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Expanding Your Potential Customer Base To Beat The Real Estate “Bubble”

May 4, 2006

It seems as though every real estate article and weblog is mentioning the "bubble"…most mention that supply is rising and prices are staying flat to falling. Agents are not the only impacted service providers; the entire real estate service chain from mortgage brokers to appraisers can be impacted as well. There may be at least two ways that you may not have considered before to help drive sales and fight the "bubble":

Find more local buyers in your local market: Are there potential buyers in your community that you have not considered or that represent underserved groups from a real estate sales/services perspective? For instance, if you are a listing agent or broker, are you offering your listings to other agents already translated into the popular languages of your local community? If providing other services, are you making those services available in other languages? This approach may be most successful in communities with strong non-english speaking ethnic representation.

Introduce buyers from outside your local area into your local market: This approach is centered on marketing to and bringing buyers into your local market that may be looking for investment properties or primary residences. As the dollar weakens and prices drop, properties in the US will become even more attractive for buyers in the UK, other parts of Europe, Latin America, Asia, and even Canada. They'll be looking for both properties and service providers and represent an excellent opportunity.

How can you market your properties or services in such a non-traditional manner? Translation of listings into various languages and advertising in external publications or online sources may be a method of finding and selling to foreign buyers regardless of your market. Many of the same networking techniques used in your local market will also be effective in finding buyers outside of your normal "buying pool" as well. Phone, email, and communicate to friends. If your community has a newpaper geared to other groups in your community, pick up a copy or go to their website. You may also be thinking that foreign buyers are only interested in the high priced areas on either coast. External buyers may be unaware of the attractive prices, great service, and interesting destinations in your local area. By providing this information to them in a variety of languages and making your listings or services available to search in their primary language, you may be able to build a new set of customers that you had not considered before.

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