7 Biggest Property Seller Mistakes

Pricing your property too high: Just because the house up the block recently sold for a hefty sum does not necessarily mean your home is worth as much. That new roof and furnace are tangible improvements and do add $20K to the market value. Not being realistic about this can cost you time and money. Buyers may place your property on a backup list rather than a ‘hot list’ of homes to view and worse, they may buy one of the initial homes they visit without ever setting foot in yours.

Not having a CMA created: A Comparative Market Assessment is a survey of recently sold and active listings in your area. The CMA report compares your property to these sold and active listings and forms a basis for predicting a realistic asking price for your home. Other useful data contained in the CMA include: days on market, asking price vs. actual selling price, and other important property comparison details.

Not preparing your property: You want your property to be seen in the best possible light from Day 1. Make sure to clear out the clutter, keep things tidy during showings/open houses, make necessary repairs and do the routine maintenance before your home hits the open market. The items you don’t repair will become apparent during the buyer’s home inspection process anyway so why not get them attended to now.

Doing over-the-top renovations: This can often have unintended consequences as many buyers prefer simple styles and are not willing to stray too far outside the lines. Even if they can be convinced to purchase a home with unconventional upgrades, getting them to pay an amount anywhere close to what they cost to have installed is another story entirely. So think twice before installing that sauna and jacuzzi in the spare bedroom.

Making it difficult to view your home: This ties in with overpricing in that buyers may be busy making offers and buying comparable homes instead of buying yours if they can’t make an appointment on reasonable notice to view it. Giving easy access to buyers will go a long way to ensuring a quick sale and will show buyers that you are serious about selling. So yes, you may have to schedule Poker Night elsewhere while your property is being marketed.

Being too emotionally attached to the property: Don’t be offended if the first offer you see is substantially lower than your asking price. There will always be bottom feeders in the market and these initial buyers may ultimately purchase your home. Once you decide to sell, the property is no longer your ‘home’ but instead simply an asset you need to part with. This may be one of the most difficult things for sellers as people have a tendency to get attached especially if they’ve owned a home for a long period of time.

Not using a REALTOR®: For the vast majority of people, marketing their home without a REALTOR® is not a realistic option. The factors working against you include: substantial time investment required, not being able to maintain an arm’s length relationship with potential buyers, having to be available to show the property at all times, and not having access to the MLS® system. Unless you have no job and no life you will likely find this more work than you are willing to undertake.

I welcome any questions you may have about selling or buying.

Feel free to comment or contact me directly.

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