Even in a seller’s market (when there are more buyers than there are sellers), the little details can make all the difference in your home’s sale. While there are many features that you can’t influence, like your home’s location, there are several mistakes you might be making. To help get you started, read these seller mistakes you might be making and how to avoid them.
1.Staying Home for Showings
No one likes to be inconvenienced, especially when it comes to relaxing and enjoying our time at home. But when it comes to selling your home, it’s important to give prospective buyers time and space to look at the property. In fact, according to the National Association of Realtors, staying home is the number one reason a home stays on the market for extended periods of time.
Always take the opportunity to leave the property during showings, even if it’s for several hours at a time. Plan a day trip during open houses, visit with friends or family, get through your weekly grocery shopping or go for a drive if you know that someone is coming to the house.
2.Placing Restrictions on Showing Times
No one likes having to rearrange our evenings, but it’s always best to remain accommodating and open when it comes to setting up showing times. In fact, try to have availability seven days a week whenever possible. Most realtors recommend having a daily schedule of 9 am-8 pm for booking showings.
If you aren’t able to keep a seven-day availability, set a time frame that is both realistic and also buyer-friendly. Having strict deadlines makes it difficult to get potential buyers through the home, particularly when you consider the work and life schedules of many people. Make sure to keep several evenings and weekends open to optimize the number of showings on your home.
3.Choosing the Wrong Realtor
Not all realtors are created equally, especially when it comes to selling your home. Make sure you take the time to research your real estate agent and ask for a few references from past clients. Always find out how long they’ve been working within the area, how many homes they sell per year, and whether they are confident in the sale of your home. Although it may seem easier, avoid signing up with any real estate agent you know on a personal basis.
You want to find an agent you’re both comfortable with and can have a professional relationship with. When you mix friendship or family with real estate, it can potentially create long-term problems, especially if the house doesn’t sell.
4.Expecting 100% Returns on Your Renovations
Having renovations done to the property can often increase the value of your home, but if you’re expecting to receive 100% of your return back – think again. If you’re hoping to get the most out of your sale, talk to your lawyer prior to completing any renovations. They should be able to tell you which investments are worth the return and which ones to pass on simply.
It’s also important to ask your realtor whether they’re expecting a family or an investor to purchase it. Many new developments are scooping up old houses to demolish and rebuild. If that’s the expected outcome for your property, any renovations you complete will all be for nothing.
4.Leaving Your Home a Mess
Everyone understands that normal living conditions are expected when visiting family and friends, but when you’re selling your home, approach every room as a potential buyer seeing it for the first time. Take care to remove any extra items that aren’t serving a purpose in the home, whether its storage bins or photographs on the wall.
Clean the room from top to bottom, including baseboards, carpets, and any knick-knacks you’d like to leave out. If you can afford the fee, have a professional cleaning company come into the home before any open houses or showings. Remember, prospective buyers, are looking for a move-in-ready home. Signs of wear and tear can give the semblance of projects, work, and effort to make the home ready for purchase – which is the last thing you want to do.
5.Leaving your dog home for Showings
We understand that your dog is a member of your family and should be treated as such. We also appreciate that not every prospective buyer will appreciate a dog following them from room to room as they view the home. Additionally, having visible pets can raise buyer concerns, particularly in the backyard or when looking for damage. There’s also a high chance that someone viewing your home may have a fear or allergy to dogs, which may exclude them from seeing the house.
Always remove your pets prior to having an open house or viewing the property. Consider taking your dog for a walk or car ride for a few hours. He’ll enjoy the outing, and you’ll have a higher number of buyers walking the property.
6.Taking Low Offers Personally
Although not everyone goes into the home buying experience trying to negotiate, many potential buyers try to get the best deal on a home that they can. It’s important to take every offer you receive as nothing personal, especially when they come in at $75K under your asking price. While selling your home can be insanely emotional, it’s crucial to avoid taking things personally during the selling process. Speak to your realtor about a fair counteroffer rather than walking away from a potential sale.
Remember, buyers don’t have the emotional connection to your property; while you may see the hallways as the place your daughter took her first steps, no one else is going to connect that to the home. Remaining neutral is important, especially if you’re selling your home for the first time.
7.Failing to Stage the Property
Staging is a process that shows prospective clients how the property can be used, especially if there are several “duplicate rooms” throughout the home. It will optimize the use of every room for the average buyer (even though you may use the space differently) and can add tens of thousands of dollars into your asking price.
Talk to your real estate agent about reputable staging companies, particularly if your home is going to be vacant for a period of time before selling. By highlighting the property features through staging, you’ll open the doors to many new buyers.
8.Not Fixing the Small Repairs
Buyers want to see a move-in ready home, making home repairs important fixes prior to listing. Take an inventory of everything that needs to be done, regardless of size. Anything that will take less than a weekend to complete should be highlighted and repaired promptly. Even though it seems to take a lot of time and energy to fix a leaky faucet, the repair will end up costing you considerably less than the deduction a buyer will make on the offer.
Look for any leaks, water damage, caulking, damage to the drywall, or small repairs in the background. These repairs are quick and easy to make but have a massive impact overall.
9.Not Bringing Curb Appeal to the Property
The first thing a prospective buyer is going to see is the front of the property. Making a great impression is important, which makes curb appeal especially important. Take time to ensure that your front yard is clean; well-kept grass, flowers, shrubs, and plants can increase the overall value of your home.
Take care of any weeds, damage structures, and ensure that any paint is in good condition. Keep clean lines of sight to the front door. If there are stains on the driveway, try to remove them or reseal the driveway. A prospective homeowner wants to see the beautiful property and features. If you have a pool or water feature, ensure it is kept clean and free of debris. You want to help anyone who comes through the home to visualize living inside the house and outside.
Although selling your home is a major decision, it doesn’t have to be difficult. By taking the time to consider the following tips and tricks, you’ll feel confident in the sale of the home. Always make sure to work with your real estate agent is someone that you trust and value with your property, leading you into the best methods and techniques for the highest sale price of your home.
Make sure that you feel confident in any decision you make relating to the sale of your home. At the end of the day, you’re in control and the seller’s seat. Your real estate agent is meant to work with you to make the selling process easier. If something feels rushed or is making you uneasy, it’s important to speak up. The last thing you want to do is feel anxious or disappointed in how your entire experience was, particularly if the asking price is lower than expected or a price you don’t agree with.