Today’s real estate market is quite different than those that came before. In the past, you were pretty much guaranteed that you would buy a home, live in it for a couple of years and be able to sell it at a profit. In fact, in the early 2000’s, people were making tons of money in a very short amount of time because the real estate market was skyrocketing. But then, it burst wide open. Home prices began to plummet. Here we are, a few months afterwards and people who bought when the prices were high are finding that their homes just aren’t worth nearly what they paid for them.
For first-time home sellers, the sales process can be especially daunting. You want to sell your home but don’t know what to expect. Here are a few tips that should help ease the stress and worry of selling your first home.
Hire an Expert – Selling your home by yourself can be extremely difficult. You should really consider hiring an experienced real estate professional. Their knowledge and resources can help make navigating the real estate waters much easier. Interview several until you find someone that fits. Research their background and credentials. Ask neighbors, friends, family members and co-workers who they have worked with in the past. It may take a little while to find the perfect “fit” for you, but it will be well worth it.
Price it Right to Start With – Use comps in the area to help determine what a realistic sales price is. If you set your price too high, your home could sit on the market for too long. A home will have its best response within the first 2 to 3 weeks. That’s why you want to be competitive to start with. If a REALTOR® won’t pull comps, you don’t want to work with them. While they’re not everything, comps are a good point of reference to know where your local market is at.
Don’t Worry About Profit Margins – Unfortunately, the reality is that you may not be able to sell your home for what you want. If you want to sell your home now, you can’t put your asking price at what you owe, what you’ve put into the home or even what the tax assessor says it’s worth. Your home is only worth what someone else is willing to pay for it. That means that you may take a slight loss. Not all homes are that way. But, it’s important to keep that in mind so you’re not surprised if it happens. Your real estate agent can explain this to you as well.
Set Your Sights on the Prize – Know your target demographic. Most first time sellers have bought a starter home. This is perfect for another couple or family just starting out. But, it may also be great for an older couple looking to downsize after their family has grown up and moved out. Once you have determined who your target audience is, you can shape your marketing campaign accordingly. Your real estate professional should be able to help you with that as well.
The Internet is Your Friend – More and more home buyers are turning to the internet to begin their home searches. That’s why you need a REALTOR® who will market your home on the internet as well. Make sure to take plenty of high quality, well lit photos of your home, since this will be how people first see your property. Keep it clean, clear and clutter-free.
Today’s real estate market is much different than the markets of the past. It takes knowledge and experience to sell a home nowadays. With the right help, your home sale can happen quickly and smoothly. You just need to get the right people on your side.