The housing market, finally, is showing signs of recovery. This is of course excellent news for the real estate market but, for homeowners that are still struggling to sell, it’s of very little value. The fact is, most homeowners still face extremely stiff competition from dozens, if not hundreds, of similar properties that are on the market. With that in mind, we’ve put together a blog loaded with tips and tricks that you can use to make your home more attractive to potential buyers. The more attractive it is of course the more people will take a look and the higher your chance of selling. Enjoy.
Before you begin a great idea is to take a video of your home, inside and out, including everything that you can think of. The garage, closets, the attic, the tool shed out back and every other feature. Once you’re done, sit back with your significant other and watch the video, making notes along the way about the things that you think are excellent, okay, not that great and definitely not good at all. If you have a little bit of courage you can ask other family members, friends and even the neighbors to take a look at your video as well and do the same thing. The feedback and insight that you can get from doing this is invaluable.
Once you’ve done this what you want to do is focus on those things that need to be changed, upgraded or simply removed. This could be as simple as slapping on a new coat of paint or as involved as removing a wall, replacing the roof and so forth. If your video uncovered some eyesores on your property, those will obviously need to be fixed. One thing to keep in mind is that many people, when touring a house, have eagle eyes and will notice everything. If you think something’s ugly but wonder if it’s worth fixing, get it fixed.
Having an open house is an excellent idea but, on the weekends, everybody is having their open house. Why not buck the weekend open house trend and have a weekday open house? You’ll reduce the competition significantly, allow people who work on the weekends to view your home and allow parents with children to view your home while the kids at school. The fact is, and open house costs you nothing and so trying one during the week is a no risk situation.
In the last few years, as the economy has soured, many people lost their jobs. Oftentimes this is the impetus that a person needs to start a new career and many times this career is in, you guessed it, real estate. That’s why, unless you are somehow obligated, you should definitely use a real estate agent that has long-term experience. An agent with long-term experience is going to have a professional network of people that can help to get more potential buyers looking at your home.
For those homeowners that are desperate to sell, a good idea might be to find a high-volume real estate agent, offering them a bonus or possibly higher commission to focus on your home and sell it more quickly. Make sure that this agent adds that fact to your MLS listing so that other agents will know that selling your home comes with a bigger payoff.
With the way the Internet works you can easily take a bigger role in selling your home than ever before possible. List your home for sale on your Facebook page, take out a free Craigslist ad and tweet about it on Twitter and other social media websites. Have flyers made and post them at your work, at the grocery store, at the library, at church and anywhere else that they have a free local bulletin board. Taking an active role in selling your home may be just the ticket to finding that buyer you’ve been looking for.
Of course if all else fails you may want to consider lowering your price. In most cases your realtor will help you to set your initial price, using information available from your market to make sure that it’s priced comparably. In the end however their analysis is nothing more than an educated guess and is not written in stone by any means. A good idea would be to determine exactly the lowest price that you’re willing to accept and tack on 10% to that, giving you a little bit of room for negotiation above your lowest price.
The good news is that in 2012 the average number of days that it took a realtor to sell a home was 69, which was down 30% from the same time in 2011. Selling a home is still difficult and, in many parts of the country, very difficult but the more that you can do to make your home stand out from the others the better chance that you’ll find your buyer and get it sold.