Your House Didn’t Sell – Now What?
If you’re like most people, when you first listed your home for sale, you were excited! You looked at the listing for your property on-line multiple times a day and you were excited every time your home was shown because you were certain an offer would soon follow. After a few weeks keeping your home “showing ready” became a chore. After all, even though your home was a product for sale, you still had to live there! After a couple of months you probably became frustrated and possibly dis-heartened. Why didn’t the buyer prospects want to buy your home? Was it market conditions? Was it the marketing? Was it the Realtor or the lack of a Realtor? Why!!!???
6 Reasons Why Your Home Might STILL be for Sale!
There are many reasons why a property might not sell, some reasons are market related, but the fact is that in 2016 in the City of Calgary only 17,804 residential properties sold compared to the 32,274 properties that were listed on the Calgary Real Estate Board multiple listing service during the year. To put this in perspective, this means that 44.82% of the residential properties that were listed did NOT sell!
This statistic does not make you feel any better if your property was in the 44.82 percentile. Yes 2016 was a challenging market year but why did the properties in the 55.18 percentile sell while yours did not? And, if you still wish to sell your property, how do you make sure that it sells in 2017?
1.) Is Your Property Market Ready?
Let’s start with the property itself. Objectively look at your property the way a prospective buyer would. What is the first impression? Is the exterior clean and clear from clutter? Does it need paint or landscaping? Is the interior also clean and clutter free? Are there any features that would be considered dated? Are there any location or floor plan flaws? Many improvements that will increase the saleability of a property can be made for low or no cost. To find out which improvements are worth the time and the cost consider asking a knowledgeable professional Realtor.
2.) Is Your Property Available to View?
When a serious buyer is touring properties they most often view several properties in one day. If there are a lot of available properties they will have narrowed the possibilities from their search into a shorter list. If one of these properties is not available to view during the buyer’s property tour it will often be replaced with another property. Unless there is very little inventory from which to choose the buyer might not wish to include the missed property on their next tour or, worse yet, if they are a relocation buyer who may not have time to go back to missed properties, they may offer on a property from the first shorter list. Within reason it is important to try to allow every showing.
3.) Where and How Should Your Property be Marketed?
Put yourself in the buyer’s shoes. If you were buying a home today what resources would you use to find the right property? In Calgary, every residential property listed with the Calgary Real Estate Board is available to view on www.realtor.ca. This is the obvious “go-to” web site for residential real estate because it also has private seller postings. Most buyers will also work with their own Realtor representative so that they can receive a customized property search specific to their criteria. Realtors have the ability to create a search on the Realtor side of the multiple listing service with much more specific criteria than is available on the public site. The ad copy and the photographs and all other media should accurately portray the best features of the property.
4.) What Market Data Analytics and Follow-up Procedures Should Occur?
This is where most private sellers and Realtors fail! The market conditions that existed when your home was originally listed are seldom the same conditions that exist when the listing or posting expires. It is important to know if the competition – the number of available properties that compete with yours – is increasing or decreasing and if the number of sales are going up or down. Are the number of internet visits and showings increasing or decreasing and what have prospects said about the property? What communication has occurred with interested parties? Regular review of the market data, prospect feedback and the viewing and showing activity will allow you to know if any changes are needed to get your property sold and will let you know what your negotiating position is when you receive an offer!
5.) What Should the Asking Price Be?
Price is a marketing tool. If you choose the asking price that best reflects the features of your property – your property should receive enough showings to generate an offer. Choose a price that is too high and your property will not be seen online or in person. This can be one of the biggest challenges for a property owner. Most property owners are justifiably proud of their properties and how they have maintained them. In addition many property owners may have a value in mind that reflects what they have paid or what they want or need from the proceeds of sale. Objectively reviewing the sale prices – not the asking prices – of similar properties will reflect what buyers have been willing to pay. If these sale prices do not reflect what you want or need it may not be the right time to sell. When looking at the asking prices of your competition, put yourself in the buyer’s shoes. Buyers comparison shop and will choose the best priced property based on their individual criteria.
6.) Do You Need a Realtor?
Maybe not. If you are confident in your marketing and follow-up abilities and your property is available to show at times convenient to the buyer prospects, you may want to “earn” the commission saved by working with a company that provides private seller postings on the multiple listing service.
If you prefer to have a Realtor advocate consider conducting interviews for the job. Ask the interviewees the appropriate questions regarding their processes and procedures for all of the above vital components of a successful property sale.
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