What It Takes to Sell a Luxury Home for Maximum Return.
Todays seller's market environment has made selling quite a bit easier than several years ago. But, if getting maximum dollar for your real estate is important, you have to do it right.
Considering the value of luxury homes, it is understandable that sellers would want to get things right. These homes are substantial investments, often worth millions of dollars. There are fewer luxury homes out there, which makes it even more important that the seller put forward a positive image of the home. You must attract the right buyer, know how to make the buyer understand what makes the home worth the money, and be able to negotiate effectively when selling some of the highest-priced homes available. Having the right list price and the best real estate agent are two vital cogs in the sale of a luxury home.
#1 Create a Psychological profile of the buyer.
It may seem strange to start off a list of the best luxury home selling tips with creating a psychological profile of the end buyer, but it is not. First and foremost, you want to know who you will be marketing to when trying to draw in high-end clientele.
With a luxury home or property sale, you are not casting the widest net but trying to appeal to a certain audience. Of course, the buyer needs to be able to comfortably afford the home. The last thing you want to be targeting is those who are marginally qualified.
But what exactly are you selling? Beyond the magnificent architecture of your property are you selling an award winning golf home, a top school system, a highly desired gated community or the best restaurants and shops within walking distance? These are just a few examples of presenting 'lifestyle' to your potential buyer.
You and your luxury real estate agent need to have a strong grasp of what separates your home from other luxury properties in the area and market to those strengths. Conversely, you must also understand the challenges and provide a simple solution to meet those needs.
#2 Price it correctly.
One of the most important tips for selling a luxury home is pricing it at the right price from day one. Pricing any home correctly is challenging. Knowing how to look at a home, measure its strengths and weaknesses, compare it to similar homes, examine the surrounding market and price it to both sell in a timely manner and for a good price – these are skills that great Agents take years to master.
Luxury homes add another layer of difficulty when it comes to pricing. There are less comparable homes to reference, and each luxury home tends to have unique features that only some buyers will value. These features often make the property more difficult to price.
Some inexperienced agents will try to use rudimentary price per square foot. This is a sure-fire way to get a luxury home priced wrong! There are significantly more challenges to pricing a luxury home than say, a moderately priced one. The price, however, needs to be spot on if you want to get top dollar as we know total days on market, decrease the properties value. Price a home too high, and it will sit on the market for months without selling. Eventually, it will develop a stigma – buyers will assume there is something wrong with it. We know from research that every day a home is on the market, it loses value.
This is especially true with luxury homes, because with such a smaller supply, buyers and their agents are unlikely to forget about the home. They will recognize it, even if it pops up a year later at a lower price.
Pricing the home correctly is one of the biggest reasons to hire an agent familiar with luxury properties. The agent should understand the difference that location plays in the comparable sales data and how one neighborhood and even one street differs from the next. The neighborhood in which a property is located can have a huge influence on value.
A skilled luxury real estate agent understands all the factors of a home. Great agents know that comparable sold properties are vital to establishing true market value. They don’t waste a lot of time looking at homes sitting on the market that have not sold. Knowing how to sell a luxury home starts with accurate pricing.
#3 Good timing.
Flagstaff and many other second home markets can be very seasonal. What does this mean? Many buyers are looking to get away from the Valleys heat. We also see buyers from Las Vegas and California looking for that perfect home in the perfect environment. Our task: create it. Understanding market trends in specific locations is critical.
Other timing factors could include political elections, interest rates, growth indicators of an area, social issues, stock markets and much more. Time it right, and you will be rewarded.
#4 Effective marketing.
When selecting a real estate professional to sell a luxury property, it is critical to have one that understands luxury specifically. From market knowledge and preparation to pricing, advertising, and branding, a luxury property demands the attention it deserves. Your Luxury Agent should be able to articulate the differences while also producing a plan to meet those unique needs. This is the ONLY way to achieve maximum results.
Have you seen your properties advertising? Was there any? Has your agent clearly shown ROI and impressions on those ads? Is there a clear and obvious strategic plan to selling your property for the most amount of money, in the least amount of time? It is a fact that most agents do not spend the advertising dollars needed to sell luxury real estate to its fullest potential.
