Sunday, June 6, 2010

How to Improve Your Chances for an Offer

In this challenging economy, even the most beautiful homes may sit on the market. In order to improve your odds of procuring an offer, there are some things you can do:

1. Price it right. Set a price at the lower end of your property’s realistic price range or even 5% below "market price." We are still seeing multiple offers and bidding wars on those homes that are priced well.

2. Prepare for visitors. Get your house "market ready" at least two weeks before you begin showing it. The first weeks of a showing are the best time to market your home. Don't wait for the negative feedback before removing clutter, neutralizing colors or eliminating pet odors.

3. Be flexible about showings. It’s often disruptive to have a house ready to show at the spur of the moment. But the more amenable you can be about letting people see your home, the sooner you’ll find a buyer. My rule of thumb: have your home ready to be shown with 15 minutes notice. In case an out of town buyer drives past your sign, stops and wants to see your home before they board the plane that evening, you need to be ready. It happens more often than you can imagine that a seller tells a potential buyer to come back tomorrow, not realizing their housing decision must be made TODAY.

4. Anticipate the offers. Decide in advance what price and terms you’ll find acceptable. Call the movers and see how much notice they need. Investigate places to live should your home sell quickly. Remember, that is a good problem we should welcome.

5. Don’t refuse to drop the price. If your home has been on the market for more than 30 days without an offer, you should be prepared to lower your asking price. Our market is changing and you need to be flexible on pricing and change to stay current with the market. Review point 1 above.

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