Our aggressive and innovative marketing plans are specifically designed to maximize the exposure your property gets to potential buyers. We strategically target these buyers with a marketing plan that is unsurpassed in its reach, resulting in $22,000 more in our Seller’s pockets based on 2015 MLS statistics. It’s a simple fact that maximum exposure for your property leads to the maximum selling price in the quickest amount of time. Contact us to design a unique plan for your property that incorporates many components including:
Off Market Campaign
Our marketing campaign doesn’t begin when it goes your property is listed in MLS. Our extensive pre marketing campaign helps connect your property with our network of buyers before it even goes on the open market. We use our established list full of buyers that are looking for homes just like yours! We also do off market advertising on Craigslist and other sources to present your home to potential buyers in the marketplace. Off market transactions can mean more money in your pocket as a seller and an easier transaction for everyone.
Since the vast majority of buyers are searching online for property to buy, this is where the marketing of your property begins. No matter where buyers are looking online, they will find your property. Because of our strategic partnerships with the most highly trafficked real estate websites in the U.S. and internationally your property will be listed and advertised on:
- Condo Domain
- Yahoo Real Estate
- And many other sites…
Additionally, your property will be featured on this site (one of the most advanced and user-friendly real estate sites in the area) as well as having a custom-created stand-alone site that will feature your property online. We drive traffic to our sites through creative linking strategies, classified ads, traditional internet marketing such as banner ads, and pay-per-click advertising (PPC) on many national search engines. We generated tens of thousands of visitors and page views per month with this step alone. And while many firms may be able to say they have your property online, that is simply not enough. What really differentiates our online marketing is the number of real buyer leads we generate for your property by creating specific calls to action to get them to “announce” to us that they are interested in your property. Not only is your property seen online, we drive people to truly want to visit it in person.
At Charlesgate, we stop at nothing to showcase your home in the best manner possible from professional photography to SD Matterport technology. One of our clients’ favorite benefits of our marketing strategy, however, is our individual property websites designed to showcase the features of your home inside to out. These websites not only look pretty, however, but they are also buyer-generating machines optimized to drive direct buyers to your home.
Each of these websites features the aspects that buyers are looking for in today’s marketplace including:
- Professional Photography
- Description of Your Home
- Neighborhood Information & Amenities
- Transit Details
- 3D Matterport Walkthrough on some listings!
- Information to Contact Your Agent Directly
With our Buyer-Centric marketing campaign we focus on the buyers and make it easy for them to imagine themselves buying your property. While most other real estate firms advertise listings just to get their “brand” name out there to attract more business for themselves, we are in the business of selling your property…not just trying to make ourselves look good. This means making your property the focal point (not us). By using advertising techniques that are useful to buyers, we create an attraction to your property by making it easy for more potential buyers to see and learn about your property (all while portraying your property in its best light). We do this with the following techniques:
- “24/7 Open House” – By making sure your property has a virtual tour, floorplan, and 10+ professional photos and diagrams online within easy reach to buyers any time, day or night we allow buyers to visit your property any time.
- Customized printed marketing materials – Professional high-quality property package (including listing sheets, postcards, flyers, etc) with full details and pictures. All mailed materials have a strong call to visit our website or call us so we can get them in to see the property.
- Open Houses – We hold traditional open houses for your property with refreshments to allow easy access for buyers. We also make sure to get feedback from all attendees by holding a raffle drawing for everybody who fills out a property survey form (great tool for feedback from buyers!). We have also scientifically tested our open house advertising in the past to ensure the maximum number of buyers know about the times and dates to come.
- Print & Newspaper Ads – Our ads are specifically designed to call attention to your property and increase potential interest. But more importantly, your property ads are filled with “calls to action” that drive potential buyers to call or visit the website where they can be converted into real leads for your property. We don’t just use ads to make your property look good…we use them to sell it.
- Social Media – We use our ever-social media sites like Facebook and Instagram to push your home out with paid ads as well as to our established network. We have professionally designed ads that are not only visually appealing, but are proven to drive traffic to your property website.
