How much should I spend on online real estate advertising? | You want to get the highest sale price for your property, right? Getting the best price means getting as many people as possible interested in your property so that they compete against each other and drive the sale price up.
The goal of advertising your property is to expose it to as many people as possible, and often spending just a little more can give you a lot better results. Without the right investment in your advertising schedule, you run the risk of:
Your property not selling
Wasting money on ineffective advertising
Paying more in ongoing mortgage and interest payments
G20 PROPERTY offers simple, cost-effective ways to increase your property’s views and enquiries.
Should I pay for advertising or will my real estate agent pay for me?
Some agents will incorporate advertising fees into their commission costs. This option does not provide you with the same level of control and you might find you are better off knowing precisely where your advertising dollar is being invested.
The real estate industry is changing fast, with technology and enhanced inter-connectivity already making a massive impact in the sector in terms of how customers find a property and how they view it. The internet remains one of the most popular resources for home buyers, with 95% of customers searching for real estate online, and a record 51% actually finding their ideal home that way
Virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) in particular are becoming increasingly popular technologies in the industry, as they allow real estate professionals to offer a unique experience and perspective to potential buyers by digitally touring properties from anywhere in the world. Helping both agents and customers save time, and considerably speeding up the buying process, this technology is only expected to grow further, as indicated by a recent Goldman Sachs report. The research predicts that the VR and AR market in real estate will reach at least $80 billion by 2025.
How Virtual Reality is Transforming the Real Estate Industry
Virtual reality has been making waves since 2010 when the first prototype of the pioneering Oculus Rift was introduced. Since then, technology giants like Google, Samsung and Microsoft have recognised the potential of simulated environments and have jumped onto the VR bandwagon.
Michael Pachter, analyst at Wedbush Securities told Fortune that he believes Facebook purchased Oculus VR for $2 billion in 2014 for “VR’s real estate potential”.
“You could do real estate open houses with 360-degree views and have a client come to your office and check out 50 homes through a head-mounted display and then pick the top ones to visit in person,” said Pachter.
However, it wasn’t until 2016 that virtual reality really gained momentum in the real estate industry. VR “will change the way people experience and interact with property” and that virtual reality will “create a brand new experience for a whole new generation of property seekers”.
One of the biggest advantages of using virtual reality in the real estate industry is the amount of time it saves for everyone, “whether that’s property seekers, agents or property managers.”
Additionally, it saves potential buyers and tenants a lot of time attending open for inspections. With virtual reality, you can literally walk through multiple homes in a matter of minutes. This not only allows more potential buyers and tenants to view different properties remotely but also increases efficiency for real estate agents.
So not only can you save time and money, but virtual reality lets you perceive what your life can be in that particular space and even allows you to interact with that virtual environment to experience different amenities, layouts and designs. This allows for better marketing of off-plan properties and reduces the fear of the unknown for potential buyers, leading to decreased barriers to sale.
Virtual reality is transforming the real estate industry by saving agents and clients time and money, increasing efficiency and engagement, shortening property cycles, helping agents win more listings and decreasing barriers to sale for off-plan properties.
Moreover, with tech analyst firm Telsyte predicting VR penetration reaching 25.5% of households by 2021, it’s evident that virtual reality real estate is here to stay. Those who do not adopt VR will go only lose out in market share as more and more real estate agencies embrace virtual reality technologies to their advantage.
Eight Ways Virtual And Augmented Reality Are Changing The Real Estate Industry
1. It Will Save Real Estate Agents And Clients Time
2. VR/AR Tours Will Put The “Real” In Real Estate
3. It Adds Reality To What Seems Otherwise Intangible
4. Buyers Will Narrow Their Options With Fewer Showings
5. Realtors Will Have To Adapt Or Get Replaced
6. You’ll Be Able to ‘Visit’ An Apartment Via Virtual Tours
7. A Lot Of Fluff Products Will Hit The Market
8. Luxury Sales Will Depend More On Immersive Viewing Experiences
Real Estate Developers | A real estate developer is a real estate professional who specializes in creating new developments or renovating existing ones, marketing them successfully, and selling them. These developers often work with partners to share the risk and the workload, and they may work for big companies which conduct real estate development on a large scale or use real estate development as one investment tool in a diverse portfolio.
