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What are your top priorities for sellers when they first list on the market? “Price is very important. I once heard it said that in this market, selling a house is a price war and a beauty pageant and you have to win both,” says Chip Neumann of Neumann Real Estate – Christie’s International. Read on to learn more about Neumann’s hands-on approach to finding success in today’s real estate market.

Chip Neumann
Neumann Real Estate – Christie’s International

Years in real estate: 36
Region served: Northern Fairfield County, Conn.

What is the key to building new business in today’s market?
I have gone back to basics and am doing public open houses—30 times a year. I’m generating significant business this way. Because of my standing in the community, people are surprised to see me and are impressed that I spend part of my Sunday doing open houses.

I also have a killer listing presentation, which I do in two parts. The first part takes place at the prospect’s home and then I always conduct the second part in my office so they can see our first-class facilities and meet my team.

How have you evolved your strategies in this environment?
Everything is in the systems. I concentrate my efforts on planning and first-class marketing for my sellers. I have a professional writer on staff that is able to take house descriptions to another level.

Are you relying more on technology?
I have always been one to leverage technology. It has helped me provide much better service to my clients while freeing up my time.

What role does your website play in your business model?
My website is an excellent site, especially for sellers. The reality is, when someone wants to list a house, they want to check out the person they hire to do it. The best way to do that is to go on the agent’s website. When they go to my site, they see everything I have done and will do. It provides my clients and prospects with a huge degree of confidence.

Where do you get the biggest bang for your marketing dollars?
I get the most value from working with my designer and writer to create first-class marketing materials. I am also a huge believer in community involvement. I spend a great deal of time participating in community events because my level of involvement shows how much I care and that I am invested in this community for the long term.

What are you doing differently this year—if anything—to attract buyers?
As I mentioned, holding public open houses has been huge. In addition to that strategy, I also utilize my top 10 client list of corporate contacts. I determine where the bulk of my referrals are coming from and I make sure I take very good care of those people.

What are your top priorities for sellers when they first list in this market?
Price is very important. I once heard it said that in this market, selling a house is a price war and a beauty pageant and you have to win both. I also bring in and pay for a stager so that the look of the house is right. The third thing I do is use my professional writer to tell the story about the benefits of owning that particular home.

Why did you become a member of Top 5?
I am a firm believer in sharing my expertise and learning from the best. Top 5 is the best way to do that. I like the new direction Top 5 is taking and I like the energy.

What is the key to a successful life in real estate?
Work hard and leverage your hard work with personalized systems and technology. Focus on what is best for your client, not what is best for you. And never compromise your integrity.