The New Year is soon to be upon us, and real estate professionals need to be prepared for what’s to come. 2022 is likely to remain a strong seller’s market as the prior year has been as buyer demand – and sales prices – show no signs of leveling off anytime soon. There are several factors at play here, most notably property shortages combined with highly affordable mortgage rates, and with predictions for rampant home price increases on the way now is the time to ensure you’re ready for the next 12 months of activity. That’s why we’ve created this short but comprehensive guide to real estate marketing for 2022.
A good real estate agent is an advocate for buyers, helping them in more ways than just getting the best price for their new home. To that end, real estate professionals working with buyers need to keep many things in mind to position themselves and their clients favorably. This can manifest in many ways, especially when you contact listing offices for information on prospective properties. Listing agents have high levels of influence, so be sure to do your research prior. Making listing agents responsible for providing you with information that you could have easily found in the MLS is a poor way to start a relationship.
When speaking with the listing agent, be sure to not rub them the wrong way directly from the start by peppering them with questions they could interpret negatively. Asking what problems there are in the neighborhood, or pointing out defects in the property, is a great way to distinguish yourself negatively from other bidders. Instead, focus on asking helpful, open-ended questions that help both your buyers and the sellers increase the chance of a deal. Asking what other aspects of a possible sale beyond price would be attractive to the seller is an excellent example of this, as is asking if the seller has any special circumstances regarding the sale.
Finally, and this is more important than you might think, but make sure your buyers don’t discuss the home openly during the showing. Offhand negative comments about the property, if overheard, can often result in your buyers being locked out of consideration. Instead, have your clients take notes – quietly – and then discuss their impressions in a private setting with you, either at your office or over the phone. This might sound paranoid and unnecessary, but in a modern world where it’s easier than ever to have an unobtrusive webcam set up on a shelf, it’s all too possible to be listened in on.
Working with buyers is only one part of the equation, of course. Helping sellers move their properties is also an integral part of what real estate professionals do, and real estate agents going into 2022 need to work just as hard as they always have, even in a seller’s market. You need to watch that market consistently daily so that you can more easily identify market trends that have an impact on your own sellers’ plans for their properties. If prices are trending upwards, you risk leaving money on the table; by the same account, if most listings are showing reduced prices, it may be time to drop your asking price to remain competitive.
Remember that your job is to make the act of selling a home as easy and stress-free as possible. This is a major challenge today, thanks to all the different issues we’re facing. An unstable economy and the looming threat of a major pandemic that is yet to be abated are more than enough to make any seller feeling upset and panicky. Yet it’s at these emotional times that you need to remain your most professional. When brokering deals for sellers, keep a level head and always maintain your professional demeanor. Yes, you may be feeling just as burnt out as your seller by the actions of both sellers and the world around you, but you owe your sellers your full, undivided attention to ensure you’re getting them the best deal for their property.
Finally, let’s look at real estate marketing strategies that you should be aware of regardless of whether you’re working with buyers or with sellers. One of the biggest and most important factors today is how newer technologies are being leveraged to aid in the real estate industry. Virtual tour technology has been especially important over the past year or so thanks to pandemic concerns, and this trend is unlikely to change going into 2022. Understanding these technologies and knowing how to use them means being able to offer the capability to both buyers looking to get better ideas of what a property looks like and to sellers who don’t want multitudes of people in their home during open houses.
This leveraging of new or existent technologies doesn’t stop there, either. Our world is ever increasingly interconnected, and that means social media marketing is a major component of any real estate marketing plan for 2022. Using existing tools such as your agency’s Instagram page to full effect can do wonders in attracting new buyers and sellers, especially if you provide a professional look and feel to your posts, images, and videos. Social media is also an innovative way to keep an eye on the market as well in ways that are less tangible than just raw data. Sentiment among buyers and sellers might not be as quantifiable as sales metrics, but they’re just as important for measuring market health!
2022 is rapidly approaching, and now is the time to begin preparing in earnest for what’s to come. As always, these recommendations are based on the industry’s expected trends going forward, but there’s never any ironclad guarantee that this is how things are going to play out. Remain agile, keep your ear to the ground, and be prepared for what the future might bring is always going to be the best approach for rapidly changing markets!