When you list your home for sale, sellers can sometimes make mistakes that will not only turn off potential buyers, but may make the transaction more difficult than it needs to be.
Whether you’ve sold 20 houses, or are getting ready to sell your first, don’t make these rookie mistakes!
1. Overpricing your home.
We sometimes hear sellers say they’d like to price their home a little higher “just to see what happens”. We can’t discourage this enough. If your home is overpriced, buyers will know it and your property will sit on the market for longer. Get a Free Home Evaluation and find out what an appropriate listing price would be.
2. Thinking your home is “clean enough”.
Now is not the time to ignore the dust bunnies. Your home needs to be spotless. Buyers will be looking in closets, under sinks and in every corner of the home. A home that has been deep-cleaned shows that you’ve maintained it well and could be the deciding factor for buyers.
3. Leaving a room cluttered.
Your home may be clean, but how cluttered is it? Too many knick-knacks on shelves, papers on desks, or an over-abundance of blankets on the couch can look overwhelming to buyers. When you have too many distractions in a room, it can feel smaller and claustrophobic. Start packing up these items now and let your rooms feel more open and airy.
4. Political, religious or controversial belongings.
We want to attract as many buyers as we can. Anything that is left out on display is going to have an effect on what people think of your home. If you think anything could be polarizing one way or another, it’s probably better to pack them away.
5. Dark and dreary rooms.
Every time you have a showing booked, we want you to turn on ALL the lights (yes, even during the day) and open ALL the curtains. The brighter your home looks, the more appealing and attractive it looks. Nobody wants to enter a dark, unfamiliar home with the curtains pulled shut. Make it bright and welcoming!
6. Using crummy photographs and video to market the home.
We provide professional photography and video services for all our listings. If your real estate agent thinks you’ll be fine with some quick iPhone shots they take themselves, demand better. The better your photos and video are from the start, the more buyers you’ll entice to see your home in person!
7. Lurking around during showings & open houses.
Every time a buyer books a showing, and every time we host an open house at your property, it’s so important that you leave the premises. Buyers are intimidated by the sellers lurking around; they can’t look around or speak freely. Go grab a coffee and we will share any feedback we receive from those buyers as soon as possible!
8. Being too restrictive with showing times.
While we try to give as much notice as possible for showing requests, there will inevitably be some last minute bookings. Try to be flexible and allow as many agents as possible show your home. We will try to accommodate any restrictions you may have, but the more open you’re willing to be, the more buyers will see your listing.
9. Leaving your pets at home during showings.
Some buyers may be allergic or scared of pets – even those cute puppies and purring cats. Some buyers might just be plain annoyed. While crating animals is an option, it’s usually better to take them with you during showings. This allows buyers to look in rooms without being barked at or disturbed in any way.
10. Remaining emotionally attached to your home.
This home is where you’ve shared countless memories and a lifetime of love. But it’s important to detach yourself from that and think of your home as a commodity you’re selling. No one can ever purchase those priceless feelings – they’re just buying the walls, floor and roof. Bear that in mind when attaching a value to your property.
11. Disregarding buyer feedback.
We request feedback from every buyer that views your home. Sometimes they provide delightful comments about the home. Other times, they may talk about what they didn’t like. It’s important not to be offended by these critiques, but rather use them to make changes or alterations that will benefit your listing.
12. Ignoring your curb appeal.
While the inside of your home might be spectacular, if you ignore the outside you’ll be turning buyers away. Make sure your lawn is cut, flower beds are tidy, leaves are raked and snow is shovelled. A couple of potted plants on the porch can add a pop of colour and a welcoming vibe, and good lighting is a must.
13. Not taking care of little repairs.
A burnt out lightbulb. A jiggly door knob. A wobbly cupboard door. All of these things start to add up in a potential buyer’s mind and give the impression that there’s going to be worse things to find later on. By taking a weekend to fix all of these “little things” in advance, you’ll be leaving a better impression on everyone that comes to visit!
14. Not effectively staging the home.
Believe it or not, buyers like to see rooms staged with furniture and decor in appealing ways. Even vacant homes “show better” when they’ve been properly staged. Help your buyers visualize what is possible with each room by using appropriately sized furniture and decor as though it’s a magazine-worthy room!
15. Not ensuring tenants will be cooperative.
If you’re a landlord listing your tenanted investment property, you should stress to your tenants the importance of keeping a tidy house, and allowing for as many showings as possible. The more cooperative your tenants can be, the smoother this process will be.
16. Trying to sell your home by yourself.
Working with an agent is worth every penny, and we’re not just saying that! Selling a home is a complex world of legal forms that can protect you in the long run… marketing expenses and reverse prospecting with potential buyers… and following up with every potential lead possible. Your home is your most expensive asset, so why wouldn’t you want to have a professional represent you?
17. Expecting that you’ll get multiple offers.
It can be a great surprise to hear that multiple buyers want to submit offers on your home. But don’t expect it. We price homes at a fair market value, and we don’t encourage under-pricing a home to promote multiple offers. If it happens – great! But we’re just as thrilled when our listings get one solid offer as well.
18. Not budging on price.
If you receive an offer that’s below the listing price, you might need to be flexible on pricing, especially if you’re in a buyer’s market. Consider making a counter offer. Receiving a few thousand less than what you were hoping for is a small concession to make over the long term.
19. Thinking that just a sign on the lawn and an MLS listing is enough.
Believe it or not, some real estate agents will just stick a sign on the front lawn, listing your home, and then sit back and wait. That’s not a very effective approach to selling a home. Choose an agent that is proactively searching for buyers, marketing your property to other agents, conducting research, and creating strategic marketing campaigns. If they’re not working regularly on improving your listing’s analytics, what are you paying them for?
20. Using a friend or family member to sell your home, and not The Kate Broddick Team!
Everyone knows someone who works in real estate. But it doesn’t mean they can provide the results you want. Buying or selling a home is a big decision, and it’s important to do your homework and ask the right questions. You’ll need to share personal financial information with this person, have tough conversations, and put all your faith in their ability to SELL. How will you handle it if the professional relationship isn’t working out?
If that causes you any stress, save the friendship! Contact The Kate Broddick Team as a neutral third-party. We’ve been the #1 Real Estate Team in Brantford and Brant County since 2015* and we have become one of Norfolk’s most prestigious brokerages as well! We buy and sell more real estate than any other brokerage in our area and we are ready to work for you to meet your real estate goals.