When it comes to selling your home, investing in a solid marketing and advertising campaign is well worth it. In this highly competitive market, it pays to ensure your property stands out from the pack.
The trick is to throw the widest marketing net to lure in as many potential buyers as possible. The more interest you attract, the more competition there will be for your home and the higher the price you are likely to achieve.
A good agent will advise you on the best strategy for your particular property and area, and will have plenty of experience in what works and what doesn't in a property marketing plan.
"The trick is to throw the widest marketing net to lure in as many potential buyers as possible."
Together, you should draw up a careful strategy and set a time frame in which to implement it. Using several different methods of marketing that complement each other is key to getting the best results.
You should ask your agent for a breakdown of the costs for your property marketing plan. Marketing costs are likely to vary from state to state, city to city and also from agency to agency. Each agency may have its own special deals with suppliers such as photographers, copywriters and different advertising websites.
Getting started with real estate marketing and advertising
Before electing an additional marketing plan with your agent, make sure you confirm what real estate advertising is already included in their sales commission and ask what their payment policy is if the house doesn't sell. Real estate advertising fees are not set in stone and can sometimes be negotiated with the agent.
It can also be possible to pay for your marketing costs as they are incurred or to ask to have them built into the agent's fee, which doesn't need to be paid until the property is sold. But in most cases, you'll need to pay for the cost of advertising and marketing whether or not your property is sold.
If you're one step ahead of the rest, marketing fees should make it into your initial considerations list when settling on the right agent for your property listing, and should be budgeted into the overall costs involved in selling your house.
Most agents will then use a combination of channels to boost the exposure of your listing, and these come with different price tags. Overall you should be expecting to pay 0.5% to 1% of your property price on your marketing and advertising costs.
Expected marketing costs for selling property by price bracket
|Property price bracket||Expected cost of advertising and marketing|
|$500,000||$2,500 - $5,000|
|$750,000||$3,750 - $7,500|
|$1,000,000||$5,000 - $10,000|
|$1,500,000+||$7,500 - $12,500|
Real estate marketing costs: Understand what you're paying for
To begin with, you will need to get your home looking its best and well prepared for sale. It's no use spending good money on advertising if the product isn't up to scratch. Get cleaning, decluttering, renovating and gardening.
Also consider the many benefits of styling your home and ask your agent for some home staging tips. If styling is not your jam, you might want to bring in a professional. You should be looking to capitalise on features that will appeal to potential buyers.
Once your home is looking good, your agent will commission professional photos to be taken for use in online and print advertisements, brochures and your outdoor signage. Some agents may also recommend that you make a video of your property and perhaps even get some drone shots taken to accentuate the benefits of your property's location.
"Before you start thinking about advertising and marketing, you'll need to get your home looking its best and well prepared for the sale. It's no use spending good money on adverting if the product isn't up to scratch."
Your agent is likely to have a photographer that they deal with regularly and have set prices detailed for this in their marketing package. Expect to pay $300 to $1,000 for the photos, and up to $1,500 if your real estate photography package includes a video or drone footage.
At the same time, they will also commission a floor plan of your home to be drawn up (at an estimated cost of $370) and advertising copy to be writing espousing your home's benefits (at an estimated cost of $180).
The photos and copy will also be used to create a "For Sale" signboard outside your home (estimated cost: $70-$300) and brochures to be handed out at open inspections (estimated cost: $200).
While the "For Sale" signboard outside your property may be considered free advertising for the agent, especially after the property is sold, it also serves to alert local residents, passing traffic and people who may not be actively searching for a property that yours is up for sale.
If you are going to auction, an auctioneer will have to be booked in advance. The fee could be 'free' or up to $1,000 depending on whether it's included in your real estate agent fees.
