The real estate market is strong in many areas, so it might be tempting to put your home up for sale. But are you really ready to sell your home? Here are some things to keep in mind.
If you don’t have a plan, you’re not ready
If you don’t have a new home to move into or a plan once you sell your home, it’s not a good time to put your home on the market. A seller without a plan is usually “testing” the market, and that translates into overpricing the home. And when you overprice your home, you can do yourself more harm than good. Rarely will a knowledgeable, savvy, active buyer overpay for a home.
Ask yourself, “If I get an offer and sign a contract for a 45-day close, do I know what I will do?” If the answer is no, you’re ready not to sell.
Once you list, the clock starts ticking
If you price your home too high, you risk having it sit on the market without offers. And you probably won’t get any showings or potential buyers. That lack of interest will follow you. Once you’re ready to sell your home at the right price or in the right condition, every buyer will know your history. They’ll see the series of price reductions, the old photos, or the previous listing when you weren’t ready to sell. It sends a message to buyers: There’s something wrong with the home or with you. Buyers will hold back on such a stigmatized home and focus instead on a newer listing that’s priced right and shows well.
Make time work for you
If you know your third child is on the way, or that your new job is too far from your current home, you’ll have the luxury of not being under the gun to sell ASAP. This help you take advantage of market conditions, as opposed to trying to time the market.
Knowing you’ll list the home in spring or fall or in February will give you time to prep the home, make the necessary improvements and get the property market-ready.
Working with a good local real estate agent, you should watch the inventory come and go, see the competition and get the word out at the right time. If a comparable home gets three offers in less than a week, then you know two other buyers are out there. Being ready to go, you can then capitalize on the market conditions.
Real estate happens year-round
Don’t assume you can only sell your home in spring or summer. Some of the most successful sales happen in the dead of winter, when inventory is low and buyers are still out. Keep this in mind when putting together a sales plan. And whenever possible, plan months in advance.
Many homeowners are emotionally attached to their homes, so they list it at a high price or don’t make the necessary improvements. This is self-sabatoge. If you’re struggling with the process, don’t list your home yet. Take a step back and wait. The right time will come, and waiting will ensure you get the most from your investment.