According to CoreLogic there are seven psychological factors which influence a home buyer’s decision, which are not price, resale value and location.
A Commonwealth Bank survey of Australian buyers found that 44% paid more for a property because they “really liked it”.
CoreLogic advised that ways to keep emotions in check include having your clients set goals on three non-negotiables the home needs to have before any inspection.
2. Cultural superstitions
Some cultures see certain numbers as ‘luckier’ than others. For example, 13 is commonly associated with bad luck in western society, but in some Asian cultures the number four is also considered to have negative connotations because its pronunciation sounds like “shi” which translates to death in Mandarin.
CoreLogic say agents working with a client who has cultural superstitions should understand that it may be difficult to sway them away from a ‘bad number’ and instead learn to work with their cultural beliefs.
3. Perceived value
Superficial things like a room painted in an ugly colour can make people less likely to buy a house even though fixing it is cheap.
On the other hand CoreLogic say buyers are motivated by added value and getting the most they can from their seller. Agents need to appeal to this psychological need to “win” by demonstrating as great a value as possible, relative to price. Consider offering a gift voucher or covering a gas/electricity bill for the first month.
4. First impressions
A buyer’s first experience with a home will either leave a good impression or not. Research that studied 63 un-staged homes found the average selling time of a home decreased to 40 days after going through a ‘facelift’.
CoreLogic say buyers can be given a good first impression by dressing the home and adding small touches like fresh flowers or light some scented candles, which create a welcoming experience.
5. A home that tells a story
The logical side of a buyer’s brain is adept at examining numbers, technical specs, history, potential resale value etc. However the psychological side responds to emotion such as romanticised stories of the home or its previous owners. This is where storytelling is a powerful medium in sales and marketing.
CoreLogic say the trick is to finding out about the home’s history, and then collecting and using a few stories to “paint a picture”.
6. Social proof
Social proof matters in a business built on relationships and trust, and is key to influence most buying decisions, including buying a home.
You can create social proof by asking clients to leave you a review on your social media channels, or by asking for testimonials which you can place on your website.
7. The ideal lifestyle
Home buyers don’t just consider it a purchase, they’re buying into a lifestyle. For example, if someone is interested in properties by the beach, they’re likely to be looking for an active lifestyle with good cafes.
CoreLogic say agents need to sell the lifestyle by understanding the area and getting to know its history, its best local restaurants and schools, if there is a nice walk nearby etc.
As CoreLogic says: “Understanding the psychology of a home buyer can help you find the perfect property for your homeowner.”