5 Thoughts - When you Decide to Become a Seller


5 Moments of Clarity

A funny thing happens once you decide to sell your home…

Everyone you know is suddenly an expert. 

The internet has flooded so much information into the marketplace that everyone who has ever owned real estate, bought, sold, flipped, rented, or lived in a house believes that they know what you should be doing, and how you should be doing it.

As you sift through the haze of misinformation and opinion, here are a few things to keep in mind…

THOUGHT #1.  Realize that Real Estate is LOCALLY Driven…

There are no shortage of websites out there that will have you enter in your data about your home, search around the available information on line, and throw a price at you as if it was gospel.  This may be a decent guideline, but it is not written in stone.  Your LOCAL real estate professional can tour your home with you, point out actual strengths and weaknesses, and give you a realistic range in which to price your home, based on your actual competition.  The sales prices in California are different than those in Indiana, no matter what you may hear on the nightly news.

THOUGHT #2.  Realize that small repairs now mean big savings later…

A cracked window pane, a broken railing, even something as simple as overgrown grass can all cause a major problem later on.  A buyer doesn’t want to walk into a listing and look at all of the work that they will have to do.  They want a turnkey transaction.  If it’s a first time homebuyer, they will view each repair as much more damaging than it really is.  Avoid all of this by having your real estate professional walk through your home with you, and together you can make a list of any flaws or imperfections that you might want to consider fixing before a buyer panics.

THOUGHT #3.  Realize that People like FREE STUFF…

You don’t have to start out offering bonuses or incentives to other Realtors or to prospective buyers.  But it is a good idea to consider what you might offer someone later, if you need it during a negotiation.  Perhaps the carpet is a bit worn and you aren’t ready to replace it just yet.  You could offer a small carpet allowance to a prospective buyer so they could change the carpet to something they want easily.  Whatever the case, thinking about this scenario ahead of time prepares you, in case you need it.

THOUGHT #4. Realize that Curb Appeal, Staging and Appearance matter!

Curb appeal is one of the most overlooked aspects of selling your home.  Prospective buyers get lists of homes from their Realtor, and they drive around and look at them.  If your home is surrounded by overgrown grass, unkempt hedges and landscaping that is in tatters, the buyer will make assumptions about what the inside of the home must look like.  If they actually make it in the door, the same problem can happen if the home is not staged correctly.  If a home is messy, with dishes in the sink and a stuffy feel, with family pictures all over the walls and heavy metal posters in junior’s room, the buyers will not be able to VISUALIZE themselves living there.  Put yourself in the buyer’s shoes and look over your home with your Realtor.  If you stage it…they will come.

THOUGHT #5.  Realize that the Competition, and the Appraiser, Set the Price. 

Unfortunately, the price of a home is not actually based on the amount you paid for it, plus 5% growth, plus the improvements you’ve made.  I wish that were the case.  The competing homes in the local market, specifically the homes that have sold in the last year in your area, are what the appraiser considers when determining the value for the bank.  The prospective buyer must have an appraiser place the value of the property at or above the agreed upon purchase price.  If the appraiser cannot place the value high enough, the deal cannot close.  Review your area’s comparable listings and sales with your Realtor to gain a true perspective of how to price your home, so it can sell.