Archive for February 15th, 2011

How to Sell Your Home in Today’s Market

It is a tough time to be a home seller in today’s market! If you are a “normal” seller (remember those?) you are faced with some stiff competition. ( And it is  not even really comparable competition for the most part.) There are the short sales which are usually below market and then there are the REO (Bank Owned) and they are always below market. These distressed properties are also usually in fair to poor condition.

 Unfortunately the seller has to deal with the human nature of the buyer, and that is how to get the most for the least. The good news is that as time goes on many buyers have become weary of the distressed properties and are looking for a good “normal” deal.

This is the time for sellers to start taking advantage of an ever-changing market, a market that may be turning back in their favor! So what does a seller have to do to get their home sold in a reasonable amount of time without practically giving the home away? Here are a few tips:

  • Pricing: Study the comparables and go over them with your realtor. Do one set of comps with all properties (distressed included) and one with just the non distressed ones. Depending on the upgrades in your home you probably want to fall somewhere between the two types of comps. Most importantly be realistic!
  • Incentives: To compete with the distressed deals you may have to offer up to 3% of buyers closing costs. If that does not appeal to you, offer a set amount for closing costs and offer a one-year home warranty (they are relatively inexpensive – running around $250) and it offers the buyer a peace of mind.
  • Curb Appeal: First impressions are important! This goes for inside and out. You want curb appeal so that the buyers will at least get out of the car. Clean up the debris around the yard and put away all items that do not need to be out. A daily sweep  of the sidewalk, driveway and front door area will give a well maintained appearance.
  • Clean: Now that the curb appeal brought them in make sure their first impression inside makes them stay awhile. Make sure the house is clean and clutter free. The buyers need to be able to picture themselves living in your home. If you have piles of your stuff on the counters and in odd spots throughout the house it distracts from that vision.  

A few other things that will help get buyers in the door are having the very best pictures for the MLS and internet.  The majority of  buyers view homes on the internet well before they ever go physically to look at it. So make sure the outside front shot and the interior of your home are the very best. If your realtor does not have a decent camera ask them to hire a virtual tour person to take the pics.

Also, be as flexible for showings as possible. Some buyers may only be able to view homes during certain hours and if your home is unavailable during that time they may just skip you all together or find another home before they get a chance to see yours.

Remember, as a “normal” seller you have an advantage over the distressed properties. Your house is clean, maintained and ready to move onto in a reasonable amount of time. For todays buyers that is like a breath of fresh air!

If you would like additional seller tips please visit my website: http://www.BoiseRealEstateChick.com  (no sign up required!)

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