Can’t sell your home? Time to try ex­treme mea­sures

Kirsty Mcluckie on some in­ter­est­ing mar­ket­ing ideas

The Scotsman - - Real Homes -

The has­sle in­volved in invit­ing po­ten­tial pur­chasers of your home to poke around, on the off chance that they like it enough to buy it, isn’t most peo­ple’s def­i­ni­tion of fun.

Hav­ing to reach a level of tidi­ness to re­ceive view­ers and then main­tain that ster­ile stan­dard for as long as the prop­erty is on the market is the sort of daily tor­ture that most of us wouldn’t wish on our worst en­emy.

So I can ab­so­lutely sym­pa­thise with poor house own­ers whose homes just won’t sell.

Be­ing on your best be­hav­iour to en­thu­si­as­ti­cally wel­come view­ers and show them round your prized pos­ses­sion, and then li­ais­ing with the es­tate agent for feed­back only to be told that not one of them was in­ter­ested in mak­ing an of­fer, is de­press­ing if you have to do it once never mind week af­ter week or even month af­ter month.

I’m not sure which is worse, show­ing your home re­peat­edly to un­re­cep­tive view­ers, or hav­ing no in­quiries in the first place.

In both cir­cum­stances, my ad­vice would be to change the price, change your es­tate agent, or in­deed change both and start afresh.

Most ex­perts will tell you that ev­ery house will sell, even­tu­ally, if it is pitched at the right price and the right au­di­ence.

But for those who want to give their prop­erty added oomph to sell, there are al­ter­na­tives to knock­ing a few thou­sand from the ask­ing price or putting it in an auc­tion with a min­i­mal re­serve.

Ex­treme house sell­ing is a trend that orig­i­nated in the US but is also pop­u­lar in Aus­tralia and in­volves any orig­i­nal ap­proach used to drum up in­ter­est by the seller or by their agent.

Ex­po­nents use cre­ative think­ing to try and cre­ate a buzz around a prop­erty, hop­ing that it will stand out in a crowded market.

Try­ing to get it trend­ing on so­cial me­dia is a good start­ing point, ac­cord­ing to the­house­, which has ex­plored the phe­nom­ena of ex­treme house sell­ing.

Co-founder Nick Marr says: “So­cial me­dia can be a great tool for ex­treme house sellers.

“A pri­vate seller us­ing our web­site listed her home with us and also cre­ated a Face­book post of­fer­ing a ‘re­fer­ral re­ward’ of £1,000 to any­one who shared her post to the even­tual buyer of the prop­erty.

“She gen­er­ated 6,000 views and eight enquiries in just 48 hours”

That seems an em­i­nently sen­si­ble ap­proach as long as you are will­ing to cough up the re­ward, but the web­site of­fers other sug­ges­tions, which are any­thing but.

One Aus­tralian es­tate agent makes music videos fea­tur­ing him­self sing­ing a self-penned ditty about the house while con­duct­ing a tour.

Whether or not you think that is a good idea is prob­a­bly down to the vo­cal abil­i­ties of your es­tate agent, but I can’t imag­ine hav­ing to con­tact a wannabe pop star to book a view­ing.

Or you could ‘sell the life­style’ with your home – of­fer the yacht that is moored just off­shore along with the beach house, or throw in a sports car with a swish pad.

This might gar­ner in­ter­est, although I think most peo­ple who have the where­withal to buy a lux­ury boat or car might want to choose their own.

It also smacks to me of a fire sale or the kind of job lot box of­fered at the end of an­tique auc­tions.

And if a prop­erty comes with an added whiff of des­per­a­tion, it’s never a good sell­ing point.

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