“The Art of Success in Real Estate”
More of an art than a science, most of us will have multiple experiences with Realtors® during our lifetimes; experiences that will likely vary as widely as the personalities and skills of the individual Realtors® we encounter. But one thing is certain – buying and selling real estate in today’s marketplace is very much different than it was just a decade ago. The experience and skill levels required to achieve a successful real estate experience today are much more demanding than at any other time in our recent past.
In this issue, we are especially excited to be introducing our readers to Realtor® Tiffany Dorn of Tiffany Dorn & Associates at Keller Williams Realty, the top 1% real estate team with 71 transactions in 2014, a level almost exceeded as of June of this year. We will ask Tiffany to share with our readers some of her strategies for achieving a successful real estate experience for both buyers and sellers.
EK: First of all, congratulations for your success as a top 1% sales leader in 2014 and being selected as a Zillow 5-Star Premier Agent and receiving a 2014 Trulia Top Agent Award. It’s also our understanding that you have almost exceeded your total 2014 sales achievement in just the first six months of 2015. So I guess this is a great opportunity to ask you to describe our current residential real estate conditions.
Tiffany: Homes “priced right” are selling at the highest level since 2008, buyer demand is extremely strong, and there are inventory shortages. Homeowners looking to sell are definitely in the driver’s seat, as there are more buyers competing for the limited number of homes available for sale. In addition, we’re receiving multiple offers on our listings within days of hitting the MLS more and more frequently. With interest rates at a historical low, it’s a great time to buy, especially if you’re currently renting.
EK: You embrace a multi-tiered marketing strategy, including a customized marketing plan, professional photography, virtual tours, professional staging consultations, and social media, to help your sellers sell their homes in the shortest time possible at the highest possible price. Why do you feel that this strategy has been so successful?
Tiffany: You only have one chance to make a great first impression, so that’s why each home we market includes a professional staging consultation and professional photography. Not only do homes sell faster when professionally photographed, but they also sell for a higher price in my experience. Each home has a unique story to tell, and we build our comprehensive custom marketing strategy around that.
EK: Provided at no cost to your clients, why do you believe that professional photography and staging consultations have been so important to your success as a Realtor®?
Tiffany: Buying or selling real estate is the largest transaction a person will ever make, so my number one goal always is to sell every client’s home for the highest possible price in the shortest time possible. I’m always willing to invest in any tool that will enhance our clients’ potential for success in today’s market, and professional staging consultations and professional photography are two excellent tools that clearly make an impact when marketing a home.
EK: The number one complaint we hear from sellers is the lack of communication from their Realtor®. How have you been able to overcome that obstacle?
Tiffany: Several years ago we implemented a system where my specialized team regularly communicates with seller clients on a weekly basis and consistently delivers the highest standard of service. The ultimate goal is to “wow” clients throughout the process and always maintain a strong sense of continuity with a primary point of contact. Once the transaction closes, we always ask for feedback, and the system serves our clients quite well. More than half of our business is generated from our wonderful past clients, and we’re very thankful for that.
EK: We hear that 70%+ of all real estate inquiries begin online. How do you use today’s social media to successfully differentiate your clients’ properties?
Tiffany: That’s correct; most consumers today begin their home search online. Social media specifically has enabled our team to get the word out on listings quicker and in a more targeted manner. We have a dedicated team member that specializes in the marketing of all our clients’ listings. Once the client agreement is signed, our marketing system initiates a “Coming Soon” campaign utilizing a variety of mediums. The listing then goes live on the Multiple Listing Service (MLS) and is broadcasted to 300+ websites, including all social media platforms. Further, we create a customized social media marketing plan for each property that covers Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, etc. Additionally, we leverage our state-of-the-art website platform, www.TiffanyDorn.com, to market all of our client listings to our vast database.
EK: What most of our readers may be unaware of is that your husband, Mark, a bilingual commercial Realtor® at Keller Williams Realty as well, and yourself are both involved in a very special program honoring our hometown heroes called Homes for Heroes®. Tell us a little bit about this program and how it benefits our community.
Tiffany: Homes for Heroes® is a wonderful program that allows our team to give back a portion of our real estate commissions to those who serve our community when buying or selling real estate. Since 2001, Homes for Heroes® has given back more than $9,000,000 nationally to our heroes. We’re excited to be the exclusive real estate team representing Homes for Heroes in the Greater Knoxville Area and to have already given back almost $15,000 in 2015 to our local heroes.
This program was created after the tragic events of 9/11 as a thank you to the men and women who have given so much. The mission is to provide extraordinary savings, through discounts, on important real estate related services to local heroes who provide extraordinary services to our community every day. Heroes include firefighters, emergency medical professionals, active duty military and veterans, law enforcement, teachers, and healthcare workers.
Heroes can learn more or sign up at www.HomesforHeroes.com and will then be contacted within 48 hours.
EK: Let us ask you to gaze into your crystal ball for a moment. How does the residential real estate marketplace look for the immediate future?
Tiffany: Homes priced right and in good condition will likely continue to sell quickly (less than 90 days). I anticipate that buyer demand will remain strong and that inventory will remain tight during the remainder of 2015. Homeowners looking to sell will remain in the driver’s seat, but interest rates will likely begin to rise. This is a great time for first-time homebuyers and those who may currently be renting to strongly consider the dream of homeownership.
EK: In closing, is there anything you would like to add? Also, tell our readers how they can contact you if they would like to learn more about Tiffany Dorn & Associates at Keller Williams Realty.
Tiffany: There are very few career opportunities that allow a professional to help another family to achieve their dreams. It has been an absolute privilege to be a part of this experience with more than 250 clients whose dreams have been achieved.
I recognize that it’s often a temptation to hire someone that you know who has a real estate license, but please remember that they may not always be the best Realtor® to represent your interests. Think of a real estate transaction as the most important business decision that you’re likely to make in your lifetime. Why not choose a professional with a proven track record for success? Your friend could turn out to be the right agent for your needs. But remember that if you should discover later that they’re not the right person, it could place an enormous stress on your personal relationship with that individual. Before you make a choice, I encourage you to take the time necessary to ask for agent recommendations from homeowners who have recently bought or sold a home, and then interview several agents before making a final decision. You’ll be spending time with your agent and relying on their professional advice to help you buy or sell your home for the best possible price and as quickly as possible.
Tiffany Dorn & Associates at Keller Williams Realty
5616 Kingston Pike, Suite 201
Knoxville, TN 37919