If you are planning to sell your home, you would be wise to take the advice of those of us who are out in the field, your local Realtors®. We see houses every day and you may, or may not, be surprised to find that there are some simple mistakes that many sellers make when marketing their home.
- Over pricing: This is the number one mistake that sellers make whether they are listing their home For Sale By Owner (FSBO) or forcing their Realtor to accept their price. An over priced home takes longer to sell, and ultimately sells for less than a home that was listed at an accurate, and realistic price.
- Selling FSBO but pricing it as if it is listed by a broker: I see this every day. An owner who has a home in a desirable neighborhood decides to go it on their own and prices their home with those other homes in the community listed by Realtors. Eveyone knows that a FSBO is paying less in costs to sell and therefore, no educated buyer is going to pay the same price for a FSBO as they would for a represented home. They just will not.
- Skipping the landscape cleanup: After all the work you have done, are you really going to skip out on re-mulching and filling the flower pots? What about taking down the dead tree? If you want buyers to think you care about your home, then do the work!
- Not dealing with the pets: Yes, you can leave all 100 pounds of friendly dog out to great us as we view your home, but just know, we probably won't be back for a 2nd showing. We are there to look at the property, not to play with your lonely pet. I showed a house a couple of weeks ago and the dog was mentioned as one of the reasons they opted against the proeprty--and the dog does not convey! Additionally, clean out your litter box every night. If you have a cat that is allowed out of doors, post it at each access/egress location so we won't panic if it darts out.
- Cooking as usual: I have just two words here…curry and fish. Just eat out as much as you can while you market your house. No one (even those of us that love both curry and fish) wants to smell it when we walk into your beautiful home.
- Making the home hard to show: I understand that you work from home/don't want to board the dog/have young children/don't trust anyone but making us wait days to see your home just means that we will probably skip it. It isn't personal, we just have better things to do than jump through the obstacles you are erecting.
- Ignore the deficiencies: Every house, no matter how perfect, has issues. Understand how your home will show to buyers and work with it. Denying the presence of a 'challenge' does not make it go away. Come up with a plan that will help buyers look past the issue or to see it in a different way.
- Not staging the home: You don't necessarily have to go out and refit your home with rental furniture (although if it is vacant, you might want to consider this), but some well positioned accessories and consideration of how a room will show to its best advantage can do wonders! Take things out, move furniture around, bring in some plants--in other words, show us your house at its best!
- Skimping on marketing: No brochures, photos from a phone (or no photos at all), no online video or floor plans; these are all items that can cause a buyer to walk on by. You have to spend money to make money and it does cost some money to market your home.
- Not having the carpet stretched and cleaned: This is a silly one, but so many people save a buck by not getting their carpets professionally cleaned and stretched. What looks more awful than filthy carpet with bumps in it? It really isn't that expensive and it makes a huge difference!
Many of these are small things, but you would be surprised at how often we see them as we show homes. Don't make these 'rookie' mistakes in marketing your house!
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