New Marketing Channel Lists Retirement Homes On The MLS
Partnering with Remax to list PLTC's homes on the MLS. Listing creates an innovative new sales channel to the retirement and real estate industry. PLTC is the first to do this. There are huge synergies between PLTC's business and the Real Estate industry. It is a natural evolution that is sure to catch on. Today, internet lead based companies such as A Place For Mom and Seniors Zen market for leads that they sell to the retirement home partners on a commission basis up to 85% of the first month's lease. PLTC's use of real estate agents provide a personal approach face to face with prospects. Realtors are one of the first people to know of someone's plans to retire, second to the financial planners and banks. You want to know how much your home is worth and how much you have to retire on.
The Real Estate industry recognizes the growing retirement industry and has launched the new SRES designation for agents (Seniors Real Estate Specialist).
Putting the homes on the MLS expand the market reach into other towns and communities but it also optimizes the companies website from linking into the MLS reach results which will go a long way to increasing occupancy of their homes.
In the retirement industry referrals are the greatest source of move-ins. Outreach and referral sources are the most effective ways to drive awareness of retirement homes that result in tours and eventual occupancy. The reason is simple, retirement choices are not a spontaneous decision. The decision is daunting to many people and so referrals play a significant part of the decision on care and trust. When you are spending anywhere from $2500 to $8000 a month on a lease you do not base this on an ad in a newspaper.
RE/MAX and PLTC Change the Playing Field in Retirement Living
RE/MAX, Canada’s Largest Real Estate Franchise has teamed up with PLTC to list their retirement homes on the MLS® through RE/MAX Real Estate Centre Inc., Brokerage’s Cambridge office. “We believe this has never been done before” stated Michelle Wobst, the Sales Representative and Seniors Real Estate Specialist that was chosen to represent PLTC. “It is a natural evolution of where both industries are going with respect to the growing seniors demographics. Teaming up with PLTC just makes sense. Now when a home is listed on the MLS®, any REALTOR® can earn a commission on a lease. This should help drive referrals to PLTC, and if other retirement homes follow this new strategy, it will change the playing field on how retirement homes can be marketed”.
“With growing competition for retirement homes, leads and referrals are going to be very important. We think the REALTORS® are one of the first people to know that a family member is thinking of moving into a home because people want to know what their home is worth. If we can tap into REALTORS® and offer them commissionable earnings then we have a significant chance at being referred” said Sullivan. “Unless you have unlimited adverting budgets, the more effective strategy is to get to the source of the decision” said Sullivan.
PLTC is a family owned business with 5 dual retirement and long term care homes located in rural towns throughout Ontario. Richard Sullivan, PLTC Corporate Manager of Marketing and Public Relations said “We are going to experience a lot of change to the retirement and real estate industry with the growing senior population. The competition in retirement homes will increase along with the aging population” says Sullivan. He suggests is you look at that many seniors, with that much wealth, and those many votes, they are going to influence change. You only have to look at what the boomers did in the 1960 to see the potential for changes they can make. They were not as wealthy or powerful at that time as they are now.
The population of seniors over 65 will grow from 1.9 million to over 4.2 million, at an accelerated pace over the next 20 years in Ontario as the boomers enter their retirement years. That’s more than double. In fact, in the next two years those over 65 will outnumber those under 14 for the first time in history.
“In the Real Estate industry the opportunities for sales and downsizing will also grow and this is why this is a win for both industries. We are both after the same customer and not in completion” said Wobst.
It was only in 2007 that the Real Estate Industry launched a new SRES® certification. The SRES® Council trains REALTORS® to meet the special needs of maturing Canadians when selling, buying, relocating, or refinancing residential or investment properties. By earning the SRES® designation, REALTORS® are prepared to approach mature clients with the best options and information for them to make life-changing decisions.
“We think other homes will follow what PLTC has started”, said Michelle Wobst. “Not only Is PLTC getting increased exposure on the web by listing on the large MLS® network, but you have to consider they have expanded their sales force to include all the REALTORS® in the communities and nearby towns that can act as a referral source to anyone within a reasonable distance”.
“When you look at these two major industries merging together on a win-win strategy, with clearly identifiable benefits, this may have the potential to change the future for how retirement homes and real estate is marketed”, said Sullivan.