- Retarget Ad Campaigns – Once a potential buyer goes to the property website to gain more information about your home, we know that there is at least some interest! We utilize retarget ads to “follow” these leads around the internet in a variety of sites to remind them about your property and try to drive communication and showings.
- Signage – Attractive custom designed banners and signage at the property to drive phone calls and web traffic are key to capturing walk by/drive-by traffic.
Attracting attention from other real estate agents is a key ingredient in our marketing platform. The vast majority of buyers today are working with a real estate agent to assist them in their purchase. It is extremely important, therefore, to ensure the maximum number of agents are aware of your property to capture their buyers. By utilizing our extensive network of agents throughout (both city-wide and state-wide) and using the following techniques, we are able to create a huge industry “buzz” for your property.
MLS and LINK Listings – We don’t just put your property into the multiple listing databases and forget about it. Daily monitoring, updating, and enhancing are key to maximize the eyeballs your listing gets by other agents (and public). Selling the property with a great description, pictures, floorplans, etc. starts with the information in the listing services and is a key (and often overlooked by other firms) aspect of our service.
Broker Open House – Holding a broker open house and luncheon, and inviting other agents personally with invitations and phone calls, allows us to put your property on display for the brokerage community. Actually getting agents in the door and showing them first hand how well the property could work for their client helps us get the entire brokerage community working to sell your property. We hold broker open houses and personally invite top agents on a regular basis.
Direct Mail/Fax/Email – We continually send out updates and information for your listing on a weekly basis to all agents in the area (with a personal focus on those agents who do the most business with similar properties). Keeping your property fresh in agents minds will cause them to think of your property first when they meet new buyers.
As you can see, our marketing strategy is unsurpassed in its reach. But, more importantly, the care and diligence we take to continually update and refresh the marketing allows us to generate the greatest possible interest in your property to minimize the length of time to sell and to maximize the sale price.
Home Selling Process
The home selling process begins long before your property is actually placed on the market for sale. It can be stressful and emotional at times but arming yourself with the information below can help keep you on an even keel throughout the process to maximize your time, money, and well-being.
1. Decision to Sell
The first step in the home selling process is the actual decision to sell. There are many unique emotional and financial reasons for selling your home that factor in your decision. Whether it is moving up to a larger home because of a growing family, down-sizing to a condo downtown, relocating because of a job, or any number of other scenarios, each situation is entirely unique. However, besides the personal reasons, there are some market wide and financial elements (such as the seasonality in the market, the current market inventory vs. the rate of sales, your home’s current value, the type and amount of mortgage you are carrying, etc) that should factor into your decision as well. Our job at Charlesgate Realty Group is to advise you to make the best decision for you and your family. To do this, through a thorough initial consultation, we take into account all of your personal needs and compare them with what is happening in the market at that time, to provide you with the best advice for you to make the best decision whether to sell or not.
2. Pricing your home
Setting the appropriate price for your property is arguably the most important factor in selling your home for maximum value within a reasonable marketing period. This, however, is much easier said than done. The difficulty lies in the fact that each piece of property is unique and what buyers will pay for one house or condo is not the same as what they will pay for another even for a similar style in the same neighborhood. It is important to be able to use the actions of all the buyers in the market as a whole to come up with a fair market value range. By using comparable data from similar properties sold in the last 3, 6, even 12 months, a trend pattern is discovered which allows you to narrow down the value range of your property. Using real facts and information (not just anecdotal evidence like what that one property next door sold for) such as “days on market”, absorption rate, tax valuations, and average and median prices for the market as a whole as well as local comparables helps to gain insight on the market and price your property most efficiently. We use these methods when we produce a comparative market analysis for your home.
After establishing a firm price range for your property, the next step is to establish the price at which to market your home. This is dependant on personal needs like how quickly you have to sell as well as the external factors relating to the market such as the number of comparable homes on the market at the time and what they are listed for. The more aggressive the price is set to market and the more difficult it will be to sell your property. Sometimes this can be beneficial and earn you more money (especially in a hot seller’s market) but it can also backfire and cause your property to stagnate on the market for too long forcing you to sell for less down the road (usually in a buyer’s market).
