Jeffrey Harrington's Blog
If you’re selling your home it can be frustrating when you aren’t receiving any offers. Perhaps you’ve heard that it’s a seller’s market and that the offers on your house would be flying in. However, it’s more complicated than that.
Whether or not your house receives offers is determined by a number of reasons--some that in your control, others that aren’t. But, that doesn’t mean you have to give up and sell your house at a low price.
In this article, we’ll discuss what to do if your house just isn’t selling. We’ll talk about some reasons why people may be hesitant to bid, to inquire about a showing, and to seal the deal and purchase your home.
Revisit the comparable properties
If your home has been on the market for a while, it’s a good idea to check out the other recent homes in your neighborhood to see how their prices compare to the listing price of your home. Since the market fluctuates, other sellers could be adjusting the cost to reflect the current rates, leaving yours higher than it should be.
When pricing your home, make sure you are comparing your house to those that have actually sold. Using houses that have been on the market for a while as a baseline might mean you’ve priced your home too high to sell just like theirs.
Also, make sure you are using houses that share many of the common features that yours does. This can include:
The year the house was built
Number of bedrooms and baths
The lot size
The condition of the home
Remember, it isn’t all just about location.
Getting more leads
If people aren’t making inquiries about your home, there are a few things you should check up on. First, make sure your listings are updated and accurate. The contact info should be easy to find, and you or your real estate agent should provide multiple means of contact (email, cell phone, text, etc.).
Next, ensure that you’ve given enough details about the house. If people are searching for a specific number of rooms but your listing doesn’t mention the number of rooms you have, you might be missing out on several inquiries.
Finally, make sure your photos are high resolution and well-lit. You want to make sure visitors to your listing can get a clear idea of what your home looks like. If your photos are small, dark, blurry, or if they make the house look cramped and cluttered, you should retake your photos or consider hiring a photographer.
Getting more offers
If you’ve had plenty of inquiries and showings but you aren’t getting any offers there may be a deeper, underlying issue that needs to be addressed. Usually, this means your home needs important repairs and upgrades that buyers simply don’t want to make.
If your house is priced to be move-in ready but it’s not, you’ll have to make some upgrades or lower the price.
Not working with an agent
Sellers can also have a difficult time getting offers if they attempt to sell the home themselves without using a real estate agent. If your home is FSBO (For Sale by Owner), you’re missing out on a number of listing services and connections that an agent can provide.
In today’s world, people will do anything to cut costs. Many people consider selling their homes without a real estate agent. If you decide to go the “for sale by owner” route, you could potentially save thousands of dollars in agent fees. However, you’ll need to be prepared to do a lot of legwork in the process of selling your home. There’s also no guarantee of a final sale in the end. Ask yourself these questions when you decide to sell a home on your own:
- Do I know The Value Of My Home?
- Can I Take On The Marketing Responsibilities Myself?
- Will I be Able To Take Criticism Of My Home?
- Can I Screen Potential Buyers?
Pricing Your Home
There’s a lot of information that’s readily available to real estate agents that wouldn’t be available to you as a lone seller. You’ll need to know the marketable price for your home as well as how competitive the market is. If you’re selling on your own, you may need to pay for an appraisal ahead of time, which is something the buyer typically does. If you want to sell quickly, you’ll want to price your home a bit lower than the average for the neighborhood.
Are You Ready To Work With A Buyer’s Agent?
Real estate involves a lot of negotiating. If you want to sell your home on your own, you’ll need to ask yourself if you’re ready to work with a buyer’s agent directly. Sellers are typically responsible for paying the agent's commissions on a home sale. Commission is negotiable but if you lack the knowledge and skills in this area, you could end up making a big mistake as a seller.
You may end up going through several price cuts in order to save yourself from difficulty in selling a home. When a house has been on the market for a long time, it leads buyers to ask, “What’s wrong with that property?” Without marketing efforts and some price cuts, you could end up with a big loss by selling a home on your own. There’s so many advantages to hiring a real estate agent including the fact that they have extensive knowledge and experience in the field.
Agents Work As A Buffer For You
With the amount of knowledge and experience that agents have, they are able to act as a buffer for you. Whether it be their presence during a home showing or being the point of contact for buyers, hiring an agent can save you a lot of time and aggravation when you’re selling a home.
There’s a lot of advantages to hiring a real estate agent to help you sell your home. They are your ally throughout the process. If you’re willing to take the dive and venture in selling your home on your own, just know that you’ll have your work cut out for you. The good news is that there’s plenty of information readily available to you, no matter what route you choose.
