Why are floor plans not used in real estate marketing?

Q: Why are floor plans not used more often in real estate marketing? I’m in the market for my first home. I have been to a handful of showings finding room sizes not suitable to my lifestyle or a layout that I don’t like. This information is easily relayed in a floor plan drawing so why are they not used? It seems like a floor plan would allow me to see what the room sizes are and the overall home layout before a showing.
– Alan G. in Edison NJ

A- I always have floor plans for drawn for all my listings, most agents do not; I agree with you that a floor plan is incredibly useful both for buyers as well as for sellers. There’s no point in having a seller’s life interrupted for a showing if a quick look at a floor plan would be all a buyer would need to know whether it might work for them or not. Listing agents who read this if you’re not having floor plans done, you might want to consider doing so in the future. 

We can see below which factors home buyers placed importance on in the 2016 Zillow Group Report on Consumer Housing Trends. Sixty-four percent of home buyers felt viewing a plan in advance was important.

When determining which homes to consider purchasing, home buyers place importance on a variety of methods, including:

  • Taking a private tour of the home (78 percent)
  • Having an inspection/pre-inspection (78 percent)
  • Having access to comprehensive data and history about the home (67 percent)
  • Viewing a floor plan of the home (64 percent)
  • Getting their agent’s evaluation of the home (54 percent)
  • Viewing professional pictures of the home (52 percent)
  • Having the home empty/free of the previous seller’s belongings (51 percent)
  • Attending an open house of the home (48 percent)
  • Watching a video tour of the home (35 percent)
  • Having the home staged (33 percent)

Some real estate agents may feel floor plans as not “necessary”. Technically, they are right. Floor plans aren’t “necessary”. But, then neither are real estate photos – and you won’t see many listings without those!
Buyers love floor plans. Floor plans help sell properties. And they make your listing stand out from other property listings.

Piecing Things Together
When it comes to viewing real estate photos online, it can be difficult for buyers to see how the images fit together to represent the whole house. This is especially the case when the property is empty. With a floor plan, buyers can piece together the photos and property in their mind. The floor plan helps buyers to see where rooms are located in context to one another, and how the property “flows”. It also gives the buyer an idea of important details, such as the number of windows in each room, the way in which the space is oriented, and how much storage space is available.
This is an important advantage because buyers are more likely to choose to view a property that already “makes sense” to them thanks to the connection between the photos and the floor plan.
When marketing to out-of-town buyers, floor plans are an invaluable tool for communicating how the property “comes together”, helping to make these buyers more comfortable with buying a property they haven’t viewed.

Being Memorable
Most buyers view multiple properties in a day, which is enough to make anyone’s head spin! The challenge for a real estate agent, then, is to make your property more memorable.
By incorporating a floor plan into the online listing and brochure we help to make the more memorable. Equipped with a floor plan, prospective buyers can more easily remember the home’s layout and the home itself. It’s the little details that help to sell a home, and floor plans are one of the most powerful “little details” you can use.

Putting Buyers “in” the Home
Perhaps the greatest advantage to using floor plans – and one that cannot be underestimated – is that they allow buyers to draw and visualize their furniture in the home. My job is to find buyers the home of their dreams. If buyers can “see” themselves in the home, their chances of falling in love with it are much greater. With a floor plan, a buyer can lay out each room with their own furniture, and really visualize what it would be like if the home were theirs, and more likely to become emotionally attached to the property.

Here are some home buyer comments left on  Zillow, Reddit, and City-Data all with strong pro-floor plan opinions:

“A floor plan can save a lot of driving and looking.”
“Floor plan qualifies a buyer before even seeing the home.”
“They may not tell the whole story, but there’s a lot that can be determined just from the floor plan.”
“Floorplans would encourage potential buyers that know what they are looking for. It will also help keep away potential buyers that basically walk in the door and walk right back out because they hate the layout.“
“My husband uses a wheelchair and we have viewed several homes that were not accessible for him which we would never have viewed had we been able to access a floor plan ahead of time.”

Below are some basic examples of plans I have used in the past to help market my home listings.

Is your agent including a plan in the marketing of your home ??

This post was authored by local resident and REALTOR, John Womeldorf. John is known around town as Mr. Williamsburg, for both his extensive knowledge of the Williamsburg/ Richmond/ Hampton Roads area and his expertise helping buyers and sellers in the local real estate market.

If you are a home owner searching for someone innovative to sell your home I would love to share my thoughts on marketing. You can read some of the stories I have written about the homes I have sold here.

Additionally, I have helped hundreds of folks find their dream home/ community and would love to help you find yours in the Williamsburg, Yorktown, New Kent, VA Beach, Chesapeake, Suffolk, Isle of Wight,  Poquoson and Richmond VA area.

Contact John “Mr. Williamsburg” Womeldorf at (757) 254-8136 or [email protected]  and we’ll get you started.

I look forward to serving your real estate needs!


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