Tuesday, 26 March 2013

The Block: securing the best ROI on your property

After watching ‘The Block’, a reality home renovation series on Channel Nine, I have come to the conclusion that there are many crucial factors that can affect the selling price of a property. It’s not only about how well the home is presented, (although that does feature high on directly affecting selling price), having a sound marketing strategy for the property sale is key to getting a high ROI for what is usually one’s highest valued asset.

There are many decision that need to be made when selling a property such as: when to put it on the market, which agent and real estate company to sell with, will the property be sold through an auction or a private sale, who will be the auctioneer (if the property sells at auction), your asking price, where to advertise… and the list goes on.

Although the TV show ‘The Block’ did not focus on how much time each bidder spent inspecting the property before showing up at the auction, on average, people spend more time choosing a car than they do on inspecting a property. According to the Melbourne Bank, potential buyers spend on average 45 minutes or less inspecting a property before purchasing it (that does not include the time spent researching the property market or the area). Since buyers don’t spend much time within the four walls of their potential new purchase, marketing the property before inspection is crucial.

An important part of the marketing strategy for the sale of the property is the advertising. The local newspaper, Australian real estate web sites, Asian real estate web sites, sign posting outside the property, and mail drops are some of the advertising options to choose from. These all cost money and it is best to understand what historical ROI these mediums have before making a decision.

A phone call to my local newspaper quoted me almost $1000 for a half page ad in the real estate section for one week. That seemed to me to be quite expensive for old fashion print media, especially when so many people are turning to on-line search engines for property searches. That said, understanding where your target market looks for properties is crucial when finally making the decision on how and where to advertise.

Although not all of us are talented home renovators like the contestants on ‘The Block’, highlighting your property’s desirable features as well as features that make your property unique during your marketing campaign is crucial. Perhaps a tasteful colourful painting on the living room wall, or a home smelling of freshly baked bread would be a suggestion for standing out that is achievable for everyone regardless of your renovation skills.

If you have sold a property, do you have any marketing strategies that you found useful that you are willing to share?

Mina D'Souza
Current student in the Master of Marketing program at the University of Sydney Business School

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