Opting to sell your property is no small decision. To start off with, your home is probably the biggest asset you currently own, and if you initially bought it with the intent of later selling it, it is also an asset that you hope will deliver a good return on investment when you put it on the market.
For precisely this reason, many first-time home sellers are often distraught when they find they have difficulty garnering attention from potential buyers. If yours is the home that is still listed on property websites week after week, it can be discouraging and demotivating, making it difficult to put in the effort needed to get that “for sale” in the front yard to say “sold” instead.
Whether you are selling your property in order to purchase a larger home or one that is smaller and better serves your current needs, or whether you are looking to see how your investment property can reap financial benefits, selling a home is no walk in the park.
Of course, a trustworthy and experienced real estate agent has been down this road before – and not once, but numerous times. When one is this seasoned in the property market, the experience is highly beneficial, often leading to quicker sales at higher prices.
If this is your first time venturing into the world of real estate sales, you’ll want someone who understands the game by your side, and a real estate agent recommended by Perfect Agent is exactly that person.
With that being said, there are some common reasons why homes spend far too many days on the property market. If you pay attention to these, you and your real estate agent might just have a much easier time selling your home with a good profit in tow.
Why your home isn’t selling
We generally define a property that is struggling to sell as one that spends an extended time on the market without an offer being made. The exact number of days on market can vary, depending on the city or suburb you are selling in, and on the market conditions that are currently at play in said city or suburb.
Your real estate agent will be able to give you a good idea of what the national and local property markets are doing at a specific time, but there is always the risk of a property going stale. As is the case with stale bread in the supermarket, a property that has spent too long on the market may be unappealing to prospective buyers.
Make no mistake – buyers that are looking to acquire a home will notice when a specific property remains visible in online listings for a long time. Buyers might start thinking that there is a pertinent reason for the property spending a significant time on the market, and will likely not even go through what they might view as the hassle of viewing a property that no one else is interested in.
It’s worth mentioning, though, that almost ridiculously simple reasons are often behind a home being difficult to sell, and these are certainly things that you can remedy if you are willing to compromise on the initial ideas you had when deciding to put your property on the market.
1) It’s overpriced
By far the most common reason that potential buyers are put off from buying specific properties is that the price of the home is simply too high. Granted, setting a price on a property is not the easiest thing in the world. Deciding on an asking price is not something that should be done willy-nilly, or by thumb sucking and guessing what a fair price for the property might be.
When your real estate agent initially consults with you regarding the sale of the property, they will ask what number you are thinking of putting on your property’s price tag. They will advise you as to whether the price you mention is realistic and fair, but will also make a recommendation about a price that won’t put prospective buyers off.
It’s important to note that this number will not simply be plucked from the air, but will also be based on the comparative market analysis (CMA) that the real estate agent helping you to sell will do. When doing the comparative market analysis, your real estate agent will take into account the current state and features of the property, along with comparing it to similar homes in the same city or suburb. This makes sense: if your property’s price is significantly higher than other similar homes in the area, prospective buyers will obviously go for the cheaper option.
Indeed, property market conditions in the suburb or city you’re selling in will certainly have a hand in what your home is likely to fetch when it ultimately sells. Failing to take what is happening in the market into account when settling on an asking price will inevitably lead to disappointment for you. A real estate agent that understands the movements of the market is indispensable when it comes to pricing your home correctly.
2) It’s in poor condition
Of course, properties that are not in the best shape will linger on the market longer than homes that are ready to move into. These homes, which are colloquially known as fixer-uppers, are more likely to garner the interest of homebuyers that are looking for an investment property that they can renovate and flip again later – but these types of buyers are far outnumbered by people looking to purchase a property that doesn’t need that much work.
Again, an experienced real estate agent is a godsend in this regard. When initially discussing the sale of your home, your real estate agent will also make recommendations about repairs and renovations that will add value to the property, and will lead to a handsome return on investment when the home sells. While these recommendations may be limited to smaller fixes like repainting, other renovations can be more significant, and also a little more expensive. These include things like repairing the roof or undertaking plumbing renovations. Even if bigger renovations will cost more, these are also things that discerning buyers will keep a keen eye out for, and which will set off warning bells and may even put them off buying the property entirely.
It’s worth noting that a little effort can also go a long way in creating a good first impression when buyers start viewing the property. Your real estate agent will probably recommend that you stage the home prior to viewings. Staging the property entails that personal and sentimental items or photos, religious and political regalia and such are stored out of sight of potential buyers, and that the home is styled in a way that is likely to appeal to the broadest group of potential buyers. The purpose of staging the home is to help buyers imagine themselves in the space – this is why anything that has the potential to sway buyers’ interest should rather be put away. When the time to move comes, you’ll be grateful that some of the packing has already been done!
Owners of older properties will especially benefit from some cleaning up, and from a fresh lick of paint here and there. If a home looks dilapidated, buyers will assume that they’re purchasing a cat in the bag. If that impression has already taken hold of buyers, there’s very little homeowners can do to convince them otherwise.
3) You have a bad real estate agent
The importance of having a good real estate agent to help you sell can’t be stressed enough. While sellers are welcome to attempt putting their home on the market and handling all the nitty-gritty aspects of the home-selling process by themselves, they will probably soon need an expert in this field to assist with things like the administrative requirements associated with a sale.
Many homeowners that are unwilling to enlist the services of an experienced and qualified real estate agent are discouraged by the prospect of having to pay commission to a real estate agent after a sale has gone through. In these sellers’ minds, they’ll be sacrificing some of the profit that they are entitled to. However, the commission that real estate agents charge for their services is a tiny price to pay for the expertise that they’ll be getting.
When deciding on a real estate agent to help you sell, it’s important to find out what their qualifications are, whether they are registered to do business in your specific city or suburb, and to ask them about previous recent sales. You may want to interview a few real estate agents before deciding who to use, but this will also give you a chance to gauge whether the agent understands your specific needs and requirements.
Are you stumped about where to start looking for a good real estate agent you can trust? Let Perfect Agent recommend a number of candidates, based on your exact needs.