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Friday, January 13, 2012

Replacing real estate apprehension with insight

At the time Tim bought his last house, he had no insight to what was going on in the market.

He knew real estate was supposed to be a good investment because the newspapers reported as much.

He knew he could get a loan with nothing down because his friend did.

He knew his real estate agent at the time could help him buy any house on the market because she told him so.

Tim didn’t know much about real estate at all, which scares him today. He wants to sell his current house, wants to know he won’t lose his butt on the transaction, wants to find a nicer house, and wants to know his investment won’t get him in trouble a few years down the road, like his current house did over the past few years.

Tim has found this difficult, though. The newspapers are only reporting negative news. He keeps hearing about foreclosures on TV. And his real estate agent, who he thought he could trust, never contacted him again after his last purchase. In fact, when Tim called her brokerage he discovered she had left the real estate industry altogether.

You can’t blame Tim for having a negative taste in his mouth toward real estate. You can’t fault him for being tainted by those in the industry who might have oversold on false expectations just five years earlier, but were nowhere to be found when Tim faced real problems.

So Tim ventures again into a sea that now seems even more vast and mysterious than it did the first time Tim navigated it. He needs someone to help advise him, and he’s going to make darn sure he vets that person’s expertise a lot more than he did his prior agent’s.

Tim asks a real estate question on a handful of local brokerage websites. He doesn’t know what to expect, but wants to know a real person will actually respond to him, first and foremost.

“If and when someone does respond, I’m going to make sure they can answer my questions, instead of immediately trying to sell me something,” Tim thinks to himself.

He doesn’t have high hopes, which is why he’s surprised when his phone rings within a couple minutes of submitting his question.

“I’m Lori,” the voice on the other end of the phone says. “I wanted to thank you for visiting our website, and had an answer to your question, if you have a moment to speak.”

Tim is dumbfounded. He received auto-responder emails from most of the sites he submitted his question to, but had never received a call back so quickly on something he inquired about. In fact, Tim’s last experience with a company was waiting on hold with his cell phone provider for 18 minutes. He finally hung up.

Lori answers Tim’s questions, which concerned the neighborhood he currently lives in, and what he might be able to sell his house for.

“Why don’t I set you up with an account on my website?” Lori asks. “That way you’ll get a weekly email detailing your neighborhood report.”

The next day, Tim finds a market report in his inbox. It shows other listings on the market that are similar to his own. Tim sees those for sale, those pending a sale and those that recently sold. He sees their address, square footage, number of bedrooms and bathrooms, the year they were built, list price and list date. For those that have sold, he sees their closing price and date, as well as the difference between what the seller originally asked and what the home sold for.

“This is pretty in-depth,” Tim thinks to himself, as he starts summing up where his house stacks against those he’s analyzing.

He looks at the report’s overview. It includes the total number of listings on the market in his neighborhood, both weekly and monthly. He sees the recent trends of what is happening around him, and where his transaction might fit in the process. Just then, another thought starts entering Tim’s mind.

“This is a better view of the market than I’ve gotten from the media. This can actually help me list my house, and when, and for how much. It’s far more in-depth than the info I got from my previous agent.”

Little does Tim know, Lori set the report up to be auto-generated. Tim will receive an updated report each week, and Lori can log into the DeltaNet to track Tim's interaction on her website.

Tim isn't so worried anymore. His collective apprehension is replaced by the reassurance his new insight provides him.

Contact Delta Media Group at 866-233-9833 for more information on how to arm your customers with the insight they need to use your brokerage to make their next transaction.
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