Experience in the real estate industry is critical, as a developer must know the market well to know whether or not a project will be successful. Developers also need connections with local governments which will help them accomplish projects, ranging from friendly people in the planning office who may provide recommendations to help push a project through to allies on planning commissions and city councils who will promote their projects.
A good real estate developer is also part of a much larger team. He or she needs to work with architects, contractors, landscapers, politicians, real estate agents, and numerous other professionals to see a project through from start to finish. Developers have to select good teams, organize them well, and manage them effectively, meeting the needs of the project and the team members while staying in control of the overall development.
Real Estate Types
Real estate consists of the following types.
a) Retail: These are projects suitable for shopping purposes with modern outfitting, appropriate access and visibility and sufficient parking space. The occupiers will be tenants. Investors and, more exceptionally occupiers, will be purchasers.
b) Residential: This concerns the development of buildings suitable for family living on a long-term basis. The ultimate occupier will be a “resident”; however the ultimate investor can vary from owner-occupier to institutional investor.
c) Offices: Buildings that could be used for market standard office buildings. The buildings should normally be fitted for occupancy by multiple tenants.
d) Industrial/logistics: Industrial real estate building for multi or single-tenant purpose. The investors are the ultimate purchasers.
e) Mixed-use: This concerns projects being a combination of two or more of the above types.
f) Area development: This concerns complex long-term mixed-use developments, which are often undertaken in joint effort with public bodies.
Use video selling home | Marketing is an essential component in selling or renting your property. Video tours can be an effective method in presenting the home that creates a deeply engaging, fun, and informative experience.
When potential buyers are located far away from the property, an excellent video tour can be the trigger to cause them to travel to see your property. In fact, a number of our clients have sold leases and homes using only our video tours, without the buyers or renters ever visiting the property.
Potential buyers searching for property on G20 Proper can now watch a video of your property as easily as viewing the photos on the photo carousel. Why not give yourself another opportunity to stand out and grab buyer attention?
Having a video may give potential buyers:
A better online tour of your property
A professional and lasting impression
Another way to interact with your listing
Talk to your agent about using a video in your online advertising.
Why Use Video to Sell Your Home?
The popularity of videos is growing and buyers love them
Help Your Property Stand Out
When selling a home, it can be a struggle to make it stand out from the crowd. No matter how wonderful your property is, there are many loud and bright advertisements to compete against when you put your home up in online listings.
One selling technique you can try that many don’t think of is getting a professional to shoot a video of your home. With more and more people using smart phone technology, ease of access to video information is greater than ever before. But why should you use video for your home sale?
When you get a video shot of your home, you are instantly offering an up-close and personal look at your property that photography and words cannot provide. The sounds and visuals are much more vivid, and you can run a ’walk-through’ of the property, giving viewers a great feel for the flow of your halls and rooms. It’s a level of closeness that can only be matched by seeing the home in person, only now you can broadcast it to the whole internet. It’s effectively a beautiful window into your home that can be accessed 24 hours a day!
You Can Make the Property Look Its Best
When you use video to depict your home, you can really show off the best angles and views throughout the property. When you engage a professional to shoot your home, they will understand where the light shines through particularly well and which shots are most effective for certain rooms. You can end up with a beautifully tailored video that will have your home shining bright like a star!
While it can be tempting to jump in front of the camera yourself, remember that it is vital to present a ‘blank slate’ with your home onto which buyers can imprint their own life.
You Can Look Like a Professional
By getting the technical aspects of your video right, you can make the charms of your home work within a professional setting, catching the eye of anyone looking to buy real estate. Take your time when choosing who will video your home, and make sure they take extra care with lighting and sound. You don’t want wind to muffle the outdoor shots, and a true professional should have the right gear to manage light throughout the home.
