As a single parent you may find that you will need to sell your home for a number of different reasons. These reasons may be financial, or simply related to the fact that you need more space for a growing family. There are several tips of selling your home to keep in mind when faced with this situation.
One of the best tips of selling your home that I can recommend is that you try and be patient. Current conditions mean that buyers are in a far more favorable position as compared to those who are trying to sell. If it is not immediately essential that you sell your home, try and wait for a more favorable time.
Be Aware of the Current Market
It is very important that you know your local market when it comes to attempting to sell your house. This is one of the most essential tips of selling your home that you need to keep in mind. You cannot know what price to ask for on your home if you have no idea of what is going on in your local market. Local changes are far more important than national changes in the real estate arena.
Be Aggressive when Pricing
Buyers look for bargains. It is as simple as that. So, if you are selling your home, one of the most essential things that you will need to do in order to get offers is to ask for a price that is between 10 and 20% lower than what you feel the house is worth. And it would be advisable to ask for a price that is also less than that of similar homes in the area. Finding out what your house is worth is easy enough, so be sure to take this very important step. The best method would be to get a professional appraisal. See what similar homes in your area have sold for in the recent past, and always set an asking price that is just below a whole number, as this is more psychologically pleasing for most would be buyers. This is one of the essential tips of selling your home as you may find it difficult to sell your home at all otherwise. Currently there are very few houses that are actually selling in the USA at the moment. On average it takes eight to ten weeks to sell a home in the current market, but of these homes, most of the sellers accepted less than 90% of their asking price.
Be Prepared to Negotiate with Your Broker
If you decide not to sell privately, you will need an agent or broker. You will need to sell your house at a slightly reduced price if you want it to sell in today’s market. This means that you need to be prepared to negotiate with your real estate broker for a reduced cut of the overall fee. Your broker will be aware of the market as much as you are, and therefore will most likely be flexible in this regard. Make sure that you have a quality agent working for you, and in this regard it is better to go with experienced and well known agents.
Remember That First Impressions Count
The first thing that potential buyers will see of your home is the outside. They will not be interested in looking any further if your house looks shabby and poorly maintained at first glance. The front of your house is the best place to spend a little bit of time and money. This means that you will need to spruce it up before allowing it to be viewed at all. This is one of the more important tips of selling your home. Prepare your home in every way possible. This involves clearing away all clutter from every surface and cleaning every nook and cranny. It may also be wise to give the place a new coat of paint if necessary, and do any minor landscaping that you have been putting off. Fix all of the small stuff, like creaking steps and leaking taps before inviting potential buyers to have a look. Get friends and family to point out anything that you may have missed. Making your home attractive is absolutely not optional. Considering how competitive the market is at the moment, you may need to win buyers over by simply having a more attractive home than anyone else. Houses painted in neutral colors sell better than houses with bright or garish colors. If bright red walls is your thing, than make sure that you repaint them before allowing your house to be viewed. Remove any items that potential buyers will not be able to identify with, including photographs or religious artifacts that may be off putting. If you have pets, make sure that you keep them under control whenever you have potential buyers over. Make sure each room is carefully designated for specific use, as this will make it easier for potential buyers to picture themselves and their possessions in each room. Your home should also smell good. This is very important, and it is harder than you think. Smells that you may be used to may create an unfortunate atmosphere for any potential buyers. Have friends give you their honest opinions in this regard. Don’t leave any DIY jobs that you started unfinished. It is important that you don’t devalue your home by having a half filled swimming pool or a bathroom that is only half tiled.
Keep the Lights On
You also need the inside of your house to be inviting and attractive. This in part means that it should be kept well lit, even if you are not there during the viewing. Open the drapes and blinds, and let the house air. If people walk into a dimly lit and gloomy home, they will be less interested in buying the place. Make sure that all of your light bulbs work, and use the lighting in each room to subtly create a positive atmosphere. Mirrors can be used to reflect light as well as space. Keep your house sparkling and clean, and make sure that everything is shining bright in terms of cleanliness as well as natural light.
