While my opinion that a good real estate blogger does not include their listings on their blog is well documented and much debated, there is always room for an exception… and marketing my OWN home is one of those!
[photopress:kids_at_easter.JPG,thumb,alignright]Essentially, we have about two weeks left before we put it on the market. We’re just waiting for the movers to take our stuff and then, after we refinish the wooden floors on the main floor, we’ll be ready to list!
So, here are the internet marketing items I have on my checklist (of course, we’ll do some off-line stuff like putting together fliers, but I’m more interested in exploring the online stuff!)
- Add Our Home to the Free Directories. Craigslist and Google Base come to mind. Are there others I should consider?
- Blog About Our Neighbors. I know that there is very limited things that a real estate agent can say about the family-friendly nature of a neighborhood, but not having a license gives me the freedom to talk in great detail about are wonderful neighbors. Things I’d like to mention are all the kids that live nearby (8 kids within a few houses!), our regular Sunday BBQs during the summer and our weekly game nights during the Winter. (And I’m sure the neighbors would love it if the new owners continued our tradition of hosting the annual neighborhood easter egg hunt!!!). When moving to a new home, one of the biggest mysteries is what are the neighbors going to be like and because the people on our street are so cool, I’d like to put together an extensive neighborhood blog post! (Honestly, the hardest part of accepting a position in LA was leaving the neighborhood!)
- Financing Options. Interestingly, I’m in a place where I could offer the “right” people some innovative financing options… Like a lease-to-own, or something similar (as long as it is a win-win for both parties, I’m game for any idea!). Does something like this normally happen through the usual MLS channels or is there a special market for these types of properties? (Hint: if you contact me before we list, we might even be able to cut out some obvious fees.)
- Blog About Our House. I promise not to overdo this, but I think one blog post about all the cool features of our home that might be too “personal” for the typical MLS listing would be appropriate on Rain City Guide. I’m thinking of things like the tree house I built in the backyard and the original art deco fixtures… I’d also like to add a map of all the recently sold homes (or maybe I’ll be lazy and just link to the appropriate ShackPrices page!)
- Unique Icon. Robbie says he’ll give our home a unique icon on the maps of listed properties… Any ideas for what the icon should look like?
- Enhance listing on Realtor.com. Around Move, people are shocked at how often real estate agents pay to get showcase listings and then don’t spruce up their listings by adding additional photos and other extras. Considering that Anna’s broker already pays for this service, I’ll make sure we spruce up our home!
- Get on the Redfin Blog. If I provide a direct link from my blog to my listing on Redfin (and beg people to click on the link!) maybe I can blow out their single home stats for a day and thereby get a mention in their blog!!! (hmmm…. Is there a way to get on the Zillowblog?)
- Newspaper Coverage? Is someone at the Seattle Times, Seattle PI, Seattle Magazine and/or any other local newspaper interested in writing a story about preparing and then selling a 1920’s Crown Hill (N. Ballard) home? We’ve got lots of great photos and I could probably write most of the story for you! 🙂
(This reminds me… I did an interview for a real estate technology story that was suppose to be in the May issue of the Seattle Magazine. I never saw or heard anything about that story… Did this story ever go live? )
- Picture Cloud. These guys just sent me a link for a free photo cloud. Interesting technology and easy enough to put together, so I think I’ll try them out with our home. (By the way, their branded option is free, but if you type the code “raincity”, they they will give you credit for five unbranded clouds for a penny.) If you try them out before I post my cloud, let me know what you think!
Any other ideas as I prepare the marketing plan for our home? Has anyone ever had any luck marketing a home on the internet? What did you do?