7 Digital Tools That Can Help Sell Your House
It’s never been easier or more convenient to sell your home while sitting on the sofa.
Selling your home can be a hectic process, and the pandemic has certainly added another level of stress. Between social distancing mandates and individual concerns regarding the safety of strangers wandering around and touching stuff, both sellers and buyers have wondered if traditional strategies such as having open houses are still worth it. These days, it’s actually possible to sell a home without the buyer even physically setting foot inside the door, though buying a house sight unseen has its own set of challenges.
Fortunately, the real estate industry was already implementing technology to make selling and buying homes a much smoother process before the pandemic. And now, it’s never been easier for both homeowners and realtors to present homes and handle transactions online. Here are seven digital tools that can help sell your house.
According to Rick Abbiati, owner of Colony Property Investments/Colony Buys Homes in Nashua, NH, using drone footage is one of the hottest ways to showcase a home for sale. He advised, “Hire a professional drone operator to take aerial bird’s eye photos and video of your home and property from all angles.” Abbiati admits that 10 years ago, this would have been an extremely expensive option, since you had to rent a helicopter or small plane to obtain views from such a high angle. Drones have changed all that: “But now, you can get these amazing images for pennies on the dollar.”
Video Home Tours
Imagine buyers viewing your house while in their own home, sitting comfortably on their sofa. “As many buyers are wary about viewing a home, we have been successful in pushing videos and live streams for all of our listings,” said Cyrus Vaghar, a real estate agent and part of the McAuliffe Vagher Team at Coldwell Banker in Boston, MA. “For example, we recently held a virtual showing at a property that we broadcast as a live video online, where prospective buyers could ask questions as we toured the property.” As a result, the next day, one of the viewers came by to see the property in person. According to Vagher, “This individual ended up being the buyer and said if they had not seen the earlier video they may not have come by.”
3D Virtual Tours
If you want a more advanced type of virtual tour, a 3D virtual tour provides a more holistic view of your home. It’s as simple as downloading a 3D home app, and then using a 360 degree camera (or a smartphone) to create panoramic views, which are then uploaded to the app and rendered in 3D. Potential buyers can choose to look at certain rooms or parts of the home and view them from any angle. They can also zoom in and out. If this sounds too complex to do on your own, there are companies that will create 3D tours for you.
If you don’t want to hire a staging team, virtual staging is another option. There are various companies and apps you can use to dress up your home. If you use a company, the process includes sending them photos of the rooms you’d like to stage, and then either selecting furniture you’d like to see in your home or letting the company select it. Next, designers will digitally erase the existing furniture and add the chosen furniture and accents to the photos. Another option is to use DIY virtual home staging software. Upload your photos, clear the current furnishings, and drag and drop furniture into them.
Almost everyone is on social media; for some people, it’s even an addiction. However, that’s what makes social media platforms ideal places to advertise homes for sale. “We have connected with many buyers through short Instagram and Facebook posts,” Vagher said, “Many younger buyers are less inclined to pick up the phone to ask a question, but are comfortable doing so through the apps they use every day.”
Buyers may have questions when realtors are not available, or they may not feel comfortable asking realtors a lot of questions. However, real estate chatbots can respond at any time. Chatbots are computer programs that simulate human conversations to provide quick and accurate information. These helpful assistants can schedule property viewings, search MLS listings, and answer frequently asked questions. They can also deliver this information in multiple languages.
One thing no one misses about the homebuying process is sitting in a stuffy conference room during the closing. However, buyers and sellers now have the option to preview, sign, and return documents electronically. This is not only more convenient but also safer for all parties—and it’s likely to relieve a certain degree of stress.