From incorrect pricing to lack of preparation, there are numerous mistakes a seller can make when putting a house on the market. Here are some things to remember:
Bad Pricing - The right price sells a house faster than any other factor. If you are priced more than 5% over market price, potential buyers may only look for "comparison purposes", not because they are interested.
As-Is' Condition - Most buyers are turned off when a house needs repairs. Buyers want a home to be 'move-in' ready. When viewing, buyers will mentally calculate the cost of each repair and deduct that from the price. First impressions count.
Touch-Up, Spruce-Up - One of your best investments when selling your home is a gallon of paint, but stay neutral with color. Take a look at your carpeting and replace it if necessary. Spring clean, even if it's not spring, and get rid of junk ... de-clutter ... put it in storage for now. Focus on the kitchen and master bedroom and clear off counters, organize cupboards, put winter clothes into storage and move/remove furniture to make the rooms look larger. Don't forget the garage ... it should store cars and display garden tools. The $100/mo you spend to store your excess treasures could net you thousands on your sale price!
Curb Appeal - Stand across the street and look at your house through the eyes of a buyer. A well manicured lawn with flower beds shows pride of ownership and is a good indication of how the home is kept inside. 'Curb Appeal' can significantly increase the value of your home so if you're not so inclined, hire a lawn care company while your house is on the market. You want your home to scream "buy me"!
Over-improving - Fix what needs fixing to ready your home for the market but a major project could cost more than you will recover. If your improvements push your home's value to 20% over the neighbours, don't expect to recover the entire cost. Some major projects however, like replacing a roof, should be done if needed.
Slow Negotiations - One of the most important negotiating factors is an immediate reply to an offer. When buyers make an offer they are in a buying mood, right then. You don't want a buyer to 'cool' while he waits for your next move because you may lose that buyer if you stall.
Adversarial State of Mind - Approach negotiations with a positive mind-set knowing that both you and the buyer want the same thing ... a sale. Leave discussion of price, terms, possession and other conditions up to your agent. It's my job to get you the best deal.
Friendly Environment - Prospective buyers should feel comfortable during a showing so try to go out until they leave. If that's not possible stay out of their way, keep children and pets from underfoot and give the buyers some space so they can look closely without feeling "watched". If an open house is scheduled, plan to be away from home but let me know how to reach you quickly.
Pets - A concern for buyer's is house smells and allergies, especially with pets. If you have cats or dogs get a deodorizer and put it in the pet area (by the litter box, etc) but don't use anything that's too strong as it will appear you're trying to mask something, you just want to deodorize. For showings it's best to hide pet toys and the litter box or put it outside and absolutely remove the pet.
For Sale by Owner - Without a professional Realtor, you may not sell your home but if you do, surveys show self-sellers often net less than sellers using a Realtor. Access to the Multiple Listing Service® is available to licensed Realtors only, exposing your home to more than 3,000 agents in Edmonton alone. I work closely with my clients to price your home properly and market it aggressively. From bringing qualified buyers and keeping things on track during negotiations, to closing and key release, I work hard to get you the highest price and the best terms.