Realtors step up advertising to promote stable market


The Maryland Association of Realtors has begun to heavily promote a program designed to encourage home-buying opportunities in the state.

The campaign, entitled "Do It Now! Buy a Maryland Home," is an effort by the association and the 20 local boards of Realtors in Maryland. Created by Herrmann Advertising Design of Annapolis, the campaign stresses that stable prices and low interest rates have created a buyers' market.

The statewide promotion began in early January.

This month the boards in Harford, Howard, and Carroll counties joined with the Greater Baltimore Board of Realtors to put up 14 billboards as one part of a local campaign. The local Realtors have spent a combined total of about $18,000 on the effort in central Maryland, according to Fletcher R. Hall, executive vice president of the Greater Baltimore board.

The billboards display a central number so that callers can be given an alphabetical list of brokers.

"In the normal marketing of real estate it's usually left up to each real estate company to determine how they market the listings that they have in their inventory," said Hall. But due to the recent downturn in the residential housing market, he said, the Realtors decided to try a unified approach.

One of the promotional activities included in the campaign will be a statewide "open house" planned next weekend. Local boards will call attention to groups of houses that are open for inspection.

Hall said the timing of the effort has been fortuitous. "The fact that interest rates have come down to as low as they've been in the last four or five years is a significant addition to the campaign," he said.

"Secondly, there appears to be increased activity in recent weeks in the real estate market."

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