Tips for Selling a Home in Today's Market
For homeowners contemplating selling their homes in the current market, there are ways to maximize the final sale price and get the home sold quickly so that you can move on to a new home. While many factors come into play with finding the right buyer at the right time, there are many things sellers can do to help put the odds in their favor.
1. Do not overprice the home. Buyers today are looking for a bargain, and the seller in the end will likely have to bring the price down to meet market demands. The longer the home sits on the market, the stronger the negotiating position buyers have.
2. Select Internet-friendly pricing. More than 80% of home buyers begin their real estate searches online. Most real estate sites filter the prices in $25,000 to $50,000 increments. So while a creative price of $555,777 may grab attention, buyers who set their search maximum filter at $550,000 will exclude it. Additionally, prices ending in 000 (such as $500,000) tend to sell at a larger discount than homes ending in 500 (such as $524,500).
3. List the home on a Friday. Most buyers are checking out new listings on Fridays so they can see what is new for the weekend.
4. Occupy or stage the home. Buyers appreciate a home that is well attended. A vacant home typically feels cold and empty, while one that is still occupied has a warm, cozy feel, attracting more buyers. However, keep the personalization minimal; having neutral decor and paint colors will make it easier for a buyer to visualize their own style in the home. If a seller moves to a new residence before selling the old residence, it is a good idea to have the home professionally staged as if someone still lives in it.
5. Monitor local foreclosures. Foreclosures are costing sellers money and have become very aggressive opponents in today's market. If the seller's neighborhood has a lot of foreclosures, wait until they are sold before listing the home, if at all possible. Most banks are extremely eager to sell, thus creating an underpriced competitor. If the seller cannot wait to list the home, it will need to be priced competitively with the foreclosures, which can dig significantly into the home's equity.
6. Keep the home neat and clean. With so many foreclosures on the market today, buyers are seeing homes at their worst. If the home is presented in the best possible way, it will attract more positive attention.
7. Keep records. Foreclosures do not come with any disclosures. Sellers who keep updated records, photos and permits handy for the buyer to review will make them feel much more confident about buying the home, giving the seller a competitive advantage over foreclosed properties in the neighborhood.
Though you can't control market conditions, there are certain aspects of selling your home that you can grab a hold of. By following these tips, you can be one step closer to selling your home at a reasonable price.