Hiring a professional to video your home may not be the absolute cheapest option, but getting a superbly shot video sequence can enhance your sale prospects greatly.
If you don’t have the equipment or know-how to get a great video of your home, consider talking to a real estate agent who does!
Selling Home; Getting the strategy right for selling your home can make the difference between achieving a good sale or just selling for an average price. A perennial question asked by potential vendors to agents, other than what price will they get, is: ‘what is the most effective way to market my property’? A property will still sell in a down market and, if your agent does their work, optimal returns can still be made.
Marketing your property
The essential elements of a successful property marketing campaign include the price you’re willing to accept, the presentation effort you put into offering your property to potential buyers and the marketing effort recommended by your agent. The soul purpose of all real estate marketing campaigns, is to sell. This is usually done by connecting emotionally with the buyer – you must establish and maintain a connection between your property and the potential new owner.
Photos are key
Vicki Gardiner, Director of Gardiner McInnes Estate Agents, Warrandyte, (VIC) says one of the keys to a great marketing campaign is fantastic photographs. “Put yourself in the position of potential buyers scanning hundreds of online and print property advertisements – don’t make them work too hard to see the best features of your home.” It’s a good idea to check with your agent about the quality of the photographs in some of their past marketing campaigns – you are entitled to ask your agent for samples of their photographer’s work and make sure you’re happy with the quality.
Other methods Ms Gardiner suggests to maximise returns include staging living areas to spark buyers’ imaginations. A simple example of home staging is to rearrange your furniture or rent furniture to maximize the space of your property. Clear your clutter away and beware of home staging cliches such as lighting too many candles. Potential purchasers should be able to easily picture themselves in your house, but it shouldn’t have too much of ‘you’ in it. Attention to detail is what matters when staging your property’s presentation. “It’s the little things that count. Take care of any outstanding maintenance items; buyers can make decisions on how sound your home is based on the small details that are easily visible,” says Vicki. Further advice includes playing to your strengths; “…if your property is strongly connected to a particular period, select a complementary interior design.”
Be open minded
Your tastes may not be matched to a home stylist, or even your agent’s, but using a professional means learning from their experience. Don’t be offended if you need to hide your wedding pictures, your cat, your baby photos and that family heirloom vase – keep focused on the goal, the best price for your property.
A 70s inspired example
As a practical example of optimising returns, Gardiner McInnes marketed a property in Warrandyte which was a fantastic 1970s home in entirely original condition. The decor was amazing and would have been the height of fashion in its day, complete with shag pile carpet and large geometric print wallpaper. Rather than alter the design, or remove any elements, the agents worked with the vendors to embrace it in the marketing campaign. The home stylist used the existing furniture and added complementary soft furnishings. During open homes 1970s disco classics were played and a celebratory atmosphere for potential purchasers was created. The home sold in fewer than two weeks for a price the vendors were thrilled with, plus the purchasers loved the decor so much they kept it as was.
Buying Home; Ask any real estate agent what a buyer’s top priority should be and they’d say: location, location. They’re right of course, but there are other factors that will offer a great quality of living and potential into the future. As an architect, I’m looking for the following to deliver lifestyle and returns over the long term:
A property with a rear yard to the north of the property offers potential to place the living area to the rear of the home, if not already located here, and direct sunlight to these living areas. Direct sunlight from the north is relatively easy to control, to allow in through winter and keep out through the summer. This orientation also gives best access to outdoor spaces from the living areas, and ultimately gets the best use of your outdoor spaces as part of the living area.
Do the window types and locations offer good cross ventilation? Awning windows offer more limited ventilation then a casement window or louvers. Another impact on this might be any noise source that is external to the house that would prevent the window being used for ventilation, such as heavy traffic. Good cross ventilation of a home will not only reduce the reliance on an air conditioner in the summer, but will also reduce the likelihood of mould growth and make the property a healthier place to live over time.
