Selling your home can be both exciting and emotional. You’re looking forward to a new change with either a move to a new town, wanting to downsize, or needing a larger home. But leaving a home full of treasured memories may be difficult. Although you have strong attachments to your home, it’s important put aside sentimental feelings and make your home sale one of your smartest moves. It pays to do your homework upfront in order to avoid the most common seller mistakes. Think carefully about each of these potential mistakes to avoid frustration for you and your family, and to save yourself thousands of dollars.
Mistake #1 – Trying to Sell Your Home before It’s Physically Ready
Don’t rush when making necessary repairs and cosmetic upgrades before putting your home on the market. You will lose money if you don’t make the repairs prior to listing your home for sale. It will end up being less costly for you to do the repairs then to have buyers see your home in disrepair. You are most likely guaranteed that offers will be lower, and buyers will want credit back for work that still needs to be done. Tip: Have a pre-listing home inspection done so you can address any issues that may be discovered before putting our home on the market.
Mistake #2 – Hiding Your Home’s Flaws
Trying to cover up serious problems like foundation issues, water damage, or mold can come back to haunt you. Don’t try to keep your home’s history a secret from buyers. Any flaws will most likely be discovered during the home inspection, and you could lose the sale. Also, if hidden problems surface after the house is sold, you could be faced with a messy legal battle. Be upfront with both your listing agent and your buyers, it will save you lots of time and money.
Mistake #3 – Selling Your Home Without a Professional Real Estate Agent
Statistics show that homes without representation remain on the market longer and end up selling at a lower price than those listed with a professional real estate agent. An experienced real estate agent will, research comparable properties, help you price your home, market your home, deal with buyers and their agents, and a professional real estate agent will complete the many details necessary to ensure a successful home sale.
Mistake #4 – Setting an Unrealistic Price on Your Home
Even in markets where inventory is tight, sellers need to be careful about overpricing their home. Properties that are priced too high usually end up selling for less than they would have if they had been priced correctly from the start. Pricing a home to sell is an art. You must look at comparable sales in your immediate area, as well as market movement, demand, location, and your home’s condition. Sellers who are forced to lower their asking price after their home has been on the market for several weeks lose their competitive edge in final negotiations.
Mistake #5 – Being Present for Showings
As much as you want to be fully involved with the sale of your home, it’s best not to be home during showings. When sellers are home potential buyers feel uncomfortable, they feel as though they are intruding. Buyers want to go through your house and envision themselves living there. They want to feel free to open closets, look in cabinets or sit at the kitchen table to get a sense of what it would be like to live in your house. When sellers are home, buyers feel rushed and are not able to go through your home at their own pace.
Mistake #6 – Refusing to Negotiate
Although your home has a lot of sentimental value to you and your family, it must be treated as a commodity once you put it on the market. Put your emotions aside and be ready for reasonable negotiations. You need to start with a fair and realistic price on your home, but you should also build in a small cushion. Be prepared for the buyer who may offer an extremely low-ball price just to see what the response will be. Of course, they want to pay as little as possible, and they want to feel like they got a great property at a bargain price. An experienced real estate agent is an invaluable asset for negotiating the tricky path of getting your price without scaring off the potential buyer.
When you do your homework upfront and then are aware of the most common mistakes to avoid when selling your West Chicagoland home, it will give you the knowledge you need to help make your home sale a smooth, headache free transaction.