Perhaps the most perplexing part of pricing your home to sell is in the recognition that there’s no such thing as sentimental value to a piece of property. It’s true that you may have spent years making memories, raising children, enjoying holidays, celebrating family events, and the like, buyers don’t want to pay for your experiences. Instead, they want to invest in making memories of their own. So the most important factor to pricing your house is to detach your emotions from the transaction.
It’s also true that your home may not hold the same monetary value as it did when you made your purchase. Real estate market trends dictate home values – so your house may be worth more, or less, depending on the current market. If your area is currently considered a buyer’s market where there are more buyers than houses, there’s more competition and you may choose to wait before listing your house, if you’re not in a hurry to sell.
Perceived vs. Actual Value
Perceived value is different from actual value. Perceived value is the worth potential buyers put on your place. When the buyer sees clean, organized, and move-in ready, the house is worth more. On the contrary, when house-shoppers are put-off by overgrown lawns, chipped paint, torn screens, stained carpet, and dirty walls, the house is less appealing and therefore holds less perceived value. To increase perceived value to potential buyers, stage your home to sell, or hire a staging company to do the heavy lifting and dirty work for you. Staging a house is a way for you to take control over first-impressions by dressing your house for success.
Choosing the right season in which to sell can also increase perceived value. If your house is ideal as a summer home, showing it in the winter may make it less appealing.
Online Home Valuation
You may be tempted to get a quick-fix answer by typing your home’s criteria into a home valuation calculator. There’s not a thing wrong with that, provided you understand that it’s an educated guess at best, based on impersonal and potentially out-dated data. You cannot accept an online estimate as a final answer as to how you should price your home to sell. It’s a starting point.
To validate and expand upon your online estimate, you may consider having a pre-appraisal. Having your house pre-approved allows an appraiser to gauge your home’s condition, upgrades, size, and location according to the current real estate market in your area. Not only can the appraisal indicate a more accurate value for your home, but could also reveal ways you can implement minor repairs, quick-fixes, and touch ups to increase your home’s value.
Professional Real Estate Agent
With sentimental value removed, online estimate gathered, and pre-appraisal completed, it’s time to rely on the expertise and advice of your professional, qualified real estate agent. You want to work with an agent when selling your home because they have the experience and background to help you navigate the legalities of selling real estate. Real estate agents also have selling power, meaning they’ve learned how to market properties to sell and have access to a database of potential buyers. Your agent will provide you with a CMA, or a comprehensive market analysis. This report displays data about the recently sold homes in your area that are similar to yours in size, style, and features.
Asking Price vs. Selling Price
Don’t be confused by the asking price. The asking price is what the seller hoped to earn whereas the selling price is what the buyers were willing to pay. Your CMA shows the selling price, not the asking price.
When you’re armed with all of the appropriate information, you may find it beneficial to scout the neighborhood and check out other houses for sale. Take the tours. Measure up the houses you explore to your own. How does your home stack up against the competition?
Slapping any ol’ price tag on your house won’t work. Charging for your memories will hinder your progress. Trusting online calculators alone could cut into your bottom dollar. However, when you combine this information with that of your pre-appraisal and market analysis report, you’ve got an edge. Furthermore, when you stage your home to be attractive to buyers, you increase those odds by increasing perceived value.
Your real estate agent is the best source of information about the local community and real estate topics. Give Melissa Patton a call today at 864-923-7924 to learn more about local areas, discuss selling a house, or tour available homes for sale.