By David Krichmar
As I talk to newer REALTORS®, about 50 percent of them do not want to commit to a “niche” or area of expertise. “I sell anywhere so I do not want to commit to one area,” which is a valid point. But at the same time, every REALTOR® sells anywhere locally. So how do you separate yourself and get the phone to ring? Commit to an area of expertise. Here are my ideas on how to find your expertise:
1. Past Deals: You know from your past experience that you have dealt with certain types of deals. Have a majority of those deals been in a certain town? Maybe you have sold a larger number of condos? So you could market yourself as a condo expert.
2. Your Work Experience: Before you became a REALTOR® what did you do? If you worked for a new home builder, then your area of expertise is with new construction homes. Was marketing your prior career? If so, you can use that expertise when becoming a listing agent — marketing is such a huge part of being a listing agent. Most likely any past career you had, you can use that knowledge in your real estate career
3. Your Competition: This is the sneaky suggestion, but may be the best! Research your competition; is there a specific area of real estate that they are not focusing on? Eg. A specific neighborhood, folks downsizing, newly wed couples needing to buy a home, etc.
At first as a new REALTOR®, this topic can be very scary because you want to sell all Real Estate. But, in order to separate yourself, you must find an area of expertise to grow your business. Once you find your niche, get to work marketing your butt off.
Some marketing ideas are:
- Blog about the topic
- Farm to that area
- Have a catchy slogan that explains your area of expertise
Do not be afraid of your area of expertise. Love it and live it.
By Kelly Reark
This week, I thought I would share some striking real estate statistics from my small local market area. Gasparilla Island is only a snapshot of what is happening locally, and hopefully what is or will be happening across our state and country.
In the first quarter of 2009, only two contracts closed on Gasparilla Island. The second quarter brought 14 closings, third quarter had nine, and the fourth quarter closed out with seven, for a total of 35 closed properties in 2009. This was down from the 2008 total of 41 properties closed.
Since the New Year, showing activity has picked up. Already this year, eight contracts have closed and 11 sales are pending on our island. Total dollar volume for the under contract and closed contract listings already tops 75 percent of what the total was for 2009. Many of what I considered to be our “best deals” have gone under contract. With a market area as small as mine, it only takes a few sales to drive up competition once again.
I encourage each of you to find statistics like these for your local market area. When I get a walk-in to our office with the familiar question, “So how’s real estate been lately?” I can answer with facts that will really grab their attention. It lets them know that the sky is not falling and quiets the Chicken Little response they were expecting. A response like this gives me credibility, puts the focus on my knowledge of my market, and puts them on track to look at property with the mindset that I want them to have.
Kelly Reark is a native Floridian and e-PRO REALTOR® with Gasparilla Properties, Inc. in Boca Grande, Southwest Florida. Visit her blog: www.BocaGrandeRealEstateNews.com.