As with anything, there are do’s and don’ts when it comes to selling your home. Some of the biggest mistakes are arguably the easiest to avoid, which becomes especially important if you are selling or thinking about selling your house without a Realtor. Here are four home selling mistakes you should consider avoiding at all costs.
- Pricing Too High: If you have ever watched any one of the numerous real estate shows on TV you know about the damage of pricing too high. This isn’t just a common theme real estate agents use to get your home sold quicker – it can have a legitimate and lasting negative impact. In the world of real estate first impressions are everything. When a new listing hits the MLS you get instant feedback from agents and buyers. If your home is listed too high agents will scoff at the listing and not give it a second thought. You may think that in listing aggressively and trying to squeeze every dollar from the property you will improve your return, but the exact opposite usually happens. The demand will be far less than anticipated and after a few weeks you will be forced to act. This could mean lowering your price or spending money on staging to generate interest. You are almost always better off asking a reasonable price for your property that is in line with the market.
- Dismissing Offers: There is no such thing as a bad offer. Sure, some offers will be well below the list price, but it doesn’t mean you should ignore it. Think about how you acquire properties. You try to get the best possible price on every property. Sellers think the same way and are always trying to get a steal of a deal. If there is a lowball offer you shouldn’t get offended and take it personally. Always counter at a number you are comfortable with, even if it is just under the list price. If their counter is still not as high as you’d like it to be then you can move on, but blindly ignoring an offer could result in leaving money on the table. Many buyers make low offers in an attempt to see where you stand. As a seller, you should see any offer just as the start to a negotiation.
- Stubbornness: In any real estate transaction there is a bit of give and take. The goal isn’t to dominate every negotiation, but to get the property sold. You need to always think about the big picture when selling a home. It is very rare that you will get everything you desire from the sale. Unless you are in the right market and time it right, you need to be willing to make concessions. This could mean slightly coming down on your price, extending the closing date or changing something in the property. If you say no to everything your buyer pool may dry up and you will be left with the property for weeks, possibly months before another buyer comes along. In light of carrying costs, mortgage payments, taxes, insurance, etc. it can sometimes make more financial sense to accept an offer and close sooner, even if it is lower than you’d prefer.
- Dismissing Staging. With some properties, it may not be enough to do quality work. Regardless if you are selling a freshly finished rehab or a home you have lived in for two decades you need to make buyers feel welcome. They should feel an instant appeal as soon as they open the front door. As much as a blank canvas provides options, it may not feel like home. You should always at least consider staging the property. Sure, staging comes at a cost but it should be thought of as an investment. Spending a few thousand can possibly net you five times your investment for the right property. Staging doesn’t work on every rehab in every market, but for the right one it can make all the difference.
Getting a property sold always has its fair share of challenges. Don’t make things harder by making simple mistakes. Use these five tips to help expedite the sale and maximize your profits.
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