November 24, 2017 1:30 am
There are many reasons why people need to sell their homes quickly. There might be financial issues, concern about losing the home to foreclosure, medical emergencies, death, divorce, job transfers or other moves, or investors reducing their inventory, to name a few. Whatever the reason, homeowners generally want to get the most of a sale even when it’s a fast turnover. In this article, we’ll discuss some ways sellers can increase their chances of gaining more dollars from a fast-track sale. Let’s get started.
1. Realtor realism
Using an experienced, full-time realtor will up your chances at gaining the most you can from your sale. Be honest about the reasons you want to sell fast and design a plan that will help you reach your goals for a preferred sell date and reasonable price. Pricing too high will not help you sell your home quickly. Your agent will understand the market demand and help you set realistic expectations.
When interviewing agents, be sure to ask enough questions to understand if the agent has time to devote to getting your property sold quickly and for a fair price. You don’t want to enlist the services of someone who is going on vacation or overloaded with other clients. Be honest about your needs and expectations to find the one who will serve you best.
Marketing is crucial to attracting buyers, and your realtor will know how to word the ads, flyers and listing to gain interest, build value and demonstrate your motivation to sell quickly. The agent can also set the wheels of progress in motion so that no time is wasted in getting your house ready, shown and sold. You’ll be coached every step of the way, and once an offer is in the works, your realtor will negotiate the terms to your best advantage.
2. Price at or below market
If you really want to get out from under it in a hurry, price your home below market value. Your realtor will let you know the current value and help you decide what percentage below value will be attractive, yet bring in the highest dollars. Ads can be worded to let investors and bargain shoppers know that you are a motivated seller, selling at a reduced price. You can give a reason for your motive and highlight the unique features of the property.
If marketed creatively and publicly, you may receive multiple bids, driving the price higher than listed, because buyers understand that they would be acquiring a home with immediate equity. This will interest more buyers and help you to secure an offer at a price that might be more than you originally expected.
If you’re more conservative with your pricing, you can price at market value, and your agent will help you with that. An experienced realtor will know the market and be able to judge pricing very closely to demand. This way, and with effective marketing, your home will be priced right for more immediate offers.
3. Prepare your home for success
Preparing and staging your home properly can be worth extra dollars in the purchase price. It can also gain offers more quickly by making a great first impression for buyers. Your realtor will give you a list of things you can do to make your house more attractive and appealing. Depending on the list, you can take care of it quickly, or get help to manage it in time. The general idea is to make all rooms look fresh, inviting and uncluttered and add curb appeal to the exterior.
If you aren’t able to do it alone, you can hire a professional stager to help you. This person is a pro at creating an enviable ambiance. You’ll be surprised at how quickly it can come together. If there are repairs and painting, you can take a few days to get it done, or hire a handyman service or professional painters. We all know that some homes show better than others, and you want yours to be the best on the market. It’s well worth the time and effort to transform the house into a showpiece which will be worth more to the buyer.
4. Added incentives
There are many ways to add interest and incentives for a potential buyer to hasten the sale. You can offer a home warranty which adds value and confidence in the sale, while reducing some of the risk on the buyer’s part. You can pay for a home inspection, so buyers can see the professional opinion on the condition of the home. This adds value by answering many questions, calming fears and helping buyers see the true value. These are not all that expensive and can move the sale along by removing objections or doubts.
Your realtor may also suggest that you help make the transaction easier for buyers by offering to pay points or closing costs. Knowing that this will save them money at the closing table will make the commitment easier for the buyer. Go over the potential costs to understand what to offer that is appealing and represents a price you are willing to pay for the overall gains.
If your home will be sold as-is or as a fixer-upper, you can price accordingly and offer suggestions on your flyers of ways to improve the property with a little sweat equity, making sure to highlight what the gain would be once the improvement has been made. If buyers can imagine an updated end result and believe they can achieve it, the deal will look more attractive.
5. Marketing for results
Careful and strategic marketing works for all types of business, and it works for selling your home as well. Your realtor will place a listing on the MLS (Multiple Listing Service). This ad is the one most people will see. It needs to be creatively written, pointing out the fabulous features of your home compared to what they might be seeing in others. You want your home to surpass all others. All data must be accurate and complete.
Buyers look at the photos (many times before even reading the listing info) so they must be professional, bright and appealing. Ordinary pictures just don’t make it. If videos are posted, be sure they are also professional in quality, using light to advantage and solidly produced so it doesn’t feel like you are on a roller coaster. Flyers and brochures are helpful in reminding buyers what they’ve seen after looking at multiple homes.
While buyers are in the house for a showing, the home should be warm, brightly lit and clean. Remove any items that might be a distraction, including personal photos and memorabilia. Play soft music and have a lightly scented candle glowing in the kitchen and bathroom. Making the house as inviting as possible helps buyers gain an appreciation of the property and prompts them into making an offer before it’s too late. Do what you can to achieve that type of impression, even if it means baking chocolate chip cookies before the showing.
In open house situations, realtors are experienced at finding out what buyers are looking for and then pointing out the features of the home and the advantages of living in the neighborhood. They can get feedback by asking questions of the buyers’ agents which will provide valuable information on ways to make the buyer experience even better the next time.
When you’re in a hurry to sell a home, look for a realtor who has the time to do it justice, who communicates well and has the experience needed. Once a realtor is engaged, discuss the market value, pricing and incentives that will work for you. Speak openly about your timetable and ask questions about what will help you sell quickly and at the highest price for that market. Be sure to follow the agent’s advice on how to prepare your house for showings and a favorable sale, and enlist help if needed.
If you have enjoyed this article and gained some perspective on selling your home quickly, yet to advantage, please share it with a friend who might also benefit. Thank you and best of luck with your sale.