10 Things Your Realtor Won’t Tell You – but Should! [PART II]
Last week, we gave you a run-down of five things that a realtor isn’t likely to tell someone searching for West Chester or Liberty Township homes for sale. Today, in Part II of this series, we’re covering the topic from the opposite angle – 5 things a realtor won’t tell their sellers.
Five Things a Realtor Won’t Tell Their Sellers
“This home isn’t worth what you think.”
I know. Your “Zestimate” says your West Chester or Liberty Township home for sale is worth a half million dollars. But it’s not.
While we always, ALWAYS encourage homeowners to do their own due diligence before listing their West Chester or Liberty Township home for sale, one of the biggest traps they fall into is putting too much faith in the estimates provided by online real estate databases like Zillow, Trulia and Redfin. It’s important to remember that these are intended to be a guide. A West Chester or Liberty Township realtor will be able to give you a more accurate idea of what your home is worth after touring your property and sizing up local competition. If you’re planning to sell your home, it’s important to go into the process with a realistic expectation of what your home is worth.
“Your kitchen renovation wasn’t worth it.”
This is one of those topics that pains us every time. Many West Chester and Liberty Township, OH homeowners falsely assume that pumping big bucks into a home renovation will help their home sell for at least that much more. Unfortunately, it doesn’t always work that way. You’ve got to hope that the buyers will have your same sense of style and design, otherwise, they may not be willing to pay a premium for your upgraded kitchen.
One of the things that influences kitchen renovations is the location of your property and the most likely demographic of homebuyers. For instance, young buyers are more likely to eat out, and therefore, place less of an emphasis on the kitchen than middle-aged and older buyers. The same is true in urban areas, where people (regardless of age) tend to eat out more than they cook. Renovations, in our experience, tend to be more valuable in suburban areas (which is great news for people looking to sell their West Chester or Liberty Township property!).
We always encourage homeowners to consult with a local real estate agent before making a significant upgrade to your property, particularly if your intention is to make the renovations in preparation of listing your West Chester or Liberty Township home for sale.
“If your home is vacant it will probably sell for less.
Many people wrongly assume that emptying their West Chester or Liberty Township house for sale will make the rooms look larger. Sometimes that works (particularly if you have oversized furniture). But sometimes, it doesn’t.
See, the truth is most homebuyers have a hard time envisioning themselves in a space when there’s nothing there to “set the stage.” When there’s no furniture, it’s hard for them to figure out how they might configure their own belongings. Your West Chester or Liberty Township home for sale might, in fact, have plenty of room for their stuff – but an empty home lacks the context to convince buyers otherwise.
Also, an empty home signals that a homeowner has already moved out. The buyer gains an advantage when they realize that the seller might need to move quickly to avoid paying both the carrying costs on this property as well as their new mortgage. As a result, we find that vacant West Chester or Liberty Township homes for sale tend to draw lowball offers.
“Staging your home will help it sell, but we don’t want to use YOUR stuff.”
OK. So, let’s clarify. We don’t want to show a VACANT home, but we don’t want to show a home chock full of your belongings either. No offense.
Homebuyers love properties that have been expertly staged. It makes the home feel cleaner and more polished. At a minimum, you should always remove any personal belongings (family photos, the kids’ artwork hanging on the fridge, etc.) before listing your West Chester or Liberty Township home for sale. But really, we’d prefer you to just rent a storage unit for a month or two while the house is on the market. Leave the staging to us. You’ll be glad you did.
“FSBO won’t save you money.”
Some homeowners believe that listing their home as “For Sale by Owner” (FSBO) will save them money, but this is a HUGE misconception!
You might be thinking… “Of course you’re saying that, you want our business!” (True). However, don’t just take our word for it. There are plenty of stats out there that show how listing your home with a West Chester or Liberty Township real estate agent can actually save you money, even though you’re paying up to 5-6% towards the realtors’ commissions.
The cost savings come from working with a real estate agent who knows the local market. They can list your West Chester or Liberty Township home for sale properly, reducing the time it sits on the market. They have access to MLS, which is the national database for real estate listings – and listing your home on MLS gives you the greatest exposure to people looking for West Chester or Liberty Township homes for sale. Real estate agents also know how to negotiate to get you the best deal – most have been in the real estate industry for years. A realtor knows how to protect you, your best interests, and lock in the best deal possible.
While it’s tempting to save on the commission, trust us – FSBO won’t save you money.
Finding a Great Real Estate Agent
There are lots of great real estate agents out there. Before listing your property, we recommend interviewing a handful of West Chester and Liberty Township realtors. Sit down in person and have an honest conversation. Learn how they’ll evaluate what your home is worth, how many homes they’ve sold in your area. Gauge how well they know the local market, and above all else, get a sense for whether they’re going to be straight-forward and transparent with you.
Not sure where to get started? Give us a shout. As one of the leading real estate agencies serving West Chester and Liberty Township, we’ve worked with countless sellers who are in your shoes. We’d be happy to have a no-obligation chat to discuss all of your real estate needs.