If you want buyers and their real estate agents to lose interest in your home real fast, it doesn’t take much unfortunately. While the real estate market is improving, there are still plenty of homes on the market where buyers have a choice. If you decide that selling your home is not something you will take seriously, then it’s probably not a good time to put your home on the market.
Selling a home today is much different than it was a decade ago. Staging was something that was relatively new in the industry. Also, the Internet was not the first place a buyer went to in order to look at homes. In those days prospective buyers still called their real estate agent to ask for information. Today, you can discover much about a home with just a few clicks of a mouse.
With competition still fierce, real estate agents will steer their clients away from a home where a seller is not motivated to sell. Why waste anyone’s time when there are better opportunities available? Here are a few things sellers can do when they do NOT want to sell their homes:
1. Ignore Landscaping:
Sorry, but curb appeal is so important, that a buyer will just walk away if they see a messy front yard. It’s amazing, but there are sellers who think, “Hey, they are coming to see the inside of my home, why should my landscaping look good?” Because your yard is an extension of the house. Buyers will assume that if the outside looks bad, the inside must look worse.
If you decide the night before a showing to cook your favorite dinner that is loaded with garlic, or if you leave a dirty litter box out for everyone to see, then guess what: you might as well have greeted the buyers at the front door with a pile of dirty laundry. Yes, smells mean everything to a buyer and if an offending odor is what they first detect when they open your door, it’s an impression that will not go away. You may have the best home on the block, but if it smells bad, it’s off putting.
3. Show Your Unique Personality:
Vivid painted walls, crazy wallpaper and wild furniture may show your creative side, but for buyers, they may say, “thanks, but no thanks.” Sellers often find it difficult to hear from their real estate agents that they need to tone down their expressive walls and furniture. It’s a sensitive subject, but buyers want to see a home they can move into it. What they see with bright-colored walls is a home that needs to be repainted. If you are not interested is toning your home down, then you are severely limiting the amount of buyers that will go through your home as real estate agents usually have a pretty good idea what their buyers are looking for.
4. Letting Fido Stay:
For sellers who just know in their heart of hearts that buyers will love their pet, and insist on having them run through the house during a showing, well, chances are your buyers will cut their visit short. No one knows how their pet behaves when they are not at home. A barking dog is very distracting, but a dog jumping up on prospective buyers? Sorry, but that never works.
Hey, it’s no problem if dirty dishes are left in the sink! Buyers will understand that this was a last minute showing so they will be sympathetic right? In one word: no. They will think you are messy and that you are not taking the selling process seriously. They will also correctly assume that the rest of the home is a mess as well and will be looking to see what else is wrong with the house instead of your homes features.
6. Forget Repairs:
Listen, buyers won’t mind fixing the hole in the wall or replacing the light bulbs will they? Yes they will. If a buyer sees a broken fixture or cracks in the wall, they will look at their agent and ask for the next property to visit.
7. Leave Clutter Around:
Sellers that leave their personal memorabilia around, such as family photos, their favorite team logos on the refrigerator, books, magazines and knick knacks, are taking away from buyers what they must envision: imagining their family in your home. It’s hard to do when they see your family vacation photos or your magazines scattered around.
8. Ignore Agents Advice:
If your real estate agent recommends that you re-arrange your furniture to showcase your fireplace, but you insist that your furniture stay put, then chances are, you are missing a valuable opportunity to promote your home’s features. If buyers only see your large, overstuffed couch, they won’t notice a fireplace where they can envision spending nights around a roaring fire.
Selling a home is no longer simply putting a “For Sale” sign in your front yard. It’s an often time-consuming process that a seller needs to prepare for. But the hard work will pay off for those that take it seriously.