You may think of downsizing as something that makes sense when you have an empty nest. Larger families do, of course, need more room. Downsizing can also be financially strategic and rewarding for you and your family if you have the opportunity to do so.
How Much Is Your Home Worth?
There comes a point in your life when the amount of money that your home is worth is very important. Maybe you need the money for retirement and are looking to move to a cheaper city or state. Maybe it’s time for you to pursue your goals and dreams. Whatever the reason, your home is a very large asset.
If you downsize, you’ll have a bit more money available to invest for your future. You may even consider buying an investment property. If all of your money isn’t tied up in a home, you’ll have a bit more freedom to do other things with your money.
A Smaller Home Means Smaller Expenses
When you downsize your home you end up with much lower expenses for your housing. You’ll save big on both utilities and home maintenance. You’ll be surprised as to how much extra cash you’ll have each and every month that you’ll be able to use for other things like investing, travel, or other expenses. You’ll have the ability to do things beyond simply achieve that one dream goal of home ownership.
What If You Don’t Already Own A Home?
There’s a lesson to be learned here for renters as well. If you’re getting ready to buy a home, you may want to think small. A smaller home that can suit your needs will allow you to save thousands of dollars over the life of the mortgage on your home. Remember that a mortgage payment is more than just the cost of the home. You’ll need to include things like taxes, insurance, mortgage insurance, heating, electricity, and more. The smaller the house that you buy, the less all of these things will cost. Think of what you could do if you invested that extra money that you saved on all of these things each month.
What Would You Do With The Money You Save?
Having a big, beautiful home is a fantastic goal to achieve. You may have other dreams that you want to pursue in addition to owning a home. While downsizing isn’t for everyone, many people use the money they save to do some pretty incredible things like:
- Go back to school
- Buy a vacation home
The Negatives Of Downsizing
If you move into a smaller home, there are a few drawbacks. For one, you’ll have less storage and will actually need to downsize your amount of belongings as well. You’ll also have less room for visitors if hey come to stay. If grandkids frequent your home, you may be hesitant to sell and find a smaller place. It may also be difficult to find what you’re looking for at a certain price in a specific area. Think carefully before you decide to downsize and see if it has the right benefits for you.
If you're getting ready to put your home on the market, the thought of organizing, cleaning, and arranging it may seem like an overwhelming project!
Knowing where to begin and how much money to spend on home staging and decorating are among the many questions that may be flooding your mind, right now.
The key to success is to make as much of an impact as possible, without spending more money than necessary.
One way to avoid "spinning your wheels" when it comes to maximizing the appearance of your home is to work with an experienced real estate agent. A good agent will quickly notice aspects of your home that need attention and advise you on the most cost-effective ways to improve its marketability. If they've shown dozens (or more) houses in their career, they'll be very familiar with all the things that attract buyers, as well as what repels them.
Although everyone has different tastes and expectations, many house hunters are attracted to gleaming hardwood floors, energy efficient windows, and stainless steel appliances. While it may not be cost effective to have new floors, appliances, and windows installed to sell your house faster, you can make the best possible impression by making sure the windows are crystal clear, hardwood floors are polished, and appliances are clean and shiny.
Since many house hunters pay close attention to the kitchen, it's especially important to win their approval on appearance and cleanliness. Because food is prepared and often consumed in the kitchen, it's going to be one of the more challenging rooms to keep clean -- especially if you have children. However, if a prospective buyer is wavering between two houses for sale, you can be reasonably sure that the one with the clean kitchen and bathrooms will be their preferred choice.
There are a lot of other ways you can make your kitchen appealing to buyers, too. By minimizing clutter on counter tops and displaying fresh flowers and a colorful bowl of fruit, you can make your kitchen look much more inviting. Prospective buyers will also respond favorably to appealing fragrances, such as freshly baked bread, cookies, cinnamon buns, or coffee. Clean windows, attractive curtains, and plenty of natural light will also add to the ambiance of your kitchen.
The ideal reaction from potential buyers touring your home would be something to the effect of "I can imagine us preparing dinner, entertaining guests, and sitting around the breakfast table in this house!" Setting the table so that it looks like the family is just about to sit down for a meal together is one way to help convey that image. The encouraging news is that when someone expresses sincere appreciation for the comforts and features of your home, there's a good chance they'll find a place for it on their short list of possibilities!