that time viewing homes. That means much of the vetting process happens online, and without the benefit of a drive by.

Reality

Is everyone that is buying in the area someone who is relocating? Of course not, but if you stand out to them, you are standing out to everyone else as well. About 50% of all buyers through most of this year have been first time buyers in their 20’s and low 30’s. This is the ultimate get what you want, when you want it, and it better be free crowd when it comes to online experience. Withhold information in the marketing of your home or make it difficult to reach and you have struck the wrong chord with a potential buyer.

Conclusion: Get as much information out there as possible when marketing your home for sale online. Oh, and I mean Short Sales too!

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