You need to sell your home fast? Most people consider 2012 to be a buyer’s market. How do you sell your home in a tough market?
Take stock of the three key areas and then make a plan. The three things you need to consider are 1.) Asking Price, 2.) Condition, 3.) Market.
The asking price or “list price” is critical. American buyers are conditioned to purchase retail at sticker price. Many buyers simply will not make an offer on a property if the list price feels too high. The buyer does not want to offend the seller with an offer that is too low. Many agents do not want to make low offers. Your job is to study the most recent sales of similar houses to better understand your value. Then size up the number of properties for sale in your price range and area. Find our how many homes sell in your price range per month. Divide the number of active competitors by the number of homes that sell monthly. This will give you months of inventory. This exercise gives everyone involved a more sober look at the task ahead. If you are still not believing what the market is doing, then visit homes on the market for sale and drive by the homes that sold. Gain a little buyer’s perspective.
The condition of your home can change how long it takes to sell as well as price. You can change the condition with staging, remodeling, additions, etc. Deep cleaning is the first priority as well as de-cluttering. If you are truly selling then go ahead pack up clutter and put it in storage, give or throw it away. Pressure washing gives everything from paint to concrete drives and sidewalks a fresh “new” look. Visit your competition before making costly decorating or rehab decisions. Sellers spend too much time and money on things that do not matter or even worse hurt the sale. We spent roughly 10% of value of relocation homes in the early 1990s to “Neutralize” and carpet homes to help them sell quicker. Some shades of gray, pink or purple may be your cat’s meow but to a buyer a big turnoff. Stick to the dull off-whites.
The market is your city and even your neighborhood. Jobs are critical to home sales and each micro market reflects it. As a nation we are in a “buyers” market. When you look at cities they are very different. At this writing in late 2012, Toronto enjoys an average 28 days on market, San Diego is 81 days on market and Chattanooga is 135. These are averages for the homes that have recently sold. Some cities may be experiencing a “seller’s” market. The months of inventory and the types of financing that most buyers are using is important to find out.
You may be facing a situation where you cannot lower the price because of loans owed. You may need to think about deed-in-lieu, short sale, or modification and selling an option for cash.
Stay creative and keep up the promotion!