Your neighbor sold her ranch home just three days after putting it on the market. A family snatched up the house across the street not even a month after it went up for sale.
Then there's your house. That "For Sale" sign has stood on your front lawn for months, and a sales prospect isn't anywhere on the horizon. And it's not as if you own a hard-to-sell property. Your house is blessed with sturdy construction, loads of living space and a large backyard. It even sits on a safe, quiet street. Still, it won't sell, even in the hot real estate market currently sweeping through much of the country. What could be wrong?
Unfortunately, there could be plenty wrong. But the good news is that homeowners can easily fix some of the most common problems typical of properties that won't sell, and they won't have to spend a ton of money to do it.
If your house isn't selling, it might be time to focus on the little things. Think leaving a stack of dirty dishes in the sink when a potential buyer is touring your house doesn't make a difference in how soon your property sells? Think again. It's the little things that make a big first impression, and a messy, cluttered house always leaves buyers with a negative impression. Often, it's bad enough that buyers won't care about how great your home is under all the mess.
Remember, it's not solely the responsibility of your real estate agent to sell your house. Homeowners must do their part, too, making sure that their homes are presentable at all times. Here are some of the most common reasons a good, solid house doesn't sell in a strong real estate market:
The price is wrong.
It's no surprise that home sellers want to list their properties at the highest price possible. But too often, sellers are unrealistic, and ask for too much.
It's up to real estate agents to educate sellers about pricing. Agents do this by showing sellers how many dollars similar homes in their community fetched in recent sales.
Need a second opinion, give me a call.
Sometimes, sellers won't lower their ideal price, even when agents show them this information. Sellers that do this, are asking for trouble. Asking for too much guarantees a long wait before a sale. In fact, most stubborn sellers wait so long, they eventually drop their price, anyway.
You forgot the little things.
When potential buyers see that a shutter is missing from a home's front window, or that one of the outside lamps is missing its top, it makes them wonder, if the home's owners haven't managed to fix such minor things, what major and expensive problems have they also let go?
It's also important to make your house look as large as possible. The easiest way to do this is to store some of your furniture. Having too many chairs or couches tends to shrink even large rooms.
You didn't do your housework.
Keeping your house neat and tidy is one of the easiest ways to help your house sell faster. And especially watch out for your dog or cat. The scent of pets is a big turnoff for buyers. Agents recommend replacing your carpets once the odor of the family pet gets imbedded in its fibers.
Sellers should make sure their homes not only are clean, but look clean. Often, this means something as simple as opening the blinds or curtains to give your homes a nice, airy look.
Of course, taking these steps won't guarantee a fast sale, but they will help.