Looking at average Time-to-Sell reports for your city and the type of house that you're trying to put on the market, you might believe that the wait can't possibly be a long one. Usually, it's no more than 100 or so days for London, no matter how small or large the home. In a city like Glasgow, properties take between 100 and 200 days to go. What if your home listing doesn't seem to behave in ways that these reports predict, though? What should you be doing differently?
Turn to the experts
To many people attempting to sell a home, it can seem as if skipping the middleman (the real estate agent) is an excellent way to save some cash. According to leading real estate agency www.gpees.co.uk, though, the For-Sale-By-Owner (FSBO) process tends to be exceedingly difficult.
FSBO homes tend to be priced too high or too low, are often not prepared or staged adequately, and are unable to draw buyers for the simple reason that they have had no presale home inspection done. They may not be represented on home sale sites with quality photos or with the right keywords, and may simply not be available for visits by potential buyers at convenient times. At other times, delays occur simply because homeowners take unqualified buyers too seriously, wasting time with them before discovering that they are unable to qualify for a loan.
The answer to these challenges, of course, is to find a qualified real estate agency that helps iron out every wrinkle in the process.
Price your home to the neighbourhood
The freedom of homeowners to price their homes is often limited by the quality perception of the neighbourhoods that these homes are located in. A fancy home in a middle-class or working-class neighbourhood can never command the price that it should technically be able to attract, given the quality on offer. A homeowner who has put in a fancy kitchen and bathroom may not be able to raise the asking price enough to cover it. Prices need to be set with neighbourhood limitations in mind.
Understand the value of good repair and curb appeal
Homeowners today do not list homes for sale unless they are retail-ready -- repaired, decorated and cleaned to perfection, and staged to welcome potential buyers. Any time a homeowner has trouble seeing the value of investing in such readiness, their home is likely to stick out as particularly unattractive among all the other buffed and polished offerings that buyers have to pick from. It's important to start with the basics, like a visit by a home inspector to bring up potential problems that require repair.
You need to do your research
It's important to do your research on the kind of market conditions that you are dealing with at the moment. You need to not only know if the market favours buyers or sellers in general, you need to know what it's like with your specific kind of house and neighbourhood. While the newspapers may mention a strong seller's market at the moment, they could neglect to mention the exceptions - homes of a certain square footage, homes near certain businesses and so on. Knowing what your position is can help greatly in the negotiating process, where you can be as firm as market conditions permit, but no stronger.
You need to advertise
If you have a real estate agency working for you, they should take care of all the advertising necessary. You do need to check to make sure, though. Get on every major site for home sales to check if you are there. While you're looking around, find out what the competition is like. Make sure that your home is priced competitively compared to similarly featured homes in your neighbourhood.
Check for a missing angle
Sometimes, simply understanding the offbeat expectations of potential buyers can help. Engaging a feng shui consultant to make your home feng shui-compliant can help with a whole new class of buyers.
You can quickly unload your home if you're willing to aim yourself at other niches. If you find that your neighbourhood is popular with immigrants from a certain part of the world or people who belong to a certain religion, advertising in magazines that are popular among those groups can give your hope of a quick sale a boost.
The first-time homebuyer is another niche to aim for. Most sellers today demand cash rather than hassle-prone mortgages. This makes homebuying extremely difficult for young, first-time buyers, who find it difficult to find cash. Lowering your standards, and advertising that you're willing to work with the specific needs of first-time buyers can take your home off the market in mere days.
Abigail Frost has worked in property sales for a number of years and likes to share her ideas online on selling strategies and other relevant topics. She writes for a number of property-related websites.