With the real estate market hotter than ever, it’s hard to imagine any home sitting too long without a buyer. Nationwide, November 2017 existing home sales reached their strongest pace in almost 11 years, according to the National Association of Realtors®. And in Lane County, the Regional Multiple Listing Service reported that November 2017 pending sales were 12 percent higher than pending sales during the same month in 2016. Definite growth. But what about those homes that just don’t seem to sell? If you or someone you know hasn’t sold a property, one of the following reasons might be why:
The home needs too many improvements. It might be tempting for a potential buyer to make an offer on a property needing a little more TLC than planned—especially amid a shortage of choices—but the bottom line often wins the deal. With Lane County’s median home sales price up almost ten percent from 2016, buyers are paying much more these days, and that ten percent rise in value may have just eliminated cash available for a kitchen makeover or new roof. If you have the funds to spare, you may just sell faster and at the price you’d like by making a few important improvements. Consider some of the fixes suggested in this HGTV article.
It’s just too personal. Many home stagers and realtors will tell you to take down your personal photos and mementos before putting your home on the market. Heed this advice. No one wants to come into a potential family room and focus on the 8 x 10 photo of Aunt Charlotte holding her pug Mini. Just take it down. Also, consider repainting any bright- or bold-colored rooms with more neutral tones. Non-neutral colors may limit a buyer’s ability to imagine options in the room he or she is viewing.
You have the wrong realtor. If you need to find a new agent thanks to an underperforming one, ask friends, family and colleagues who they’ve hired previously. Ask potential agents how they plan to market your home, as marketing plays a critical role in the type of offers you’ll receive and the length of time your home sits on the market. Research each agent online. Does he or she participate in community events? Have active social media accounts focusing on real estate? Ask about commission too, but don’t make this one of your first questions.
You’re asking too much. It might be a seller’s market, but that doesn’t give you the right to price your home way above the median and expect to sell it in a week. Be honest about your asking price instead of overpricing with the hopes of turning a profit. If your house needs a major improvement, don’t price it like a comparable home that doesn’t need the repair. Be fair, and be realistic. The best advice: look up comparable homes and what they’ve been selling for. Price accordingly.January 14, 2018