When you’ve listed your home, and there have been many showings and no offers, something is wrong. In addition to being frustrating, the lack of a sale can prevent the homeowner from moving forward with their purchase of a new home. Prompt action is required to get the selling process back on the right track. How do you determine what the problem is, and once you’ve identified the problem, how do you fix it?
1. Wrong Price
Listing at the wrong price is common with slow-selling homes in the real estate market. Homeowners often recall how much they paid when they originally built or purchased the house, and hope to sell it for the same amount or even more. Unfortunately, the markets may not match.
To make sure your house is priced to match the current market, take a careful look at the recent sales of comparables in the same area. Pay attention to the critical information such as the number of bedrooms, the number of full and half bathrooms, square footage, lot size, and any “extras” such as a swimming pool, heated garage, finished basement, etc. The average selling price of the houses most similar to yours is the best guide to follow, regardless of what you originally paid.
2. Outdated Kitchen or Bathrooms
The first things prospective buyers look at when considering a home are the kitchen and bathrooms. A homeowner selling a home may not wish to spend money on an aging kitchen or outdated bathrooms. Consequently, those rooms become red flags to buyers.
A complete remodel of either of these areas is indeed a costly undertaking, and a sale may not necessarily allow you to recoup your investment. If you determine that the cost will outweigh the earnings through a sale, it is still possible to give these areas a facelift to make them more appealing to prospective buyers. In the kitchen, fresh paint, a new backsplash, new knobs on cabinets, and possibly a new appliance or two can make a dramatic improvement. Similarly in the bathroom, freshly painted walls and trim, new light fixtures, and new accessories (mirror, rugs, towels) can all work together to create an updated look and feel.
Homebuyers enter a house attempting to envision themselves and their families living in the space currently occupied by you and your family and all of your things. That becomes problematic when your home is cluttered. Instead of envisioning where they will put their couch and end tables, prospective buyers may be overly distracted by the sheer amount of “stuff” and leave with a bad impression.
A house that is truly “show ready” should not only be cleared of clutter but also of excess in general. You can pack up anything you don’t need or use on a regular basis and store it elsewhere (such as a storage unit) or neatly in the basement or garage. All remaining things should be well-organized and free of dust. The result will be an airy, spacious living space that buyers can imagine themselves in.
A slow-selling home is discouraging but does not indicate that it’s unsellable. Take the time to determine what is making your property seem unappealing, and then find the right solutions. Your home will find a favorable spot in the market in no time!