Statistics from the National Association of Realtors show that up to 90% of home buyers start their house hunt online. In my experience, selling a home has become much easier than it used to be a decade ago – all because of technology.
The days of driving down streets and talking to other agents is becoming less rampant. Tech-savvy listing agents and homeowners can leverage cutting edge innovation – from drone photography to digital transaction services – to make the entire process easier and friendlier.
This post highlights the top 11 tech tools that will help you sell a house fast.
[wp-svg-icons icon=”images” wrap=”i”] High Quality Images
Gone are the days when taking a few cellphone snapshots was enough for a real estate listing. Because real estate is such a visual product, younger buyers expect nothing less than the best visuals.
Potential prospects are searching online with smartphones, tablets and computers that allow them to see in high resolutions. They want a perfect visual depiction of every room or facility in the home before they even express interest. Otherwise they’ll just skip to the next listing.
In our experience at Palmetto Park Realty, professional photography can be the difference between listings that attract a lot of attention and those that don’t. Fortunately for real estate sellers, affordable digital photography equipment allow you to show off a home’s best vantage points. If your in-house real estate team is not well-versed in the art of photography, consider hiring a professional real estate photographer to capture the best angles and lighting.
[wp-svg-icons icon=”camera” wrap=”i”] Drone Photography
The National Association of Realtors agrees that pictures and video taken from drones are an incredible tool to sell homes fast. These are especially ideal with large properties and more expensive homes. Drone photography allows potential buyers to see any large homes with unusual features in all its splendor. Clear aerial shots easily highlight the property’s unique features.
Bird’s eye view drone photography works like magic when it comes to showcasing estate properties with horse stables, farmlands, sports courts, lake or oceanfront access, swimming pools, mountain views, and other outdoor features.
Buyers who are looking to buy in a new town or location will also benefit greatly from drone photography because they can see the entire home within its locale. This ‘bigger picture’ helps buyers visualize the property as well as what’s around it. For real estate sellers, drone photography will enhance the appeal and potentially the price of property whose best side is not easily shown in street view and interior photos.
Real estate agents can use drones to obtain inexpensive images of homes for sale, commercial properties and parcels of undeveloped land.
48% of professional drones are used primarily for ‘aerial imaging and data collection, which includes real estate photography. – Federal Aviation Authority (FAA)
Read –> How Technology is Disrupting the Traditional Real Estate Model
[wp-svg-icons icon=”stack” wrap=”i”] Floor Plans
Let’s admit it, many real estate agents see floor plans as “unnecessary” to the selling process. Contrary to that, buyers love floor plans.
When it comes to showing a home’s photos online, it can be difficult for buyers to figure out how the images fit together in the whole house. This is more so true if the property you are showcasing is empty. A floor plan helps buyers piece together the photos and entire property in their mind. This is important for real estate sellers because buyers are more likely to choose to inspect a property that already ‘makes sense’.
Out of town buyers consider floor plans to be a highly valuable tool because it helps them figure how the property ‘comes together’.
Many serious buyers will inspect multiple properties per day. The challenge for sellers is to make your property more memorable. Adding floor plans to your open home brochures or marketing materials is a great way to establish the listing as the most professional one the buyer came into contact with that day.
Another great advantage of using floor plans is that they allow buyers to draw and visualize their furniture inside the home. When buyers do this, they are more likely to become emotionally attached to the property.
Tech tools such as VHT Studios make it easier for real estate sellers to integrate floor plans into their listings. VHT interactive floor plans combine professional photography and a realistic illustration to enhance a buyer’s viewing experience and motivate them to take action.
[wp-svg-icons icon=”camera-2″ wrap=”i”] Immersive Video Tours
Because it shows a virtual tour of your property (both interiors and exteriors) video is a powerful imaging tool for real estate sellers. Today’s real estate videos go beyond the empty home virtual tours that were popular in yesteryears.
A video tour provides excellent interaction for online viewers so they get a walk-through-the-home experience.
The video will include narration, music, and scenes of people enjoying the features of the property. Video gives you an opportunity to create an emotional connection, which makes it a huge tool for buyers, sellers and agents.
Multiple studies back the claim that video is the newest frontier in real estate marketing. 50% of online interactivity is video based and consumers are 41% more likely to click a video thumbnail compared to a picture or link. Video content also leads to 403% more enquiries. The good news for real estate agents and individual home sellers is that you don’t require high-tech equipment to shoot a great video of a home.
