Wednesday, July 21, 2010

What can Your Agency Offer You?

What can your agency offer you?  Are you going to a boutique agency?  What is the difference between a boutique and a franchise such as Century 21, Coldwell Banker or Prudential?  Coldwell Banker, Century 21, Sotheby's International are all brands of Realogy.  This holding company has been in financial straits since the crash and don't have the money to put into infrastructure and above the line advertising.

Prudential has relationships with all of the above sites and networks.  Those that are circled are sites that offer property search functionality.  The others, are sites where Prudential Real Estate advertises.

Prudential has feeds to the sites that have property search functionality that pulls data from the Multiple Listing Service (MLS).  If Prudential realtor updates or posts a new listing, the listing is automatically distributed to these sites.  This means the listing is always updated.  Remember the MLS is the realtor's association database.  As part of the cooperating agreement, the data must be kept up to date otherwise, fines apply.  This means that Prudential's data is accurate.  When a change to the MLS listing is made, it cycle's through to all of the associated sites.

This is a huge advantage to seller's.  Small boutique realtors generally don't have the capacity to keep up the manual data entry on all of these sites and doing it manually also introduces a lot of error.  They also don't have the brand presence and advertising on such major sites as MSNBC, CBS, HGTV and other major networks.

Because Prudential has relationships with these sites, its Online Seller's Advantage also offers reporting.  However frequently the seller would like data - daily, weekly or monthly a report is produced that shows how frequently the listing came up in search results and how many click throughs to property details were garnered.  This is a fantastic tool in understanding whether or not the property is priced correctly as the market moves.

Smaller agencies sometimes offer lower commissions but at what cost to you?  When 90% of buyers start their search online, is a small agency relevant?  They will take a listing for less but will other agents show it?  What tools besides the MLS do they have to market your property?

There are other advantages such as network referrals as a buyer is relocating from one area to another.  Prudential is nationwide and has approximately 3,000 agents nationwide and about 3MM hits to its site every month.

What can your agency offer you?

Provided by Donna Antonucci
Prudential Castle Point Realty

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