The 3 Immutable Laws of Home Selling

Kimberly Bean
Kimberly Bean
Published on August 30, 2017

Some things are constants. The sun will always rise in the east and set in the west. We will all die someday, and as long as you make a certain income, you will always pay taxes. There are things in life that we cannot change, no matter how much we’d like to.

Real estate also has immutable laws, and there are three very important ones that you should pay attention to as you get ready to list your Southern Maryland home for sale.

No, your home in need of repair won’t be popular, unless you price it at rock bottom.

Unless you can’t afford to fix what is broken in your home, making repairs is a must – especially if you want to make the most money as possible. If you don’t make the necessary repairs, your home is like chum in shark-infested waters. You’ll attract mostly investors who won’t pay you anywhere near what you hope to make.

Plus, the repairs needed are major, very few lenders will loan a buyer the money to purchase the home until the repairs are made.

Even a Southern Maryland home that needs minor repairs like dripping faucets or ratty carpets will lose perceived value. Right now, most homebuyers are Millennials, and a recent National Association of Realtors study found that these buyers neither have the money nor the desire to make repairs after they buy a home.

“They want to cook in that kitchen from day one and entertain in the backyard that very weekend,” according to Consumer Report’s Dan DiClerico.

Want to make a profit when you sell your home? Fix anything that needs it.

Overprice your Southern Maryland home, and it will stay on the market longer and, trust us, you won’t like the offers you get on it.

Many homeowners are surprised to learn that no, they don’t determine what their Southern Maryland homes are worth. Homebuyers do – and ultimately, the lender’s appraiser will.

Today’s buyers are savvy enough to have either researched market values in your neighborhood or they’ve had their real estate agent do it for them. A higher-than-market-value price doesn’t fool anyone.

Often, owners price their homes high to leave “wiggle room” for negotiations. There’s a problem with that tactic, though. Buyers who can afford what your home is actually worth won’t even see your listing. Your listing will appear in the MLS adjacent to homes that are larger, newer or better-maintained.

That means you’ll have few potential buyers to even negotiate with.

Let’s say someone does offer what you’re asking. What are the chances that the appraiser will come up with an inflated value for your home? Slim to none, actually. So, to keep the buyer — or attract another — you’ll need to lower the price to where it should have been in the beginning.

Signs don’t sell homes, marketing does.

It’s great to have a for-sale sign in your yard with colorful fliers to hand out. But it takes a lot more to sell a home than an MLS listing, a sign, and lockbox. Sure, it might be easier now in a hot sellers’ market, but it won’t always be this easy.

And even though buyers are lining up now for certain types of Southern Maryland homes and homes in good conditions in decent areas, you still won’t get top dollar if your home isn’t marketed properly.

The Internet has changed nearly everything when it comes to home sales. The biggest change, though, is that potential buyers begin their home search from the comfort of their homes or offices. They surf the Internet – both local real estate brokerage sites and the big real estate aggregators – and pore over listing of homes in the areas where they want to live.

And, while it is your agent’s responsibility to market your home, it’s your responsibility to give your agent something to work with. Make sure that both the inside and outside of the home are captivating enough in photos that buyers are compelled to want to take a tour.

In eye-tracking studies, “[w]e find that the photo is overwhelmingly viewed first,” according to Michael Seiler, founder of the Institute for Behavioral and Experimental Real Estate at Old Dominion University in Virginia.

In the age of technology, the basics of readying a home for the market – decluttering, deep cleaning, and increasing its curb appeal – are no longer choices, they are necessities, especially if you hope to get the most money possible when the home sells.

Making needed repairs and properly readying your Southern Maryland home for the market will increase its perceived value. Pricing it competitively will help it sell quickly. It’s like hitting the trifecta!

Hughesville MD Homes for Sale and Real Estate Services in Southern Maryland. You now have a search engine to help you with your Southern Maryland home search! And I’m ready to provide you with a custom home valuation if you’re considering selling your home. Let’s connect to discuss how I can help you. Contact Kimberly Bean at 301-440-1309

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