Toolkit for taking real estate video tours
A simple smartphone or tablet may be enough to shoot a superb video tour. Where necessary, consider hiring the services of a production company that knows how to get the best angles and footage.
[wp-svg-icons icon=”books” wrap=”i”] Virtual Staging
This is another incredible piece of technology that will help attract multiple offers for your home. Virtual staging is essentially the digital enhancement of a home’s listing photos to show what the rooms would look like with furnishings and décor.
Because bringing in furniture to improve the look of an empty home can become prohibitively expensive, virtual staging is becoming increasingly popular with real estate teams across America.
This cool technology allows buyers to see photos of any home online with furniture and different colors or flooring.
[wp-svg-icons icon=”joomla” wrap=”i”] Interest Maps
This is a tech hack that many real estate sellers – not just in our Greenville backyard – are using to quickly cash in homes. Most listings integrate Google Earth’s maps that allow viewers to see the physical locations of properties.
You may include an extension for interest maps that show a certain home’s proximity to schools, shopping centers, and landmarks. This can be a major influence point especially for online viewers who are not able to visit the property in person.
[wp-svg-icons icon=”mobile-2″ wrap=”i”] Real Estate Mobile Apps
Real estate shoppers – especially younger buyers – want to be able to look at listings on their smartphones. These clients want an easy and convenient way to view photos, look up details of a property, find directions to a home, or get details of the agent in charge of it. It’s no wonder that most major real estate marketplaces and brokerages have mobile apps.
Zillow’s chief marketing officer, Amy Bohutinsky, says that about 600 million homes are viewed on mobile every month. That just shows how many buyers are using mobile devices to search for homes. By going the extra step to make sure that their listings look GREAT on mobile, real estate sellers can attract more cash offers.
[wp-svg-icons icon=”facebook-2″ wrap=”i”] Social Media
When it comes to spreading the word about a property on sale, social media is an indispensable tool. Social media feeds have become so interconnected that they provide a valuable marketing tool for selling homes.
At Palmetto Park Realty, over half of our social media website traffic comes from Facebook alone. We believe that in this digital age, all real estate sellers should leverage a vibrant social media strategy that includes paid advertisement.
[wp-svg-icons icon=”screen” wrap=”i”] Friendly Online Search Tools
Millions of home buyers across America are already using Zillow, Trulia, Realtor.com, Redfin and other online portals. A decade ago, there was a huge gap when it came to searching for listings online. Customers are able to access real estate listings quickly with more targeted searches than ever before.
Because they allow people to search for homes that match their lifestyle, smartphones and mobile devices have been a real catalyst in the entire real estate process. Real estate sellers should utilize these search platforms to increase the exposure of their listings.
[wp-svg-icons icon=”github-3″ wrap=”i”] Virtual Reality
Virtual reality brings three dimensions (3D) to how real estate agents showcase homes. Although this technology is still new to real estate, it’s catching up fast. Imagine your buyers being able to use an inexpensive viewer such as Google’s Cardboard to tour a home in high resolution. The experience is very immersive, almost as real as being physically present for an open house. The buyer will be able to look up and down, climb stairs, zoom in and out, and view (in great details) all the features that make a home sellable.
By allowing clients to truly experience a property without ever setting foot in the physical space, virtual reality will lead to less time wasted touring properties and faster closes.
[wp-svg-icons icon=”profile” wrap=”i”] Digital Transaction Services
Digital transaction services are also having an impact on how Americans sell real estate property. These technology services simplify the home-buying process by allowing buyers and sellers to complete their transaction online. Perhaps the best example is DocuSign, which allows parties to complete offers, counteroffers, contracts and other documents online with eSignature technology. Notarize.com makes it possible for buyers and sellers to have legal documents notarized online. This process will entail uploading the real estate documents, and participating in a video call with a notary public in Virginia. The company’s services can be used in any U.S. state except Iowa.
Although not as popular as the other innovations we have seen above, these digital services can make everything easier especially in situations where distance is hindering a buyer who’s interested in a property.
Contact Palmetto Park to list your Greenville home
Time to sell? Forward thinking real estate professionals are using technology to attract top dollar home prices on their listings! At Palmetto Park Realty, we utilize these measures – and many more – to sell homes faster while saving thousands of dollars in costs per sale. Contact us today to request your free listing analysis with our Greenville, SC team!