Selling a house is a big decision and can be especially intense for first time sellers. After all, we form strong attachments to the places we call home and the idea of turning it over to strangers can feel awkward. Even worse, the buyers who come to look at it will have criticisms, complaints and possibly even try to offer less than the asking price! Sometimes, the house can sit on the market for months, while sellers are forced to keep the house in “show-ready” condition during that time. It can be exhausting and frustrating. It’s enough to cause a home seller to re-think the whole plan. But it doesn’t have to feel that way. In fact, there are several mistakes to avoid with selling a house that can ensure the process is more enjoyable and ends with the right price and the right time line.
- Remove the emotions – Last week, we talked about how homebuyers have to remove the emotional attachment they can feel when falling in love with a house at first sight. This detachment is even more important (and harder to do) for a seller. Selling a house is really a business transaction and home sellers have to keep that in mind. Home buyers will be viewing the home with brand new eyes that don’t have the same nostalgia as the home sellers.
- Not being prepared – Okay, once you’ve made sure that you have enough emotional distance from the house to list it, it’s time to get it ready for hitting the market. Start by cleaning, cleaning, cleaning. Then begin to remove evidence of your life in the house and make it more friendly to buyers. So, remove the pictures, rearrange the furniture and listen to the advice of your listing agent. This will help put your house in its best possible condition to appeal to the most people that will also help get the highest offer. After all, that is the goal right?
- Listing it for too much – No home seller wants to hear that they have unrealistic expectations about their asking price. However, see our first point above. Most home sellers hear about home sales in their area and generally assume they can get the highest price too. This kind of thinking does not take into consideration square footage, current market conditions, overall condition of the home, etc. Pricing too high means the home may turn away potential buyers during its initial listing period and generally sellers are forced to lower the price anyway. Save the time and trouble by listing it appropriately the first time.
- Not hiring an agent – The easiest way to avoid mistakes when selling is to work with an experienced agent. Yes, you can sell your home by owner. But, most sellers don’t end up with more money in their pocket. Plus, without an agent sellers are far more likely to find the process intense and stressful. With a life event as big as selling a home, it doesn’t make sense to go at it alone. Seek out referrals from friends and family and work with a trusted REALTOR who can help you get top dollar in a appropriate time frame.
Are you interested in listing your house in the coming weeks or even in early 2017? Call DeSelms Real Estate today at 615.550.5565 and see how one of our award winning agents can help!