In the hot summer months, when home inventory is low and demand is soaring, sellers may think that their home will move in mere minutes—and at a price that defies even the loftiest expectations. Let’s face it. These dreams of big prices and warp speed sales can spell disaster—and major disappointment.
Don’t worry! With a few smart, premeditated steps—and the help of a savvy agent—it’s easy to head-off common misconceptions. Here are five simple must-know facts and tips that sellers need to know before their home hits the market this summer.
1. Staging matters—big time!
Every agent knows the old adage, “Homes that don’t show well don’t close well.” But still, time and time again we see sellers rail against the time and cost associated with staging a home. After all, if they love their home as it is, why shouldn’t everyone else? This is a situation where sometimes showing trumps telling. Go on a two-home showing; one where the home is staged and one where the home is not. Their decor may be a beautiful expression of their personality, but sometimes less is more.
Also remember that when the warm weather comes, it’s as equally important to show off the outside of the home as it is to highlight the inside of the home. During the summer selling season, buyers are more likely to value things like a stellar backyard, a great (but low-maintenance) garden, or incredible curb appeal.
2. The market sets the price, not the owner.
It’s understandable that many home sellers think that their home is above the price that the market dictates. Sentimental value often translates into an inflated sense of the home’s worth, but when it comes price, the winning opinion is always the market’s opinion. Agents know it’s impossible to effectively price a home without taking into account the competition. Unfortunately, too many sellers don’t.
3. Small renovations may mean big bucks later.
In many cases, the cost of a home repair is less expensive than a potential buyer perceives the cost of the repair to be. If buyers over estimate the cost of fixing the problem, it may negatively impact the offer amount and end up costing the seller more in the long run.
4. Incentives can help close the deal faster.
Offering practical incentives might not sound sexy, but those that fill legitimate buyer needs have the power to differentiate a listing from the competition and attract just the right attention needed to get the home sold for the right price.
5. Real estate is a local business.
The last few years have turned real estate headlines into high-profile news. Home prices are on the rise. For many sellers, seeing the numbers is just the ammunition they need to see to agree to the right price.