11 Mar 12 Costly Mistakes for Home Sellers
If you are considering selling your house, read this article first… it will save you money!
Your house is likely to be your greatest financial asset. It has probably taken you years to save to buy it, and longer still to pay for it. Before you sell, you should spend a few hours considering your options. Many people think selling a house is a stressful experience. It does not need to be this way!
This article is not a guide to conveyancing but may help you achieve the highest price at the lowest cost to avoid making some costly mistakes.
Mistake 1 – Not trusting the agent
If you feel you do not trust the estate agent, use a different one!
Trust is a major ingredient in any relationship.
When choosing an agent, ask yourself whether you feel comfortable with the idea of them handling the sale of your home.
If this answer is no, choose again!
Once you have decided upon an agent, give them your trust and let them get on with the job of finding the right buyer for your home.
Resist the temptation to interfere – after all, they are professionals!
Mistake 2 – Beware of High Valuations
Some agents overvalue to win your business.
Do not choose an agent because they have given you the highest price. They may be buying your business.
Some agents will deliberately overvalue your property to get your instruction.
If you suspect the agent is giving you an over estimated sale price, ask them for a comparable evidence and check out they are experienced in your local area.
Mistake 3 – And Low Fees
Cheap and internet agents get cheap prices!
Beware of up front fixed fees – these agents have no incentive to sell your home or to get you the best possible price or indeed to find you any buyer at all.
Steer clear of agents offering to sell your home for a fee significantly below the going rate for your area. Remember, you get what you pay for!
Cheap and internet agents give cheap service. For instance: it is unlikely they do the viewings which we feel are vitally important in obtaining the best price for your home.
It is better to pay a little more for a selling fee than to lose £10,000 of your selling price!
Mistake 4 – Poor negotiations cost money
If you have a well presented home, you do not need a salesman. You need a negotiator.
Negotiation is a skill, which if carried out well, can substantially improve your position. Poor negotiation can cost you money.
Use an agent who you feel has the right attributes to be a good negotiator.
Mistake 5 – No ‘For Sale’ signs
No sign can mean no sale.
The buyers most likely to offer the best price for your home will be the ones who really want to live in your area.
A ‘For Sale’ sign is the best possible advertisement for your home. It is an invaluable sales tool and it works 24 hours of every day.
Mistake 6 – The multiple agency trap
There is a difference between multi-listing and multi-agency!
The idea that you improve your chances of a successful sale by instructing several agents at the same time is a fallacy.
With multiple agency agreements, none of the agents will try very hard to sell your property in case they get pipped at the post. Also your property will appear multiple times on the internet creating suspicion and confusion.
Alternatively, they will try very hard to steal a march on each other by fixing you up with the first buyer that comes along.
Either way, you are unlikely to get the best price for your home. The sale will be the most important thing; the price will be of secondary importance.
Choose an agent who will give you wider exposure through multi-listing than any multiple agency agreement can give you – at a sole agency price!
Mistake 7 – Dismissing early buyers
High prices often come early; low prices often come late…
The longer your home is on the market, the fewer buyers it will attract – and the more likely it is that you will have to reduce the price.
Do not automatically dismiss early offers – they may well be the highest ones you get!
Why? Because genuinely keen buyers will always make the first move while the less committed hang back.
They are certainly not waiting for the price to go up!
Mistake 8 – No buyer record
More buyers mean more sales.
Most agents get dozens of enquiries about properties for sale each month – some get hundreds!
A good agent will keep records of all of them and will maintain regular contact with those readiest to buy.
Use an agent who keep detailed records of genuine buyers and can keep you informed with feedback on viewings.
Mistake 9 – There is nothing wrong with your home!
Your agent should carefully vet or qualify prospective buyers before arranging for them to visit your home.
They should also provide you with any useful feedback, plus regular updates on the sale.
If you home is not selling, there are usually only two reason – the agent is incompetent or the price is too high!
Mistake 10 – Keep it clean!
Dull homes get dull prices.
First impressions count! Stand back and look at what buyers will see when they arrive.
Do not confuse home improvements with presentation. Cleanliness is vital. A home which is clean, tidy and fresh-smelling will always sell for a better price.
Remember – make your home sparkle and your price will shine!
Mistake 11 – Local experience counts!
Don’t you care who is selling your home?
An estate agent rarely gets asked about their level of knowledge and experience.
Do they personally live in the area? How long have they been valuing property?
Is the company represented by offices in other local towns, on the internet and will your property details be made available there?
Mistake 12 – Websites that do not work
A good website will help sell your home – a bad one can easily do more harm than good.
There is nothing worse for buyers than websites that are out of date.
Make sure tour agent updates their site daily. How many people look at it? Is it easy to use? Find out how many people actually visit the site.
Log on and check it out yourself!
Will your agent showcase your property on multiple websites?
More coverage means more buyers!
More and more people are searching for properties using mobile media; social media also plays its part – find out if your agent has a Facebook or Twitter account.
The more people who can see your property is for sale, the best chance you have of selling it!
The directory of our award-winning expert agents can be found here – speak to them today to see how they can help.