Real Estate Tips for 2016
Happy New Year!
Are you thinking of selling and/or buying this year?
Here are some ideas to hopefully give you an edge in conquering what usually ends up being the 1% to 2% difference between the thrill of victory and the agony of defeat!
- The new listing agreement suggests getting a home inspection prior to hitting the market. It’s a good idea; fix what’s wrong in advance, and then give buyers a copy to demonstrate your pride of ownership.
- Know where you are going to move, and only hit the open market when you are 100% committed to selling. You might get an offer the first day.
- Showing the house is inconvenient but necessary – the more you do it, the better your chances. Be ready to show the house on the day it hits the open market – and expect dozens of lookers to visit in the first 7-10 days.
- Do two things to make a great first impression; spruce up the curb appeal and insist on top-quality photos.
- Be smart about price.
- Ask agents about bidding war strategies, and recent experiences. Spreading out the offers on your coffee table and picking one isn’t a strategy.
- Avoid gimmicks like range pricing or ‘coming soon’. A clean, straight-forward approach is attractive to buyers.
- Determine if a company brand name is a benefit or a crutch.
- Real estate ‘teams’ means you get passed around. Make sure to identify who handles the buyer inquiries, and that they are top-notch sales people.
- The buyers you want to attract – the ones that pay too much – are represented by lousy agents who don’t know the difference. Get Good Help – hire a listing agent who can carry any agent to the finish line.
- See more houses in person. You have to keep your chops up, because low inventory causes complacency. If all you do is shop online, you’ll look for any reason NOT to buy, and stay home. But there are no perfect houses.
- Start looking at least six months before your lease is up.
- There aren’t many rules, and every listing agent is different. Work with an agent who has a track record getting buyers to the finish line.
- Don’t expect much from sellers regarding repairs.
- Be open to fixers. To get more comfortable, line up contractors in advance and ask for a sample quote so you know what to expect.
- Expand the target zone, but buy in a great school district.
- If affordability is an issue, compromise on size before location. You can always add on later.
- Properly evaluate the negatives, and the appropriate discounts.
- Know what to do in a bidding war.
- Your agent should suggest an offer price, and a strategy behind it.
These are some basic, general tips, but the best thing you can do is to get an experienced agent on your side – someone who is closing at least a sale per month (check at zillow). I am available, and would love to assist you!