Listings With Complete Information and Captive Pictures Sell Better!
INVESTORS, are you annoyed when online listings don't have all the information you need to analyze a property? Very often when I'm searching for properties, in Pittsburgh PA for clients, the GAI, Vacancy, GOI, NOI, Insurance, Utility Expense et al plus Rent information (or rental history) are left blank! In addition, there may be no pictures or just one picture showing the front and none of the inside. Some listings show remarks describing the property, others don't. Without basic information, how can you make a determination if you even want to actually see it in person? If I'm holding 50 listings in front of me, I'm probably going to pick those that have the information I need and trash the rest. But by doing so I could be missing out on a great deal. And Agents, you may be doing your Clients a disservice by not providing the property facts. Listings with complete information attract the most attention and sell better!
When it's time to list, other than sprucing up the property, the seller needs to collect income, rent roll and historical information, expense data and have the leases available to their chosen listing agent. All of those need to be provided prior to putting the property on the market. Without them a buyer can't determine if it would be a potentially good investment. Likewise, the remarks section of a listing is an opportunity to really show the fine points of the property. Remember, be clear and sell it! The proof is in the details!!
They say a picture is worth a thousand words, but you don't want that picture to say "hmmm", or "meh" or "no"--you want people to look at it, even if it's a mess and say, "you know I think I can fix that up and make something out of it". So showing just the outside of the house makes people wonder what's lurking behind. Even if it's rough looking inside, take good pictures as best you can and put them up. But please no sideways pictures, this isn't the bat cave! You may even want to take videos. At first you may think that bad flooring, dropped ceilings and loose molding may deter buyers, but these things are cosmetic and can be fixed. Even if your property currently holds tenants, I encourage you to ask them if you can take pictures of parts of their apartments for marketing purposes, always protecting their privacy. While your lease may allow you access to apartments with proper notice, many tenants balk at giving access. Properly prepping them for visitors will go a long way to a successful showing. When a buyer tours your property, they don't want to just see the outside and the common areas, they want to see the entire property!
When I'm talking about listing a property, I am referring to doing so on the local Multiple Listing Service (MLS). If you are going this route, Sellers, choose your Agent wisely. If they're not interested in or ignorant about gathering all of this information, that should be your first clue that maybe they are not a good fit for you. An agent who works in the investment world should understand what the terminology means and how to help their clients sell better and faster. They should also be able to help a buyer analyze properties to determine if they may be a good investment. But it all starts with the listing, so do it right the first time and show 'em the property facts. You will surely get it SOLD!
It has been said that "A picture is worth a thousand words". And it was Picasso who said "Every now and then one paints a picture that seems to have opened a door and serves as a stepping stone to other things". In real estate, a great picture is a stepping stone to personally seeing the property, and just like a painting, a picture must be composed for maximum effect. Having great pictures is one of the key components in drawing people to your home or investment property. These pictures could lead to a sale and, according to Inman News, a leading website for agents and brokers, listings with professional photos sell for more money and at a quicker rate. But a bad picture won't even get people out their door let alone into yours. So make it count by having phenomenal pictures of that home or investment property you are trying to sell. Don't take good pictures? Hire a professional as it's so worth it.
I take pretty good pictures, but I must admit that a professional does it so much better. They have better equipment than an Android phone, combined with a vast knowledge and expertise to make even the most ordinary look extraordinary. The lighting, the time of day, the color scheme and of course the angle is crucial to getting that just right shot. Sometimes when I look at property pictures online, I wonder why they were ever included. You know the ones: Upside down, dark and even sideways. I mean come on, this isn't the batcave, it's your pride and joy, so show it off properly. Remember this is a buyer's first impression of your property and you want to make it a good one.
Having attractive pictures is often thought of as a "must have" for residential properties, but that goes for investment properties as well. Most people, nowadays, scan the internet looking for their next purchase. Rarely, does anyone just drive around and look at places for sale. First stop is generally online. Again, Inman News states that 92% of home and investment property buyers shop first online, so if people see bad pictures they are more likely to pass and move on to the next. And that goes for investment properties too, even if the list price makes it seem like a good deal no matter what it looks like. Price is important, but it's not the only thing that is. Granted, investment properties are more difficult to show as you can't force your tenants to clean their apartments, but you can make sure the common areas look good. And your property may be well worth the look in person, but without favorable pictures, no one will show up at your doorstep. Your photos should be inviting buyers to come take a look for themselves. And that means getting it show ready.
I've mentioned "Curb Appeal" many times and the need for having it. Just as pictures lure people into seeing your property, having curb appeal welcomes people inside. Again with the first impressions, if buyers see weeds, dead grass, peeling paint and rusty nails their first impression is already tarnished no matter how great it may look inside. And once inside, people want to see neat and tidy areas. So declutter and depersonalize as much as possible especially before taking those awesome pictures. It's amazing how pictures can almost erase stains on a carpet, or marks on a wall, but they can't straighten a messy room or hide major defects. So get it fixed before the pix. And if your property is vacant, you may want to consider staging it. That typically applies to just single family homes. Most important is that you want your pictures to say "Come Look At Me", not "Turn The Other Way". A home or investment property is a product for sale, just like any other, and should be marketed as such. And while you may not have the multi-million dollar property seen here, you can still take it from drab to fab.
Want to know how to take amazing pictures that get attention? Then contact me. I had a professional take these pictures on my past listings in Pittsburgh PA and I firmly feel that they added to the overall quick sale of the property.
So get your property ready for it's close up, make it picture perfect and you'll get that face to face you desire. With ultimately an autograph, from an admirer, on the sales agreement.