Real estate advertising costs: Quick facts
|Real estate photography and video||$300 - $1,500|
|Property floor plan||$370|
|Property listing description||$180|
|'For Sale' signboard||$70 - $300|
|Open inspection brochures||$200|
|Auctioneer||Free* - $1,000|
|Online property listing||$600 - $900|
|Print property listing||$1000+|
Marketing through your agent's database and website
A free source of marketing is likely to be through your agent's client list or database of potential buyers. A good agent will regularly send out email updates or SMS's to this database alerting potential buyers of new properties on the market as well as recent properties sold.
The agency will also have its own website where its real estate listings are advertised. Before deciding on an agent, be sure to ask them about their database and website, and how they work. Some agencies have better databases and websites than others.
Also check how the agency uses social media like Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, as well as pay per click advertising on search engines. In addition, ask how the agency markets to offshore markets like China or Hong Kong and uses social media in other countries, including WeChat.
Online real estate advertising
A successful advertising campaign can make a big difference in the price you get for your home and the time it takes to sell it. Online advertising in particular is a non-negotiable expectation when selling your house.
Strategically targeting websites for your online advertising, such as Domain and realestate.com.au, means you can reach a lot of people for a reasonable outlay. This route will give you the biggest bang for your buck, as the people browsing these essential channels are more likely to be actively looking to buy.
For instance, Newscorp's realestate.com.au, boasting Australia's largest property audience, has a reach of 8.7 million unique views, with 45% of its audience looking to buy a property.
Having your property listed on a platform like this means not only are you reaching people who are browsing their website, but you are also reaching potential purchasers through their social media channels.
"Strategically targeting websites for your online advertising, such as Domain and realestate.com.au, means you can reach a lot of people for a reasonable outlay. This route will give you the biggest bang for your buck!"
While these sites only allow advertising by licensed real estate agents, they also allow potential buyers to ask your real estate agent vital questions before they set out to view the property.
According to Canstar Blue, Domain's advertising rates are $660 for an eight week listing and $770 for 12 weeks, though an agent is likely to get a discounted rate – and should pass this saving on to you.
Prices will also differ depending on the suburb, and the rate you will pay will depend on the advertising subscription your agent has elected. If you are opting for a premium package through your agent, you could see yourself paying up to $2,000 with inclusions.
Print advertising is generally more expensive than online listings. These types of publications allow you to reach passive buyers – those not actively in the market. Indeed, research by Newscorp found that around 80 per cent of readers like to read the property section of the local newspaper even when they are not looking for a property.
Similarly, CoreLogic's statistics show that advertising in both print plus online maximises the number of potential buyers and often helps get the seller the best available price.
You're best off discussing with your agent whether the option for print, on top of the competitive Domain and realestate.com.au advertising rates, is worthwhile for you.
Remember, without adequate advertising, you won't reach the wide pool of potential purchasers that will help you get the best price for your property. In general, the more you advertise and the more avenues you take, the more exposure your listing will get.
That said, some experts believe that if your marketing budget is very tight, print should be the area that you cut back on first.
"In general, the more you advertise and the more avenues you take, the more exposure your listing will get."
It is recommended that you spend around one per cent of your property's value on marketing to get the best results, and that you organise your marketing to appear in the first 21 days of your home being on the market.
Making the most of your advertising budget
With all this talk of advertising and marketing fees you may be concerned as to how this will fit into the original budget for selling your house. There are a few steps we recommend taking to maximise your budget and potentially reduce real estate advertising and marketing fees.
Before purchasing additional marketing or advertising:
- Consider marketing costs when comparing potential agents
- Check what is already covered in your real estate agent's commission
- Get to work and declutter, repair and style yourself
- Know the market – check out the listings in your area and consider what marketing tools could make your house stand out from the crowd
- Read our OpenAgent Smart Seller's Guide
Implementing a marketing plan:
- Request a breakdown of marketing and advertising costs from your agent
- Don't underestimate the reach and value of online advertising
- Review whether an outlet is worthwhile. Will the additional cost for drone footage give your property the competitive edge? Or, would the budget for this be better spent elsewhere?
- Don't shy away from open homes!
- Take advantage of word of mouth and share your online listing to your local community - you never know who is waiting in the wings!