Your property will possibly be the most valuable asset you will ever sell so it’s important to heed professional advice in order to maximise its sale price.
Selling your property is not a task undertaken everyday. When you’re selling, it’s important to be fully informed and plan each step carefully.
There is something to be learned from how home sellers have approached the often complex task of putting their home on the market, and more importantly, closing the deal.
Effective Habit #1: Be Realistic
Property is one of those rate things with no recommended retail price. What your neighbour sold their home for last year, or even last month, doesn’t matter. What you “lost” because you didn’t sell your home at the peak of the market doesn’t matter. The enemy is any other property for sale within your area and price range.
Selling a home ranks WAY up the list of “life’s most stressful moments”. But you have to understand and be realistic about your home’s value, your neighbourhood, and the real estate market you’re in. There are many factors that impact the potential sale of your home. You do not have control over current market dynamics (economy, interest rates, outlook, consumer sentiment, employment, wages) or local supply versus demand. But there are things you can control (presentation, cleanliness, street appeal, availability). Address what you can control, and understand the impact of what you can’t. Realistically.
Effective Habit #2: Be Open to Suggestions
You’ve selected a real estate agent to help you, trust their advice. After all, you wouldn’t visit a doctor and then tell them how you should be treated. Your real estate agent will be able to add real value to the process and is an essential component in selling for more. Sure, you may not be able to do everything they suggest, but at least listen and consider suggestions your agent may have for the best way to present, market and sell your home.
Effective Habit #3: Be Available
YOU don’t necessarily have to be available to buyers interested in your home, but you do need to be flexible with inspection times. In fact, you should avoid staying inside the house while a buyer inspections. Buyer’s sometimes feel they cannot openly discuss concerns with your agent in your presence. Golden opportunities may there be lost. Should it be necessary for you to remain at home, be courteous but don’t force conversation with a potential buyer. The buyer wants to inspect your home – not pay a social call. However, should you be asked questions about the home, the neighbours or the area answer them.
At times you need to be able to vacate the premises with reasonable notice – and occasionally with unreasonable notice. Your home can not be sold if potential buyers can’t view it. “No inspections on weekends” or “Inspections only between 11:00am and 1:00pm on Thursdays and Fridays” won’t cut it.
Effective Habit #4: Be Smart
Understand the local real estate market. Understand the home selling process. Understand the buyers’ cycle (you may not be buying, but you want to understand what your potential buyers are dealing with).
Why understand all this? KNOWELDGE IS POWER!
How do you understand all this? Let your agent help you understand it. That’s what you’re paying them for.
Effective Habit #5: Invest in a Marketing Campaign
Choosing a marketing plan that ensures your home is exposed to the maximum number of buyers is critical to achieving the best price.
YOU CAN’T SELL A SECRET! This is a well-known saying in the real estate industry. In other words, a property may be immaculate, fresh and supremely interesting but if you don’t tell ‘the world’ you will struggle to sell for more.
Let’s now look at an effective marketing campaign.
- It attracts buyers with increased chance of attracting offers, resulting in a great sale!
- It encourages competition between buyers resulting in top prices being paid!
- It is an insurance policy against underselling. Every suitable buyer in the market will see the advertising and will make the decision whether or not to inspect further. Those buyers who do view and want to the property will vie for the chance to buy!
Think about it…would you like the first buyer or the best buyer.
Effective Habit #6: Balance Emotion with Logic
Selling your home and all the things involved with the transaction can be very exciting, but many times it is an extremely stressful event.
Home sellers not only have to worry about their home remaining clean and available to buyers on a daily basis but they often have other important things that they could be doing to ready themselves for their move. It is also true that most Sellers have a tremendous amount of pride in their home and want to make certain that the marketing and eventual sale price are reflective of that pride.
The moment you list your home for sale, it just becomes a house on a shelf – 1 of many. You may not like what the market tells you but it will never lie to you. If you don’t have inspections you will very likely not receive any offers. If you have inspections and still don’t get any offers you must be prepared to adjust the price. Don’t take it personally.
The best homes remain unsold due to price!
Effective Habit #7: Don’t Be Afraid to Ask Questions
This is YOUR home you are trying to sell. You need to be comfortable with what is going on. If there is anything you don’t understand, ask your Real Estate Agent for clarification. Don’t be embarrassed about things you don’t know. You don’t sell a home every day. Most real estate terms and jargon aren’t important to you 99.9% of the time. But they are important now, and often agents tend to forget we frequently speak in a foreign language. There are no stupid questions. Ask.
The Bottom Line
These “seven habits” can help you through the home selling process. There is every chance your efforts will be rewarded with more buyers and the potential for buyers competing for your home, a faster sale and a better price. You will also be able to take comfort in the knowledge that you did your absolute best to influence the value of your home and your stress levels may be greatly reduced. It may also greatly reduce the stress levels of your real estate agent as well. That’s not a bad thing. People don’t like stress so anything that can be done to alleviate a stressful situation is a good thing.