Whether selling your home is something that you want to do or something that you are being forced to do, you naturally want to receive the most money possible from the transaction. Whether you have been transferred and must sell immediately or you're an empty-nester with all the time in the world, you want to make sure that you get the best possible price for your home.
The best way to do that is to avoid the most common mistakes that many sellers make.
1. Not interviewing enough Realtors
Many sellers interview only one Realtor before listing their home. Trusting your most important asset to the first person you meet simply isn't the best way to do business. By interviewing only one Realtor, you are not necessarily hiring the one with the best marketing plan for you and your property. A strong agent will not shy away from the competition. (NOTE: “Strong” does not necessarily mean aggressive.) Ask your friends, neighbors and associates for recommendations.
2. Choosing a Realtor based on how high he/she is willing to list the home.
Prior to completing a competitive market analysis (CMA) an agent should have toured your home and neighborhood. Only after doing this can they properly compare your home to the other properties (comps) they will be using to make their price determination. (Beware the agent who tries to price it: 1) before they’ve toured it, 2) without presenting documented proof outlining the comparable properties they used, or 3) who allows you to set the price yourself without further discussion!) Following this level of research, your Realtor should be able to price your home appropriately.
Unfortunately, many sellers have a set price in mind before they even speak with an agent and then refuse to budge from it whether their home warrants it or not. In fact, many are willing to simply ignore black and white proof when the market analysis shows that their home’s true market value is lower than what they desire. Do not let emotion get in your way. Analyze the numbers!
While a principled Realtor will not accept an overpriced listing, as it is truly a disservice to the client, some Realtors will accept it even though they know that it is unlikely to sell. Some see it as free advertising. (As long as his/her sign is in your yard, the agent will get calls from people driving by your home. If your home isn't priced right for them, they may let your agent show them others.) Others simply believe that when your home hasn't sold after several weeks, you will be more than willing to reduce the price just to get it sold. The problem with that reasoning is that you will likely end up with less than if you had priced it correctly in the first place. The saying is “Nobody wants a house that nobody else wants.” The odds are good that you will be offered significantly less than the Realtor would have priced your home in the first place.
3. Failing to prepare the home for sale before it goes on the market
Preparing your home for sale can include everything from spring-cleaning to repainting, clearing out clutter to making repairs, and it should always include freshening up the landscape. It's hard work, but it matters!
If your home needs work it will not compare favorably to others whose owners have taken the time and gone to the expense to freshen them. Also, you must keep in mind that you are competing not only with homes of the same age, but with new homes as well.
4. Overpricing your home
Most buyers are pre-qualified for a specific loan amount. If your home is overpriced, they will compare it to other homes in their price range that are larger or have more features, and will pass on yours. At the same time, buyers who might well have purchased your home won’t even see it because you have priced it outside its appropriate range. In addition, a good agent will have already priced your neighborhood before he/she begins showing in it. In order to protect the buyer’s best interests he/she will not show them a home that they know is overpriced. Determining your homes value
5. Never sign a listing based on vague verbal promises.
Some agents will tell you whatever you want to hear in an effort to get you to sign a listing, but you should insist on a written marketing plan. This plan should state specifically what services and marketing the agent and their company will do for you; where will your home be advertised, what other unique marketing ideas the agent be will using, how many feedback calls you will receive every week and a basic schedule of these events.
Fear of non-performance is understandably a key reason why home sellers are concerned about listing their home with a real estate company. How do you know that the company will uphold their promises? How do you know that you have an agent who fully understands the art of marketing and is skilled at attracting a steady stream of qualified buyers through your home?
While a written agreement is necessary, there is no reason that you have be locked into a long-term listing agreement. Now, the risk and anxiety associated with listing your home can be eliminated, thanks to our "EASY OUT" listing agreement.
Our "EASY OUT" listing allows you to cancel your listing at any time, for any reason, if at any time you are not 100% satisfied with our marketing effort. You can simply cancel the listing just by calling us or sending us a letter. No hassle. No questions asked!
Our "EASY OUT" listing agreement allows YOU to be in control! Don't gamble with your most valuable asset - get it in writing.