Finding the right buyer requires getting the word out about the property for sale. Today the primary marketing channel is the internet but putting up a listing on the multiple listing service (MLS) is not enough to sell a luxury property. At least, not for maximum return. You want your property in front of potential buyers that didn't even know they wanted to buy. That means getting many more impressions outside the MLS. Luxury buyers have an advantage in that they can often buy a new property when they wish. We capitalize on this advantage by presenting amazing real estate to them outside of traditional means.
Marketing correctly should be very strategic. In addition to pricing a home, a reputable agent will have many marketing options for your luxury home. The first will be online, but the most pervasive will often be the network he or she has with other Realtors, past clients and other people involved in high-end real estate. Top real estate agents understand the best marketing routes for selling a home and they take advantage of them all. Exceptional agents leave no stone uncovered when selling a high-end home. Internet, print, social media, texts, emails, and many other mediums must be considered in a truly complete marketing plan.
Our proprietary 'Strategy Statement' meets these needs and much more. It is the absolute most comprehensive marketing plan in the Flagstaff area. Guaranteed.
#5 Using high-end photography and video appropriately.
Whether a buyer finds your home online, through contacts of your real estate agent or other medium, most people are going to want to look at the listing before they schedule a viewing. A quality listing must contain amazing pictures of the property. Just as a good portrait photographer can bring out the best in a person, a skilled home photographer and agent can make any home look its best. You want pictures that attract buyers, which requires working with a professional.
Luxury homes deserve exceptional professional photography. This is one of the most important aspects of selling a luxury home. When someone asks how to do you sell a luxury home, photography will be at the top of the list! This is step one in getting a qualified buyer through the door. Video and/or drone footage is often as important as photos when selling real estate today. Buyers may be coming from across the country to view your home. Even if they are coming from next door, a video tour can give them a good idea of what living in the home would be like and convey what makes your home special. Filming a quality video tour may cost a little bit of money, but it can be considered an investment. The better the video looks, the more likely you are to attract the right kind of buyer.
#6 Effective offline marketing.
While online marketing is a critical part of selling a luxury home so is your non-digital marketing material. There should be additional money invested into marketing material when marketing a high-end home. Perception is everything when it comes to marketing to buyers who are purchasing an expensive home. The marketing material should tell a story both about the home as well as the city or town the property is located in. Selling such things as the neighborhood or outstanding education are all part of the puzzle.
Often you are selling a lifestyle, and this should be conveyed in the marketing material. Keep in mind that many luxury home buyers look for well-known luxury brands. This should be reflected in your marketing. For example, in the kitchen, high end appliances include a Sub-Zero fridge, a Wolfe or Viking stove, a Thermador oven, a Miele or Bosch dishwasher. Luxury buyers look for these brands. When marketing the home these things should be emphasized. The kitchen is often the most important room in the house so extra time should be spent featuring it.
#7 Traits of Luxury Home Real Estate Agents
When marketing and selling a luxury home, the agent you select becomes even more critical. The agent you hire will be your voice in getting the word out about how magnificent your property happens to be. Some of the most important traits of a luxury real estate agent include:
- Amazingly effective communicators.
- Extremely detail oriented.
- Understands luxury home market preparation.
- Understands the local, national and international markets.
- Experts in marketing, branding, and advertising.
- Have a good sphere of influence.
- Skilled in problem-solving.
- Pro negotiation skills.
- Understanding of wealth management in real estate.
Wow, that can be a lot. These skill sets are unbelievably valuable when selling a high-end property. At least if getting top dollar is important to you. Keep in mind your real estate agent plays a vital role in the sale from start to finish. Also keep in mind, your agent will more than pay for him/herself in higher sales results. Each aspect of the transaction is important whether it is communicating with you, the other agent, contractors, title/escrow or solving problems that comes up in the sale.
Selecting the best real estate agent is one of the most important tips when selling a luxury home. You want the best on your team.
For much more on luxury home branding for maximum results, contact us today for a free consultation.