April 13th, 2017
According to the National Association of Realtors(R), the supply of homes for sale has fallen on an annual basis for the past 21 months and is down 6.4% since last year.1 Of course, you don't need statistics or to read the news to know this - you see it every day: dipping inventories, rising prices and worried buyers who are afraid that they may not find a house or one that fits their budget. But these demands make something else equally desirable: you.
Potential buyers can rely on any number of online tools to help them find and buy a house - but what those tools lack is the insight and experience that you provide. Never before has your personal market knowledge, relationships with industry professionals (inspectors, lenders, etc.) and personal skills as a guide and "relaxation therapist" been more critical.
When marketing yourself, you need to focus on those same "hard" and "soft" skills that can't be accessed at a button click or app touch. Sure, a buyer can go to any number of "review aggregators" to look up reviews of inspectors, etc. - but you've personally sifted through the good and bad, so there's no buyer guesswork in trying to decide if that one-star rating is legitimate or from a difficult client. Schools? Perhaps that "Great Schools" score doesn't reflect the latest trends at the local high school - and you know from your own experience as a parent or from people you know who teach or administrate there.
The only thing more valuable than your "local knowledge - and inaccessible on an app - is your guidance and wisdom. Nothing may have a greater impact on a buyer's overall experience and satisfaction than your personal insight - that helps them make an informed decision - and your warmth - that can get them through the many stresses the house hunt, especially in today's market, presents.
Your buyer will remember that you were the one who helped them avoid getting involved in a bidding war that could have gotten them in over their financial heads, or returned a depressed, after-hours call because their offer didn't get them the house and "I'm never going to find something!"
We all have those existential moments, especially at the end of a long, tough day, when we ask ourselves, "Why am I doing this?" There's no doubt that you have had more than one of those Q&A sessions with yourself. But all you need to do is to think about the difference that you are making in your buyers' lives: the "first timers" you guided through stress and tears, the couples you set on the road to being families in a family home. Now, more than ever, those and every buyer needs the personal attention and first-hand knowledge that only you can provide.
You? No. There isn't "an app for that." There's just you.