Focusing on what not to do will help you get to a quicker, smoother sale. It’s easy to get carried away and try to do everything right, but neglecting some things will make your transaction seem to drag on and on.
- First off, be careful about hiring a realtor who’s a friend of the family or an acquaintance. Remember this is a financial decision to sell your house, not an emotional one. Leave it to the pro’s that sell real estate full-time and know the market. You don’t want to hire a part-timer and entrust them with selling, most likely, one of your largest assets. It never seems to end well when you hire your friend’s cousin who happens to have a real estate license!
- I’ve said it over and over again, but it all comes down to price. Overpricing a home is a certain failure. The higher you price it above what it’s worth, the longer it will sit on the market. The longer it sits on the market, the worse it will appear to buyers. The house will develop a stigma and people will wonder what’s wrong with it. A common misconception that sellers tend to think is that buyers will just give them an offer to bring the price down. That rarely works because buyers come into an overpriced listing and think, “Wow, this is overpriced – I won’t even waste my time on it. I’ll just buy the one down the street that’s less expensive.”
- Stage it to sell it. Make sure you de-clutter and reposition furniture to give the house a nice flow that will make buyers want to linger. The longer they stay in your home, the more likely they will be to make an offer.
- Don’t get over-emotional throughout the sale. It’s easy to stay in love with your home and all the memories you have with it. This is a surefire way to lose a sale. Forget about all that during the sale and focus on the check you’ll be getting. I’ve seen plenty of deals go south because emotions got the best of the sellers and then months down the road they were kicking themselves because they didn’t use their financial sense. Remember, this is a financial transaction; your home provided you lots of good memories and shelter, but when it comes to selling it’s time to switch hats to a business one.
- Don’t get worked up over the home inspection. Buyers almost always hire a home inspector – they are hired to find things wrong with a home. If they don’t it can be perceived they aren’t doing a good enough job. Often that can lead to overkill on the reports and spook buyers – and in today’s market, buyers usually want everything fixed. I had an owner whose pocket door was a little tight when it rolled. He’s lived with it for over 10 years and always been fine with it. The inspector said it was faulty and the buyers wanted it fixed, so the seller had to pay several hundreds of dollars making it right and he did. The sale went forward and everyone was happy. I’ve had other sellers get emotional and blow up and risk losing the sale over other things as trivial. Do what you have to do, stay reasonable and remember the end goal.
Gabe Mellein was voted a Top Real Estate Agent – Exceptional in Service and Overall Satisfaction by Gulfshore Life Magazine in 2012 and 2013. He is the broker of Gulf Pointe Properties, Inc and has over 9 years experience in the SW Florida Real Estate Market. He is a member of The Naples Area Board of Realtors, Bonita Springs – Estero Association of Realtors, Realtor Association of Greater Fort Myers and the Beach, The Florida Association of Realtors, The National Association of Realtors, and is nationally certified in Feng Shui for Real Estate. Need real estate help? Please contact Gabe at: 239.825.2234, Gabe@GulfPointeProperties.com or www.GulfPointeProperties.com