Unique point of view
EVERY home needs a unique selling point. Without one, selling the property will be a struggle.
A unique selling point, or USP, is a term borrowed from the world of sales and usually implies something that differentiates a product from the rest of the market, but it has a place in modern real estate marketing.
Having a USP helps focus a sales campaign and ensures that your real estate agent knows which of your property’s features will strike a chord with buyers. These sale points are not reserved for only grand homes, waterfront properties or urban retreats.
Every single home should have at least one USP to attract buyers in sufficient numbers.
If the points are not physical features such as an extra bathroom or more space, they can be visual elements, like a view.
It could even be the location, street or position within that street. If all else fails, the price or terms of sale may suit.
Many sales campaigns founder because they don’t establish the property’s USPs at the earliest opportunity. Without these points it’s difficult for buyers to look past substantial negatives, such as limited parking or being on a busy road.
Your USP moves the focus away from these and offers buyers compensation.
The negatives of being on a main road, for example, can be outweighed by an attractive price tag. If you have a big family home with a substantial back yard but no second bathroom, you can establish your USPs as the scale of the property and the block size, which are better than most other comparable homes in your local market.
You can also show solutions for where and how that second bathroom could be created.
The key is to acknowledge that what is special or unique in one market may not be worthy of that title elsewhere.
A stunning modern kitchen is nothing exciting in an area with many newly built homes. An acre of backyard space for a home on the edge of a small country town is nice, but nothing unique. A block one tenth that size in an urban area is a rare find.
Even that restored heritage stunner worthy of an interior design magazine won’t stand out if it’s in a historic, wealthy suburb where properties of this ilk are plentiful.
They expect those features in the suburb, so all that character won’t get buyers over the line to pay top dollar.
A better USP would be something like rear lane access or a view of the CBD.
I strongly urge anyone struggling to sell, preparing to list or even those about to rent out a property, to know their home’s USP.
Hopefully it has more than one. Ensure they are unique to your local market, housing type, price range and intended market. If your home has one of those clear negatives that seem insurmountable — a busy road, electricity pylons, a hideous house next door — discovering your USP will balance these factors out.
If all fails and you really have nothing different to offer, hit the market with the right price. That may be enough to tempt a buyer.
Andrew Winter hosts
on the Lifestyle Channel