We know, this isn't a super-fun concept. Buyer's are more educated than ever. and in almost every case, they have every intention of using that knowledge to obtain the best possible purchase price for their next house. And now that we find ourselves squarely in a buyer's market, all of the buyer's leverage will be amplified accordingly. If you're a seller, and you have every intention of selling in this market, this isn't necessarily a reason to panic, although it is necessary to refine your selling approach to achieve your goal of selling the house in a timely manner. How's that done? Well, let's take a look and lay out what needs to be done in a market like this:
1) Price the thing right! This is not the time to aim high, and hope a buyer comes up to meet you on the high end of price. If you price it high in a seller's market, all you're ensuring is you will be adding the dreaded days on market to your listing history, and you lose even more leverage. Don't do this! It will only result in frustration and ultimately, a lower selling price when you finally do get the house gone. Instead, talk to your agent about the recent sold comparables, and price in relation to those. Getting greedy = making less money on the sale in a market like this.
Once you get past pricing it properly, the next important thing is to maximize your property's strengths in every way. These days buyer's almost have the Cheesecake Factory menu syndrome - too much to choose from. This means that people will be extra quick to discard ones that don't leave a strong first impression. It's imperative you do certain things to ensure your home stands out among the plethora of inventory out there.
2) Make sure your curb appeal is top notch. It's the first thing people see when they pull up, and according to a recent study, having good curb appeal can boost your home's selling price by up to 17%. Extensive landscaping obviously is the most obvious way to boost curb appeal, but if you don't want to play that game, just make sure the lawn and plants are healthy and well maintained.
3) Accentuate the square footage of your house. Or, another way of saying this is remove all clutter. Once buyers are at the showing stage of the process, they pay attention to numbers like actual square footage, but a lot of it will be eyeballing these properties. Give your home the best chance of standing out by ensuring it feels as spacious as possible. Those old bookshelves, cabinets with 2/5 drawers used, dvd racks...those are some good examples of things that can, and should be removed. Staging also helps hugely, and some wonderful agents offer this service (yes, our team includes staging as part of our full service), but if your agent doesn't offer that call us! Or, do everything in your power to de-clutter.
4) Make sure your home is brightly lit. I recently showed a vacant home where they decided to cut the power, so we had to bring out our phone's flashlights. Needless to say it didn't show very well. That's an extreme case, but just make sure all your lightbulbs are in working order, and make the house as bright as you can. It's hard to get excited about a dark, dreary house, especially when there is so much to choose from.
5) Finally, make sure your house has some buzz built around it. Should be shown around social media when it hits the market (typically done by you and your agent), and if you wanted to get rid of some of your stuff, ie clutter, a garage sale is a decent way to get rid of junk and bring some street exposure to your home.
If you follow these, there is no guarantee your home will sell quickly, but it will give it the best chance to do so. Good luck and make sure to contact us if you have any questions about the selling or buying process!