What do you tell potential clients that others haven’t yet pitched? What do you have to show to stand out from your local competition?
The single property website story has been played. So has listing syndication, property videos, commitment to doing open houses and other typical advertising and marketing strategies. In a distressed market, pre-forelcosure and short sale experience also tend to make a huge difference. But on any day, highlighting online auction as one of your strengths and unique strategies to marketing client property is a significant differentiator.
Whether you are working to win a large commercial or residential deal, your prospect will be delighted to hear how you can use online auction technology to market their property to buyers worldwide, and set up an environment that can ignite a bidding competition on their house or office building.
The next generation agent is going paperless, and negotiating deals is a critical piece of the puzzle. So is the ability to bid buyers against each other to maximize asset value, without breaking a sweat. Online auction delivers these benefits easily and efficiently, and is a rapidly growing trend that pioneering agents and top producers are and must pay attention to.
A house that’s walking distance to Union Station in DC recently listed for $337,000 and sold for nearly $761,000 after approximately 170 bids in just two weeks, as reported today by the Washington Post. Imagine enabling out of area, out of state and foreign bidders to chime in as well, online. Now how about firing up the bidding process even more, by allowing bidders to see each others’ bids online, and enabling them to increase their bids with a click of the mouse, while you and your client watch in real time?
New online commercial and residential real estate auction technology is extremely easy to use, and is completely free of charge for all parties involved. It allows you to manage and oversee hundreds of bids without lifting a finger, and gives you the chance to market to buyers out of state and across the world, with no added effort.
Now that’s the kind of pitch that stands to snag you more listings, while others stand in wonder.
A new year is just around the corner, and we’re already setting up to attend and exhibit at two of the real estate industry’s most powerful and energizing conferences, back to back.
ListedBy is sponsoring both Connect and Reboot in NYC, which will be held January 16-18, 2013 at the The Grand Hyatt New York. We will be showcasing the latest release of our free online real estate auction and ‘Best Offer’ platform, ListedBy.com.
As always, get ready for some amazing prizes from ListedBy, including the now famous Vegas luxury condo stay giveaway for four people! And after really great feedback at NAR in Orlando in November, we just might do the remote controlled helicopter giveaways again as well! Just drop by our exhibit to get in on the action.
We look forward to seeing many of our members and business partners in NYC, and to meeting many more real estate pros keen on adopting the latest technologies in their business. If you want to get exposure and learn about technologies that are truly making a difference in the real estate business, INMAN conferences are the events to be at.
If you haven’t yet registered to attend INMAN Connect or Reboot NYC, here is are the links:
Real Estate Connect: http://www.realestateconnect.com/nyc13/rates
Agent Reboot: https://register.inman.com/shop/Agent-Reboot-2013—New-York/
To view venue and travel information, here is another link: http://www.realestateconnect.com/nyc13/venue
We’re pleased to announce the release of a new consumer handbook on real estate auctions, ListedBy – Real Estate Auction Primer for Consumers.
One of the terminologies explained in the booklet, which will be available for download right here within this blog post next week, is Transparency.
Transparency is one of the key advantages of real estate auctions, specifically online real estate auctions. That’s when bidders can see each others’ bids at any time, and can look up each others’ information, such as account profiles. Much like on LinkedIn and other social networks.
This kind of transparency gives everyone a greater sense of trust and confidence in the process, equal chance, and optimizes a property’s market value. New platforms such as ListedBy.com allow everyone to view other’s bids and member profiles including any ratings, recommendations or comments.
The guide also emphasizes the importance for consumers to engage an experienced REALTOR® when considering selling or buying a home through auction.
Click to DOWNLOAD ListedBy – Real Estate Auction Primer for Consumers.
Meanwhile here is the full News Release capturing the content of the booklet:
ListedBy Releases Real Estate Auction Guide for Consumers
Downloadable handbook outlines and explains basic auction terminology, strategies and ‘must-know’ guidelines for home buyers and sellers
NAPA, Calif. – November 30, 2012 – ListedBy (www.ListedBy.com), the first free online real estate marketplace and social network with live bidding auction and ‘Best Offer’ functionality has released ListedBy – Real Estate Auction Primer for Consumers, a ‘must-know’ guide for anyone looking to buy or sell real estate through auction.
