2008 Mar 12th

Sign, Sign, Everywhere a Sign!

Hoboken Streets Are Over Run with Signs – It’s Time For a Change.

Every Saturday and Sunday morning, you can watch as Hoboken realtors scurry around town, putting out sandwich board signs on street corners all over Hoboken to advertise their open houses. These signs are supposed to direct people to the open house but there is no evidence that this is at all effective. Worse, when it is windy, the signs often end up in the street instead of on the corner. Cars drive over them, people have to walk around them, and to say the least, they can be very unsightly.

According to most realtors, these signs are a necessary part of doing business. Yet in today’s internet world, that’s just nonsense. All of the open house information is readily found on-line at sights like craigslist, realtor.com and more, and it’s typically in the Hoboken Reporter classified section. For anyone who really cares, finding where the open houses are being held is pretty simple. The one thing the signs seem to do is make the seller feel all warm and fuzzy. So as long as one agency does it, the sellers will pressure every agent to do it. How do we get it to stop? Don’t let anyone do it! Or at least make them do it in a better way.

What’s the Alternative? Kiosks!

Why not have the city install a central kiosk or two, in high traffic locations that don’t block the sidewalk, where each agency can rent ad space? In fact, the city could use the revenue improve the street scape of Hoboken. Let City Hall fill some pot holes or plant some trees. The City has an interest in keeping the streets clear for pedestrians and ensuring the safety of its drivers. Keeping these signs out of the way and out of the street and having them placed in designated areas would surely further that purpose. It would also make Hoboken look a whole lot nicer.

Maybe even a little bit Parisian?

  1. r

    I like the signs, but only when there is a property description attached. When the sign has a description, I can easily avoid the open houses I don’t want to see. They also signal desperation.

  2. Daytona Beach Florida Home

    Why not have a space on the town website for open houses giving the necessary info and a map people could print if they need directions.

    I saw on the news where a town has set up a donation site on the towns website and people can list an item to be donated and they in turn leave a response they like an item and leave there telephone number and arrangements can be made to pick it up.

    Keeps it out of the landfills and there is always someone in needs They have offers from furniture, books, clothes, home decor, cars.

  3. Lori T.

    Property descriptions are certainly helpful and often missing. I think one sign infront of the actual property and a flyer box next to it is all that’s really needed. That combined with the internet and newspaper ads is plenty. You don’t see any signs at all in NYC and yet there are plenty of open houses and those units are selling quite well.

  4. Lori T.

    I don’t think Hoboken City Hall is organized or efficient enough to run any sort of website that requires constant updating. They can barely keep the info that’s on the current site up to date. That’s why we post here when alt. side of the street parking is suspended due to snow. They don’t put that on their site – nor do they post block parties – they just tow your car if it’s parked on the street and you didn’t happen to know about the party.

  5. Michael Bergin

    Hey Lori,
    You make some great points about the over abundance of signage on any given Saturday or Sunday and you are absolutely right about what owners expect to see. Another thing to consider is local regulations and ordinances governing signage. For instance, here in Alexandria and Fairfax County, real estate signs are not allowed on any city right of way and home owners associations can degree when signs can and cannot be posted. Ken Haedrich, a fellow agent in Annapolis has also done a great post on signage at http://annapolishomedigest.com/2008/02/07/8-things-you-probably-didnt-know-about-those-real-estate-directional-signs/.

    Paris sounds good to me.

  6. Lori T.

    Thanks Michael. I’ll take a look at Ken’s post.

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