Client Showcase – Making the Difference

04/05/2018 01:30:18

For this case study we are going to look at the sale for Ellenor Ferguson in Battlefied. 

This wasn’t our first time selling for Ellenor. She had previously sold her father’s property in Merrylee in 2014 with Craig Smith through our Shawlands branch. Thankfully, happy with the service and result achieved, she came back to Craig in 2017 to sell her traditional tenement flat in Battlefield.

The flat was a larger style 2 bed flat with a dining kitchen, situated on the corner of Sinclair Drive and Ledard Road.   

Here is a quick summary of the property:

Property – 2 bedroom, 1st floor flat at 121 Sinclair Drive, Battlefield, G42

Asking Price – Offers Over £159,000

Home Report Value - £170,000

The Initial Meet

Craig initially visited the property approximately three months prior to Ellenor being ready to market. We always advise to get in touch with us as early as possible. The ‘valuation’ appointment should be about so much more than “how much is my property worth” and “what are your fees?”. It is an opportunity for any advice to be considered so that your property is presented in its best possible light, maximising the impact when you come to the market.

In Ellenor’s case, she had plans to upgrade the kitchen and possibly rip out the old cast iron bathtub. Craig’s advice was to concentrate on freshening the décor. Albeit the kitchen wasn’t brand new it had charm and appeal with it’s Belfast sink and large walk-in pantry. An upgrade, in our opinion, wasn’t necessary and the sheer size of the kitchen would be a major selling point. With the cast iron bathtub, we highlighted this is a feature rather than see it as a negative. Again, it tied in with the many original features and charm of the property.

Marketing Plan

The importance of getting this right from the start can never be underestimated. So many agents in today’s market are in a rush. You see properties with poor quality, dull front pictures, boring description with no attention to the unique features and the cardinal sin…no floor plan! Nothing drives buyers away quicker from your listing than not having a floor plan!   

Now living in Scotland, it can be near impossible to time photographs for a sunny day. This case was no different. But not to be defeated by the Glasgow weather, we sent the photographs away to a specialist company to have ‘blue skies’ added. We also asked for the ground floor hedge to have an ‘on-line trim!' (see before/after photo’s below). This may seem over the top, but these small details can make all the difference. Research from Rightmove shows that quality, eye catching photographs attract 3 times more leads.

Once we were happy with the photographs we started a targeted social media campaign, promoting the property to a defined demographic on Facebook. The key to this is knowing who your target audience is and we find the best results are when you run the campaign prior to the property being listed on any other websites. This will create more of a ‘buzz’ on social media as the property is not yet being advertised - a ‘sneak preview’ or exclusive look. 

It was then onto the database marketing, emailing and texting the details to our matching buyers on our extensive database and calling the hot buyers to run through the features of the property in more detail.

This pre-marketing activity resulted in 12 viewings in the diary and this is all before we went live on any website.

Accompanied Viewings

Ellenor took Craig up on the offer of accompanied viewings. This is a service we have promoted for 15 years now but we have never hired a ‘viewing agent’. Viewing agents DO NOT work. They just do not have the knowledge to discuss, and more importantly, sell the property to the viewer.  They have never met the owner, so how do they know their expectations?  The majority are there to just open a door and nothing else!

We recommend accompanied viewings for several reasons, which we discuss in detail at our initial appointment with any prospective client.  The key is it must be the RIGHT person and not ANY person carrying out the viewings. In this case, it was Craig personally accompanying all viewers.

Offers

Viewings are now underway, and the first offer has come in, 2 days after going live. It’s an exceptional offer of £195,000, some £25,000 above the home report value, which would make it a record price for a 2 bed flat in the immediate area. Ellenor is delighted and the figure is way over her expectations. The easiest thing to do would have been to accept the offer and move on. But this is where your estate agent should really be working for you. As Craig had carried out the viewings and met everyone face to face, judging the reactions, asking the right questions to gauge budgets, interests, timescales and circumstances he was perfectly positioned to advise Ellenor. He felt the positive reaction he’d witnessed so far and the number of additional viewings already in the diary over the next few days it justified hanging on a bit longer. He was confident we would not lose the offer, from meeting the buyers personally, and felt they may go even higher once up against some competition.

Ellenor trusted his judgement and by the end of the week a closing date was set after 45 viewings. 12 offers were received on the closing date, with the highest being £210,000, now £40,000 over the home report value!! Who by? The same buyer who had originally offered £195,000.     

Conclusion

Now we are not saying the initial advice to decorate or the quality photographs, adding in blue skies or cutting the hedge made all the difference. Or that it was the targeted social media campaign, the database marketing, the phone calls to registered ‘hot buyers’. It may not even have been the accompanied viewings by a Director, where the person who knows the property, owner and local market best was there to meet the buyers. Or perhaps it wasn’t even being perfectly positioned to offer advice once offers were received. But we hope that, by putting it all together, we provided a service that made all the difference to our client! And if that means it helped Ellenor achieve a bit more than she would’ve with some of our competitors, then all the better!

More importantly, what did Ellenor think?

 “I cannot praise the Scottish Property Centre enough for how they handled the sale of my flat in Sinclair Drive, Glasgow. They were very professional from viewing and photographing the property, marketing it and showing prospective buyers around.

I had in excess of 35 viewings, 12 offers and an offer £40,000 over the home report valuation and a sale within two weeks.

They also sold my Fathers flat and I would not hesitate to use them again in the future and have recommended them to various friends.”  Ellenor Ferguson, 121 Sinclair Drive

P.S. Not long after we sold for Ellenor, a similar sized property came to the market with a competitor at 165 Sinclair Drive, with the same home report value as 121 Sinclair Drive of £170,000.  It sold for £170,000.

If you are thinking of selling, we’d love to make all the difference for you! Arrange your free market appraisal now.

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