Selling Your Home: 5 Common Mistakes To Avoid
Selling your home is a major life milestone and it can be especially stressful when selling your first home. Alleviate stress by anticipating problems before they arise. By knowing the most common home selling mistakes, you can protect your investment and enjoy a smoother process.
- Not Hiring a REALTOR®
While it’s true you can sell your home yourself, often it is not wise to take the do-it-yourself approach. It pays to hire a real estate agent to assist you with the process. Because of their negotiating skills, real estate agents will help you get the best possible price for your home, as well as favorable contract terms. There are many points of negotiation in addition to price and the contract is a legal document, so it pays to have the guidance of a pro.
National Association of Realtors statistics show that the typical For Sale by Owner home sold for $260,000 compared to $318,000 for agent-assisted home sales. So, it may seem like it’s a good idea to avoid paying commission by not hiring a real estate agent, the fact is you will miss out on the market knowledge, marketing, negotiating skills, and the expertise a professional real estate agent spends years perfecting. Which means more money for the sale of your home, even after paying commission.
- Pricing Too High
Although netting the highest amount possible for your home is something everyone aims for, it is also important to be realistic about the property’s value. Of course, there is nothing that can stop you from setting a price that you want, but it’s the buyers who establish market value. And it’s important to be aware of the time factor. Timing is an important factor for most sellers and in a hot market, a property that remains unsold after a matter of weeks can become stigmatized.
People who overprice their properties eventually lower the price in order to sell. By the time they lower the price, they have missed the highest period of activity on a new listing. Real estate agents are well aware of this, and they know exactly how to price a home so that it gets buyers interested during a new listing’s peak period of activity.
- Failing To Make Improvements
One of the best ways to increase the value of your home is to make updates and repairs. The remodeling project you undertake must not only be within your budget but also in line with market value in order to yield a high return for your money. Not all home remodeling projects will increase the value of your property. Home renovations that make your property stand out include replacing your roof, front door, HVAC, modernizing bathrooms and kitchen.
If your budget is limited, however, you don’t have to tackle a full-on remodel. There are minor changes that you can make to your house that will make a difference. For instance, you can change the bathroom tiles or replace plumbing fixtures. A fresh coat of paint and updating fixtures, including lighting, are tasks most homeowners can handle themselves and make an impact.
Decluttering, depersonalizing and a deep clean are essential to making your property look its best. Take care of any deferred maintenance items and make sure the exterior and interior of your home are spotless.
Most homebuyers prefer move-in ready, and a real estate agent can help you evaluate which fixes and improvements are needed before marketing your home for sale.
- Avoiding a Pre-listing Home Inspection
Some home sellers make the mistake of waiving the pre-listing home inspection. Although this inspection can expose things that are wrong with your house, such as a cracked foundation, mold, and pests, it is better to be aware of these problems and to tackle them before putting the house on the market. Home inspections are affordable and most buyers will pay to have one after their contract is accepted, so a pre-listing inspection removes inspection surprises.
If the home inspector uncovers an issue or issues that you choose not to fix, make it a point to let buyers know about it and provide an estimate for the cost to remedy. Most states require disclosure of property defects, so honesty is not only the best policy, it’s the law.
- Allowing Emotions to Get the Best of You
Selling a house is not always easy emotionally, especially if you have lived in that house for many years. Home is where the heart is and often holds sentimental value. A house is not just a physical structure for many people; it is a place where lasting memories are created. However, if you are not careful, you can end up making decisions based on your emotions. You need to base the valuation of your house on hard numbers, not its emotional value to you.
As soon as you decide to sell your home, start thinking of it as an investment – a commodity – and start making plans for a new home to love and make memories in.
Summer House Realty
At Summer House Realty we are experts in the local Amelia Island and Augusta real estate markets. We know home values, inventory, investment opportunities, and commercial real estate. We know to make your home stand out from the rest. If you would like to interview one of our agents, contact our Amelia Island 904.557.3020 or Augusta 706.955.6436 locations. Our experienced Realtors® are ready to assist you with selling your home.