Jessica Koltun, a Realtor with The Associates, has found her niche in the real estate industry focusing branding for both new construction and renovations. While she doesn’t miss the chance to swing a sledgehammer, she’s just as passionate about building strategic marketing campaigns for her clients. She leverages her interior design experience, her attention to detail, and her market savvy to give the properties she represents a serious leg up. Of course, it’s taken some trial and error to develop these strategies, and in the process, Koltun has found that Realtors often lack the tools to really make the most of their marketing efforts. 

Right now, her work with Kalterra Court really speaks to that experience. It’s fresh and exciting, and considering how many properties we see on a weekly basis, that’s saying something.

Want to revamp your marketing strategy? Ready to take your listings to the next level? Here’s some sage advice from Koltun:

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LakewoodIf you’ve got your heart set, say, on raising your family in the Woodrow High School feeder pattern, starting in Lakewood Elementary, but need a little breathing room while you look for your forever home in the boundaries, we’ve found a great Rental of the Week that just might do the trick.

We say might, because as much as we like the layout and are in favor of everything in the description, the photos make it uh, hard to actually see all the great updates talked about in the listing description.

Realtors, good photography is worth its weight in gold, but doesn’t cost nearly that. In fact, in the 2017 National Association of Realtors Profile of Home Buyers & Sellers, 89 percent of those surveyed said that when they hopped online to search for a home, they found photos to be the most useful feature of the site they visited.

So basically, everyone who looks at homes online would like you to use photos that are useful.  (more…)

For this week’s Wednesday WTF, we’ve found a listing that is a bit of a time warp, again.

Now, we’re not afraid of a house that time forgot, I mean, we wrote about three last year. And we never cease to be amazed at a listing where nothing has changed in more than 40 years.

So when we got this listing this week for a house in Gladewater, Texas, we knew we had to share, because sharing is caring, and we care a lot.

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If a prospective buyer visiting your listing is the first date, your listing photos could be considered Tinder — and the Picture The Sell team says they’re ready to make sure people swipe right on your listing.

And this team prides themselves on being young, tech savvy and — by their own admission — real estate nerds. But they also point out that they’re no one-trick pony, either — the team has experience in almost every phase of the home-selling business, including photography, lending, legal, and real estate.

And that translates to an attention to detail so precise that Picture The Sell has morphed from referral only to a highly competitive real estate photography company. (more…)

No, you didn’t leave your beer goggles on, someone needs a better camera

The MLS provides us all with a fairly regular chuckle or eye-roll. Bang-bang, two popped into my mailbox as cautionary tales of properties trying to find their way to a buyer. No, this isn’t a hatchet job. The properties aren’t bad. What it comes down to is pricing realistically and showcasing properties in their best light in a market that’s less steam-full.  Apparently neither Realtor read my recent piece deciphering the clues for an overpriced home.   Today I’ll start with a property with a mysterious and meandering series of price drops. On Friday, stay tuned for the home with the 16,029 percent price hike (if for no other reason, to be sure it’s not yours).

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Real Estate Story

real estate photography

real estate photography

This house languished on the Orlando, Florida, market for 224 days, until professional real estate photographer Harry Lim re-shot the exterior and interior. It proceeded to sell in just eight days. Photos: Harry Lim

This month, there’s a story that’s gone viral by Orlando professional real estate photographer Harry Lim. His post, After Nearly 8 Months, Photos Help Sell Home in 8 Days, is remarkable because it shows the unmistakable difference professional photography makes in the marketing of a house (his before-and-after photos above make that clear!).

Here at CandysDirt, we could not agree more! In 2013, contributing writer Karen Eubank wrote an interesting series for us, Outside the Frame, which looked at the importance of professional real estate photography and offered the insights of Dallas’ leading real estate photographers (see parts one, two, three, and four).

Today’s real estate buyer is doing their home searches on the Internet, with 90 percent searching online and 89 percent using a mobile search engine. What they find first in their searches are photographs, and the quality of those can make or break a listing.

So today, we’ve made a list of five ways professional real estate photographers bring value to the marketing of a house.

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Photo: Lance Selgo/Unique Exposure Photography

Historic districts are some of my favorite neighborhoods. When my husband and I first moved in together, it was a Craftsman bungalow in Junius Heights that set the scene for some of our first days and weeks as a married couple. That huge, open front porch was a great place from which to meet our neighbors, and we loved the cool little details that evoked the home’s own memories.
Sunlight filtered in through the wavy glass in the almost 100-year-old windows, and the hardwood floors were patched with an old yardstick from a neighborhood hardware store now long gone. It’s that built-in character that makes these homes treasures to be cherished.
When restored, of course, these prestigious homes become gems that glisten in the hearts of towns that are growing fast. While newer models are popping up like mushrooms overnight in nearby developments, these homes will stand the test of time. That’s what I love about Historic Downtown McKinney. While the Collin County suburb has fabulous schools and plenty of great new home developments to choose from, everyone gathers at the heart of this neo-Mayberry that calls itself “unique by nature.”
And this prairie home, a diamond that shines so bright, has been restored to wonderful results. Jump to see the perfectly staged interiors within this listing from Christine Hogan of Ebby Halliday Realtors.

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When we first heard of Yurz, it definitely piqued some interest. Sure, some Realtors definitely need help with branding and photography. We’ve seen some awful websites out there, with some listing shots sporting horrible glare off of mirrors and windows and a flash that drowns out any details that buyers wouldn’t want to miss.

Of course, the logical side of me says that these agents should either take a photography course at a community college or perhaps do one better and hire a professional to take great snaps and build their website.

But Yurz’s “Instagram for real estate” app claims to “deliver top quality, custom web design, strategic search engine placement, Facebook management, reputation support, and more, all under $200 per month.” It could be a great way to help brand an agent, sure, but promote listings?

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