7 Common Mistakes Sellers Make

1. Your property won’t sell because it’s overpriced.
It is very difficult to accept that your house may not be worth as much as you think it is worth. A house is only worth as much as the last sale, of similar structure, in your neighbourhood OR what a buyer is willing to pay for a home. It is a difficult exercise, but sellers should always try to look at things from a buyer’s perspective and ask themselves, “Would I buy this house for this price?”

2. Your property won’t sell because your photos are “less than impressive.”
The vast majority of home buyers now start their property search online, so your property had better look fantastic in photos. Today an internet view should be considered your first showing and if the photos impress, then you can hope for the second showing when they actually come to the home for a visit. People want to feel like they have been through a tour of the home when they view the photos online, so satisfy them by using as many photos as you can.

3. Your property won’t sell because it shows badly.
This is a test for the senses. Do you have a dog, do you smoke in the house, do you cook with strong odour ingredients? Do you have mildew around the bathtub or shower, are the carpets stained, are the windows clean? Are all the dishes washed and put away, beds made, clothes off the floor? How is the lighting in the home? Is it too dark for evening showings? Do you still have every family photo and heirloom displayed prominently in the home? Is the grass cut or walk shovelled? These are all things to consider when you look at how your home will show. When choosing your realtor, be sure to ask if free staging is part of their client services. This way you can be sure not to miss any of these important details.

4. Your property won’t sell because you’re invisible.
With over 90% of buyers starting their real estate searches online, you have to expose your listing on as many real estate websites as you can. Long gone are the days of simply listing your home on the MLS and waiting by the phone. Be sure to ask prospective agents how he/she plans to expose your home to the market. With Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, YouTube, company websites, blogs, kijiji … Todays buyer comes from the internet, almost exclusively. The more places you expose your home to, the greater chance of it selling quickly for close to your asking price.

5. Your property won’t sell because it’s unavailable to show.
The first 2-3 weeks is the most crucial for any new listing. If you plan on listing your home, you must be prepared to live at the mercy of the BUYER. If you don’t want to show your house because Mom is visiting from out of town, OR because you have temperamental pets, OR if you have children that need their uninterrupted scheduled naps, you should reconsider listing your home at a time when ‘anytime is a good time’ to show the home. If you are not prepared to open up your home at the convenience of the BUYER (not seller!) you should reconsider listing your home. As with an overpriced listing, a house that stays on the market too long will become stigmatized and prey for the bargain hunters … if you get any offers at all.

6. Your property won’t sell because of the time of year you listed your home.
Also, if you are planning on selling a family home, try not to list in the middle of the summer. Most families will want to be in their new home by the middle of the summer so the kids can get used to the new neighbourhood and can develop some friendships before the start of the school year. So, if we assume the average close on a property is 60 days and it takes on average 30 days to sell your home (depending on the market), you need to think about listing the home at least 60-90 days before the middle of summer.

7. Your property won’t sell because your listing is tired and stale on the market.
Okay… yes, you overpriced your home initially when you first came on the market a year and a half ago. Now, finally you’re truly priced where you believe you should be, but your listing has become tired and stale. Everyone who is looking for your type of property already saw your home when it first came to market. It is sometimes a good idea to remove the listing from the market and then re-list it to give it a fresh start.