Today I was asked this question by some wonderful agents in Georgia. It is a question that I have been asked before by a variety of people: agents, friends, and media editors. Everyone wants to know the "quick fix" or the answer that "cuts to the chase." Why? Because we live in a fast paced world and we know that we can save time if we avoid other people's mistakes. So, here is the answer to this common question . . . .
The biggest mistake that sellers make is: Not seeking professional staging advice.
Why is this the Biggest Mistake? Well, it is because this mistake can cost them lots of precious time. It is because this mistake can cause them to leave major money on the table at closing. This mistake can cause them stress by letting their house linger on the market.
You probably thought the answer to the questions was going to be not creating curb appeal, or failing to de-clutter the house, or not neutralizing pet/smoke odor, or not removing outdated wallpaper. All of them are major mistakes, but the biggest is not seeking professional staging advice so that all of them could be fixed. Every house needs a marketing specialist that knows how to see the property with buyers eyes. That is the art of a professional stager. A two hour consultation will show and teach sellers how to make their house stand out among the competition.
Chances are that the house you are selling, be you the seller (owner of the property) or the other seller (the agent of the property) can be improved in more than one way. There isn't one big mistake, there are lots of little mistakes in each zone of the house that should be improved BEFORE anyone comes for a showing. It is an entire makeover. And it works!
There are only a very few sellers who would not need any advice when it comes to selling their homes. Even interior designers I know would benefit from the advice. That's because they fail to see their home as a product on the market. To them, it is a museum for all of their treasures. And, thats exactly what I'm talking about -- there is a world of difference in how you live in your house and how you sell it. What is the biggest mistake sellers make? Not getting a professional stager to help them see this diffenence.