When selling a home, you're often instructed to neutralize and depersonalize everything about the home. Take down family photos to create a space that people can envision themselves living in. Don't share too many personal reasons about why you're selling or where you're going. Stay at an arm's length during the process, and let the agents talk to each other. There are many reasons why this advice is sound, but what I feel is often lost in the real estate process is the stories behind the homes. Especially when representing an older home, I love to draw out the history and make it work for you.
In my recent Whatcom Falls listing, for example, I knew that we weren't going to capture inspiring photos of the inside of the home. I'm a big believer in staging but this home just needed too much updating, and putting new furniture in it would have just highlighted its shortcomings. Over 90 percent of buyers start their home search online though, and I have a digital marketing focused approach. I knew the photos weren't going to sell this place. So I asked myself, how could we get traction?
During initial meetings with the siblings who were selling the home for their (very large!) family, the stories of their childhood kept flowing. With 15 kids growing up a 1500 sq foot home, how could they not? Lynn and Bill had me enthralled...I wanted to know more. So, I decided to "break the rules" and share heartwarming stories of the family who have owned it for over 70 years. I knew that telling this home's history would make people fall in love with it—and share it online.
Interviewing Lynn and Bill was fun. They had so many hilarious memories about growing up! The hardest part was pairing their stories down into a piece that was easily consumable, as people have increasingly short attention spans when it comes to digital media.
I managed to get my hands on some old photos of the kids growing up, which made it so much more real. We paired the stories with gorgeous drone video of the almost 1-acre property. At the end of the video, I was able to sneak in some information about the development opportunities—knowing that leading with that info wouldn't be something that would catch most people's attention.
Once finished, we distributed the video via YouTube, Twitter and Facebook. And I'm quite delighted with the results. The video received over 5,700 views on Facebook! The property ended up selling for $70,000 over asking price.
One of the things you'll get with me as your listing agent is a fresh approach to marketing the property. With a 15-year background in marketing, communications and social media, I can't help but take real estate a step or two beyond what's typical. And, I love storytelling. Take a peek for yourself and let me know what you think!