If you are currently selling your home, or plan to sell your home in the future, I ask that you please take a moment to read this letter.
Dear Future Home Sellers…
I am writing to you based on my current experience as a home buyer. Have you asked yourself the important questions as you prepare to sell your home?
Are you sure now is the right time to sell your home?
Do you just want to find out what your home would sell for?
Are you considerate of your future buyers?
Are your expectations realistic?
Are you absolutely sure you are ready to sell your home?
Why do I pose these questions? Well, because the home owner of the home we were beginning the process of purchasing has decided to not sell her home for unrealistic reasons. Also, she was utterly inconsiderate. She might have ruined our opportunity to find the right home for us. Let us start with the first questions…
I know that the market is changing and you might be considering a move. Maybe to another city. Maybe to downgrade. Maybe to upgrade. What ever your reason may be, I understand the hesitation. You don’t want to sell too soon if you can get a higher sales price a little bit down the road. You also may not want to miss the opportunity to get a fair/high sale price if the market take a dip. So, are you sure now is the right time to sell your home? The answer is a bit easier than it seems. Do your research! Your local newspapers and news stations should be reporting on your area’s housing market. Many areas around the country are still experiencing slow markets, while other are booming with sale prices increasing almost monthly. Look online for homes in your area that are for sale. Find something close and comparable to you. Also, if you still have an open loan on your home, find out your balance and see if selling your home is worthwhile.
Are you still wavering on whether or not you should sell your home? Do you just want to find out what your home would sell for? If you just want to see some real numbers before making your decisions, and don’t trust your own research, seek professional help! No, I don’t mean a therapist. Realtors and real estate agents are always available to review your property. Why would they be so willing to help you if you are not sure if you are ready to sell? First, you’re a potential client. If they provide you with excellent service and assistance you now have a contact you have confidence in. Second, referrals referrals referrals! If you tell your friends, family and coworkers about the amazing assistance of a real estate professional, you could be the source of future clients! Realtors and Real Estate Agents have the tools and experience to help review your property and give you a reasonably accurate estimate of the estimated sales price.
Now you have all of your information and want to sell your home. Great! Now, what is your timeline? Do you need to sell your home in less that 3 weeks? Do you not mind waiting 3 months for the perfect offer? How responsive do you plan on being? Are you considerate of your future buyers? How is this all related? Easy. There are many different types of home buyers. Foreigners with cash offers, investment seeking individuals/businesses, regular financing home buyers, and first time homebuyers. Think about your buyers for a second. Do you realize that you aren’t changing just your life, but possibly making (or breaking) the lives of others? The home owner of the home we just had an offer accepted on (and contract signed) was always SO SLOW in responding. We saw the home over a weekend and had an offer to them Monday morning. We asked for a response by Wednesday, but we didn’t hear a peep. On Thursday the listing agent contacted our agent to state that our offer was one of two “remaining” offers that the seller was considering. We were advised that we would have an answer by Friday. Guess what. NO response on Friday. The seller was inconsiderate enough to have another open house thinking we wouldn’t find out. Honestly, if the seller would have been upfront with us and said that they wanted just one more open house to see if more offers came in, we would have understood! They were seeking the best offer. At the same time, my fiancé and I could have considered searching for homes. But no. We waited patiently. I guess the open house wasn’t as successful. On Monday we were notified mid-day that our offer was accepted. Yet, it took the seller two days to get us a signed contract. My fiancé and I were OVER THE MOON. We were making plans for our first home and scheduling all of the inspections. Now, two days after receiving the contract and 13 days since the open house the seller has decided not to sell us her home. Reason to follow. The important thing to note is that if the seller was honest from the beginning, we would not have lost two weeks worth of house hunting. Prompt and honest responses only help everyone.
Now, let me ask you… Are your expectations realistic? What do I mean by realistic? Basic common sense. That is what I mean. If all of the comparables in your area have your home “expected” to appraise at $240,000 and you have a listing price of $260,000, do you think it is REALISTIC that you will have a seller willing to pay $275,000 for your home? A full $35,000 over the anticipated appraisal amount? That is almost 15% higher than the value of the home! How does that make financial sense for your buyer? Don’t let greed ruin a great opportunity. I am not saying to walk away from profit. But at the same time, don’t expect to find a buyer willing to drastically over pay for the value of your home. Realistic expectations from the beginning will only help with the communication and speed of the process.
You’ve done your research, you decided that you want to sell, and you have worked out your timeframe and expectations.. Are you absolutely sure you are ready to sell your home? Do you have any hesitations? Is there anything that would stop you from selling? Is there a minimum price that you will not go below when considering offers? Share all of these things with your listing agent! This helps to weed out the bad offers from the good. What ever you are unsure about can burn a deal. Be ready to make these big decisions!
Your decisions and how you handle selling your home affects many people around you. Take your time to make sure you are completely confidant with selling your home and the terms of the sale.
Taking all of this information into consideration can help you get the price you want, and avoid the heart ache that buyers like myself went through.
Wishing you all of the best,