There are some very important tips of selling your home that you need to keep in mind when it comes to preparing your home for sale. If you have many different types of floor coverings your house may look smaller, so make sure that you either replace your flooring, or keep the doors closed until you show each room separately.
The Importance of Bedrooms
Most people choose a home based on the bedrooms,so one of the most important tips of selling your home that you need to keep in mind is the presentation of the bedrooms in your house. If you are using a bedroom as a study, add a bed for the purpose of showing your house as bedrooms add more perceived value to your home. If you have limited time or resources to expend on your bedrooms, focus on the master bedroom. It will, after all, be the room that will be used by your primary buyers, and therefore it needs to stand out. Pay attention to the layout of the various bedrooms. Make sure that they don’t appear too small, and make sure that they can walk around the bed. Built in wardrobes add a lot of value to your home, so it may be worthwhile to have some put in if you are able to handle the cost. Buyers don’t worry so much about the state of children’s rooms, but it is better to keep them clutter free, so get your kids to work with you on this by whatever means necessary.
One of the other more important tips of selling your home involves making your home feel bigger than it really is. This could require removing some of the bulkier items of furniture temporarily to give visitors a better idea of the size of the house. Removing family pictures from the walls may also be advisable as it better allows visitors to envision themselves living in your home.
Don’t Be Too Quick to Rent
One of the most tips of selling your home to keep in mind when trying to sell your home is not to be too quick to rush to renting out your home. The current market means that you may start to lose hope of ever selling your home. However, renting your home is not always the best or safest option. Houses are quickly losing their value, meaning that if you don’t sell your house now you may be selling it at a loss in the future. If your moving plans involve you moving out of town this means that you will have to keep track of your tenants from a distance.
Be prepared to be Flexible
It is tough to sell a house in the current market, so you need to be prepared to be flexible if necessary. Consider all bids, even if they are incredibly low, and be prepared to throw in added benefits in order to sweeten the deal. Banks are not providing 100% or even 95% of loans, so buyers may not be able to give you bids at your asking price.
One of the important tips of selling your home to remember is that everyone feels that their home is more special than everyone elses. Unfortunately most potential buyers will not have the same emotional attachment to your house as you do. This means that you need to think beyond your emotions and be professional. Selling a house is a business transaction, and therefore needs to be treated objectively.
Market Your Home Effectively
If you want people to buy your home, they need to know that it exists in the first place. This means that you will have to market your home, and this is one the most important tips of selling your home and therefore needs to be done properly. In the US about 90% of buyers look for a home online. This means that you will need to market your home on the internet. There are several appropriate websites, but one of the most popular is ForSaleByOwner.com. Take some photos for this website, and make sure that everything is perfect for the photo shoot. Make sure that you provide photographs of every essential aspect of your house. You want people to have all of the facts as this makes it easier for them to know whether or not they like the house right from the outset. Show indoor and outdoor space in the photographs, and make sure that if you advertise three bedrooms that you show images of all of those bedrooms. The same goes for bathrooms and garages. Considering how increasingly popular mobile devices have become, it may be wise to advertise your home on websites that are compatible with such devices. If your agent is the one doing your marketing for you, keep track of what they are saying and promising, and make sure that you agree. Make sure that they are not making any claims that are not in line with the truth.
Accept Current Conditions
The last and most important tips of selling your home that you need to be prepared to keep in mind is that your house may be a sunk cost. It may represent money that you are never going to get back, and you need to ultimately be prepared to accept your fate and sell your house at a lower price than you were otherwise hoping to sell it for.
Selling your house will not be easy, especially as a single parent. You may find it easier than you expect, if you are lucky, but in the long run you will most likely find it to be a difficult task. There are many tips of selling your home to keep in mind when making this momentous decision.
Originally posted 2011-11-10 00:00:59.