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Latest Marketing Trend: Reducing Stress for Buyers and Sellers

Buying or selling a home is a high-stress process that many people hate – hence the appeal of many iBuyers. As a result, more brokers are creating programs to simplify the process for sellers as a way to gain an edge in the marketplace.

CHICAGO – More brokerages are offering programs to help home sellers spruce up their properties before they list by fronting the costs.

Realogy announced that its Coldwell Banker brand would be piloting a new home improvement program called RealVitalize in conjunction with HomeAdvisor, an online home improvement resource.

If homeowner lists through a participating brokerage, they can have nonstructural home improvements and repairs done using a service professional from the HomeAdvisor network. The brokerage covers the upfront repair costs, which could include services such as painting, kitchen and bathroom upgrades, new appliances, staging, installation and handyman services. The costs are repaid by the seller when the property sale closes or the listing expires. There are no additional fees to participate in the program or minimum listing price.

The pilot program will first be launched in Columbus, Ohio; Denver; Orlando, Fla.; and Tampa, Fla., before rolling out nationally.

“Home sellers are looking to real estate professionals to offer integrated solutions to ease the process of the real estate transaction,” says Ryan Gorman, president and CEO of NRT. “Through a participating Coldwell Banker brokerage, sellers who choose to utilize the program benefit from a home improvement process that is more convenient while positioning their home for maximum appeal. … This is a win-win for all parties involved.”

Other brokerages have also launched programs to help home sellers tackle home remodeling projects and prepare their properties for listing.

Keller Williams recently announced a pilot program, The Keller Offers Concierge Program. The program allows agents to advise sellers on strategies to increase their home’s value, and Keller Offers will fund the improvements at “very little to no upfront cost to sellers,” according to a program announcement. As with the Coldwell Banker program, sellers pay the funds back when the property sells. The Keller Williams program is being rolled out in select markets in Texas, Georgia and California.

Other brokerages also offer concierge programs, such as Redfin, Compass and ERA Real Estate.

Renovation startup Curbio, a company that won the pitch battle at the National Association of Realtors®’ second annual iOi Summit, received funding from NAR for their work in presale home renovations.

Source: Realtor® Magazine

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