There are fewer things worse than putting your home up for sale, only to have weeks go by and have no offer. One of the things that can be listed as worse than that is when you put your home on the market, weeks go by and not only do you not have an offer, but you’ve no showings.
Our homes are, for most of us, our castles. They are where we live, eat, sleep, house our family together and make our cherished memories. When we put our home on the market we not only put our ‘castle’ up for sale, but we agree to disrupt our lives and our families’ lives in order to attract a suitable buyer who will close on the sale.
What we don’t expect is to continually do that and have no response.
Take into consideration that most sellers are enjoying what’s known as a seller’s market in which there are more buyers than homes for sale and this gives sellers the upper hand and buyers fighting for the inventory. This can leave you with the visual of all the other sellers running and skipping to the bank with their large checks while you sit under a dark raincloud getting wet, stuck with a home that’s still for sale.
Now, not only haven’t you sold your home and disrupted your family’s schedule and not sold your home, but you’re the seller all the other sellers are talking about and pitying, while you sit under your black little raincloud because for some cruel twist of fate – your home has still not sold.
The good news and the bad news
The goods news is, there may be some things that you can do, right now to help your home sell. We have a list of 5 items that may be killing your home’s value while it’s on the market and most of these you can do something about.
The bad news is, some of these – there is nothing you can do about and the only real answer is a price drop. When it comes to a price drop, our best advice is to bite the bullet and if you have to do it and can do it, then do it.
Meeting your goals and the goals of your family and still being able to buy when interest rates are low may help you make up some of the money from your price drop.
The five things killing your home’s value
1. Not Keeping Up With Home Maintenance
During an appraisal, inspection appraisers take detailed notes on the condition of a home including such things as damaged siding, broken windows, the condition of interior flooring, and plumbing and other fixtures. This information is used to compare the subject’s condition with that of the sales comparables. If this has not been maintained then this will negatively impact the value of the subject property.
Your Realtor has probably already told you this, so do the repairs. It’ll save you time and aggravation in the long run.
2. Get rid of the gym or home office
Buyers want to be able to see themselves in their new home which is your present home and if they need bedrooms for little ones and they see stinky gym equipment loitering what would have been their little angel’s bedroom then it’s bye bye to your home on onto the next one.
Whenever you have a room that is meant to be used a bedroom, make it as inviting a bedroom as you can. Think of your favorite hotel. When buyers feel invited, they’ll want to stay.
3. Curb Appeal
The fastest way to improve the look of a home’s exterior is to remove anything that detracts from the curb appeal.
Buyers won’t notice your home’s architectural charm if all they can see is clutter.
Clear your driveway. Put away yard tools, children’s toys, and trash cans. Remove, repair or replace anything that’s worn out or falling apart.
When buyers walk to the front door feeling good, they are less likely to pick apart minor flaws inside.
Overgrown landscaping can also be considered clutter. Unkempt bushes in front of windows and weeds make it difficult for buyers to appreciate a home’s exterior.
So, in this situation, subtraction is the name of the game.
4. Remodeling gone wrong
Not making the right upgrades can drop your home’s value, but making the wrong upgrades or doing a poor job of trying to make the right ones can also slash your selling price. DIY blunders like renovations that are not up to code can cost buyers a fortune to undo the damage. Savvy buyers can check local building permit records to find out whether your home’s modifications are on file. If not, they’ll know there can be some potentially costly problems.
Even remodels done by contractors or new home builders, for that matter, can raise concerns during home inspections. Homeowners who fail to properly vet their contractors have been left with half-finished remodels or faulty electrical wiring. Hire someone who is licensed and insured, and check their references.
5. You’re in a bad spot
This is another one that most of us cannot help. When location is a factor, unless you have a magic wand that you can actually use, moving your home isn’t an option.
You can’t always anticipate changes to the surrounding area during 10 or more years tenure in your home. Neighbors move; traffic worsens; buildings go up that block your view; a new job creates a longer commute.
Those are scenarios over which you have little or no control. It almost goes without saying that you would not deliberately choose a poor location on purpose, but budget constraints can push you toward one that’s less than your ideal.
This is a prime reason for a price drop. It’s really all you can do to get your home moving.
Hopefully, though, you’ll be able to get into a new home soon and enjoy the still historically-low interest rates before they go up, and this lifts that dark little rain cloud hanging over you while your home is on the market.