“As the auction market gains traction, important terminologies and factors are a must for both buyers and sellers,” said Stephan Piscano, CEO and Co-Founder, ListedBy. “ListedBy’s model changes the auction practice almost entirely and adds new dimensions even experienced real estate professionals can greatly benefit from.”
ListedBy – Real Estate Auction Primer for Consumers will be available for download, free of charge, in the Knowledge Centre on ListedBy Blog, starting December 4, 2012. Consumers considering auctioning their home or purchasing a property at auction can also tap expert advice on the ListedBy Member Forum.
ListedBy – Real Estate Auction Primer for Consumers
Basic Terminology and Strategies
1. Auction – The term auction is derived from the Latin ‘augeō’, which means ‘I increase’ or ‘I augment’. It is a process of buying and selling goods or services by offering them up for bid, taking bids, and then selling the item to the highest bidder at a pre-set set auction expiry date and time.
2. English Auction – Is an auction where the price is driven up by buyers and where the highest bidder wins, at auction expiry.
3. Dutch Auction – A process where the starting price of an asset begins higher and scales down until the offer meets a bid.
4. Reserve Auction – A ‘Reserve Auction’ sets a minimum price below which the seller is not obliged to sell the property at the expiry of the auction. As a home seller, use this strategy to secure an absolute price below which you are not ready to sell, and to advise bidders that bids must go higher for an acceptable agreement to be reached.
5. No Reserve Auction – A ‘No Reserve’ auction, also known as an Absolute Auction, legally binds the seller to release the property to the highest bidder above the set starting bid price. This strategy is usually used to create early excitement around an attractive, lower but acceptable price. The approach can drive a bidding competition that can result in a final sale price higher than originally expected by the seller.
6. Buy It Now – By placing a bid under a Buy It Now price option set by the seller, the bidder instantly wins the auction and both seller and buyer are obligated to transact at the set price. Leverage Buy It Now to avoid entering into a competitive bidding scenario and to secure and close on the property quickly.
7. Buyer’s Premium – A traditional practice that new business models such as ListedBy.com are eliminating. Also referred to as a Buyer’s Penalty, or the fee that a winning bidder must pay over and above the price of the subject property. The premium is typically between two and ten percent of the asset value.
8. Open Outcry – Unlike sealed bid auctions, ‘open outcry’ auctions are ‘open’ or ‘fully transparent.’ The identity of all bidders is disclosed to each other during an open outcry.
9. Auction Expiry – An auction has a start date and time, and a close ‘expiry’ date and time after which new bids are no longer accepted. In cases where a last minute bid comes in just prior to the expiry, certain auctioneer rules may include a short extension, to give former bidders a chance to counter the late coming bid.
1. Fees and charges – New, advertising and service driven business models are doing away with all fees associated with buying or selling property at auction. As a seller, look for auctioning your property through a provider or platform that does not charge any fees or commissions. As a buyer, look for auction venues that do not charge any Buyer Premium or penalty.
2. Transparency – Sealed bids may have some advantages in certain cases. However, in buying or selling your home, it is important to first consider a fully transparent environment where everyone gets to see who is bidding and how much. Transparency gives everyone a greater sense of trust and confidence in the process, equal chance, and optimizes a property’s market value. New platforms such as ListedBy.com allow everyone to view each other’s bids and member profiles including any ratings, recommendations or comments.
3. Online Auctions – New, entirely Web-based auction platforms and service providers offer a simpler, quicker and more efficient avenue for buyers and sellers to engage in auction. An online avenue also does away with the added effort, inconvenience, resources and expenses needed to organize and run a physical, on-location auction.
4. Engage a REALTOR® – While buying and selling at auction online is relatively easy, look to engage an experienced representative who understands real estate marketing, knows the area, the auction process and various strategies that can be used to maximize your property value or clinch you a better deal, if you are a buyer. A local REALTOR® who also has experience in online auctions can bring significant advantage to the process. The Member Directory on ListedBy lists agents from across the U.S. and can be a great place to begin your research.
Benefits of Online Auction for Buyers
· Knowledge that the property will sell at auction expiry.
· Knowledge of who you are bidding against and where the bids are at any point in time. A fair play environment.
· Ability to participate free of charge and from anywhere, anytime.
· Ability to conveniently view and bid on multiple properties.
· No Buyer Premiums means additional funds to put towards a desired property.
· Significantly cuts down price negotiations time typically consumed in traditional buying and selling.
Benefits of Online Auction for Sellers
· Expose your property to cash-ready, pre-qualified buyers.
