There isn't one home seller in the country that desires to have their home go stale on the market, however; sellers often sabotage themselves (unknowingly) because they don't have every piece of the puzzle. I believe that most sellers think that selling their home will be a walk in the park but home buyers are becoming more saavy these days and it doesn't make life any easier when there is a lot of inventory. There are dozens of individual tips for selling your home fast but here we're going to hit on the major hot topics that could make the difference in how long it takes to put a SOLD sign in your front yard.
The Business Side of Things
Selling a home can be very complex because it involves both science and art. The science half of things usually has to deal with the numbers and if you don't get this right, your property will not sell fast at all.
Get the Price Right from the Start
If I were only allowed to give you one piece of advice, it would be to price your home correctly on the first day of the listing. So many home owners believe that their home is worth more than it is and then they figure out the hard way when no one is scheduling an appointment to see it.
Here are some quick tips on pricing.......
Work with a seasoned Realtor who knows how to analyze market conditions. This analysis is your crystal ball to determine what price you should be at when you first list your home to sell. You're able to see the pulse of the market in your area by determining if you're in a buyer's market or seller's market. Is home inventory flying off the shelf? What is the listing to selling price ratio? How much competition do you have (other homes on the market)? How many home listings have expired and why? How many listings were withdrawn from the market?
In other words, if the last 4 homes that are similar to yours sold for $300,000, why do you want to list your home for $330,000?
Another tip is to work with a Realtor who tells you what you need to hear, not what you want to hear. There are a few agents out there who will list your home for whatever price you tell them, just to get the listing. This doesn't do anyone any good. A good Realtor who gets the job done will present you with the facts, not just a bunch of hot air. Always remember, one of the many ways to becoming an informed home seller is to be realistic.
Marketing and Advertising
Exposing your listing to the most amount of people is vital to putting yourself into position to win. Work with a Realtor who will go above and beyond in marketing and advertising. Just putting a sign in the front yard doesn't cut it anymore so your Realtor will have to be up with the times. Here are some questions to ask your Realtor during the interview process:
- What kind of internet presence do you have?
- Do you have one or more local real estate websites?
- Do you have a site that your brokerage company gave you or do you manage your own?
- Are your websites optimized for Google? In other words, will people even be able to find your website?
- How often do you update your sites?
- What social media platforms do you utilize?
- How active are you with posting about real estate topics for your clients?
- Do you pay for any internet ads? For instance, would you pay for any Facebook ads to market my property?
So, I guess you get the point. Marketing in real estate has everything to do with the internet and if your Realtor is not using the web to its fullest, your chances of selling your home fast will drop. According to the National Association of Realtors, 96% of home buyers found their home online, which means that only 4% of them bought their home by driving by, seeing a flyer, visiting an open house, or through a friend.
The "old school" way of doing things are long gone so work with a Realtor who is internet saavy and has a strong web presence. You will sell your home faster.
The Artful Side of Things
Have you ever heard that every home will sell at the right price? Well, that's true but unfortunately that price may be lower than you would like if you're not concerned about the rest of this article. Your price may be on point compared to similar homes on the market but if it looks less than desirable, you will not sell your home fast.
Important point - Buyers are not only looking for the best price but they are also attracted to properties that won't need a lot of work to fit their needs.
You have one shot at a good first impression. As a potential home buyer pulls up to the front of your home, will they be attracted, repelled, or unimpressed? Here are some quick an inexpensive ideas to appeal to the most buyers while trying to sell your home....
- Pressure wash the entire house, sidewalks, and driveway. You can often get away with not having to paint by just giving your house a good cleaning.
- Brighten up the entrance with a newly painted front foot. It also wouldn't hurt to change out the hardware.
- Liven up the front by adding new mulch and flowering plants. Be sure to trim bushes and trees so they don't cover up your windows.
- Change out your mailbox. This often overlooked but it's a nice touch.
- Add planter boxes to your porch.
- Make sure that your lawn is freshly mowed and raked.
- Purchase a new welcome mat.
There are an abundance of little extras that you could incorporate to enhance the curb appeal of your home and most of these items won't break the bank. The more positive that you get the buyer to think about, the faster you will sell your home.
Up to Par Condition
Since you're trying to have buyers think more positive about your property, you're going to have to take an objective look at what's wrong with it. I get it. We're all busy with family, jobs, and life so it's easy to neglect some of the minor issues that come from living in a house every day.
Serious buyers are going to notice everything! They're going to see where the caulking has cracked between the baseboard and wall. They will see the watermark on the ceiling from where the little one let the tub run over last year. The corner of the door that has been chewed up by your new puppy will stick out like a sore thumb. Don't even get me started on smells!
The bottom line is to think like a buyer. How will you scrutinize the next home that you buy? The less you give the buyer to worry about the faster you will sell your home.
Another great idea is to have a pre-home inspection completed before you list your property to sell. Then, once you complete any needed repairs, you will have more peace and confidence when your new buyer orders their own inspection. No surprises is the goal when it comes to repairs.
De-Clutter and Clean
This is often a touchy subject when I have to advise a home owner that they need to de-clutter but this is the case for the majority of homes in the country. Most home owners have gathered things over the years and most of the time, they bring more in than they take away. Almost all of us are guilty of this. When trying to sell your home fast, you want the buyer to take notice of the house itself, not your stuff. For instance, you want the buyer to notice the ample amount of square feet in your office, not your collection of 3,000 Hot Wheel cars that you have displayed from floor to ceiling (and on the ceiling). Yes, I've seen this.
Highlight what is actually going to sell, not the deer head that you mounted last year.
You don't want to totally empty the place but consider having a couple of garage sales and renting a storage unit. This way, you will show how open your space is so buyers can visualize their own stuff in your property.
Once you have minimalized, you now have a blank slate to work with for cleaning. Buyers love an exceptionally clean home. Everyone loves a home that has gone through a deep clean and it gives buyers the impression that the home has been well taken care of.
There are many actionable things that you can do right now to put you ahead of the curve when trying to sell your home fast. If you just took a few of the tips mentioned here, you're that much closer to the goal. Work with a great Realtor, get busy on that house, and think like a buyer.