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Are you thinking of listing your home? With a competitive market such as St. Louis, you want to be sure your listing stands out and attracts as many potential buyers as possible. The more traffic you receive, whether it be online or in person, the higher your chances of a quick and smooth sale. Here are a few common mistakes to avoid when listing your home for sale.
Listing for the Wrong Price
When deciding to sell your home, determining the asking price can be hard to do. You know what your home is worth, right? Well, this is where you have to be careful and consult a seasoned real estate agent to understand the best strategy to price your house to sell. Often, sellers overprice their homes based on their personal attachment and wind up accepting less than the house is actually worth due to the lack of interest. If your home is overpriced, the comps in the area will be priced for less, therefore receiving more traffic and more interest. If you do not receive offers, your house will end up on the market for an extended period of time, which is also a red flag to buyers. It’s best to consult with your agent and price the home based on its comparable worth. Who knows – with multiple buyers come multiple offers and you may end up with a bidding war.
Selling Your Home As Is
When listing your home, you want to be sure that it’s in top viewing condition. As homeowners, we don’t have the same discerning eye that a potential buyer does and may overlook some things that could be a turn off. You should remember that many buyers have already toured other sites and will be comparing your home to a model home they may have seen the day before. Take the time to declutter, clean, and organize. Be sure that the yard is trimmed and the garage doesn’t look like a storage locker, and patch up any blemishes, take care of small repairs, and paint if it’s needed. Rearrange your furniture to highlight the space of each room, add some fresh flowers, and open up the curtains to let the natural light shine in. With a little motivation and elbow grease, your home will knock that model home out of the running.
For Sale By Owner
Many people will attempt to avoid the commission fees by listing their home as a FSBO (for sale by owner). Selling your home on your own can be done but it really isn’t recommended for a few reasons. If you’re not a licensed real estate agent, you don’t have access to the MLS (multiple listing service), a database used by cooperating real estate brokers to list properties and share information about them. Having your property on the MLS allows multiple agents to suggest a viewing of your property to their clients, opening up a much larger window of interest. Aside from the MLS, agents have a huge audience on multiple marketing platforms, and they have the knowledge and experience to price your home correctly and to negotiate on your behalf. When choosing a realtor, shop around, ask questions, and communicate your expectations.
Consider the First Offer
Real estate can be a rollercoaster, there are times when you get an offer right away and times when you may have to wait a month or two. Many sellers get so excited when they receive their first offer that they decide to hold off on accepting it, expecting multiple offers to come pouring in. While it’s understandable that a seller would hope for a bidding war to drive the listing price higher, that isn’t usually the case. Sometimes the first offer may be the best offer, so be sure to consider it.
Fulfill Your Obligations
As a seller, you have certain obligations by law and by contract. It’s very important that you’re clear on what those obligations are in order to avoid a messy transaction, unexpected costs, or legal issues. The information is laid out in your sales contract and your required disclosures. Your contract will contain many clauses that you should read and agree to carefully. Items such as property inspections, appraisals, and loan approvals will all have deadlines that should be adhered to by both parties. Disclosures will let the buyer know of any issues such as lead paint, prior damage, or even a death in the home. A good real estate agent can guide you through all of this and will ensure that the transaction is done correctly and timelines are met.
These are just a few tips to make sure listing your home goes smoothly and successfully. Do you have any other tips for sellers? Let us know in the comments.