A buyer’s market usually means that it’s the seller’s turn to be flexible, especially with the sales terms. Purchase price, closing dates, move-in-dates, storage, appliances, window treatments, points and fees may all require a little negotiation. Whatever the terms, don’t let personal feelings stand in the way of a good deal. Here are some valuable tips:
The Basics: in a buyer’s market, curb appeal; cleanliness, overall good condition and updates are important. Any little flaws should be taken care of before the first potential buyer walks through your home.
- Attend open houses in your neighbourhood to see what “sell-ready” looks like.
- Make sure that the exterior of your home makes a good first impression to potential buyers. Reseed or lay down some turf on lawn patches that are missing grass, change the outdoor lights, and if necessary, reset the walkway.
- Clean the interior of your home beyond your standards. Even if they are impeccable, rent an industrial carpet cleaner or hire a professional cleaning service. Brighten the interior ambiance with updated light fixtures, as new lighting is one of the most inexpensive and noticeable improvements you can make.
- Fix leaky faucets and make sure the water pressure is strong in both the kitchen and bathrooms.
- A great way to improve the appearance of your home is to give it a coat of paint. Use neutral colours that can easily lead themselves to different décor and styles of furniture.
Don’t Reject Low Offers; Negotiate:
- Don’t dismiss lower-than-expected offers. Consider buyer incentives that help you meet your asking price. Offer to pay the buyer’s closing costs, moving costs, or loan origination fee. These can help the buyers with upfront costs. You may also consider offering a limited home warranty that covers HVAC systems and some appliances for a definitive period of time.
- Be careful of purchase offers that are contingent on the buyer selling their home first. Their home may be in a softer market than yours and you could be in for a long wait. Be sure that the purchase agreement includes a contingency-release clause. This way you’ll be able to sell if another buyer comes along.
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