3. Adaptable layout & Structure
Over time, renovations or alterations are like to be carried out on the property. Having property that offers easy adaption will help. Well-located bathrooms and kitchens are especially important. These are costly items to be moving and make future renovations more complex. Don’t forget to eye that layout carefully!
4. Existing character & integrity
If you are considering buying an older home watch out for poor quality renovations. Sometimes these will devalue a property as there is allot more work to be done to correct the poorly thought out and poorly constructed owner builder projects. On the other hand you may find a home that is small, as most of it is original, and well looked after. If you find them, these can offer great value. High ceilings will always make a space feel larger than it is in floor area. It will also make the home feel cooler. For new properties, keep an eye on the quality of workmanship, and ask questions if you want to know more.
What impact do nearby properties have on the one you are considering? Do they overshadow your whole back yard and render it dark or damp year round? Or will they impede any future changes you’d likely want to make to the property These factors can have a big impact on how you – or possible tenants – live in the property – and not items that can be easily changed. Other things like features, paint colours and floor coverings are things not likely to be around in 20 years time anyway. Don’t get hung up on them.
If you’ve successfully purchased an investment property and secured a tenant, you might think the hardest work is done when it comes to setting yourself up to reach your investment goals. But like any investment, it’s important you keep a close eye on your property and avoid all too common financial mistakes.
We spoke to Carolyn Parrella, Insurance Executive Manager at Terri Scheer Insurance, to learn her view of the most common traps landlords fall into financially, and how you can avoid them.
1. Setting the rent too low or too high
“Before purchasing an investment property, carry out extensive research to help determine an appropriate rental price,” Ms Parella said.
“Setting the rent too high may result in limited interest from prospective tenants, leaving you out of pocket if the property remains empty for an extended period of time.
“However, setting the rent too low may place you under financial pressure, limit your rental income and has the potential to attract unsuitable tenants.
“Find listings with similar features to your property, as this will give you a guide on the rental market in that area.
“If you appoint a property manager, they should be able to provide you with information on comparable properties and advise an appropriate rent for your own investment.”
2. Failing to monitor arrears
“If a tenant falls behind in their rent, it can be a very long and costly process to resolve and could leave you considerably out of pocket,” Ms Parrella said.
“Diarise the dates that your tenant’s rental payments are due and check your bank account on those days.
“If your tenant doesn’t pay on the due date, monitor your bank account on a daily basis. If they fall into arrears a breach notice should be sent for non-payment of rent.
“The number of days in rental arrears before a termination notice can be sent, and the time between presenting the notice and requesting vacation varies around Australia, so it is important to be familiar with your local tenancy laws.
“Regularly monitoring arrears and issuing tenants with appropriate notices promptly may help resolve issues sooner and mitigate any financial loss.”
3. Attempting to self-manage a property
Ms Parrella said self-managing a rental property might create headaches for landlords, especially if they’re not able to commit the time or resources necessary (which they might not realise until after they’re in too deep).
“While it can be tempting to save a small percentage of rental income by self-managing your rental property, the benefits of appointing a property manager can far outweigh the costs,” she said.
“Property managers are able to conduct regular property inspections to identify maintenance issues, have systems in place to find and screen prospective tenants, and have access to databases that list tenants with a history of defaulting on rental payments, damaging property and eviction.
“If a dispute arises with a tenant, they are also familiar with the relevant legislation and can follow the correct procedures to help resolve the problem as quickly as possible.”
4. Neglecting maintenance
“As a landlord, once you have been alerted to maintenance issues, it is your responsibility to act on these or authorise your property manager to do so as soon as possible,” Ms Parrella said
“If a maintenance issue arises and you are slow to fix it, you may be legally liable if your tenant injures themselves. It is also important to ensure that all maintenance is completed properly and to appropriate standards.”
5. Inadequate insurance
“Landlord insurance cover can protect investors from many of the risks associated with owning a rental property, provide peace of mind and ease a landlord’s concerns about receiving regular rental payments if their tenant damages the property or absconds,” Ms Parrella said.
