Selling a home is a big decision which can be time-consuming, emotionally draining and, if you don’t make smart calls, very expensive. To get the most money out of selling your property, you need to do everything right and avoid the wrong moves that could cost you thousands and tens of thousands of dollars. With that goal in mind, here are some of the most common mistakes home sellers make when listing their houses, along with the ways to avoid them.
Trying to do it all yourself
It’s just selling a house, there is no science to it, right? Wrong. Sure, at the beginning, it may look like a piece of cake, all you need to do is an evaluation of the price, take a few photos of your house and put it out there. Do all this and you will save on real estate agent commission, but in the end, it might cost you more than you were hoping for. You need an expert who can keep emotions out of the game when pricing and showing your house. Also, marketing and showing a house can be a full-time job; do you really have enough time for it? Finally, negotiating the price and additional fees requires having experience and knowing the pulse of the market.
Putting the wrong price tag
Estimating the price is something a good real estate agent should take care of, but you should be involved in the decision-making process. Homeowners often overprice their property because of the emotional stakes or underprice it because they are in a hurry to sell. Take your time to research properties similar to your own that are listed for sale or already sold and see their prices. Also, establish whether your house has a feature that raises its value (e.g. a pool).
Not making repairs before listing
Imagine you were buying a house; would you buy a home that has faulty electrical installations or any other malfunction? Maybe you would, but you would certainly ask for a lower price or demand a credit back for the repairs that need to be done before closing the deal. That’s why it is imperative to make all the necessary repairs before listing your house for sale and then the buyers won’t have anything to use to their advantage when negotiating the price.
Not sprucing up the outdoor space
Many sellers direct all of their attention to the interior of the house, and while there is nothing wrong with making the interior look more attractive, neglecting the front and the backyard can be an expensive mistake. Boosting the curb appeal can increase the value of your home significantly, and that includes everything from laying out the lawn to painting the exterior of the house. It is very important to remove all the safety hazards, such as large trees growing into the electrical wires. However, this is something you can’t do on your own. Hiring professional tree removal service providers is the better call.
Not preparing your home for showings and open houses
Getting your house in top shape for the house showing and open houses is the essential thing you need to do if you want to find a buyer quickly and get the desired price. Besides repairs and sprucing up the outdoor space, you need to clean, de-clutter and refresh (e.g. a coat of paint) the house interior in a way that makes the property appealing to home buyers and makes it possible for them to imagine themselves living in it. This means you shouldn’t leave any traces of your previous life there. Keep the style clean and neutral.
Opening up the door for new expenses
You’ve set your price, but you are willing to negotiate. However, you may end up paying additional fees and penalties. One of the ways this can happen is by being dishonest with buyers about the home’s issues. If you don’t reveal them all, the buyers will find out eventually and when they do, they will demand you to pay big bucks to fix them. Also, not asking for a full list of fees and expenses before closing the deal can lead to an unpleasant surprise later on.
Finally, the most important piece of advice you can get when it comes to selling your property is to always be prepared for less-than-ideal scenarios.
Author: Will Sandford is a Sydney based wood architect, blogger, and contributor on interior design and ecology blogs. Besides that, he is also interested in home improvement combined with green technology. In his spare time, Will enjoys surfing and rock climbing. He is a regular contributor to SmoothDecorator website.