Deciding to sell your property is a big decision, and if you are planning on doing it yourself it doesn't have to be any harder. It doesn’t take much to gain the same knowledge as an agent, and avoid making some key errors when selling.
Despite what agents may tell you, being present at your open homes is not one of these mistakes, in fact we have found buyers enjoy being able to glean firsthand insights from vendors.
We have compiled a list of ten common but easily avoidable errors made by property vendors:
1. Not Getting Your House in Order
Before starting the process, repair what needs to be repaired, repaint, declutter, clean , mow and potentially stage your home. All these thing will add value to your home and make it more attractive to buyers.
2. Setting the Price Too High
You need to set the price right. Too high, and it will languish on the market for too long and too low, and you could lose out on some serious profits. Often when the price is too high, sellers incrementally drop it, making them appear desperate and leaving buyers hanging back to see just how low they will go.
3. Too Much Emotional Investment
You may have spent fortunes on your home in renovations, but remember to remain subjective at all times. That includes setting the price for actual features rather than for perceived tastefulness, and also not getting upset if you hear potential buyers plan to alter one of the elements you created. Stay dispassionate at all times. If you find that really difficult, get trusted friends to point out some hard truths about your property or get them to undertake a reality check with you every now and again.
4. Dismissing Unsuitable Offers Completely
Even if you get an unsuitable offer early on, respond politely and explain why you have set the price at that level (use recent sales history or evidence of expensive renovations which have added value). Those buyers might spend some time looking at comparable properties but there is still chance they will come back to yours, so don’t burn your bridges.
5. Not Having Legals Ready
Ensure you have all your contracts ready before you list and have a trusted conveyancer on board and ready to go. When you have a buyer lined up for the property, the last thing you want to do is waste time sorting out the contract.
6. Not Enough Property Pictures
Don’t skimp on advertising pictures. Try to use as many as possible and show off all the different areas of your house. Often people post lots of shots of the garden or one room, which makes buyers suspicious the rest is not worth photographing. Buyers are especially keen to see wet areas (bathroom and kitchen) before inspection as these are the most expensive to renovate.
7. Hiding Major Problems
It can be tempting to paint over the rising damp, or make a short term fix to a structural error to save money, but when buyers get a building inspection, your handiwork will be uncovered, and then you risk losing a sale or losing money from the offer. So it is far better that you repair anything major ahead of listing your property, or highlight the issue upfront so you don’t look dishonest.
8. Expecting the Asking Price will be the Sale Price
It is very rare that the final sale price matches the asking price and most vendors add a buffer on top with the expectation of being talked down a bit by buyers. Don’t be surprised when buyers want to negotiate.
9. Not Understanding Your Buyer’s Financial Situation
It can be tempting to accept one offer over another, but it is important to take the time to check whether buyers have finance. A cash buyer for a few thousand less can be much better than one who still needs to secure a mortgage or finance approval. If the finance falls through, you run the risk of losing the sale.