· Let the market reflect the right value of your property.
· Create excitement around the sale of your property.
· Certainty that the property will sell and by when.
· A way to potentially sell your property more quickly.
· Create competition among buyers.
· Less back and forth negotiations lends for an overall faster, easier process.
- ListedBy on LinkedIn and Twitter @ListedByYou
The auction segment is growing rapidly and, more and more REALTORS® are moving to learn about auctions to add to their marketing toolkit and differentiating expertise. One of the biggest shifts that ListedBy is driving in the real estate auctions market segment is the move to an entirely Web-based process. The benefits are huge and in many cases obvious, including efficiency, speed and lower costs for everyone involved.
Another major change is the revenue model. While traditional auctions usually involve registration/participation fees and, the biggie, up to 10 percent of the asset value in what is referred to as a Buyer’s Premium, ListedBy is doing away with ALL these costs. The result is more money in buyer pockets to go towards making a deal happen. For the seller, it means wider participation and optimal market value, for reasons too many to cover in this post.
If not the auction part of ListedBy, industry professionals are highly interested in the platform’s online offer submission technology, another major advance ListedBy is bringing to the real estate transaction that we will also discuss here in the future.
We look forward to engaging with you here on the blog as well as in the ListedBy (LB Social™) Forum. If there are any specific issues or subjects you’d like us to tackle, please post your ideas and thoughts in the Comments area below, or send me an email to email@example.com.
Please drop by often for corporate updates and news, special feature property listings and education on the world of auctions, or to view and participate in on-going discussions.
Meanwhile here is the full announcement about the launch of ListedBy Blog that was issued on the Wire earlier today:
Online Real Estate Auctions Platform ListedBy Launches Blog
Dynamic stage to deliver timely corporate news, ListedBy user communication and online real estate auction education
ListedBy (www.ListedBy.com), the first free online real estate marketplace and social network with integrated live bidding auction and ‘Best Offer’ functionality today announced ListedBy Blog, a dynamic environment the company will use to deliver corporate and product news, featured listings, ListedBy member and user information, education materials, articles, event schedules and market reports.
“I am excited about how the blog feature on our site will allow us to not only broaden our ever growing base, but also gives us yet another way to keep direct contact with our very loyal and active user base on the site,” said Stephan Piscano, CEO and Co-Founder, ListedBy.
ListedBy Blog is now live and features a number of real estate marketing and auction related educational articles, success tips, and answers to frequently asked questions.
Membership in ListedBy continues to increase at a rapid pace with thousands of new accounts added over the past month and approximately 4000 industry professionals now participating on the site’s LinkedIn Group.
- Media and industry analyst briefings: firstname.lastname@example.org
o Leaders and Laggers – How Industry Pioneers are Using Online Real Estate Auctions to Distance Themselves
o Online Real Estate Auctions – When to Dive and When to Skip
Reserve Auction sets a minimum price below which the seller is not obliged to sell the property at auction expiry. The reserve price is also usually undisclosed. However when the reserve price is met, the seller would indicate that the reserve price has been reached so that bidders know that the property will now sell for sure, to the highest bidder recorded by the auction expiry date/time.
….that one out of every five real estate transactions will be through auction by 2014-15?
….that 58 billion dollars of real estate assets in the U.S. sold at auction in 2011?
Online real estate auction is emerging as the next power tool in real estate marketing and sales. 58 billion in sales in 2011 and projections by NAR that one out of every five transactions will be in auction by 2014-15 sets the tone for the years to come.
The sweet and short of it is that because auction buyers are typically cash or finance-ready, and because online auctions reach buyers across the U.S. and the world, deals can be reached far more quickly. So in essence, REALTORS® and real estate investors who participate in online auctions benefit from being in a position to buy and sell more real estate, in less time.
All Real Estate Auction Platforms Are Not Created Equal
As a real estate professional, you’re constantly looking for faster, better and cheaper ways to conduct business. Traditional online auction platforms and services have typically been cumbersome and time consuming to participate in, not to mention the high cost imposed on both sellers and buyers. All of these can be key reasons why auction as a strategy could not realistically make it to many REALTOR® listing presentations.
Simple Works – The world of auctions has evolved, and consumers everywhere have become familiar and essentially are now more comfortable with auction buying or selling through marketplaces like eBay and others that have made it extremely easy. The auction process is no longer alien to the masses, and it is only realistic to expect a pick-up in auction activity in real estate as well. This move has already begun and continues to gain momentum.
