SELLING a house is a bit like having a baby — everyone gives you advice that may or may not
SELLING a house is a bit like having a baby — everyone gives you advice that may or may not be true for you. Here are 10 of the most common myths when selling a property.
1. Myth: You should always price your home high and gradually lower it if it doesn’t sell.
Truth: Pricing too high can be as bad as pricing too low. You may think by listing high you can always accept a lower offer, but if you do, you’ll miss the buyers looking in the price range where your home should be. Offers may not even come in, because interested buyers are scared off by the price and won’t bother to look.
2. Myth: Minor repairs can wait until later. There are more important things to be done.
Truth: Minor repairs make your house more marketable, allowing you to maximise your return (or minimise loss) on the sale. By and large, buyers are looking for an inviting home in move-in condition. Buyers who are willing to tackle the repairs after moving in automatically subtract the cost of needed fix-ups from the price they offer.
3. Myth: Once potential buyers see the inside of your home, curb appeal won’t matter.
Truth: Buyers probably won’t make it to the inside of the home if the outside of your home does not appeal to them. Many buyers drive by a home before deciding whether or not to look inside. Your home’s exterior will have less than a minute to make a good first impression.
4. Myth: You can sell your home just as you live in it.
Truth: Buyers have no qualms about walking right out the front door within 60 seconds if the house doesn’t look like it could be theirs. Remember that most buyers are looking for an inviting home in move-in condition.
5. Myth: Your home must be every homebuyer’s dream home.
Truth: If you get carried away with repairs to your home, you may end up over-improving. At some point, improvements that you make to your home can exceed what is customary for comparable homes in your area.
6. Myth: Buyers are never swayed by sellers that offer creative financing options.
Truth: By offering flexibility in financing options, you may lure more prospective buyers. You might consider offering seller financing or paying some of the buyer’s closing costs.
7. Myth: You are better off selling your home on your own, thus saving the commission you would have paid to an estate agent.
Truth: Statistically, many sellers who attempt to sell their homes on their own cannot complete the sale without the service of a professional. Sellers who sell their home without an estate agent often net less from the sale than sellers who use one.
8. Myth: Good sellers should be available to guide prospective buyers through the home, giving the whole process a more personal touch.
Truth: Prospective buyers will feel more like the house could be theirs if the current owners are not there. The presence of homeowners during a viewing can make buyers feel like they are intruding.
9. Myth: Successful sellers insist that the terms of the sale happen their way or no way.
Truth: If you approach the sale of your home as the buyer’s adversary, you risk losing a perfectly solid buyer. Both you and the buyer have the same goal: for you to sell your home and for the buyer to buy it. Work with your estate agent to approach negotiations positively, with a win-win frame of mind.
10. Myth: When you receive an offer, you should make the buyer wait. This gives you a better negotiating position.
Truth: You should reply immediately to an offer! When a buyer makes an offer, that buyer is, at that moment in time, ready to buy your home. Moods can change, and you don’t want to lose the sale because you stalled in replying.