Home Selling Mistakes You Must Avoid
When Listing Your Home for Sale
There are so many quotes out there around making mistakes and learning from them. Below is one of my personal favorites, another one goes something like this ‘Smart people learn from their mistakes, the wise learn from the mistakes of others.’
In this article, we are going to dive into some of the most common mistakes sellers make when listing their house for sale, and if you’re wise, you’ll be sure to learn from them!
Not Having a Plan to Sell
One of the first mistakes sellers make is not having a proper plan before they decide they want to sell their house. Here is what having a plan, and an education will help you avoid:
Hiring your friend or family member that is a Realtor
They may hire the first Realtor they meet, or worse, hire someone they know. (it’s hard to fire a friend – don’t believe me? I’ve seen families and friends refuse to talk to one another because things didn’t go the right way, or there were problems). Learn from the mistakes of others.
Understand that there are times when everything goes smoothly and everything works out for the best. Everyone’s happy in this scenario. One of my friends is actually in a lawsuit right now because they hired their friend to do a job and they didn’t do what they said they were going to do. Awkward!
The common objection to this is, “well business is business and we can still be friends after.” Go for it then, hire your family member or your friend!
Selling your home at a price that’s too low or high
Know your local real estate market trends and statistics before you place your home on the MLS. You want to make the most money for your home right? Here is why overpricing your home actually ruins your value. Let your Realtor help you determine the price for your listing because if you try to price it too high you may end up as an expired listing.
If you have a great understanding of your local housing trends, and what homes are selling for than you will be a step ahead of your competition. You’ll also be able to accurately price your home allowing it to sell for the most money and in the fastest time period. The best thing you can do for your house is generate multiple offers in the first day or two. This will allow you to sell your home for the maximum amount.
Here is what having a plan will do for you:
- You’ll know how to price your home
- You can stage your home to make it appear it’s best
- Improve your home to sell for more
- Market your home in the best light
- Be prepared for what comes after you go under contract
There is a lot more that having a great home selling strategy will do for you, and these are a few of the obvious reasons it makes sense to have a plan. You’re working with hundreds of thousands of dollars, you want to keep as much as possible.
Another mistake sellers make is pricing their home incorrectly.
Pricing your home incorrectly is one of the most common mistakes sellers make. This is the number one reason homes do or don’t sell. If you want to sell your home for the most money possible you’ll want to have a list price that is spot-on where it should be.
If buyer demand is strong enough, like they are for homes in the Bella Casa subdivision in Apex, NC, you can attract multiple offers and sell your home for over list price. What sellers don’t realize is that you will damage your home’s value if you overprice it. Especially, if you overprice it and put it on the MLS. If a home sits for more than 28 days in Raleigh it needs a price drop. Homes are selling way too fast and far too close to list price.
Are you familiar with absorption rates? If not, contact us and we will be happy to help.
The other night I was at dinner talking to the guy at the table next to me and he was talking about selling his home. Of course when I heard that my ears perked up.
I said, ‘excuse me, did you say you’re selling your home?’ He responded in the affirmative. My next question was scripted, though he couldn’t tell ‘Interesting, how do you plan to price it?’ His response was ‘I don’t know, just going to sell it for over list price.’ Nodding my head up and down I said, ‘I’m a Realtor in the area and I’m more than happy to come by Wednesday at 3 or Thursday at 4 to help price it, which works better for you?’‘Are you going to sell it for over list price?’ He asked.‘I’m not sure yet because I haven’t seen the house, what I can tell you is that the homes I’ve sold are at 99.5% of list on average.’‘Well I’m only interested in selling for over list price but thanks anyway,’ he said turning back to his friends.
Long story short, I didn’t get the listing (stop answering questions, start asking them moral of the story here). I did run into him a few months later and he waved hello to me. I didn’t even recognize him at first, though I walked over smiling and he introduced me to his friends as ‘the guy who gave him a business card one time.’ If you guessed that 110 days later his home is still on the market and listed at a price that is too high you’d be spot on. Which is interesting because homes in Cary, NC are selling fast and for top dollar.
Hopefully, he kept my business card, I know I can help him sell his house.
Trying to sell a home that is in bad condition
You cannot change the location of your house. Two things you can change are the price, as we talked about already, and the condition.
There are a lot of changes you can make to your home that will improve it’s condition, whether it’s something as small as cleaning or as large as remodeling. If your home is in average condition you need to improve it or you won’t be able to sell for as much or as quickly as others.
There are many tips Realtors have for sellers who are attempting to accommodate buyers by presenting the best home possible, here are some pretty great resources that I have read online to help you do that:
- Home Improvements for More Value via Max Real Estate Exposure
- Staging tips for your Home via Selling Warner Robins
- Increase Your Home’s ROI via Rochester Real Estate Blog
- Small Improvements for Big Additions via Frederick Real Estate Online
- Add Value to Your Home via Raleigh Realty
- How to Sell your Home Fast for the Highest Price via Las Vegas Luxury Home Pro
While these resources are great for improving the condition of your home, they may not be able to save it from being overpriced, or from a less than desirable location. There are a lot of homes that are in great condition and in a nice location that sit on the market because they are overpriced.
Hiring the Wrong Real Estate Agent
Not all Realtors® are created equal, similar to any profession.
You need to put things aside when you’re determining what Realtor you want to work with. Do you want a results-oriented Real Estate professional, or do you want the Agent that will sell your home for the lowest price?
If your Realtor doesn’t know what price to list your home at find a new one. If you suggest a list price and the Real Estate Agent feels it is high that is because the neighborhood determines the price, the Agent doesn’t. In order to price your home efficiently there are a number of factors that go into it, and if you’re not using the data to your advantage than you’re not serving your customers the right way.
There are certain offerings we have at Raleigh Realty, that come with different sets of packages and you can choose which you’d like. This gives owners the option to purchase different packages at different prices.
We understand not everyone wants to pay for a full service package, we care too much about helping people to list a home that is overpriced though. That would be doing far more damage than good for the seller.
Poor Negotiations During the Sale
One of the fastest ways to crush a sale is by trying to take advantage of a buyer.
One of the recent buyers I represented moved on from a home because the seller, a For Sale By Owner had verbally accepted our offer. My buyer and I put together and signed off on the offer. Then I received a phone call that the offer wasn’t good enough (she wanted an additional $300).
Buyers buy a home based on emotion. When selling a home it’s important to make sure the buyers feel like they win. If the buyers don’t feel like they’re getting a good deal they won’t buy your home so make sure they know they feel great about it.
Bad negotiations is one of the fastest ways to kill a deal. It’s one of the most important roles for an Agent because the emotions involved between buyers and sellers. Delivering messages and taking the emotions out of it is a big part of what a Real Estate Broker does.
Final Thoughts on Mistakes Sellers Make
These are five of the typical mistakes sellers make and they are one’s that can easily be avoided with a little time, effort, and knowledge. Be sure you understand how to avoid the mistakes that other sellers have made before you, and you will have a much easier time selling your home.
Selling a home is not as easy as a lot of people think. There are hundreds of thousands of dollars involved and you’ll be competing against other homes for sale. It’s important to make sure you have a great Real Estate Agent to help make sure you receive top dollar for your house. Determining the best list price for your home is one of the best ways to ensure your home sells for the greatest price possible.
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This excellent guest post was from Ryan Fitzgerald, Raleigh NC Real Estate Agent. He graciously shared 5 mistakes sellers make when listing their home. Thanks Ryan!