3. Preparing your home for sale
Along with appropriate pricing based on real market data, preparing your home for sale is the other most important factor to maximize the sale price of your home. There are two forms of this preparation. The first is to get it ready for market and the second is to get it ready for showing. These steps are vital, and the goal is to make your property appear easy to live in and without any major concerns for a buyer. This creates a buying atmosphere.
Getting it ready for market – This step involves making any necessary repairs or upgrades to your home. We recommend hiring a thorough home inspector to inspect your home and provide you with a report to determine if there are any structural repairs needed (the roof, HVAC system, and foundation are definite hot spots for buyers). After that, cosmetic repairs and changes can be done. Consulting with a real estate agent can be very helpful at this stage. Some upgrades are worth the money while others are not. Many times even a relatively inexpensive upgrade such as a fresh coat of paint, replacing old carpets, or refinishing hardwood floors can go a long way to improving value.
Getting it ready for showing – Once your home is on the market, it is vital to keep it ready for showings at any time. This is a difficult task at times, but well worth the effort. First impressions are key to attracting interest and offers from buyers. The main rules are to reduce clutter as much as possible, and keep your home as spotlessly clean and neat as possible at all times. Be ready for showings on short notice – they will happen and it is best if you are prepared to accommodate all buyers. .
4. Marketing Period
The next step in the process is the marketing period for your home. The goal is to maximum the exposure your property gets to potential buyers. Because each property is unique, we craft a customized marketing plan for each home. For more details on this, please see how to sell your home for maximum value.
During the marketing period, you will receive an offer for your property. This is when the fun begins. Offers will be drafted by the potential buyer (or their agent or attorney) and negotiations begin. An offer could be accepted immediately or counteroffers could be made for days depending on the circumstances. Typically, a negotiation will last about 24-48 hours. An offer is not just about price. Other variables to consider are:
Contingencies (like home inspection clause, mortgage clause, etc.) – These give the buyer rights to back out of the deal depending on certain conditions up to a certain date.
Earnest money deposit (typically $1000 in the Boston area) – A larger deposit many times indicates a more serious and capable buyer and vice versa.
Time frame – This lets you know how long you have to respond to an offer from a buyer.
Closing date – This is the date when the transfer of the property takes place.
Down payment – A larger sum of money for a down payment usually means a well qualified buyer.
A key element in the negotiations is to realize it is not just price that is of importance. The above terms can make a big difference to your bottom line, and additionally making sure the buyers are qualified (checking preapproval letters, etc) and ready to proceed with the purchase. There is nothing worse than taking your property off the market because you have a signed offer, only to have the buyer back out weeks later because they were not qualified. A well constructed offer can help prevent this.
6. Purchase and Sale Agreement
Between the offer and the P&S Agreement, there is usually a 10-14 day period during which the buyer will complete a home inspection and review any other records as spelled out in the offer. During this period, the P&S will be drafted by your attorney (although it is not required, we always recommend hiring a good real estate attorney to write the P&S Agreement). This document fully spells out the terms of the sale of your home. There may be some re-negotiation of different terms and conditions set forth in the offer, especially if some problems are discovered during the home inspection. If so the agreement will incorporate those terms.
The closing is typically 45-60 days from the date of the offer. This is when title actually transfers hands from seller to buyer and the escrow monies are distributed. During the period between the P&S and closing, many legal documents must be obtained by the seller (or agent representing the seller) in order to comply with state regulations including:
Smoke Detector Certificate – The fire department must be brought in to certify that there are working fire detectors and carbon monoxide detectors in the home.
6D Certificate (for condos) – States that all common charges and dues are paid up to date.
Title V Certificate (for septic systems) – This document certifies the septic system is functioning properly, regular residential septic system cleaning services are required to have the system working properly.
Insurance Binder – Ensures that the buyer has adequate insurance coverage for the property upon taking title.
The closing attorney will prepare a settlement statement (also known as a HUD) for review a day or two before closing. This form details all the money changing hands and needs to be reviewed for accuracy. After that it is on to the actual closing. Many closings take place at the local Registry of Deeds, or at the broker or attorney’s office. This takes approximately an hour and once complete, you get the proceeds from the sale and the sale is complete.
Contact Us For a Free Home Sale Consultation