Think about the last time you were on vacation. Did you peruse the local real estate listings while you were there? Our bet is you probably did.
Well, you’re not alone - many of your clients are likely doing this as well. Redfin recently reported that nearly a third of their users confirmed they searched for properties while in a vacation destination.
With Alaska host to more than two million visitors each year, that means huge potential for you.
So, how can you target your listing to attract the attention of people looking to buy a vacation home here?
Research on How to Speak to a Second Home Buyer’s Needs
While creating most of your listings is simply a matter of keying in the facts and figures, it’s the description and the photos that allow you to truly showcase a property. You also already understand that each property caters to a specific client.
Families like open floor plans for sightlines and room for the little ones to run and play. Empty nesters and retirees want something smaller - less maintenance that way. And everyone comes to Alaska for the picturesque landscapes and proximity to nature.
You already write your descriptions to highlight what’s most likely to draw in the appropriate buyers. We know because when we partner as your real estate photographers, we do the same with our images.
So what does the research say about the elements vacation home buyers are looking for? What should we focus on when we’re speaking to them?
First, you need to know what they want.
The Institute for Luxury Home Marketing points out that vacation and other second homebuyers are typically making real estate decisions primarily for their own enjoyment.
41% Purchase for Vacations
When nearly half of those looking for a second home have vacations in mind, it only makes sense to include language in your listing that tells a buyer that your property is a place where they can unwind.
A subtle edit, for example, from master “suite” to master “retreat” could broaden your listing’s appeal without alienating buyers seeking a primary residence. From a staging perspective, the furniture layout in the master bedroom may include a sitting area to play up the retreat idea.
Our photographers would highlight this staging, fantastic master room views, and any master bath features that lend to the idea of a getaway.
31% Want a Family Retreat
Speaking of “retreat, ” a third of those clients looking to purchase a second home want a family retreat. Most of the time this means a place to make forever memories. So when you think about those best moments with your family, what do they all seem to have in common?
We think the three most common elements of every family retreat are:
If you have the perfect property for family retreats, you’re going to want to focus on the common areas where these things happen.
In your descriptions, you’ll want to play up how many family members a given space can accommodate, and what kind of family activities they should imagine happening there.
Photographs should include both outdoor and indoor family areas that are well-staged to suggest those retreat-like moments.
28% View the Purchase of a Second Home as Investment Diversification
The other aspect that most home buyers are thinking of - especially those buying a second one - is how it will work as an investment.
The current value of the home, information on the market and where it’s going, the potential financial benefits from the investment - these are key insights you can weave into a description to begin building confidence that the property they are looking at is the investment they’re seeking.
We also recommend incorporating important elements like walkability to local shops and restaurants or recreational areas through drone photography. These visuals help a buyer get a real sense of the added value in an investment like this.
If you have any questions about this research or would like to discuss how DMD Real Estate Photography can help you capture second home buyers’ attention through your listings, don’t hesitate to reach out.