We at Sotheby’s International Realty are in continuous evolution to maintain our high standard of white glove service to our clientele all over the world. With society in constant motion not only are we on the pulse with what is current, we strive to stay ahead of the curve. This recently created video explores how much our world has changed and how our company thrives on meeting those challenges.
How Sotheby’s International Realty has grown
In 1976, the Sotheby’s auction house began Sotheby’s International Realty and, in 2004, entered a strategic alliance with Realogy.
In February of 2004, there were 15 company-owned offices. Today we have more than 12,000 real estate agents working out of nearly 650 office in 45 countries and territories.
In 2005, our company completed 19,000 transactions totaling $19 billion in sales. In 2009, we had grown to nearly 34,000 transactions totaling $22 billion. Today, Sotheby’s International Realty handles over 59,000 transactions representing $41 billion.
Sotheby’s International Realty: continuously expanding our reach
When a listing is featured as a cover property on sothebysrealty.com it gets 30% more views. We have also developed lifestyle micro sites for buyers looking for property falling under one of the following lifestyles: Waterfront, Golf, Vineyards & Wineries, Skiing, and Farm & Ranch. There are 60 billion dollars in property value on sothebysrealty.com representing 30,000 listings with 38% of them outside the United States.
Of the 2.1 billion internet users, 72% don’t search in English. On sothebysrealty.com, users can search in over 16 diverse languages.
China will soon become the largest English speaking country in the world. Sotheby’s International Realty already has a network hub in Hong Kong and we continue to expand our presence within Asia.
On the pulse of where and how our clientele search for property
13.9 million mobile subscribers access real estate information via mobile and this year more internet searches will happen via mobile versus a computer. Because of this shift toward mobile search, we created a cascading platform of 60 interconnected mobile-friendly websites and developed GPS-enabled apps for smartphones.
1 in every 8 people on earth are on Facebook. 3 years ago twitter didn’t exist now there are 175 million tweets per day. 200 billion videos are watched around the world per month. We maintain a strong and active presence on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and other social networks on both a corporate and local level.
What is the end result of our marketing efforts? 506 million media impressions delivered. Leveraging the world’s most influential partners including BBC, Google, The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, Financial Times, Luxury Properties, International Herald Tribune, Bloomberg Markets, Country Life, The Robb Report, Sotheby’s At Auction, etc.
We designed our website to give you the tools you need to achieve your real estate goals. We believe the combination of the best technology and attentive and knowledgeable Realtors will give you the advantage in a competitive real estate market.
As you know, our website features every listing offered on the MLS, including those for sale by owner. Our website updates with the MLS each hour, so you know are getting the most accurate information available. On every one of the listings you have access to on our site, you can take advantage of the following:
Contact a Realtor with questions on the listing or to schedule a showing. No need to pick up the phone or even switch over to your email client since your request can be done directly from the listing.
Save the listing to a list of favorites, so you can easily access it later. You can use this to keep track of listings or to have easy access to listings you want to compare.
Save notes to the listing for you to reference later. By keeping your notes on our website, your notes will all be in one place and available for you whenever you want them.
Calculate mortgage payments with the integrated mortgage calculator. The mortgage calculator is adjustable, so you can change the down payment, interest rate, and loan term.
Get the opinion of friends and family with the ability to email the listing to anyone you want or share the listing to your social networks: Facebook, Twitter, Google+, LinkedIn, and Pinterest share buttons are all available on the page.
If you find some value in the Zillow Zestimate®, you can access this figure for each listing as well as many market and area demographics area compiled by Zillow. Although, if you rely on the Zillow Zestimate®, we should talk so I can explain how my knowledge will give you a better understanding of the real estate market than a number spit out by an algorithm.
We believe these tools will help make the most of your online search for property, but we also think your Realtor is another tool to be utilized in any real estate transaction. We are here to help and offer the guidance and advise you will not get from a website.
Are you new to the area or looking for the neighborhood that best suits your lifestyle?
We are available to discuss and share our insights on the city and its neighborhoods. Trust us, we could talk about Boston and its neighborhoods for hours. But if you’d prefer to do some research on your own before you get us talking, our website is a great source.
We have integrated the website with resources such as Walk Score, education.com, Yelp, and Google Maps to help educate those in the midst of an international relocation and those looking for a new neighborhood to call home.
The Walk Score feature will provide one score for the walkability of a location and another score for its access to public transportation.
The Yelp integration allows you to locate nearby services including dry cleaners, coffee shops, grocery stores, health providers, athletic facilities and gyms, restaurants, and much more.
Our education.com feature will show area schools on a map, provide contact information, offer a brief description as well as a link to more thorough information and reviews on the education.com website.
By featuring Google Maps on our website, we are able to provide access directly to Google Street View without the need to leave the property listing.
The Zillow integration offers a variety of charts and data providing insight on the real estate market and area demographics.
We think these tools will give you the ability to find the area right for you and your lifestyle. Of course, I am always available to discuss in more detail or if you have any questions.
