September 4, 2015 | View on Facebook
Imagine driving to a neighborhood in Birmingham where you’d like to live. You point your phone down the tree-lined street, and suddenly all homes for sale in the neighborhood pop up on your screen.
With RealtySouth’s brand-new phone app, finding your dream home is only a touch away. Available for Apple and Android users, the app takes the familiarity of working with RealtySouth—which sells more homes in Alabama than any other company—and puts it at your fingertips.
“Some homebuyers like to search for a home online, while others prefer the one-on-one guidance from a knowledgeable real estate agent,” says Richard Grimes, CEO of RealtySouth. “Our new app provides a different way to search for homes that is comfortable for many of our clients.”
Grimes shares some of the app’s innovative elements that homebuyers can engage with, such as the map feature that lets users use their finger to draw a circle around a neighborhood of interest, such as a preferred school or place of work. The app will instantly show which homes are for sale in the circled area.
“And don’t think this is just for Birmingham,” says Grimes, smiling. “Wait until you’re on vacation and are wondering how much that cool beach house is—it works there, too.”
Grimes also explains that since the app is managed locally by the trusted RealtySouth team, all data is up-to-date and accurate, something not always guaranteed with national portals. Simply put, the new RealtySouth app is the company’s latest innovation in providing its clients the best home search experience possible.
“The app is just another tool to create a seamless homebuying process,” says Grimes. “I’m excited that RealtySouth will always do our best to understand what technology can make buying a home easier for our customers.”
The new RealtySouth app is now available for download on your phone or tablet at realtysouth.com/mobile
Visit your device’s app store to check it out, and learn more about RealtySouth at www.realtysouth.com
September 11, 2015 | View on Facebook
“Selling a home isn’t as easy as putting a sign in the yard,” says Dawn Reeves of RealtySouth. “We work hard to be at the front of opportunity for our customers.”
Known as Alabama’s leading real estate company, RealtySouth works to constantly bring new, innovative tools to its home buyers and sellers. The company recently released its new online AVM– automated valuation module—to give consumers the most accurate listings of home values.
“An AVM provides a wealth of information in one location,” explains Reeves. “In addition to showing a home’s value, it provides information on comps, mortgage rates, and market trends.”
To use RealtySouth’s AVM, simply visit its website at www.realtysouth.com. The AVM is listed right on its homepage, where you can enter the address of your home (or a home of interest) to access a wealth of information online.
While several national companies offering home valuation also exist, what separates RealtySouth’s AVM from the rest is its local focus. Simply put, its base in Birmingham gives RealtySouth the ability to provide the most accurate home valuation possible.
“One of our national competitors is in California, so they have no true, firsthand knowledge of the Birmingham market,” says Reeves. “They don’t know how those recently updated kitchen countertops boost a home’s value or if there has been recent water damage to decrease it. They only know what they can find online.”
By using RealtySouth’s AVM as a starting point, Birmingham home buyers and sellers can ensure they’re getting the best, most local guidance from a trusted source. For the best success, however, one should always follow up by connecting face-to-face with a RealtySouth agent.
“It takes the eyes and ears of a local Realtor to do the job justice,” Reeves says. “Our AVM is a great place to start the conversation, but a RealtySouth professional is a must.”
Get started by visiting www.realtysouth.com to check out your home’s value. There, you can also find more information about RealtySouth’s services, homes, and people.
Says Reeves, “Purchasing a home is typically the single, largest investment a person will make. We believe in making it as stress-free and convenient as possible.”
The Heart of Real Estate
September 25, 2015 | View on Facebook
“At its very heart, real estate is helping people find their home,” says Katherine Manush, an agent with Alabama company RealtySouth. “It’s more than dollars and cents; it’s where people live, walk their dogs, raise their families, and dream.”
Manush has been with RealtySouth since the 1990s, and over the years, she has seen home trends come and go. In today’s technology-driven world, she knows that real estate is all about creating an easy to access, one-stop shop for home buyers and sellers.
As a member of RealtySouth’s Technology Task Force, Manush helps test new real estate tech that can then be used by her clients. For example, after requests to offer a mobile app for clients, the Task Force developed the new RealtySouth app, which is now available for download at realtysouth.com/mobile.
“Since 96% of all buyers start their search online, this is very important technology,” Manush explains. “Today’s buyers aren’t tied to a computer anymore, so our app lets buyers search for homes from their phones or tablets.”
Manush explains her favorite app feature, called “My Home Watch,” which alerts a buyer when a house that meets their given search criteria comes on the market.
For sellers, the “Sell My Home” feature provides a regular recap of all activity on their house—from how many times their home was pulled up in searches to how many buyers saved their listing.
Between RealtySouth’s innovative app, its new AVM online home listing service, and its website—which had more than 1.3 million visitors last year—the Birmingham-based company is committed to making the home buying and selling process as easy and successful as possible for its clients.
“RealtySouth goes out of its way to make sure our agents have the necessary technology to help buyers and sellers achieve their ultimate goal: a successful closing,” says Manush.
If you’re in the market to buy or sell your home, get your process started by visiting www.realtysouth.com. There, you can get a free valuation on your home and get connected with a RealtySouth agent to offer their expert opinion.
Top 5 Tips to Get Your Home Sold
October 9, 2015 | View on Facebook
We all love watching home buying shows on TV, it has us wondering what it’s like from the perspective of the seller. What makes a home sell fast and at a valuable price? We’re chatting with James Harwell, a Realtor with RealtySouth and president of Birmingham Association of REALTORS®, Inc., for his Top 5 Tips to Get Your Home Sold.
1) Make sure the price is right.
Finding the ideal selling price for your home takes a lot of research—after all, you want to make money, but you also need to set realistic expectations for buyers. “The best way to get educated about the housing market is to work with a Realtor,” says Harwell. “Think about it this way: you go to a car dealership to buy a car, so you need to go to a Realtor to sell a home.”
2) Set a timetable.
Once your home is listed, follow its activity, and have a plan in place in case that activity isn’t producing results. Says Harwell, “If a client’s home has sat on the market for 30-40 days without selling, it’s time to look at lowering the price.”
3) You don’t have to hold an open house to sell a home.
“When I started as Realtor twenty years ago, it was all about the open house,” says Harwell. “Now, with so many online search engines available, much home shopping is done online.” Ensure the first impression your home makes on screen is a strong one; beautiful home photos with good lighting can make a home stand out amongst a sea of listings.
4) When it comes to the buyer, quality trumps quantity.
It’s not about how many prospective buyers that see your house, it’s about getting the right buyers through the door. “You’ve got to have an astute Realtor who can prequalify each interested buyer and make sure they are capable of buying your home,” explains Harwell.
5) Good condition (but not perfection) matters.
“I ask each seller ‘What is more important to you: selling your home fast or getting more money for it?’” Harwell says. If a home isn’t selling, Harwell usually suggests lowering the price instead of investing more money into top-of-the-line updates. A clean home that is well taken care of has just as much potential to sell as a fully-upgraded one.
Have you sold a home? What did you learn from the process? Let us know in the comments below, then learn more about RealtySouth at their website www.realtysouth.com