How were you able to come into a new area and make such an impact in the real estate market?
Madden: I wish I could say I did it myself and it was easy but, the truth is I have had guidance from one of Central New York’s Top Real Estate Agents and Coaches Bob McTague. Bob made a similar transition to Syracuse New York 7 years ago so I have really leaned on him during the entire process. The difficult aspect of starting my business was just that starting the business. Any new business owner will tell you getting the phone to ring is the hardest part. I have brought new systems and techniques that have allowed me to show potential clients that I am different than agents in this market. This has been an integral part of my success.
How do you answer the experience question when it comes up in regards to selling homes?
Madden: When you are new to a market you have to find ways that you can separate yourself from your peers. Being different than most agents or doing things differently has really helped me show sellers that I can sell their home faster than the average agent regardless of my time in the business. Most agents and agencies use the same methods to market properties. Newpaper ads, Magazine ads, Open houses. I don’t do these. They are in my opinion a waste of time. With 2% of homes being sold from open houses it is not an effective way to spend time or money. I prefer to invest my money into highly advanced internet marketing systems which help me attract buyers to my listings. I personally market a listing to 50+ websites and give my clients a marketing presentation once complete. Most agents will say they market homes to over 50+ sites but, this isn’t entirely true. Their company or brokerage will put the listing from on the local mls and then the listing gets syndicated out. This is not a manual process ensuring the pictures and content are perfect. This is why you tend to see blurry pictures on sites, wrong information, and poor content.
What is the status of the Lexington market?
Madden: It is a fantastic time to buy. With interest rates at an all time low and more than 25% of our market being short sales and foreclosures today’s consumer can find a great deal. That being said there were over 8,000 homes sold last year in the Greater Columbia area and Lexington alone over 1,500 homes. The average sale price for 2012 in Lexington was $185,000. There is no question today’s sellers are seeing the impact of all these foreclosures and anyone who has purchased a home in 2005 and beyond in most cases they are not able to sell their home for what they paid. This is not going to be a quick fix. When are market is able to reduce the foreclosures and short sales below the 10% number and closer to 4-5% range sellers will see improvements in their sales price. The market just isn’t able to absorb all of this inventory this quickly. When the bubble burst in 2008 no one was prepared but, as time has shown it is cyclical and the market will come back.
How many consumers have you helped thus far in 2013 and what do you forecast for this year?
Madden: Thus far I have helped 12 buyers and sellers obtain their goals and I am forecasting to finish the year helping 50 buyers and sellers.
According to data from the National Association of realtors 95% of all home buyers start their search online. Do you have an effective website that is effective in helping buyers?
Madden: I do in fact have my own website outside of my company Coldwell Banker. I invest money in lead generation which helps me communicate with potential buyers in the market. I communicate with 150-175 new buyers each month through my lead generation system and my website. Whether someone is looking to buy a home right now or in the future I try to keep my website up to date with relevant, current information which will help today’s consumer.
Why did you decide to work with Coldwell Banker?
Madden: Coldwell Banker is a company who has a strong brand nationwide. I have learned I cannot rely on my company to give me business. I see a lot of agents who rely solely on company relocation and "hand outs", however, I do not get any of these benefits nor do I get leads from Coldwell Banker, and I do not participate in relocation. I take pride in knowing I don’t need my company to keep my business going. I am able to utilize my advanced systems to separate myself from my company and show people why doing things differently pays off.
What are your goals for 2013?
Madden: I am gearing up for a busy spring. I have come out of the gates quickly and am looking forward to helping more buyers and sellers this year. I am going through my marketing budget this quarter and making sure it is in line to grow my business to the levels I want. I have taken the past 7 months to build a solid foundation and set myself up for success this year. I will be integrating new systems and marketing in the upcoming months which will play an integral role in our growth as well. I am projecting sales volume of 7-9 million this year. From that point I will be bringing on 2 members to my team.
You can learn more about Andrew Madden by calling 803-687-2260 or visit their website at http://www.lexingtonpropertysearch.com