Entry #243, August 13, 2010
When selling your home in this difficult home market, a slow period is expected. Between the enormous amount of inventory of homes to choose from, buyers have their pick of thousands. Although, when is it time to re-evaluate why your home is still on the market? If other homes in your neighborhood are selling, and yours is not, it is time to look at your current situation.
I found this article on MSN Money that talks about why your home may not be selling. These tips are very helpful, and should be taken into heavy consideration when deciding to keep your house on the market or not.
1.) House is overpriced:
Overpricing is the most common reason homes don’t sell. When you ask an unrealistic price, it sets in motion a process that often works against you. Here’s why:
Most real estate agents, and hence most qualified buyers, will see your new listing within 30 days. If it is overpriced by as little as 5%, it will be duly noted and interest in your property will wane, especially if you show no intention of coming off your asking price. You likely already priced out buyers who might have qualified for financing at a more reasonable price. Even if you manage to find a buyer at your inflated asking price, the property may not appraise at that figure and the financing will fall apart.
2.) House doesn’t ‘show’ well:
Your home is competing against shiny new houses in those pristine subdivisions out in the suburbs with their attractive prices, incentives and community amenities.
Face it: Even the best old house needs a little makeover if it hopes to attract a qualified buyer.
The good news is most of the work will be cosmetic and relatively inexpensive: a new coat of paint, a few attractive window boxes, a thorough cleaning of floors and carpets. Voila! The place may look good enough to reconsider.
3.) House is in bad location:
Nothing has a greater effect on your home’s value than its location. Your humble abode might be worth a king’s ransom were it located in Palm Beach, Aspen or San Francisco. It might even jump thousands in value just two streets over in the next (and far superior) school district.
“If you’re in one of the higher-ranked schools around here, you’re going to add $50,000 to $100,000 to the price of the same house,” says Lenn Harley, a broker with Homefinders.com Inc. in Maryland and Virginia.
The point is, location rules in real estate.
4.) Poor listing agent:
Their bad advice can cost you plenty in time, money and the sheer hassle of keeping the place show-ready 24/7.
The agent from hell will allow you to overprice your home (“Here’s what I can get for you if you list with me!”), not market it properly, fail to screen for qualified buyers, be unresponsive to interest from other agents (if they sell their own listing, they don’t have to split the commission) and keep you totally in the dark throughout the process.
What’s more, if your agent is abrasive, arrogant or otherwise difficult to work with, other agents may not want the hassle of showing any of their listings to prospective buyers.
5.) Ineffective marketing:
Gone are the days when an agent could simply place your listing with the local multiple listing service, hold a halfhearted open house and wait for another agent to bring forth a buyer.
Today’s top performers launch a multilevel marketing plan that includes listing tours for area agents, newspaper and even TV ads, weekend open houses, listing fliers and placements in local real estate publications.
Computers and the Internet also have changed the face of real estate. According to the National Association of Realtors, today more than one-third of all home buyers use the Internet for house hunting. The best real estate agents are computer-savvy. They have your listing in color on their laptops to show clients and communicate frequently via e-mail, a particular boon when working with out-of-town buyers.
Suffice it to say that if your real estate agent isn’t listing your home online through the company Web site as well as with the local MLS, you may not be getting the exposure necessary to find a buyer.
“There are those who just put the listing in the multiple and pray it will sell and those that put a lot of effort into marketing their listings,” says Fisher. “Unfortunately, with this weird system of compensation we have, they all get paid the same, whether they know nothing or have many years of experience.”
For more home buying & selling tips on Stagetecture, click here.