“Standard building and contents insurance policies usually don’t cover landlords for these risks.
“Landlord insurance can cover property owners for malicious damage by tenants, accidental damage, legal liability for occurrences on the property that cause death or bodily injury, and loss of rental income as a result of property damage or a tenant absconding.”
One of the biggest considerations when buying an apartment is deciding if you’ll buy upstairs or on the ground floor.
It’s not just about getting views but whether there’s financial benefit to being higher up or lower down. Greville Pabst, CEO of WBP Property Group, recommends researching the target suburb to understand what’s influencing its home buyers.
“This will give you a very good indication of the type of apartment that will provide the best returns,” Pabst says. “With that said, when looking at the performance of apartments, generally those positioned on higher/top levels tend to experience greater capital growth, being not only more attractive to investors and owners, but also to tenants.”
Top or bottom?
Pabst says there are pros and cons for upstairs and downstairs.
Ground floor apartment pros
Courtyards “The main advantage of ground level apartments is they often include courtyard areas that are much larger than balconies, which can almost act as another room if positioned well.”
Absence of stairs “For areas with an ageing demographic, easily accessed downstairs apartments can be desirable.”
No neighbours below No need to worry about bothering underlying neighbours, especially if you have children.
Ground floor apartment cons
Privacy/security concerns “This is particularly so in inner-city areas, where a high proportion of the population are professional single female tenants and security is a top concern, and is reflected in rent prices,” Pabst says.
Noise and disturbance “Ground floor can be very noisy in regards to foot and vehicle traffic and being close to a side driveway means vehicle lights can often shine into living rooms.”
Upstairs neighbours “The noise produced by apartments above can be a huge concern for buyers and tenants.”
Upstairs apartment pros
Improved views Views attract a premium when selling, especially in cities and near water.
More security and privacy “Upstairs apartments are positioned further away from the street and generally have windows that are not accessible,” Pabst says.
More natural light This is important in the inner-city, where there is often more overshadowing from tall buildings.
Upstairs apartment cons
Less appeal for retirees “For areas where there are larger populations of older people, stairs are a major concern so investing in an upstairs apartment without lift access can be unappealing to buyers/tenants,” Pabst says.
Can be hot Depending on the apartment’s aspect, upstairs and top-floor apartments can sometimes produce much heat in summer.
If you’re living in a share house, a one-bedroom flat or an urban area you probably inhabit a bedroom that’s little more than a glorified cupboard.
If not, you’ve hit the bedroom jackpot and you should probably live there forever. If you’re not blessed with a decent sized bedroom, we’ve got a few tricks that will help make your shoebox bedroom feel like a spacious sanctuary.
1. Wall mount like a crazy person
The biggest mistake you can make in a tiny bedroom is to waste floor or surface space on items that can be wall mounted. Lights, lamps, shelving, hooks and racks can all be mounted to the walls and this will keep your limited floor space clear for essentials like a bed and bedside table.
2. Use mirrors
No matter how many times you rearrange the furniture it’s never going to increase the floor space.
Once you’ve decided on your furniture arrangement, you need to accent with mirrors. They create a wonderful illusion of space, tricking the eye into thinking that the room is far more spacious than it actually is.
3. Draw your focus upwards
Buy or build shelving and cupboards that span from floor to ceiling. They’ll create a long vertical line which gives the illusion of space. You’ll also have the added bonus of ample storage with a full length cupboard or shelf.
4. Choose lighter colours
Dark colours can be beautiful and luxurious when you have the space for them, but in a small room they can be oppressive and enclosing. Choose lighter colours like white, creams and dove greys when it comes to decorating and be sensible about your use of colour. An acid yellow bed spread will look fantastic in a large, spacious loft but in a tiny bedroom you might find the colour a bit aggressive.
5. Get your scale right
It’s sensible to choose the largest bed you can fit within the space but then if you put a teeny tiny bedside table next to it, it’s going to look silly. By all means choose smaller, more streamlined furniture to fit in your small bedroom, just make sure that they all fit together in terms of scale.
