Here’s how to sell in a seller’s market like the one we’re in now.
You’ve probably heard that we’re in a seller’s market and that homes are selling quickly, for high prices, and with multiple offers. And that’s all true. But, what you probably haven’t heard is that a third of the properties in our market have been on the market for 90 days or more. Why is that if we’re in a seller’s market?
The answer is simple: Just because we’re in a seller’s market doesn’t mean you can ask whatever price you want for your home or list it in any condition. Buyers are smart these days. They won’t pay for a home that they feel is overpriced and/or needs a lot of work. This is why, even in a seller’s market, it’s important to have an agent look at your home, do a comparative market analysis, and determine what its true value is in today’s market so you can price it accordingly.
Your agent can also let you know what to do in order to attract the most potential buyers. You’d be surprised how much value just a little decluttering can add in the eyes of buyers. And more potential buyers means a high price for your home.
Another thing to know about selling in a seller’s market is that you shouldn’t count your chickens before they hatch. If your property looks great, is priced correctly and marketed well, there’s a good chance you’ll receive multiple offers. But beware! Some agents will coach their clients to make offers that are way above asking price in order to win the bidding war. It’s not uncommon to see offers that are $5,000, $10,000 or even $50,000 over asking price but, unless one of those comes from a cash buyer, your property will still need to appraise for the sales price before most banks will be willing to lend on it (unless the buyer is putting a lot of money down to mitigate their risk). If it doesn’t appraise, you can be sure that the buyer is going to ask for a price reduction. And that’s just one of the hurdles you’ll need to get through before taking all of that money to the bank.
Buyers who have made over-asking price offers also tend to negotiate pretty hard once the inspections come back. It’s another strategy to whittle a little off the inflated price they initially offered, so set your expectations accordingly. And remember, if you get an offer above asking price, even if you have to whittle a little bit off during negotiations you’re still doing really well. So just don’t count those chickens before they hatch and you’ll be fine.
Lastly, beware the agent who’s super excited that we’re in a seller’s market. The reason they’re excited is that they think they don’t have to spend any of their own money marketing your home because the home will sell itself. It’s not only false for a seller to assume a home will sell itself, but it’s also false for an agent to assume so and therefore not invest in marketing it. To get the highest price possible for your home, you need as many buyers as possible on day one who are excited about your home and ready to make an offer. Great marketing makes this happen. No one is out there getting excited about buying a home that has terrible photos online.
The way we at Lakeside Realty ensure this happens is by capturing your home in its best light and creating amazing marketing materials including professional photographs, video, 3D models, and floor plans. We want buyers to see your home online and call their agent immediately to make an appointment. And we want your home to look so good that their agent recommends they make an offer as soon as possible because they know a great looking, well priced, home won’t last long on the market.
If you have questions about selling your home in this market or how to proceed as a buyer in a seller’s market, don’t hesitate to reach out to us. We’d love to help you.