Even with real estate prices high and home inventory low, sellers may still need all the help they can get. Sellers can expect their homes to be criticized and judged as people decide if they want to purchase them or not. The below home-selling considerations, though, can help you get your priorities straight and avoid common pitfalls.
Hire a Great Real Estate Agent
Even though you may know your home better than anyone else, agents know things you may not. They provide a buffer between you and buyers and that can help make home-selling a less stressful experience. They will be the ones accompanying potential buyers through your home rather than you. They also know how to approach things in a businesslike manner when it comes to the important pricing issue. Agents are there to advise you and lead you through every step from listing to closing.
Price It Right
Comps, or comparative prices, prepared by your agent, supply sellers with a suggested selling price based on sales of similar homes that sold recently. Listing your home at the correct sale price will influence how long it stays on the market and more. If your home needs some fixing up to compete with other homes, take into consideration how much more money you may be offered vs. the cost and time factor. You may or may not agree with your agent's pricing suggestions but know that they usually understand market issues. If the price your agent suggests seems too low, know that low prices can trigger a bidding war among buyers and that can raise the offer prices too. You always have the option to counter a too-low offer.
The above issues are important but be sure to avoid the following problems too:
- Don't be skimpy with photos and marketing. Online listings are the way many buyers find their homes so hire a professional to video and photo your home for optimal web viewing. If you do the job yourself, do so on a sunny day, don't use blurry photos, consider a wide-angle view, and take twice as many shots as you think you should.
- Don't fail to disclose problems to your agent. All states require sellers to reveal problems with the home, although what must be revealed varies. Consider having a home inspection performed on your home before you list it.
- Don't assume the buyer can finance the home. Ask for preapproval letters that show the buyer is likely to be approved for the mortgage. It's a terrible waste of time to take your home off the market for buyers that end up being turned down for a loan.
Speak to a residential real estate agent to find out more.