Myth #1: Sellers should still price their home higher than market value to allow for negotiating room.
Truth: Pricing too high in a buyers’ market is a big mistake. If your home is overpriced in this current market then agents showing your home will use your property to sell one of the other properties currently listed and in competition with your home. Three important things to keep in mind when pricing your home: 1. Is your home updated? 2. Does it need cosmetic touch ups like fresh paint and new carpeting? 3. Is your home in a location that will attract buyers or does it back up to a major highway? These are all items that the buyers’ lender will use when doing an appraisal on the property. The bottom line is this: you can price your home at any value you feel is appropriate, however, it still needs to appraise for the selling price in the contract in order for the bank to approve the loan! A well-trained real estate agent who looks out for your best interests will consult with you on your home’s fair market value and guide you accordingly. Remember, agents do not set the price of home, sellers do. Agents are here to give you current market information in order for you to make an informed decision to price the home in line with what is currently selling. The worst thing to do is price higher than what is selling-all you end up doing is chasing the market from a loosing position.
Myth #2: The carpet needs replacing. Why can’t I offer a credit at closing for new carpet?
Truth: Today’s buyers are looking for houses online and first impressions are critical! More than 87% of today’s buyers are searching for homes online. They are quite Internet savvy and know what they are looking for. If your home looks great in the pictures then chances are good that they will linger on your home’s listing a bit longer. When they see worn carpeting (and yes, it does show up in the pictures) or outdated appliances they immediately proceed to the next home for sale. They don’t read anything beyond that. Before your home’s initial debut online it is important that it show well to draw the potential buyers in-not turn them away! What seems like a savings for the seller in the beginning of your home’s market time might end up costing much more in the long run. Remember, buyers are comparing your home to other homes that are currently on the market. Your home should be inviting so that everyone who looks at it can see themselves living there.
Myth #3: Updates are not necessary. Let’s just list the house and see what happens.
Truth: Buyers probably won’t make it to your doorstep if your home doesn’t appeal to them online. Again we need to be mindful of first impressions. In today’s market your home’s online presence is vital to drawing in buyers. If the pictures of your home look great but the cabinets are circa 1970 and your appliances are old then chances are good that they will be on to the next listing without batting an eye! You don’t always have to replace the cabinets. Sometimes a coat of paint and some new hardware will add life to your home and freshen up its appearance. This is where a good agent’s expertise comes in handy!
Beware of agents who will not share constructive criticism with you. They are probably not all that interested in getting your home sold as they are in getting the listing. Your agent is the professional here and his/her real estate advice should be aimed at getting your home sold as quickly as possible and in the shortest amount of time.
Myth #4: People don’t expect the interior of the house to look like a designer special. Why do we have to move the furniture and scale down the accessories?
Truth: The way you market your house for sale is not the same way you live in the home. While its true that people don’t expect every home to be professionally decorated, they do want to see themselves living there. A professional agent can offer a wealth of information or bring in a professional to help stage your home for sale. Often times it doesn’t involve spending money on new furniture-just some re-arranging and de-cluttering to appeal to a wider audience.
Myth #5: You are better off selling your home on your own and saving money on the commission you would have paid to a real estate agent.
Truth: Statistically, many sellers who attempt to sell their homes on their own cannot consummate the sale without the service of a real estate agent. While saving the commission might sound great at first, many “for sale by owners” will tell you that the majority of calls they received to view their home were from real estate agents and not from potential clients. One other very important thing to consider is the safety issue around selling your home yourself. How are you screening the clients if and when they call? Some “for sale by owners” get so excited about showing their home to potential buyers that they don’t pay attention to the fact that they are allowing complete strangers to walk through their property! Real estate agents screen buyers-making sure that they are not only qualified to purchase your home but some also go the extra mile by making sure that they have a copy of their driver’s licenses on file. Electronic lockboxes that are used by most agents can be monitored and information is stored on every agent who shows the home-thereby making it difficult for someone to enter the home that might have ulterior motive!
Also, homeowners who succeed in selling their home by themselves usually net less than if they had a real estate agent working for them. The National Association of REALTORS surveys consumers every year, including homeowners who succeeded in selling their home without a real estate agent. Over 70% of these homeowners say that they would never do it again.
Myth #6: When you receive an offer, you should make the buyer wait. This gives you a better negotiating position.
Truth: You should reply as soon as possible to an offer! In my opinion it is not professional in any way, shape or form to make a buyer wait simply for the sake of not wanting to seem too anxious! If you listed your house for sale then any offer needs to addressed and considered-even if it’s low. Many times buyers will try to feel out a seller’s position by offering a lowball price. These offers can often be negotiated successfully. A highly skilled agent is proficient in negotiating any offer on the sale of your home and doesn’t need to play games-especially in a buyers’ market. If you and your agent don’t respond in a timely manner the buyer will off writing a contract on your competition’s home!
Don’t wait until the holidays the over to get your home on the market! Relocation buyers are out there looking right now and very anxious to get on with life and get settled in their new surroundings! Call Dagny Eason today at 203-858-4853 and let me share wtih you my Internet Markeing Plan for getting your house sold in today’s market!