As Halloween approaches and we are surrounded by ghouls, ghosts and goblins, it seems like an appropriate time to remember how to not scare off potential buyers. From overpricing your property, to not promptly responding to buyer inquiries, there are a lot of ways to lose buyer interest. Here we outline some key tips on how to make your property appealing to the most buyers.
Since the vast majority of home buyers start their search online, it is imperative that your home is accurately priced. Why? Because online real estate listings sites often have a search feature to target buyers’ specific price ranges. A home that is priced too high will not even make it into buyers’ search results.
Photos are one of your most critical marketing tools. When searching online, if potential buyers don’t like the photos of your home, they won’t contact you for a showing. Before you take photos, stage both the interior and exterior of your home. Take pictures on a bright and sunny day. No one is going to be interested in a dark and drab home.
First impressions are so important and the first thing that someone sees while driving by or walking to your door for a showing is the exterior of your home. Make sure the lawn is mowed, leaves are raked and windows are cleaned. Don’t forget, curb appeal isn’t just for the daytime. Soft exterior lights along your driveway and sidewalks, as well as outside your front door, will aid in making your home feel warm and inviting.
While we feel strongly that no one knows – and can sell – your home better than you, don’t fill showings with personal history and family memories about your house. Keep information vague, such as ‘this backyard is great for kids’ and ‘the dining room is ideal for large dinner parties.’ Remember, home buyers want to picture themselves in your home so providing them with an idea of how they will use the space, instead of how you used it, will work to your advantage.
We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again, make yourself available to all potential buyers. This means responding to all phone calls and emails in a timely matter. Don’t only be available for showings during a brief window of time a few days a week. Remember, it’s a buyers’ market and if a potential buyer gets frustrated with a homeowner’s slow response time or lack of flexibility, they will just move on to the next home.
Saying and doing the right things when selling your house ‘by owner’ can mean the difference between a swift sale and a lengthy time on the market.