Santa Cruz is one of the hottest places for real estate in California, and Pleasure Point one of its hottest neighborhoods, giving sellers the opportunity for big gains. As a top producer in the greater Bay Area, Sam Bird Robinson has seen his share of bidding wars. And our team has found that even in the most desirable markets, your marketing strategy can be the difference between an offer you’re happy with – and one that has you breaking open the champagne.
With several transactions over $1.5 million to his credit, including investment properties like this four plex on School Street, Sam knows what it takes to get the highest possible bids. Here’s what we’ve learned after more than a decade in the business.
Use your online resources
Research is one of the most important things you can do for yourself whenever you start any project. So, before you jump into making your investment property an official Pleasure Point listing, look up some comparable homes online. What price are other properties like yours going for? What kinds of people are interested in your type of real estate? For example, you might think the apartments in your triplex should be staged for young families, but with the median age of the area being roughly 41, it likely means you should prepare and describe your home in a way that attracts a slightly older couple.
Speaking of your demographic, clear and attractive descriptions that appeal to your target audience are crucial. While preparing to list your property, write down its best features. For buyers in their 40s, things like easy access to downtown necessities and golf courses might appeal to them. For retirees, an open, accessible and relaxing layout will probably be more important to them than the local, sweat-heavy mountain hiking trails. While your real estate investment might offer all of that, focus on what matters to your prospective buyers.
The professional look
When it comes to modern real estate, great photos are necessary. Ultimately, a well-made house will make the sale, but marketing tools are what get people in the door for a tour. To help your investment property sell well, hiring a professional photographer will go a long way. Fantastic pictures will make your house look better on real estate sites, social media, and print materials.
To help your photographer, a little interior design will help. A fully designed house is above and beyond, but even simple choices will make the house look put together. For example, you can rent clean, fresh-off-the-truck furniture that gives your home the kind of glamor it needs to help nab your perfect buyer. Also, keep local trends in mind. For example, Redwood inspiration and coastal styles are popular in the Santa Cruz area.
It’s also important to keep in mind the style of the home. With a home like 116 Gharkey Street, a $4.2 million single-family residence we recently sold, the photography and design had to complement the ultra-modern exterior. For investment properties, the right design and photographer can help your future buyer realize a higher ROI. And that means a higher bid for you.
Finally, creating video tours of your Pleasure Point listing is becoming a popular way to showcase investment properties. Try adding one to your online listing and see how many more offers come across your desk.
Nowadays, you can’t sell a house without social media. Well, you can, but it’s way harder than it needs to be. For example, millennials as a demographic are starting to gain further interest in homeownership lately, and data from the National Association of REALTORS show that 93% of older millennials say they use real estate sites to find their future home. So, once your pics and descriptions are ready, get your home online, too.
When it comes to real estate sites, get your property on Facebook Marketplace at a minimum. That might seem unexpected, but according to the National Association of Realtors, 74% of realtors use Facebook for professional reasons. Moreover, roughly half of Facebook users go on the site multiple times a day. Don’t miss out on access to that kind of user consistency.
You can also really highlight your Pleasure Point investment property by posting your property pictures on Instagram. As the hub of picture-sharing, it’s a great place to show off how modern and gorgeous your investment property looks. Tag common real estate terms and even possibly tag some popular Instagram home-sharing accounts, like Zillow’s Instagram. If you make great homes with great pics, you should get quite a few eyes on your real estate. And while you 100% should have your contact info in your Instagram bio, putting it in the caption of your posts will make it even easier for prospective buyers to contact you.
Early bird gets the buyers
After a decade and dozens of successful transactions, we’ve seen sellers leave money on the table more than once by simply going into the process unprepared. We see this especially with investment properties because you’re often not in the home on a daily basis. Don’t wait until every room is remodeled to start marketing. Finish the kitchen or living room and then post it on Instagram to tease the property. If it’s a multi-family property, do one apartment and share it online, before all your refurbishments are finished. Drumming up interest means you’ll have a better shot of having buyers the second your investment property goes up on the market.
Not everything needs to be an online game. In the greater Bay Area, the name Sam Bird Robinson has become synonymous with real estate expertise – and that reputation was built as much offline as in the digital world. Taking your own efforts off-screen can help you as well. Sometimes a personal recommendation can be just as (if not more) useful than a pretty picture on Instagram. Consider attending events that cater to demographics, such as tech professionals, that are likely to be in the investment property market. The more people you bring into your network, the more opportunities you have to find the perfect buyer. Sam has learned this over the years, and it’s just one of the reasons he has become so successful for his sellers.
Another way you can attract buyers is by making your outside signage very, very clear and readable. For example, you might feel like it’s tacky to put a “for sale” sign at the end of a long driveway, but what if someone who’s looking to move sees it on their drive to work? A house closer to their job that’s been recently upgraded might be just what they’re looking for. So, always make the signage perfect for drive-bys.
It never hurts to have an experienced and knowledgeable real estate agent in your corner! Feel free to contact professional Pleasure Point real estate agent Sam Bird-Robinson to help you along the way.