Next to death and divorce, selling your home is one of the most stressful times in your life.
Some of us get lucky—we stake the For Sale sign in our yard one sunny morning and the house is sold before sundown. However, in reality most homes sit for an average of 21 days on the market until the right buyer comes along and makes an offer (that is the case only when the home is priced right), according to real estate expert Elizabeth Weintraub.
There seems to be hope on the housing market horizon as the average selling price of a single-family home is up 7.2% from a year ago, and we are seeing the highest prices since 2008, according to the latest data from the National Association of Realtors.
Now seems to be the time to list your home, but how can you stand out in the crowd when it seems every other home on your block is up for sale?
Here are some great tips to get your home sold even when the market is overflowing.
The Price has to be Right
Of course you want to squeeze every possible dollar out of your home. After all, you see your home as perfect and you know how much is invested in it. With that being said, you may not like this next strategy , but it will sell your home fast: Price your home slightly below market value.
In a crowded market, you are competing with numerous homes – some better than yours, some worse. The absolute best way to grab a buyer’s attention is the price. Take a look at the prices of other comprisable homes in your area, and then list yours just slightly lower than the average (around 2% lower according to Elizabeth Weintraub).
Why should you do this, won’t you be losing money? Simply put – NO. Make your initial price point slightly lower than the average home on the block to make buyers attracted to you first. First come, first serve, and first sold.
Don’t Become a Dated Listing
If your home sits on the market for too long then it becomes a dated listing, and dated listings do not sell for asking price. It’s hard to believe, but by starting off with a lower price point, you are likely to make more money on your home than if it sat on the market with a higher list price.
According to BankRate.com, an overpriced home just helps all the other houses sell while yours sits stagnant. Maybe you still don’t like the idea of pricing your home slightly below the average list price in your area. Maybe your home has too many upgrades to lowball the price point.
There are numerous home improvements, such as kitchen and bathroom remodels, that warrant a higher listing price. Price point may not be the key to a quick sale when expansive home improvements have been made. Here is another strategy which could help.
Make your Home Stand out from the Crowd
The only way to sell your home quickly is to make it stand out above the rest.
If a lower price point is not an option because you feel that your home is full of upgrades that other homes in your area can’t boast of, then you need to show off these added features.
Help buyers be aware of the added value in your home, and help explain away a higher list price, by highlighting your homes upgrades.
Here are some ways to show off your homes features and upgrades:
- Have your realtor set up an online tour of your home. Most buyers start their search online. Reach as many eyes as possible with an amazing online tour that highlights the wonderful features and upgrades of your home.
- Have flyers available at open houses and showings. In the flyer highlight all the homes upgrades and costs. If you spent thousands on landscaping then say so, and include pictures of the landscaping in the flyer.
- Hire a realtor who is willing to work hard to sell your home. Give your realtor a list of all the upgrades and tell them that you want him/her to sell these added features when showing the home.
Buyers are willing to pay slightly more if they feel that they are moving into a value-added home that has everything they could possibly dream of, so sell those features that you are so proud of.
Always Be Show Ready
It seems obvious, but it is imperative that your home always be ready for a showing. Some prospective buyers may want to view your home at a moments notice – not giving you time to clean.
One of the best ways to a buyers heart is to show them a pristine and uncluttered home. In order to facilitate a quick sale you may want to consider hiring a cleaning lady or have the family chip in to help.
No one wants to buy a home that requires a lot of cleaning, upgrades and extra work.
Here are some ways to make your home shine:
- Put a coat of fresh, neutral-colored paint on all the walls, and paint the front door and trim a pretty color that coordinates with your homes façade.
- Plant plenty of flowers in the front yard and add planted urns around the pool, patio and front door.
- Pack away all your family pictures, knick knacks, and any extra furniture to make the home seem big and airy.
- Make sure the house is well lit at night for buyers who may drive by in the dark.
A lot of little details can go a long way and the added work is well worth it when you sell your home quickly. If you are unsure about what needs editing in your home, then ask an honest friend or your realtor to go through the home and point out areas that need tweaking.
If you don’t have the time to do all these little extras, then maybe consider hiring a home staging expert to get your home show ready. It may cost a bit extra, but pays off when your home sells in a blink of an eye.
A crowded buyers market can be difficult, but as you can see, there are ways to stand out amongst the sea of other For Sale signs.
One great thing about crowded markets is the traffic flow that you will get,thanks in part, to other listings.
Take advantage of this traffic by making your home scream ‘Buy Me’ at first glance with a stage-ready, show-stopping yard and façade.