Just like many other industries, the real estate industry has had to adapt to changes instigated by the rise of the online culture. At one time the only realistic way to sell your home was to list with an agent, have it published in an MLS book and advertise in the paper and perhaps on the radio. Those days are long gone. Today, if you are not showing your home online, regardless of whether you list with an agent, your chances of selling a home is much less.
Buyers are also much more savvy. They use the online applications to narrow their search for a home to the area they want to live in, the features they are looking for in the price range they can afford. They rule out many homes before they even leave their home. High quality pictures and videos are important as well to help potential buyers decide if they want to visit your home.
Consumers can also use many of the same applications and portals to show their homes online that agents do. They can sell their own homes themselves and save thousands of dollars in commission fees. There are some costs that they will need to absorb, but it is far less than the commission they might have paid to an agent. There are a number of listing sites that don't cost you a dime:
What are the Four Easy Steps to Selling Your Home Online?
There are four areas that home owners should focus on if they want to be successful at selling their own home and saving thousands of dollars. Note that this activity is typically what your agent would be doing. You are working for yourself and need to have the time to complete the task well to be successful.
High Quality Pictures
A picture is worth a thousand words and it is incredibly important in the sales area. Potential online buyers will first look at the pictures of your home. If they like what they see only then will they read some of the descriptions and content that you have added describing your home. If they still like what they have read, they may book a showing or ask some questions. With so many online listings, your pictures need to be high quality and show your home well.
Even if you have great pictures online, you need to be found by the search engines. Place pictures and links on all of the popular social media engines. These can include Facebook, GooglePlus, Pinterest, Twitter, Instagram and many others. Ask your friends and family to share these posts, like them and send links to their friends and anyone who might be looking for a home. All of these posts should be linked to a website or blog that has all of the pictures and a full description of your home. Place links and advertisements on sites like Craigslist and also local online classifieds.
Ask the Professionals
There's no shame in reach out for help! There are many real estate professionals who would be happy to help educate you on how to best sell your home. Their help costs you nothing and can save you thousands of dollars.
Use Recognized Portals for Selling Homes by Owners
In every city and state there are recognized online portals that cater to home owners who are selling their own homes. List your home on these sites even though you may have to pay a fee for a few months to list your home. Many buyers will go straight to these sites when they are looking for a place to purchase. Your blog can link to this portal as well.
Answer Questions and Book Showings Promptly
The online universe has created expectations of instant gratification in almost all areas of our life. Selling your home online using a portal or social media is no different. Buyers expect answers to their questions within a few hours or less. Many expect to be able to see a home in person within 24 hours. Be ready and available to respond to all of these queries at all times. If they are asking questions, it usually means your home has passed the first filter and they are interested in learning more about your home. Answer quickly, be positive and also up front about your home with all potential buyers.
If all of this is too much for you, i.e. complexity, time required etc. there are alternatives to consider. Of course you can list your home with a real estate agent. Some owners who are also motivated to sell their home quickly will sell to investors who are interested in a quick purchase at a lower price.