THE FOUR PILLARS OF SELLING YOUR HOME
Our area specifically has massive swings in value based on location; not just n0eighborhood by neighborhood but also street by street and lot by lot. We’ve had more than one instance where two homes with the same SQFT, bedrooms, bathrooms, 5 lots apart on the same street that have had a $500,000+ difference in value. Why? Could be the lot size, could be the proximity to a high traffic road or school, condition of the home with regard to updates and maintenance, or it could be the functionality of the floor plan and layout.
Although you can’t change the location of your home you should ensure that your agent is aware of how that location affects the value of your home. You don’t want to overprice if you’re close to a high traffic road or school and you don’t want to undervalue your home if you have a rare lot location or size.
OFF-MARKET STRENGTH: Did you know you can sometimes achieve a higher price by selling your home “off-market”? Special properties that no one else has access to are highly, highly coveted by Buyers. Having the right network within the community is key to the execution on a swift, high-value, off-market sale.
TIMING IS PIVOTAL: The first 90 days are the most important days on market. Ensuring correct pricing based on these 4 parameters as well as maximum momentum and exposure during that time frame is key; In tandem with proper timing, your agent must monitor and assess each piece of feedback that is received from agents and potential buyers, this allows you to mold your home to what the market is demanding whether it be based on price, aesthetics, location, positioning, etc.
EXTREME BUZZ / TOP OF MIND EVERY TIME: Video and social media are the new standard in marketing your home – you can communicate directly to the buyer and pitch what makes this specific property special, overshadowing any of the shortcomings with strategic media, messaging and graphics. Make sure you hold your agent accountable for being creative in the broadcasting of your home and (most importantly) do not let them take your listing photos with their cell phone, they need to hire a professional!
“Positioning” has to do with how the property is framed or positioned in the presentation. Depending on the property this could mean positioning your home as a redevelopment project with a really high upside “off-market” in order to get developers to pay a premium for it. It could also mean de-cluttering, re-arranging furniture, painting and staging in order to position the home as completely move-in ready. For challenging properties that might be close to high traffic roads or have obstacles that need overcoming, positioning is extremely important. Your Agent should know the local market well enough to clarify what your property’s unique strengths are and what buyer type is most likely to purchase your home. Positioning those strengths in a way that out shadow’s the weaknesses is key.
THE BASICS: Understanding true market value for your home means taking many factors into consideration, the majority of which we’ve mentioned above: lot size, lot location, floor plan, functionality, current condition, type, curb appeal etc. all these pieces have a monetary yield that can be plugged into your home’s value and pricing strategy. Your agent should be able to quickly quantify that amount if they are a Market Expert.
COMPARABLES AND COMPETITION: In addition to understanding all the components of your individual home it’s key to understand what comparable sales can support in regards to price. Ask your listing agent the three most recent sales nearest and/or comparable to your home and ask them to discuss square footage, layout, and age of the home. What is your home’s competition and how does it stack up in a Buyers mind regarding all the factors mentioned above.
UNDERPRICING VS. OVERPRICING: The worst thing you can do in real estate is over-priced. If you over-price your listing will become stale, buyers will wonder why no one else wants it and will always assume the worst, it will take substantially longer to sell and you eventually sell for less than if it was priced correctly to begin with. Never fear underpricing a home. Underpricing will lead to multiple offers and more action because that is what the market will dictate. Depending on the property underpricing can be a good strategy to get more than the home is actually worth, but your agent must go “highest and best” and strategically pull the strings of the buyer’s agents to net you the most possible with your deal.