Unfortunately when selling your property not “getting it right” the first time can be a very costly mistake.
Information about real estate for sale and property in general is now easier and more accessible for potential buyers to research than ever before. They now have a wealth of data and information at their fingertips before even doing a single inspection. This means more opportunity for them to sniff out properties that have been on the market for too long, or worse, been on and off the market with different Agents without a successful sale. Those properties then become targets for bargain hunters and low offers. Invariably one of the first questions most Buyers will ask is “How long has it been on the market?” They love to catch Agents out who fib about this because they will already know!
It is a proven fact that the longer a property is on the market the more the original asking price will have to be discounted to achieve a sale. And it is not just Buyers who expect a lower price for longer days on market. Agents are probably just as influenced as Buyers by days on market. Invariably the impression will be that there is “something wrong”with the property when in many cases there is nothing wrong other than poor preparation or in some cases a poor Agent!
Agents, especially inexperienced and/ or desperate ones will often try to pressure potential Sellers into putting their home onto the market because they need the listing to satisfy the Agency owner (their boss). Many Agencies require sales people to have a minimum number of listings with Seller advertising dollars to keep their job because it promotes the Agency. This is great for the Agency profile but can be disastrous for the Seller. Beware if your Agent says “don’t worry about fixing that – the Buyers will see past it or will want to change it anyway” Wrong! The vast majority of Buyers have little (or no) visual imagination. If your property is not set up to show in its best light they will pass it by. This applies even for Investors. The only Buyers who relish a poorly presented product are renovators and bargain hunters whose offers are always under market value.
My advice, based on hundreds of millions of dollars of sales over more than 20 years, is this:
- Get professional advice about what the Buyers in your are are looking for and who will be your “target market”
- Prepare your property for the market getting help if you need it
- Carefully assess the market information and price opinions you are given based on facts, not emotion. If you are pricing your property list it no more than 5% above the price range indicated by the facts, and
- Listen carefully to real feedback from Buyers who inspect your home. Don’t be afraid to seriously look at early offers – these often come from educated Buyers who know the market and may have missed out on one or two properties before seeing yours.