Just what does it take to sell a home in a market in which foreclosures, short sales and excess inventory have become the norm?
Bradley K. Tuttle’s Real Estate Update offers these tips for getting your house moving:
- First and foremost is to enlist the most qualified expert to help. Finding the best agent to guide you through the real estate transaction can be the difference between a real estate dream and a nightmare.
- Make your home stand out among the sea of homes for sale. Highlight and advertise what makes your home different than its competition, including the upgrades, the location, the amenities, the curb appeal, the well-maintained landscape, the outdoor living space and the “aging-in-place” remodeling you've done.
- Take a pad of paper or your iPad and do a walk-through of your home, looking for all the things that a buyer would see as a benefit and list them. Share these details when you meet with your agent, who will determine which features are most important to highlight.
- Be realistic about your asking price. Let your agent guide you to the right pricing, so you won’t ask too much for your home, causing it to sit on the market and perhaps not even get walk-throughs. A qualified, experienced agent studies the market and understands realistic pricing. The agent isn't emotionally vested in the price and therefore can help you compare your home with others that have sold or are currently on the market.
- When an offer comes in, give it careful consideration and accept it if it’s reasonable. If the home is priced right, you will see offers come in and you must be ready to take action.
- Depersonalize and declutter. Buyers want to see the home as their own and that’s difficult to do when your personal mark is all over it. Sellers often say, “But I live here.” While that’s true, you don’t want to anymore. Pack up your personal belongings and declutter the areas so that potential buyers can see the true value of your home. The rooms will look bigger, and buyers will appreciate being able to see each room without getting lost in your pictures, memorabilia and other items. Some items in your home might actually offend the buyer. Professional stagers or agents with a staging background can help decide which things should stay and which must go.