Does it really matter whether or not your Realtor is “Tech Savvy”?
The answer is a resounding YES!
As a Buyer or Seller, it really doesn’t matter whether YOU are into technology or not. We work with all kinds of folks and we adapt to whatever their comfort level & needs are when it comes to communication, home searching & more. And while technology can make buying or selling a home easier on you, it’s really not an absolute necessity that YOU be tech savvy.
So, whether you’re like my husband (who has a phone with no camera, no internet access and a flip top – he calls it a “dumb phone” instead of a “smart phone”) or you’re the first person in your office to get the latest gadget or download the newest app – you can be successful in buying or selling a home, doing it with the least inconvenience possible, and maximizing your exposure (if you’re selling) or your opportunity (if you’re buying.)
But only IF YOU HAVE A REALTOR WHO IS TECH SAVVY.
To understand why this might matter to you as a Buyer or a Seller, ask yourself these questions:
- If you are a Buyer and you know that the Northern Virginia market is seeing many cases of multiple, competing contracts on homes that are new on the market – wouldn’t you want to have a Realtor who is uber-connected and knows about listings sooner rather than later?
- If you are a Seller, don’t you want to maximize the exposure of your home to the market? It’s not your “Grandma’s Market” any more and a sign in the yard & word of mouth over the back fence are not how you get the word out. While traditional marketing still has its place, wouldn’t you want a Realtor who can provide exposure to new arenas? You may not be on Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, etc – but don’t you want the folks who are in those places to know about your home too?
- And whether you are a Buyer or a Seller, a Tech Savvy Realtor is also often a sign of a Realtor with superior market knowledge, sharply honed negotiating skills and an out-of-the-box mindset. Aren’t those things you would be looking for in today’s market?
The bottom line is that Social Media is not just “hype” – it can HELP you!
So, how do you know if a Realtor is “Tech Savvy”?
Many will say they are Tech Savvy when you ask them, but how do you REALLY know? Here are 5 Tips To Find A Tech Savvy Realtor:
1. Go to their web site and see if they have a blog. If they don’t have a blog, they probably are not Tech Savvy. If they do, how often do they post and what do they write about? If their last blog post was a month or more ago, it’s not a good sign. Scroll through the blog and see what types of things they post. This is a great way to see what kind of market knowledge they have, how they work, how they market their homes and more. A Tech Savvy Realtor will have at least one blog (oftentimes more than one) and will update it at least 2-3 times a week year-round and will include things like market statistics, advice to Buyers & Sellers, market trends and more. (The Belt Team has two blogs – one about Northern Virginia real estate and one about Life In Vienna. In addition, we have been tapped as Community Bloggers and blog regularly for Vienna Patch, Oakton Patch and WUSA9.com .)
2. Check out their KLOUT score. What’s a KLOUT score? Here’s what Klout’s web site says: “Klout measures influence based on your ability to drive action on social networks.” If you’re a Seller, don’t you want someone who can drive action on your home? And if you’re a buyer, don’t you also want someone who is ultra wired in? A Tech Savvy Realtor will have a higher than average KLOUT score. (An average KLOUT score is around 40.) So go to www.klout.com , sign up for a free account, find your Realtor and check them out. (Or just ask them what their score is. If they have no idea what KLOUT is, then you have your answer!) If their name doesn’t come up at all – they are definitely NOT Tech Savvy. If they do come up, you can not only check out their score, but you can see what topics Klout says they are influential about. Hopefully it will be “real estate”! (Klout scores fluctuate daily. As of this writing, my Klout score is 63 and among other things, we are listed as influential in “Real Estate”, “Blogging”, “Vienna”, “Business”, “Charities” & “Sales”).
3. Ask them if they have ever represented a Buyer who bought a home with them from afar – meaning someone who bought a home long distance without seeing the home in person. While this may not be the situation you are in, it is a great indicator of how Tech Savvy the agent might be. If they have done this a number of times, it likely means they are great with video, Skype, DocUSign and a host of other tools that make buying virtually much easier than you think. You don’t have to use those tools, but having an agent who knows how to benefits you. It’s a great indication that they are probably very sharp, go the extra mile and think outside the box.
4. Check out their Facebook page. How many “Friends” or “Likes” do they have? Do they have both a business & personal page? When was the last time they updated their status? Is their page an active forum where potential Buyers could be sourced for your home? Do they have lots of contacts so that perhaps they can find a home for you to buy that may not even be on the market? Ask them whether they have actually generated business from their Facebook page (or do they just “play around”?)
5. Search for online reviews. A Tech Savvy Realtor will have lots of online reviews. Just like travelers use Trip Advisor to check out hotel reviews and Yelp to check out restaurant reviews, home buyers and home sellers use sites like Zillow.com and Trulia.com to find out about good Realtors. Realtors who are not Tech Savvy will probably not show up on these sites. And if they do, they may only have a few reviews. Realtors who ARE Tech Savvy will have multiple reviews and show up on more than one site. If you do this, not only will you know whether or not the agent is Tech Savvy – you’ll also know a whole lot about them and what it’s like to be one of their clients. These reviews are posted directly by consumers – NOT by the agent. So you’ll find out the good AND the bad. (As an example, The Belt Team has 43 reviews on Zillow.)
Twitter ~ GChat ~ Hangouts ~ Circles ~ Facebook ~ IM ~ Skype ~ SEO ~ IVR ~ You Tube ~ Blogging ~ Texting ~ Pinterest
If you know what all these terms mean, then you’ve found the right real estate team to help you buy or sell. We combine yesterday’s values with today’s technology to make your tomorrow bright.
If you don’t have a clue what these terms mean, that’s ok – we DO! In today’s market, you need a team who is on the leading edge of technology to help you achieve your dreams. No need to be “tech savvy”, we’ll do it for you!
While The Belt Team lives old fashioned values like integrity & trust, we also pride ourselves on being on the leading edge of marketing & technology. Why? It’s in our clients’ best interests!