San Francisco property prices can spark sticker shock for many buyers. The cost of owning a Bay Area home is even prompting many would-be homeowners to move to other cities or states. Real estate prices cooled briefly during the pandemic, but the post-pandemic exodus from cities is contributing to higher rates.
Despite expensive home values as compared to the rest of the United States, sellers in San Francisco still need to compete to make their homes stand out—especially faced with investors who can pay cash, and may have their pick of homes with unlimited budgets.
An updated home in a desirable area has the highest chance of selling quickly with a robust marketing strategy. Open houses and online listings are important features of a home advertising campaign, along with others that maximize the power of current real estate listing tools and technologies.
Whether you want to sell your home without a realtor, or aim to be better informed as you partner with an agent, understanding real estate marketing will help your home sell fast. These six strategies are a start, using the power of the internet, real estate trends, and creativity.
Price based on data
When prices are high, knowing what other homes on the block are selling for is crucial. There are many factors that determine how much a home should list for and top real estate agents know that creating a Comparative Market Analysis (CMA), is the first step to pricing a home competitively. You don’t need a real estate agent to create an informative CMA.
The essential data may be pulled from a site such as Zillow, looking at homes with similar square footage, condition, amenities, and physical characteristics such as light and green space, that recently sold in your area. A well-rounded CMA will compare three or five homes to determine a comparable price. Another step is to use an online appraisal tool, such as HomeLight’s Home Value Estimator to see how much your home is worth.
Take your online listing to the next level
It’s rare to find a home without an online listing, even those homes that sell immediately after they hit the market. With a high percentage of buyers looking for their next home online, adding extra features to an online listing is part of a successful marketing strategy.
Online listings are particularly important for investors or iBuyers who may not view a home before buying it and complete the entire real estate transaction virtually. There are many platforms for online listings from websites that aggregate homes for sale to mobile apps and Facebook marketplace. Advertising your home on more than one channel is the best strategy to reach the widest buyer pool.
The basics of an online listing will include photos and text about the home, and many real estate agents are following a trend from the pandemic, to create virtual tours. During the pandemic, when open houses and tours halted, real estate agents had to host virtual tours.
Now, these virtual showings are a tool to help buyers make real estate decisions remotely and research potential homes. How involved you get with a virtual tour depends on your budget and level of expertise. A virtual tour could be a video walkthrough, a 3-D interactive website that allows potential buyers to move through rooms at their own pace, or a live virtual open house either individually or scheduled with multiple viewers at a time. Researching similar listings and seeing how virtual tours are integrated with them is part of staying competitive.
Get creative with descriptions
Potential buyers may find their next home while riding the subway to work, or waiting in line at the grocery store — those moments when they may not have time to interact with a virtual home tour. For that reason, professional photos and descriptions are still important, even in the digital era.
Successful real estate advertisements go beyond listing a home’s features to telling a story. Creative descriptions will set a scene for buyers as if reading a story about living in their dream property. These descriptions will sell an experience and a home.
Promote modern amenities
In the San Francisco Bay area, you can’t get away from talking about technology, and homes that have smart home features can shine in a crowded real estate market.
Amenities such as smart locks, built-in speakers, remote climate control, and security can all be front and center. Green details, such as recycled flooring, solar panels, and low-flow water systems, can also help a home sell.
Hire an expert
If you are planning to sell your home yourself, you may still want to hire an assistant with real estate experience to show your home. If working with an agent, choosing a professional with expertise in your neighborhood and in selling homes similar to yours is part of a solid marketing strategy. With their network, you’ll have access to another pool of potential buyers.
When selling a home in San Francisco, stay aware of the market and what buyers are looking, for while using the power of creative listings.