6. Remove all clutter
Don’t have anything unnecessary in your bedroom. If you can get by with just a bed and a bedside table, that’s ideal. This is obviously difficult if you live in a share house but try to minimise the amount of items you store in your bedroom. You should avoid keeping things like computers, excess furniture, washing baskets, bookshelves and ironing boards in your bedroom if you can help it. Keep your bedroom simple and neat to avoid making it look like an oversized storage cupboard.
7. Never block a walkway
It can be tempting to move furniture into ‘free’ space like doorways and walkways but it’s never a good idea. If you have to turn sideways to slide past your bed every time you leave the room, it’s not an ideal arrangement of your furniture.
You need make sure your bedroom is comfortable and functional and blocking off walkways is not the way to do that. (c/j)
Good real estate agents can be difficult to find if you don’t know the qualities to look for.
We had a chat to some industry experts to find out what you should be looking for when scouting around for the perfect agent.
Qualities of a good agent
1. They communicate
As a house seller or buyer it can be stressful dealing with an agent who’s not a great communicator. The real estate market is time sensitive, so you need an agent who will let you know quickly where you stand with your current buying or selling situation so you can move on quickly to another property or potential buyer.
Jean Gordon from Estate Agent Stars says that one of the biggest frustrations for people is a lack of communication from their agent.
“It’s so important that agents stay in constant contact with their clients and customers. What seems like insignificant information to an agent who’s been in the business for years can be really important to clients who are new to the real estate game,” says Gordon.
2. They’re proactive
Ben Hatch from Harcourts Real Estate in WA says a good agent should be proactively calling potential buyers, communicating with existing customers and constantly chasing new leads. The key element of being proactive is keeping the client well informed.
“If your clients keep calling you, you’re not giving them enough information,” says Hatch.
3. They listen
Most good agents will tell you to be wary of an agent who talks too much.
Hatch says that if you can’t get a word in when communicating with your agent, then you’ve got a problem.
“As a client or customer, you’re the one who should be doing most of the talking and making sure that your agent understands your special requests and needs. A good agent should be asking all the questions not the other way around,” says Hatch.
4. They’re client motivated
Put simply, if the customer gets a good a deal, the agent gets a good deal, which is why it ‘s so important to choose an agent who puts their vendors first.
Lucy White from David Murphy Real Estate in Mosman says a good agent will always have their clients needs as their top priority.
“Buying and selling houses can be stressful and it’s important for the agent to make sure that the client is feeling supported and happy.”
5. They can adapt to their clients needs
It’s also important it is for an agent to be able to ‘read’ their client.
“Some clients like to communicate via email, some prefer a quick text message and others like to receive a phone call so they can have a chat about what’s happening with their sale,” says White.
“It’s the responsibility of a good agent to suss out the clients preferred method of communication so they don’t feel either ignored by silence or pressured by too much communication.”
6. They know their clients time frame
Jean Gordon says that timing awareness is essential to a good client/agent relationship.
“You need to know if the client is in a hurry to sell. If they need to settle soon, the agent should know this and should be working to a tighter time frame. If the client isn’t in a rush the agent can shop around and advise the client to wait for a better market so they can get a decent price on their house,” says Gordon.
7. They know their customers selling motivation
Ben Hatch says a good agent always knows why their clients are selling and will ask themselves the following questions:
Is your customer selling to buy?
Is this an investment property?
Are they going live in this home and then knock it down?
“These are all things that good agents need to think about. It also helps to know if there’s a sentimental attachment to a home. A client who’s selling one of five investment properties will have very different needs to a client who’s selling their family home. A good agent will know the difference and will adapt accordingly.”
8. They aren’t afraid to give you their last 20 clients as references
Jean Gordon says the best way to get a good agent is use their past clients as references.
“If you’ve lined up a new agent and you want to make sure that they’re the best fit for you, ask them for testimonials or statements from their last 20 clients. Not selected clients, literally the last 20. A good agent should be able to give you a positive reference from any of their past clients.”