6 Common Myths About Selling a Home
Whether you're upsizing, downsizing, or relocating for a job, selling your current home can be one of the most daunting aspects of moving. You'll probably receive a lot of advice from friends or family members who have sold a home in the past, but try to remember that everyone's experience is different. Here are six common myths you may hear about when selling a home.
Myth #1: You Can't Sell Your Home in the Winter
You can, although seasonal factors do affect the real estate market. Typically, there are less active buyers in the off-season, but those who are looking are usually serious — for example, they're moving for a job and need to act quickly. Typically, the number of homes on the market decreases in the winter, meaning less competition for sellers so there may even be an advantage to selling at this time of year.
Myth #2: You Need to Renovate Before Putting Your House on the Market
If you're looking to get the best possible price for your home, you may be tempted to consider undergoing large renovations, hoping the investment will pay off. Modern kitchens and baths are a selling point, but you don't always need to undergo a large-scale remodel to improve your home's marketability. Sometimes, a minor remodel can have a large effect for less money.
In terms of home upgrades, you should also consider what's important to buyers. According to the most recent Home Buyer and Seller Generational Trends Report, heating and cooling costs were the most important environmental factor for recent homebuyers. If you've installed a new heater or air conditioner, be sure to mention it in your listing.
Myth #3: Homebuyers Don't Care About Cosmetics
Some buyers can see past cosmetic issues, like outdated paint colors or décor. Others will enter a house in need of cosmetic work and be unable to see the potential. While you don't necessarily need to make major renovations to your home before selling, if you have the time and resources, you may want to consider taking care of cosmetics like painting the walls in neutral colors. You should also take the time to thoroughly clean and declutter your house before scheduling showings.
Myth #4: Visual Appeal is All You Need
When getting ready to show your home, remember to think about more than just visual appeal. Pet odors, lingering smoky smell, or musty scents can turn off buyers as well. Try to air out your home and neutralize scents before showings. Playing soft background music during an open house can also help create ambiance.
Myth #5: Price High
Pricing a home is dependent on many factors. Sellers may assume that buyers will start negotiations with a bid lower than the asking price and therefore list their home for a higher amount. However, don't want to price yourself out of a potential buyer's budget. Better advice for sellers is to price realistically. Talk to your real estate agent and look at recent sales in your neighborhood for guidance and seek the advice of a real estate agent.
Myth #6: If a Buyer Makes an Offer, You Can Assume They're Qualified
Work with your real estate agent to get the necessary information from the potential buyer to help you make a good decision when accepting an offer. Sell your home to someone who's going to come through a settlement with mortgage approval and enough money to cover closing costs.
Remember to plan ahead and find ways to relax amid the uncertainty. Once the process is over, you can look forward to moving on to the next step in your life. If you have any questions about obtaining a mortgage, selling a home, or obtaining a financial plan, speak with your financial advisor today.