One of the most common questions we hear from potential home sellers is: “Can I trust this non-traditional method of selling my house?”
We get it.
Consumers rely on the internet for so much these days, from managing our bank accounts to booking travel accommodations within other people’s houses (Airbnb, anyone?). These tasks seem so ordinary and convenient now, but when they were first introduced, people were skeptical.
Selling a house is one of the biggest transactions a consumer will make in their lifetime, so yes, doing it online might seem scary. The idea many people hold is that this transaction should be personal and hands-on. But here’s the thing: Selling your house online does not remove that touch of personalization. Rather, technology enhances it and it adds certainty. Here’s how.
1. Pricing and timeline become more certain
There’s plenty of uncertainty that comes with selling a house: “Are people interested in my neighborhood?” “Is my price too high or too low?” “What are my kitchen upgrades really worth?”
So, sellers end up playing trial-and-error with their prices. A 2016 Zillow study found that 66% of sellers change their list price at least once, and 39% change the price at least two times.
This game of trial-and-error leaves sellers in limbo – not knowing how long it will take their houses to sell. When we pull the numbers for Metro Atlanta, we’re seeing that houses that have sold in 2017 have been on the market for an average of 59 days. That means sellers are waiting nearly two months before a feasible offer comes through.
Technology reduces much of the uncertainty by accounting for every individual factor. For example, the Knock algorithm takes into account how recent properties in the neighborhood have sold, when the house was built and specific upgrades that have been made. This provides sellers with a guarantee of the minimum amount that their house will sell for, and with an actual timeline of when their house will sell.
2. Faster buyers
In today’s marketplace, consumers turn to online reviews and photos for research on purchase decisions — especially when it comes to big buys.
That’s especially the case when it comes to shopping for a home. A 2017 study from the National Association of Realtors found that photos are the most important website feature for 90% of buyers under the age of 62.
Photos are great, but they still leave buyers with tons of questions. What if sellers were to kick that visual experience up a notch? Virtual reality and 3D home tours are a major part of the current online home selling landscape, and they provide so much value. This technology allows potential buyers to envision how they can transform any space their own.
And some added value: Because potential buyers can access this “showing” anytime, sellers don’t have to scramble to keep their houses show-ready for months.
3. Real estate = real people
According to Zillow, these are the top five attributes sellers care about when selecting an agent:
- Local market knowledge
- Positive general reputation in community
- Strong sales history/number of recent sales
These attributes are enhanced via online channels. Algorithms do the pricing work in the background, but knowledgeable agents sit at the forefront – reviewing the information and relaying it to the homeowner.
But, how can you be sure you can trust these folks you’ve never met face-to-face? Well, everything is online, so you can rely on third-party sites like Zillow (whose reviewing policy is pretty thorough, by the way) to help make informed decisions.
Is online home selling the right approach for you?
We understand that online home selling is not for everyone, and that’s OK. But, ultimately, technology turns this major transaction into something a little more certain, personalized, AND it sellers leave with more money than when they leave the process up to chance. To learn more about how Knock relies on technology to accurately price properties and guarantee a sale within 6 weeks, read up on our strategy.