Look for an advanced real estate online auction platform that allows you to join and participate very easily. A simple registration process, simple to use tools and a 100 percent online environment is a great start. Cumbersome and demanding registrations, advance commitments, add-on offline service components and services might be your early signs to skip this dive. The world has moved on, so should you.
No Fee Environments – The days of getting charged through the nose to list a property in auction, or to participate in one, are over. They are gone. This is your next big warning to skip this dive too. Buyers who have been used to paying between one and ten percent (yes you read that right) on the value of their purchase are now more likely to engage – and perhaps pay a bit of a premium for a property in a free environment, than to dish out an extra eight percentage points to the organization that is simply facilitating the auction. New models such as ListedBy.com have done away with all fees for both buyers and sellers, which stands to accelerate the adoption of online auctions as a whole, and optimize property values as more dollars become available to go towards the value of the asset than corporate cash registers.
Transparency – Does the platform you are looking into allow you to see who is bidding on a property and what the price levels are? Can you see a profile and online consumer ratings of all the participants? A transparent online auction marketplace should give every participant equal weight and chance, and a sense of comfort and confidence. Alternatively, it’s a capital SKIP!
Networking and Lead Management – One last item we should cover in the context of this article is whether the platform you are considering is strictly a short term buy/sell solution, or a long term environment where you can strategically position yourself to grow your brand, run your real estate marketing, cultivate and manage a solid business network, and establish yourself as an expert in the online auction arena. In today’s day and age, a truly effective online real estate auction platform should put such tools at your fingertips, and for free as well.
Now you can dive with confidence.
Leaders and Laggers – How Industry Pioneers are Using Online Real Estate Auctions to Distance Themselves
When the Internet came about, the pioneers got onto email before everyone else. Eventually, the same group went online with their Web pages. From there, they were first to start their own websites and adopt other technologies way before the laggers got on board. If ever. Listing syndication came about. Thousands sat back, debated things or fought hard to maintain the status quo (many still do to this day). Meanwhile the winners began to distribute their listings widely on the Internet and reaped the benefits of exponential brand exposure and lead generation.
You get the point. Paperless transaction tools, telecommuting, social media and the virtual office brokerage faced the same skepticism from the majority or, shall we say, the followers, while the leaders took the bull by the horns and blazed through. This is how winners win. Believe or not, some agents still do not have their own website and many have to be educated on why they should look at their email more frequently!
On to the next big thing. Online real estate auction.
First let’s get one thing cleared. Auction does not mean having to price a property at a dollar and hoping it sells for half a million. There are a number of online real estate auction strategies that we’ll go over in future articles. But for the purpose of this piece, think of online auction as a process that allows you to market a listing starting at a minimum acceptable price, and marketing it so it is bid up to its optimal market value. If you have been in this profession long enough, you would have either used this pricing strategy or heard of others using it, but in the traditional fashion. Price a property attractively, draw in buyers, then create a bidding war. It works.
Fast forward to the future. New online real estate auction platforms allow you to replicate the excitement and benefits of this strategy but far more easily. It also helps you to reach buyers from around the country and the world. Without costing you a cent. Review, accept, reject and counter offers with a click of the mouse. Things don’t get any easier.
Another great benefit of tapping real estate online auctions is that auction as a selling method inherently narrows the pool to buyers who are finance-ready. To bid on a property in auction, buyers or their buyers’ agents typically must be ready to move forward, if theirs is the winning bid. This alone can significantly accelerate the sales process, and takes care of the financing subject headache in advance.
Try listing a property on ListedBy.com. The membership and traffic on the site continue to reach new proportions each month, as more professionals discover the platform. Unlike other real estate auction sites, ListedBy is completely free of charge and does not charge a buyer’s premium or a buyer’s fee. ‘The old’ auction model is being re-invented, with both buyers and sellers coming together to negotiate and close deals in a completely free, transparent and highly advanced environment.
While this may create a headache for the traditional real estate auction industry, for industry pioneers, and those who have come to expect hefty fees to buy or sell at auction, it’s a breath of a fresh air.
Listing interviews and presentations sometimes turn into a show of force with beautiful looking folders, comparables sheets, a glossy bio and a big pitch. All this is ultimately useful but Richard Hartian on the WinningAgent goes beyond to discuss the role of the agent as a consultant and how asking the right questions is key to positioning and differentiating yourself in the prospect’s mind.
