When there’s more demand for homes from potential buyers than the current available housing supply, the condition known as a “seller’s market” exists. This can be a great time for sellers to market their homes, provided they strategize accordingly.
While it is certainly easier to sell a home in a seller’s market, there are still some important steps to take, especially when hoping to maximize proceeds from the sale and minimize disruptions to your own life and routine. Here are some surefire tips on making the seller’s market your ideal time to sell:
5 Tips for Selling Your Home in a Seller’s Market
- Set the stage.
Home staging is the process of prettying-up a home in preparation of a sale. This includes packing up and removing clutter, rearranging furniture, making necessary improvements, painting where needed, etc. This process can go a long way toward generating the “wow factor” you hope to achieve when potential buyers view your property. You may want to hire a professional to help.
- Is the price right?
Just because you might be looking at a seller’s market, doesn’t mean you can get away with asking any price you dream up. You’ll still need to set a realistic price in order to sell your home quickly, or risk months of sitting on the market. Realtors, appraisers and other real estate professionals often use the “comparison” or “comp” method to come up with home values; you can either enlist the help of a real estate agent to assist with the research, or you can apply this methodology yourself. You will need to find several recently sold homes that are similar to yours, analyze their sale prices, and see how your home compares.
When judging your home against your comps, consider factors like: Is your home older, or newer, than the comps? How do extras like the yard, pool, garage, basement, etc., compare to the comps? How do the streets where the homes are located compare to one another? What are the overall conditions of your home and its comps? Add or deduct from your target price as is appropriate.
- Haggle, if necessary.
Don’t think your asking price is etched in stone. If you’re not getting the response you’d hoped at your current asking price, lower it as needed until you see results that do make you happy. In some cases, the revenue you’ll lose from dropping the price is more than made up for by the increased buyer activity the reduction can generate. And the more possible buyers you have, the better your negotiating position will be.
- Shop for the best buyer.
Ideally, you want to have multiple offers on your home, which affords the luxury of choosing which offer is best for you. That may not always be the highest offer; there are other factors to consider, too. For example, some buyers may not have already obtained mortgage approval. Others may have a timetable for moving that does not coincide with your own. Make sure you’re accepting the offer that you want. It is a seller’s market, after all.
- Be nimble.
Selling your home in a seller’s market may also mean that you receive offers much quicker than anticipated. You’ll need to be prepared to move from your home nearly as quickly, should you choose to accept one of those offers. In some cases, that might mean a short-term rental, extended-stay hotel, etc., in the interim as you close the sale on your old home and move into your new one. Try to keep the big picture in mind during this time and not get too bogged down in the day-to-day inconveniences. A short-term disruption to your routine can be well worth it, considering the potential payoff.
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