By RE Technology Staff
Everyone knows that public records are integral to closing a property sale, but have you really thought about how to use them to improve the price of a sale or to help you reach, or even exceed, your sales goals? Public records, more than ever due to easy digital access, can help you research property and build a clear picture of the seller's motivation to design a winning sales strategy. Here are a few examples:
1. What is the history of a property?
Tax assessor records indicate the age of a home, its improvements, roofing, subdivision, size and other value-based details. Plus, you will see how long the seller has owned the property and how much they paid. Knowing this level of detail about the properties you're showing gives buyers that extra sense of safety and you that extra bit of authority. Sellers and buyers respond favorably when the agent has done their research on the subject property.
2. What is the motivation for the sale and the financial picture?
Public records will tell you how many times a property has been on the market, withdrawn, and how long the seller has owned it. Is it a forced sale, or a flipper, or was there a legal incident like divorce or death? Are taxes owed? How much is still owed to the lender? Who is the lender: a large financial institution or a small or individual lender? All these details can tell you the predisposition of a seller, and help you address the seller's needs as well as the buyer's.
3. Assure buyers that you know exactly what they are buying.
For undeveloped property, maps can be crucial. They show topography and flood zones along with property lines and easements. Parcel maps fully identify the property, including developed properties in subdivisions. You may even discover development plans down the street or near the neighborhood that could impact the future value of a home. You'll find municipal codes and code violations. For people with kids, you will be able to tell them about the schools, nearby parks and neighborhood characteristics.
4. Generate great comparables.
With the level of detail public records give you, you can narrow the comparison list based on property facts. Again, your buyers will have greater trust and feel less compelled to question your information and guidance. You even can add FSBO sales, not just agent facilitated sales.
5. Digital farming.
There is no denying that agents who focus their marketing on specific areas or neighborhoods have more success. Public records data allows agents to pull a farming area and leverage that for direct mail and neighborhood market trends.
Overall, developing a solid relationship with both the seller and the buyer is dramatically supported through the use of public records. However, doing this work via various online sources is as time intensive as it is valuable. In many markets, CRS Data is a preferred solution. With CRS Data and their MLS Tax Suite, you get an entire in-house team to save you loads of time. You'll get the information you need to guide your customers in making informed, confident decisions that work for everyone. Both buyers and sellers benefit and will remember their experience with you, leading to future clients and sales.