14 Ways Sellers Can Guarentee Their Home Won't Sell
1. YOU GET WHAT YOU PAY FOR
Cost is only an obstacle in the absence of VALUE. Sure, it might seem like a savings, paying your agents less money but, are you attracting the right buyers or are the agents out there avoiding your house for others on the market where they will make more money? This is against the “rules” but agents are human and most will pay attention to the bottom line. As a Seller, your agent needs money to be able to actively attract buyers, if they are cutting their commission to get you listing, they will be cutting the costs they spend on marketing your home. You need to focus on “Net money”, not what is your outlay to a Realtor”.
2. PRICE YOUR HOUSE WRONG
This biggest part of any marketing plan is the price of the item. You can have the best marketing and the best publicity, but if your product is overpriced it will not sell. Your product is your house, if you do not price properly and aggressively to attract the buyers, you will suffer two fates; a longer time on the market and a lower final sale price.
3. DISREGARD PROFESSIONAL ADVICE
If you are a typical Canadian you will buy and sell 5-8 homes in your lifetime. If you are very active, maybe an investor, you will buy and sell 2-3 homes a year. The best agents in most areas are selling between 40-120 homes a year. That is 3-10 a month. These professionals are in the market all day every day. They are in tune with what is happening and are true experts. These are also the agents that have “nothing to lose” by telling you the truth. A part time single agent who has his mortgage to pay might tell you what you want to hear, but are they doing the best job for you? If you hire an expert you should listen to them and make the best decisions for your situation given the facts.
4. SECOND GUESS THE MARKETING PLAN
You can share your concerns and timelines, but leave the details to your agent. As for a Marketing Plan; get the statistics about why they do what they do, and if they know their stuff, trust them. Know that marketing for Real Estate is different from marketing a soft drink. If you have a seasoned professional they are not wasting money on ineffective marketing.
5. REFUSE HOME STAGING
This could be one of the biggest mistakes; there is a huge difference between designing a home for living and designing a home to SELL. Check any ego because the staging is not about your sense of style, it is about making the home show as best as it possibly can. Oh, and homes that are stages average 5.8% more on the selling price – there is that benefit too.
6. FREE RANGE PETS
If you have them, great, make sure they are invisible. Literally, at the showing find a place for your pets to go, and inside the house get rid of the evidence such as toys, leashes, food dishes. Many people are afraid of animals and simply crating them will often offend others.
7. BOTHER THE BUYERS
Buyers want to be able to walk around a home and boast about it or cut it up. They want to be able to picture themselves living here. This is next to impossible with the current homeowner right there, pointing out how her dead husband build the shelf unit just before he died in this very room. Give them their privacy, it is best not to be around at all during the showing.
8. OVERLOOK THE KID FACTOR
If you have kids you know what they can do to a house in 12.6 seconds. This is the first place to look when cleaning up. Make them pack away as many of their toys as humanly possible. Make sure that they are not hiding any food in tough to find places that will end up smelling. Make it a game or bribing them also works. If you are moving out of a home because it is too small, the kids are usually the biggest reason and you need to make sure the buyers can’t see how “small” the home is.
9. IGNORE THAT AROMA
Your house doesn’t smell to you. You are used to it. But all homes have some type of odour and usually not one that is pleasant to all people. A steam clean of the carpets and a quick Febreeze of your home are great ways to make your home smell clean and fresh. You may not realize that there is a smell but the buyers will so make it a pleasant one of cleanliness. It makes a great first impression.
10. DISCOUNT BUYER FEEDBACK
What do buyers know anyway? If they aren’t going to buy my home why should I care what they think? Remember that they are telling you the reasons that they didn’t buy it, not that they didn’t want to buy it. This is the best advice you will receive probably even above the Realtor’s. These are your potential customers for your product. Look what happened to Coke when they decided to ignore their customers and bring out NEW COKE!
11. MISTAKE RE-FINANCE APPRAISALS OR TAX ASSESSMENTS FOR THE MARKET VALUE
Unfortunately, an appraisal may have been stated at an untruthfully high price. Often, lenders estimate the value of your property to be higher than it actually is in order to encourage re-financing. The tax assessment is usually well out-of-date, and doesn’t take into consideration much about your home. The market value of your home could actually be lower or higher than these numbers. Your best bet is to ask your Realtor for the most recent information regarding property sales, in your community. This will give you an up-to-date and factually accurate estimate of your property value.
12. BE IGNORANT OF YOUR RIGHTS & RESPONSIBILITIES
It is essential that you are knowledgeable of the minutiae in your real estate contracts. Real estate contracts are legally binding documents and they can often be intricate and baffling. Not being aware of the terms in your contract could cost you thousands of dollars. Your Realtor should be telling you what you are accountable for before you sign any contract.
13. LIMIT THE MARKETING AND ADVERTISING OF THE PROPERTY
There are two obvious marketing tools that nearly every Realtor uses: open houses and classified ads. These tools are traditional marketing for real estate and you should expect your Realtor to do much more than the basics. In fact, these two marketing tools are often more about finding new business for the Realtor than about selling your home
Your Realtor should employ a wide variety of marketing techniques and the best these days are using the newest technology to make the selling experience more hassle-free. Your Realtor should also be committed to selling your property; he or she should be available for phone calls from a potential buyer.
14. CHOOSING THE WRONG REALTOR
Selling your home is one of the most important financial transactions in your life. As a result, it is extremely important that you select the Realtor that is going to provide the best service and the best results. Avoid making this decision on superfluous factors such as age, or how long they have been in the business, how nice they are or whether they dress the part. You need to dig deeper. Look at the track record, look at the marketing plan; look at what type of support structure the agent has working for them. This is where the decision lies. You do not need another friend you need a Realtor who will get the job done efficiently and effectively, if you end up getting a friend, that is simply a bonus.
CENTURY 21 First Canadian Corp., Brokerage*
3354 Mersea St, London, ON N6P 0G3