A well-thought-out listing and brochure can help you sell your house faster and more efficiently than you might think. An effective listing attracts buyers to your home, and allows them to carry their good impression of your home back to their home.
Here’s a checklist of key ingredients for creating a great listing and brochure:
- Pictures: Regardless of whether your home is valued at $100,000 or $1 million, professional pictures of your home’s best features are extremely important. In today’s internet-centric real estate market, high quality photos are critical for attracting attention to your listing. Most buyers today view listings online because they want to see pictures, not just written descriptions and details, before they go view a home in person. Compared to listings with bad photos, those with great photos benefit from increased buyer interest which makes the investment in a professional real estate photographer well worth the price.
Color brochures convey a warmer, more personal message. Pictures are equally important in creating a great listing brochure that can be handed out during viewings and open houses, or left in a cylinder attached to a yard sign for drivers-by to pick up. A great brochure can help you sell your house even when you’re not around. The ideal listing brochure is colorful, and packed with photos and well thought out descriptions of the home and property. It allows buyers who’ve view the home to take their positive impression of it back to their home to show friends and family, and motivates people who drive by to make an appointment to tour it. For the same reasons they’re critical of your listing, professional photos are integral to a winning brochure.
- List of upgrades: Your listing ad and brochure should include details on upgrades such as new appliances, a gourmet kitchen, remodeled baths, hardwood floors, a finished basement, energy efficient windows, a fenced yard, a walk-in pantry, new roof, manicured landscaping—any improvements you’ve made or any highly desirable features should be mentioned in both your listing and your brochure. Highlight these items with photos to really draw in buyers. Improved homes tell buyers that the current homeowner took good care of the property. Avoid terms like must sell, motivated, move-in condition, clean, new paint or carpet, quiet, vacant or ranch, as studies have proven that these terms don’t sell houses.
- List of amenities: Your listing and brochure should mention desirable features not already listed in your upgrades. Amenities can include proximity to local parks and landmarks, items like tennis courts and guest house, acreage, and of course the name of the community if it’s prestigious or in high demand. Ammenities can also include boat slips, a sweeping staircase, fireplace, a . Make sure to include scenic views if your home has them, such as lake front, golf course or mountain view. If the HOA takes care of landscaping, mention it.
- Tell the story of your home: Your house has a story and a history. Use that history to your advantage to help sell your house. Rather than saying, “The house was built in 1910,” tell home buyers more—something like “This home is an historic, two story 1910 bungalow with original Craftsman details including original stained glass windows, original hardwood, built-in cabinetry, oak staircase, etc. Remember to include all the relevant details such as square footage, lot size, number of bedrooms and bathrooms, bonus rooms (for instance, 2 living rooms, office, breakfast nook, etc.) and any outdoor living spaces that add to the home’s unique appeal.
How to write your listing and brochure content:
What’s the secret to writing the perfect property listing? Simply tell buyers enough to intrigue and not so that overwhelms (or causes them to eliminate your home from consideration). Many times, prospective buyers will end up purchasing a property quite different from what they originally had in mind, so your listing needs to draw them in just enough to take a closer look.
Your goal is to entice the buyer by making them want to learn more about your property.
Begin with the most important details
The number one rule to writing a listing that sells is to be direct and to-the-point. Most home buyers will immediately want to know three things: the price, the location, and the number of bedrooms in the house.
Leading with the home’s selling price will immediately attract serious buyers to your ad. The first line should include the home’s location and include terms that will appeal to both search engines (SEO) and knowledgeable neighbors: the zip code; a nearby well-known street or intersection; the nickname of the neighborhood; the name of the historic district, if your house is in one—these elements draw buyers in at the start.
Add descriptive details
Next, add the descriptive details from the checklists above, starting with the number of bedrooms and baths.
Streamline the details, focusing on the house itself. Don’t inject flowery descriptions or impart onto buyers the value that you put on certain features that they might find high-maintenance or even threatening.
Keep It Short and Sweet
The most effective ads are those that are short, simple, and not intimidating. They fulfill the most important job of telling the buyer what they want to hear. View some examples of well-written listings and brochures, and emulate those.
Organize your brochure to complement your home-showing presentation. The flyer/brochure is what potential buyers take away from a home visit. They won’t forget important features and benefits of your property if you list them on the flyer.
When writing your listing and brochure content, make sure your message is consistent. Use the same terminology and details in all your ads—online listings, the flyer and local publications.
Don’t forget to feature the price of your property prominently.
When you sit down to write descriptive copy about your home for your listing ad and property flyer, always follow a feature with a benefit. Here are a few examples to get you started:
- Neighborhood – nice neighbors, quiet and safe, family-friendly.
- Convenience – walk to public transportation, schools, closeness of shopping
- Condition of home – well maintained, new appliances, new floors, new furnace or roof
- School System – reinforce the positive elements of the school district’s reputation, i.e. “award-winning” or “friendly”
Remember to include your street address and all contact information with a cordial message to the prospect.
“Please feel free to contact us for more information.”
ListingDoor.com will walk you through the process of generating a professional listing ad and property brochure to help get you started.
Remember, a listing or brochure can’t make up for a poor home presentation, a badly orchestrated open house, or any of the number of things that should be addressed before a potential buyer tours the property. Make sure your listing and brochure provide the best possible impact by preparing your home for showing first.