How you plan on marketing the listing is a key component of the overall discussion, but at the right time. Once there, ensure you cover an aggressive online listing distribution / syndication program to reach more potential buyers. Discuss giving the seller access to online traffic reports but also, key today, that you have the ability to market the listing as an auction or a “Submit Offer‘ listing that allows potential buyers across the country and internationally to view and present tender offers right there online, for quicker negotiations and close. Successful ListedBy.com members know the impact the site has had on their listing presentations and sales revenue.
With one out of every five properies sold by 2014-15 projected by NAR to be through auction, and with 58 billion dollars recorded in auction sales for 2011 alone, the online real estate auction market is an emerging trend that can clearly differentiate you when meeting with new prospects. May sound complex, but it’s actually extremely easy once you look into it.
Reverting back to Hartian’s proposed questions and tips for the listing interview, these are critical. They demonstrate that you are technical about your approach, that you truly care and that you actually take notice of what the client is thinking and saying:
“It happens all the time: you’re contacted by a potential seller. Maybe the seller was referred to you, you met at an open house, or she’s just gotten fed up with the FSBO route. Whatever the reason, you’re having a conversation about the possibility of listing the home. You finish the home tour. What’s your next move? Like Clark Kent slipping into the phone booth, you need an instant transformation. No, we’re not suggesting a cape and blue tights, but you need to morph instantly from a Realtor to a consultant. Go into your interview mode, and win the real estate listing interview by asking these eight important questions:
1. May I ask you a few questions? This puts you in control of the conversation, but it also flatters your potential client. Everyone loves to tell their story, and you’re leaving that door wide open. Bring your questions with you in written form, and write down notes as you talk. This lets the clients know they are being heard.
2. What’s the approximate value of your home? No surprise—most people think their home is worth a lot more than it is. At this point, don’t get into a back-and-forth about asking price, and certainly don’t disagree with the client’s perception of value. Simply write down the number they give you. Before you get to the point of setting a sales price, you need to establish a level of trust with the client.
3. How much do you currently owe on the home? This, of course, is a critical question in the interview process. You need to know how much flexibility you have to work with. If the seller is underwater, for example, it’s a totally different scenario from someone who has five years left on a 30-year mortgage. Which leads you directly into the next question:
4. Why are you planning to sell your home now? This information goes directly to the client’s attitude and state of mind. Are they being transferred due to a job change? Are they downsizing for age or financial reasons? Is there a neighborhood problem they are trying to get away from? Their answer gives you important information about the degree of urgency the client is feeling, which could range anywhere from “I’ve got to be out of here in 30 days,” to “I just want to put it on the market to see what happens.”
5. On a scale of 1 – 10, with 10 being perfect, how would you rate the condition of your home? You’ve probably picked up some of the answers to this question during your walk-through, but you need to know the client’s perception and how willing they are to make repairs or cosmetic upgrades.
6. How does your home stack up in comparison to others in the neighborhood? Of course you can find this out simply by driving the neighborhood, but this question encourages the client to talk about neighborhood pros and cons, as well as providing information about other homes that may be on the market or about to be.
Right now you’re probably thinking you could get most of this information from public records, and that’s true. And you should look up that information before going to the real estate listing interview. However, the actual answers the client gives you are less important than the fact that you are creating a consulting relationship and setting yourself up as a subject matter expert that the client can trust.
7. What are you looking for when you choose a Realtor? Now the clients will likely tell you a whole lot about what kind of marketing plan and effort they will expect from you, what kind of communication they hope for (email once a week vs. daily phone calls!) and even good or bad experiences they have had with other Realtors.
8. What problems would you anticipate in the selling process? This final question gives you a great opportunity to continue in your consulting role as you are able to make recommendations for problem solving on the spot. It may also allow you to identify any areas of conflict between the sellers themselves (if they are a couple). He loves the old homestead and she wants out of the neighborhood ASAP, for example.
Now you’re probably wondering—when do you get a chance to talk about yourself, establish your credentials? The answer: you bring a one-page bio sheet with your listing and sales record, background, certifications, and other relevant information. Whether you sign a listing agreement immediately or set up a time to get back together, you’ll leave that behind as a lasting impression — you are not just the Realtor. You are a consultant who listens.”
Read this article on the WinninAgent Blog