Selling your home is a big deal, especially if you don’t have any previous experience in it. It can be a tricky process, and there is more to it than simply sticking a ‘For Sale’ sign out front. There are many tips and tricks for millennial homebuyers, but what with some of those 37% who already bought a home and now decided to sell; the following are some tips to avoid common mistakes made in the housing market.
Selling a property is a complex business. Listing a house is not as simple as listing something on eBay or having a yard sale. Once you’ve decided to sell up, one of the first steps you should take is to seek professional help from a Realtor. Of course, you should take your time to select the right real estate agent for you, so you feel confident and secure in the process (and the outcome). Don’t be fooled into thinking that avoiding an agent’s commission is significant – their guidance and advice is invaluable when negotiating the tricky ins and outs of the real estate market. They will also help you to prepare your property for the market, to accurately value it and to filter out time wasters, all of which contributes to a quick, smooth and profitable sale – definitely worth the commission price.
The Right Price
One of the biggest mistakes millennial sellers make is to overvalue their home. A grossly inflated price will scare off buyers – they may be priced out of contention to start with, but even if they can afford it, no one likes to be ripped off. An obviously overpriced property is a big red flag. Factors that can affect the value of your home include location, market strength, and demand. Investigate and find out what similarly sized and located properties in your area have sold for – and remember that an experienced real estate agent can assist in setting a fair price which is also appealing. It’s also worth bearing in mind that most price tags are subject to offers during the buying process, so you’re going to have to negotiate anyway.
You may think your home is fine as it is, cozy and well maintained. However, it’s really easy to turn a blind eye to certain things – or to just get used to them. You’ll need to consult someone with a critical eye and housing expertise to inspect and survey the property (really you should be doing this before you even think about listing for sale). Remember, your buyer’s eyes will be equally critical and not at all nostalgic, so getting an inspection (preferably with some form of certification) is essential. This survey will also identify any necessary renovations you need to make (see below).
Renovating the Right Way
When selling a property, many owners are tempted to make costly renovations to tempt potential buyers. Whilst certain areas should be updated and changed if necessary, such as bathrooms or kitchens, there are many renovations that are unnecessary, and in the end, unprofitable. Another common mistake is to make renovations that are too personalized and will turn off buyers who will want to add their own personal touch to their new home. If you’re going to invest money, it should be in the overall infrastructure of the property, to make sure that everything works, the roof doesn’t leak, the heating functions and nothing is damp, smelly or rotting. Buyers will expect that basic functionality – and even smaller things such as cracks in the ceiling or loose hinges on doors can turn off potential interest in a heartbeat.
Preparing for Viewings
We’ve all flicked past ads for properties, for sale or for rent based on the photos alone. Pictures are a powerful force in the early stages of selling your property, and well taken, well-lit photographs can be the difference between getting viewing interest and not. A badly taken photo can make the nicest space look bleak, unfriendly and cold, so either hire a professional or take your time to get appealing shots. Your real estate agent can advise you on what areas of your property to shoot and how best to do so. Whether you’re taking a photograph or actually showing the property it is crucial to declutter and clean your home. When viewing a potential property, buyers need to be able to visualize themselves there, and your clothes all over the bedroom or unwashed dishes and mugs in the kitchen detract from that. If you already took your furniture out, stage your house for targeted buyers and make it look comfortable. Keep the space as clean, bright, airy and neutral as possible to maximize the impact it has, in a positive way – and don’t forget to apply the same principles to your garden!
There are so many things to think about when you’re selling your home, so it’s easy to make a mistake. But with these tips, and some professional advice the process can get quicker, simpler and hopefully, more profitable in the end.