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How To Market And Sell A Fractional Property.

A fractional may share common elements with the whole ownership market but significant differences in these products mean it takes exceptional skills to sell one, writes Sarah Lee.

The majority of fractional buyers are savvy individuals. Once presented with information on the product they should be left to make a decision on the purchase, rather than being sold to. The property and location should largely sell itself, leaving the marketing and sales process low-key and no pressure.

Marketing your property

Sourcing your market and the necessary information on potential clients can prove challenging. However there are a number of ways to address this:

  • Consider branding and affinity partnerships. Partnering with a strong and trusted brand can bring your property kudos and a ready supply of good leads.
  • For fractional properties that are part of a mixed use development with a hotel on site, consider approaching current customers, while timeshare developers should look to their established owners. These can be a good source market for a fractional product.
  • Current, happy clients can be helpful in sourcing potential leads from among family and friends – approach current clients to become resort ambassadors. You could even incentivise their efforts.

Making the sale

People buying a fractional are looking for a wise purchase and as such they are intelligent buyers. A fractional property can by nature be a complex product. For these reasons it is critical that developers employ specialist and experienced sales teams. It is not enough for sales teams to be recruited solely from the whole ownership market as the product has a very different structure.

Equally sales staff used to working within timeshare may treat the sale as a deal that can be closed in minutes or a couple of hours. But as the fractional is aligned to that of a freehold purchase, potential buyers may want to visit the property a number of times. Thus sales relationships with purchasers should be nurtured and can span several days or weeks. Sales teams need to understand the financial needs of purchasers. They should also understand the limitations of the development. They need to appreciate the nature of the property, its legal structure, as well as the country of operation’s legislative and regulatory requirements. While the deeded sale appeals to many fractional buyers, there are also those who appreciate a more flexible model, such as a limited lifespan fractional. With these the period of ownership has a life of say 10 years after which the property is sold and accrued equity is divided between owners. Sales teams need to be fully conversant with each business model and those available within a property’s structure.

Developers that make significant investments in the recruitment and training of sales staff will see the best results. Suitable investment will help attract and cultivate the right calibre of salesperson and the mindset necessary to develop the relationships crucial to sales success.

Tips for selling a fractional

  • Sales teams should emphasise the low capital investment required compared to that of whole ownership.
  • Sell the flexibility of the purchase.
  • Lock into buyers’ emotional triggers to boost the chances of a sale: buy better and spend less!
  • Highlight the fact that fractional properties are ‘hassle free’ compared to second homes.

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