7 Sinful Mistakes Of A Home Seller

By on November 26, 2013

Selling your home can be a tough job. And it is not something you do everyday. Here are 7 deadly mistakes commonly made by home sellers. If you can acknowledge that you might be prone to making them instead of thinking it is impossible to commit them, you might actually avoid them.

Failure to apply marketing principles

If you have ever tried out a sales job, you would know how important marketing is. Even though you are selling your house, you should treat it like a product that you are selling. Fancy gimmicks and even freebies can go a long way to selling at a good price or shorten the time it will take to find a serious buyer. Be reminded that your marketing efforts must not be misleading or falsified. You might get away with it. But to risk your credibility and reputation this way is bad for you if you are a long term investor.

Your marketing goals should not be to get as much exposure as possible. But to get as much exposure to your targeted segment. No point showing your advertisements thousands of times to people who will never be interested in your listing. Many real estate agents go all out to get prospects to the viewing. The more visitors there are, the more likely a sale is going to happen. But when visitors realise on arrival that they have been misled into believing something that was not, everyone will just lose their valuable time.

sinful seller mistakesFailing to live up to the price visually

You might have a property that is worth $500k appraised by valuers. But if the condition of the house looks like a rubbish dump that has never seen daylight, good luck with selling it at $500k. You might think that you house has “inner beauty”. Even so, you have to sell that inner beauty by making it look great on the outside. Curb appeal is a critical factor in selling any product. In fact, houses are known to sell way above what they are worth when they appear more valuable on the outside.

With that in mind, always make an effort to beatify the place so that buyers will have less excuses to suspect how much the house is actually worth. Ask your realtor for tips on this. Experienced agents will have little trouble giving you tips on basic home staging. Perception is reality. If someone perceives a property to be worth $400k, there is little chance that he will willingly pay $500k for it. Period.

Failing to see through the eyes of the buyer

You can be forgiven if you fail to empathise with your wife from time to time. It is common and nobody is perfect. But as a seller, you cannot for the life of you, fail to empathise with your buyer. That is, unless you are willing to close at 50% below your asking price.

If you are able to put yourself in the shoes of the buyers, you will start to observe important aspects of the deal that matter most to them. Then you can prepare beforehand on how to address them. This also means that you will be in lesser positions to compromise which will harm your negotiating position. The more you compromise, the bigger the bite a buyer wants to snap at you.

Failing to trust your real estate agent

You hired him. Now let him get to work for you. The biggest reason why real estate agents do not do a good job often is because they are locked in shackles by the seller. But on the other hand, if you give them too much authority, they might just spot a window of opportunity to work things in their favour instead of in yours.

It’s a catch 22. You have to at least give your agent enough freedom and authority to act on your behalf so as to work efficiently. If you can somehow create a synergy with him, you are going to eliminate half the tasks you are expected to perform as a seller.

Pricing yourself out of the market

Being a seller, it is a given that you want to sell for as high as possible. So you list your house at 25% above market value. You know that if there are no buyers, you can slowly bring down the price until some kind of equilibrium is met. The problem is, once you set a high price, you immediately filter out genuine buyers who are willing to pay market value. And when they see your listing 3 months later at 20% less than what was first advertised, they will know that you have a tough time finding buyers. Experienced buyers will know it is time to go for the kill.

It is a real balancing act to set a price that is not too high and not too low. The best person to seek advice from is your property agent. This is time to pick their brains and make them work for their money. They should be able to tell you what needs to be done to justify a 25% upsell or what is a more realistic number to decide on.

Failing to plan for relocation

You could be waiting for a serious buyer to turn up and save the day for the last 3 months. It is starting to bore the hell out of you and complacency sets in. Bear in mind that when things start to happen, they fly. Before you know it, you start realising that you do not have enough time to find a new place or plan for relocation.

There will always be not enough time. So make your plans early to avoid panic decisions in the later stages of closing. Also take into consideration seasonal events that will likely hamper the execution of your plans. Draw up your moving plans early.

Not using an experienced real estate agent

A cute looking agent might have caught your eye on a poster and you decided to hire her based on the judgement of your eyes. Being new to the industry and unproficient in real estate legislation and practices does not matter to you as long as your eyes continue to be fed candy. By the end of the deal you will realise that she is gone and so is an extra few thousands from your personal bank account. Maybe your next career move can be a property agent since you have learned everything in the trade as you had managed the entire transaction yourself.

Always go for experience. Newbies may need on-job-training to get really good. But that does not concern you. They can go train with other sellers. Just not you. An experienced agent bring along knowledge and invaluable soft skills. They are worth the money.



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