Do you feel like you are a few steps behind the real estate market? Is every house you inquire on already under agreement?
This is one problem with the large national real estate websites like Zillow and Trulia. These sites were not built with the intention to provide information, so they are not concerned with whether listings are current or accurate. Their intent is to sell leads to real estate agents and, to this end, the sites will withhold certain information to encourage you to contact one of their paying agents.
Our website is updated with the MLS each hour, so you know the information is current. Another benefit we can offer with our website is the ability to save your searches and have the system send you daily email summaries of any properties matching your criteria. The triggers prompting a listing to be added to your daily email alert include a new addition to the market, a price reduction, and status changes, which is helpful when a property goes back on the market after a buyer falls through. Watch the video above to see how easy it is to set up daily email alerts for MLS online casino listings.
You should also be aware every property does not make it to the internet. Some sellers do not want their property online at all, so the property is shopped around within the real estate community. Other properties are shared among agents before going public, so once it does hit the market buyers are already lined up. If you would like to set up a consult, our Realtors would be able to get a good idea of what you are looking for and alert you of any pocket listing matching your search criteria.
I recently watched an episode of TED Talks featuring psychologist Barry Schwartz discussing the Paradox of Choice (also the name of his book). According to Barry Schwartz, the American mantra of more choices equaling more freedom, which in turn results in more welfare is not only wrong, it is harmful. Too many choices affect a person”s ability to choose by causing decision paralysis, unable to make any choice at all. If the person does make a choice, she often becomes dissatisfied with the choice made, because, she believes a least one perfect option will be present among the multitude of options. If the one chosen turns out to fall short of perfection, buyer”s remorse can set in and the blame often falls on her own ability to make a correct decision. A fear of this buyer”s remorse can also prevent a person from taking action at all because we are aware of our heightened expectations resulting from living in a time of limitless choice.
After watching Barry Schwartz’s lecture I started thinking how it relates to the online casino current Boston real estate sales market. I hear complaints from buyers and fellow real estate agents regarding the low inventory and how new listings to the real estate sales market are selling within days of being listed. When the sales market was saturated with inventory, property sat and sat. It’s hard not to make the connection between buyers having fewer options and their increased ability to make a decision.
According to MLS data, from March 15th-April 15th of this year (2012) 289 single family homes and condos were listed for sale in the downtown Boston neighborhoods, 225 properties went under-agreement, and they averaged 31 days on the real estate sales market. The same time period last year (2011) there were 377 single family home and condos listed for sale in the downtown Boston neighborhoods, 184 went under-agreement, and spent an average of 120 days on the sales market.
Barry Schwartz said “the secret to happiness is low expectations.” It is because when expectations are low, the opportunity to be pleasantly surprised is present! Many agents and sellers feel the current real estate sales market is a pleasant and welcome change after the mortgage crisis a few years ago. And buyers, knowing there are few options, are less likely to talk themselves out making a decision on their new home. The result is less stagnation in the market, which is good news for both buyers and sellers of property.
Not too many people put much thought into etiquette these days even when going to view property to buy or rent. It’s not anyone’s fault, it is just how society has evolved. When I talk about etiquette, I don’t mean to conjure images of Victorian Britain and reruns of Upstairs Downstairs. I am simply speaking of the basics in proper behavior dictated by certain situations. For example, appropriate behavior does exist when one is going to view property. It’s nothing complex, it is common sense behavior that follows the golden rule: Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.
First, if you are working with a Realtor, be aware that just because you are available in the next hour, your Realtor, the listing agent, or the current occupant might not be. If you are available within the hour, do let your realtor know but also give other times you are available.
Second, when you are going to view property, bring everyone that needs to see it. Inventory in Boston is limited and moves fast. If this property is for roommates, a couple, or a single occupant that needs parent approval, make sure everyone can see it. I am not saying multiple showings are inappropriate, but in the time it takes to schedule and reschedule showings, someone else can come in and scoop it up.
Third, even if the listing is pet-friendly, leave the dog at home. Again, this property is someone else’s home and that someone may choose to not have a pet regardless of the pet policy. They may have allergies or a fear of dogs and forcing one into their home is disrespectful. Or they may have pets that may not want another animal in their home.
Fourth, don’t ask to use the bathroom. Just don’t.
Fifth, if you are looking at property for sale, look beyond the paint and the furniture. This was how the current or previous owner made it their home, you can change it to make it yours. When comments about the decor are being made, one is not always sure who may be listening. Not to mention those comments are irrelevant and off-topic when it comes to the task at hand, which is finding your next home.
These are not fixed rules; there may be agents who disagree with some of these, and there may be agents who have even more rules. We are not trying to make anyone on edge when viewing property, because buying property is stressful enough without thinking about behavior at the viewing. All we ask is to think of it in this way: If you are planning to rent or sell your property, think about how you would want people to treat you and your property when viewing it.