Real Estate Report:
Sellers Beware! These Costly Mistakes
Can Cause Your House To Sit On The Market!
By Kathy Anderson
You put your house on the market, your realtor put the listing in the MLS, and you sat by and watched as the phone didn’t ring. To make matters worse few, if any, people came by the house. This happens frequently, and the problems in all cases are usually the same.
The Dangers of Pricing Too High
You probably have lots of emotion “built in” to your house. Maybe you fixed it up, or bought it for top dollar just a few years back. Your home is your “special” place. However, when it’s time to sell, don’t let emotion play a roll in your pricing decision! Many sellers don’t understand that overpricing can actually result in your getting LESS for your house than if you had priced it correctly in the first place. Knowledgeable agents and buyers often won’t bid on an overpriced home. By the time you “wise up” and reduce the price to where it should have been priced in the first place, many of your best prospects will have bought other houses. This decreases demand for your now properly priced home!
The problem is exacerbated if you placed your home on the market in the January, it sat on the market “overpriced” throughout the high season, and now that you’ve reduced your price, the market has slowed during the hot Arizona summer months. While homes DO continue to sell through the summer months, many buyers come into town figuring since sales are down they should be able to get a “great deal”.
Also, consider that agents tend to steer buyers away from homes that have been in the Multiple Listing Service for long periods of time. Agents and buyers become suspicious that something is wrong with your property if it didn’t sell relatively soon after it went on the market. It’s important to price it right the day you put it on the market! Suppose you overpriced your home, and after several months, had to reduce it and now price it where it should have been priced in the first place. If we are experiencing a declining market, as we have been over the last few years, that price is now too high. The market has gone down even more in the 2 or 3 months since you listed it. In Sun City Grand the market has been dropping about .75% per month. If you continue this trend you will experience what we refer to as “chasing the market”. Even worse, the house still isn’t sold! Ultimately, once you get it priced at or slightly below where the market is, your home will have sold for tens of thousands of dollars less than where it would have sold had you priced it right out of the gate.
It’s a fact that most real estate transactions occur between buyer’s and seller’s agents. Buyer’s agents typically find properties for their clients through the Multiple Listing Service or on the internet. Not being in the MLS makes it extremely difficult to get buyers through your door. If your home is not in the MLS, you’re off the radar! Hire a good real estate agent, and get into the MLS! Also, make sure your real estate agent uses aggressive marketing strategies to make sure your home sells. In a red-hot market, the MLS is probably the only exposure your home will need. However, if the market is anything less than red-hot, your agent will need to print flyers and introduce your home to other agents in his or her office, as well as other local sales offices. Also, exposure in local papers, classified ads, and the Internet will help generate demand for your home. Make sure your agent uses a powerful marketing program!
The Dangers of not “packaging your home” for sale!
Curb appeal is everything! You can take two identical homes next door to each other, both for sale. The first home has minimal landscaping. A few of the plants are struggling because the drip irrigation isn’t working properly. The windows and screens desperately need to be cleaned. When you open the screen door, it’s torn and also filthy. The inside is fairly cluttered as well, and the wall could use a coat of paint. On the other hand, the owners of the home next door paid $200 for a landscaper to trim the shrubs and make sure the drip irrigation is working properly. Inside, they added a fresh coat of paint and removed all non-essential furniture and accessories. Again, the two homes are identical. Both owners paid the same amount for the same model. Guess which home is going to fetch more money? Don’t be lazy. A few days of labor and minimal investment can make the difference between your house sitting on the market and selling the day you put it on the market. Cosmetic appeal is essential!
Finally, don’t negotiate foolishly!
Don’t appear overly eager when you negotiate with buyers. If you appear too eager or too anxious to make a deal, buyers may become suspicious. Worse, they may lower the offer because they think you’re desperate to sell your home. Stay cool! Also, don’t appear too tough. A good deal can fall apart if buyers find you too rigid to work with. You probably have a lot of emotion invested in the house, which can certainly get in the way of effective negotiations. The best thing you can do is let your real estate agent handle your negotiations. She or he is emotionally detached from the home and has strong negotiation skills. If you’ve priced you home properly a good realtor will be able to negotiate a price close the asking price.
Make sure you hire an agent who is a Home Marketing Expert!
As your local Home Marketing Expert, I am well versed in the science of packaging, pricing, and aggressively marketing homes. I consider the sale of your home to be a new product launch that requires a proven marketing strategy and brilliant execution. My three-tier Property Marketing Plan includes:
• Packaging and cosmetically enhancing your property, at very little cost, to get it sold and off the market!
• Aggressively marketing your property through my proven, highly effective marketing channels
• Expertly negotiating with buyers to maximize the equity you walk away with
I hope this report was informative. As your local Home Marketing Expert, I am available to answer any questions you have about how to create the necessary exposure for your home to get it sold fast, at the price you want. You can call me at any time for advice, and please remember that you are under no obligation or pressure of any kind. I would very much like to help you.
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