In a fast moving market homes typically go under contract fairly quickly , usually within the first couple of days or the first week on the market. So if your home is still on the market, you may be asking yourself why hasn't my house sold then. There could be various reasons why your home probably hasn't sold; in my experience there are 5 main reasons ; price, staging(aka clutter), availability, flexibility, and odors. Which one is plaguing your property? To get your answer let's get into each of these a little deeper.
The first and biggest elephant in the room is usually price. Now you may be thinking it's a fast moving market why can't I price my house high and just take less. Well simply put, a house is worth what someone else is willing to pay for it. You see even in a fast moving market you have to be realistic with your pricing because most people that would be buying your house will likely be getting a loan and every loan requires an appraisal. Buyer's will also typically not consider homes that are listed too far out of their price range. So yes you can list your house for $500,000 if you want to; but if the identical home across the street sold for $400,000, you're gonna have a hard time convincing an appraiser that your home is worth more. The other thing to remember when pricing your home is that although the flooring that your child took their first steps on is priceless to you, as far as appraisers and buyers are concerned it holds no monetary value. So be sure to take the emotion out of the pricing equation.
Moving on to the next issue that can keep your house from selling, clutter. Now that doesn't mean you have to get rid of everything you own but it does mean some serious de-cluttering is in order. If your planning on selling your home or if your home is on the market and hasn't sold consider getting a storage unit and packing up everything that is not a necessity. When looking at homes, buyers need to be able to picture themselves in your home. It's a little hard to picture your stuff in a home that already has too much stuff in it because you can't get a clear idea of the size or layout of the rooms. Its also important to de-personalize as much as possible. You should also consider putting away family pictures and replacing them with some artwork.
I know we all have busy schedules but it's important to remember a buyer can't fall in love with your house if they can't see it. When you put your house on the market you have to be aware that buyer's often have busy lives too and you don't want to miss out on a potential buyer being able to see your home. That's why its very important to be flexible when it comes to showing requests. Now that's not to say you have to let people in at all hours of the day but the more flexible you can be the better especially during those first few days when the house is new on the market. The more buyers you can get to look the more opportunities you will have of getting an offer.
The other thing that can affect your home is odors. I'm not saying your home is stinky but there are many odors a house can have that we become immune to overtime. For example the smell of smoke or the cat litter may not bother you because your used to it but for a buyer that walks in and is not used to it, it could be a major turn off. If you smoke make sure you smoke outside away from entryways to avoid the smoke going inside. If you have pets consider getting a spray or powder you can use before showings to neutralize the odors and make sure to keep litter boxes clean to minimize the smell. I also want to point out good smells can be just as bad as foul smells. While you may love the strong citrus or cinnamon smell of your Scentsy warmer, it could be too much for potential buyers. If you decide to use candles, sprays, etc, opt for more mild scents like "clean linen" that give off a pleasant scent without being overpowering.
In a fast moving market as well and as a down market it's important to remember people will always want to negotiate. So whether it's the price or inspection issues don't shut yourself out of negotiations. Most buyers will want to fell like their getting some kind of deal. That can be anything from including the appliances to getting a home warranty, paying closing costs or even something simple like getting an outlet cover replaced. You might find during negotiations that something is less expensive to fix than you initially thought. Remember majority of buyers will be getting a loan for the house and if your house only qualifies for certain loan types due to repairs needed you will vastly narrow your buyer pool.
The final thing I want to leave you with is this, if you do have your home listed with an agent and it's not selling set up an appointment with your agent and go over what you could do differently to get your home sold. As agents we are in the business of selling homes not just listing them so we want your home to sell just as much as you do. If you've been contemplating selling your home, stop thinking about it and call me right now to set up a Free Market Analysis.
***If your home is currently listed with an agent, this is not an attempt to solicit your business.