If you’re thinking about selling your home, you may be wondering how technology has changed the process over the years. It’s definitely NOT your Grandma’s real estate market! So what are some of the top tech tools being used today to sell homes?
1. IVR (Interactive Voice Response) Systems
On each home marketed by The Belt Team, we install a special rider on the sign so that anyone who is interested can call and get information 24 hours a day. They can hear a recording and get a fax about our properties any time of the day or night. Yes, all of our info is easily found on all sorts of web sites, but when you’re driving by – it’s a lot easier to just call. You’d be surprised how many people call as early as 5AM or as late as midnight!
The good news for our Sellers is that our system captures the caller’s number via caller id. Since the technology includes an 800 number, we are able to caller id every caller. Within seconds of a call, we receive an email notification with the caller’s message (if one was left) and their phone number. And one of the Realtors on our team follows up with a return call to make sure the caller got all the info they need. No page left unturned so to speak!
2. SOCIAL MEDIA
GChat, Hangout, Facebook, IM, Twitter, Skype, Texting, You Tube, LocalMinds, FourSquare, Video Tours, Blogging, Circles, etc, etc, etc. These are terms you may or may not be familiar with. (And between the time I write this and the time I post it, there will probably be more new terms!)
Some things in real estate haven’t changed much since your Grandma bought & sold her house, but the way we communicate has definitely changed. Today’s Buyers & Sellers want to be communciated with in very particular ways – and no two consumers are the same. So we make sure that when we’re selling homes, we’re on top of that communication path. If none of these terms mean anything to you – that’s ok. When we’re selling your home, we handle the technology for you. And if you already know what hangouts & circles are – great. You know exactly what we’re talking about!
Today’s market requires creativity and a need to be on the leading edge of technology. The Belt Team has embraced this philosophy. It’s one reason why we were selected to be Community Bloggers for various online news sites like Vienna Patch, Oakton Patch and WUSA9. And it’s why we have close to 500 followers on Twitter. And why we have a You Tube channel. And why our agents are on Facebook. And why we write a lifestyle blog about Vienna. You get the picture. We don’t wait for Buyers to come to us. We’re proactive and reach out to draw them in.
Back in the 50’s & 60’s there used to be TV shows about “the future”. (My favorite was The Jetsons!) But boy would your Grandma have been surprised back then to see what we can do now.
Imagine this scenario:
You’re selling your home. You take the kids to the Outer Banks for a week so your house will actually stay clean. Your spouse is on travel in South America for business. Your in-laws co-signed when you bought the house, so they have an interest as well. And your Realtor is here in Vienna.
A contract comes in on your house. Now what? Your Realtor emails the contract to everyone. You’re on vacation, so you pull it up on your smart phone. Your spouse travels with an ipad, so he pulls it up there. And your in-laws have an old-fashioned desktop and check their email as well.
Your Realtor sets up a “hangout” on Google Plus (or conferences everyone in on Skype – you know the thing you set up so the grandparents could “see” the kids!) and all 5 of you go over the contract and discuss your options. Then your Realtor sends out the document via DocUSign so each party can sign electronically and no time is wasted in ratifying a contract.
Back to your regularly scheduled vacation – where you toast the fact that you were smart enough to choose a “tech savvy” Realtor!
With today’s technology, we have actually even sold several homes where the Buyer never even stepped foot in the home until AFTER they owned it!
3. THE “BAT PHONE”
Remember when Batman would get “important calls” on the red “Bat Phone”? Well, all the calls that come in on our listings are important. So we have a dedicated cell number we use on all advertising for the homes we sell. We call this cell phone the “Bat Phone”. Our goal is no only to be “high tech” but also to be “high touch”. And so each week a different Realtor Partner on the team handles the Bat Phone. Our goal is that this phone is ALWAYS answered. Today’s consumer wants answers immediately. And we aim to please. This tech tool might sound pretty “low tech” – but when was the last time you called and got a live person on the phone instead of voice mail or a bunch of recorded prompts?!
If you’re thinking of buying or selling a home, contact The Belt Team.
We combine yesterday’s values with today’s technology to make your tomorrow bright!