Ten big mistakes a home-seller can make

Property sellers are always motivated by different reasons, whether they have moved jobs, need more space for their growing family or just want a change of scene. Nevertheless, selling your home will be a challenging task in terms of choosing a real estate agent, pricing and negotiation.

The property you are selling could be of high value, in good condition, and in a nice neighbourhood. Yet, if sellers make some simple mistakes, the property could end up remaining on the market for a couple of months without selling.

To help ensure your sale runs smoothly, global real estate website Lamudi has put together a list of mistakes a home-seller should avoid in order to get a good price.

Not showing your property in its best light

You do not have to renovate your property and invest a large amount of money. But there are a few steps you can take in order to make your property appear more valuable. The first impression, in terms of the exterior, is the most important. Clean the windows, paint the front door and make sure the grass is not a mess.


Rushing into the market

Do not rush into the market as soon as you have decided to sell your home.

Price fluctuations and availability can have a huge impact. Try to gather as much information as possible and to forecast trends for your local area.


Hiring the wrong agent

Choosing an agent is one of the most important steps when selling your property. Do not let ties to family or friends get in the way. Where money is involved, you should always keep the relationship professional. Also don’t just hire the first agent who comes in mind. Try to gather information about the agent’s network and expertise before hiring him or her.


Setting the value too high

The emotional value of a property often differs from the actual value.

Potential buyers do not know about the ups and downs you have experienced with your property. Try to be objective when it comes to the pricing. It is good, though, to fill the property with emotions. Try to describe to the agent why this property was special to you and he may be able to use this information during sale.


Withholding information (such as hidden defects)

The house has been sold. The new owner enters and finds the roof leaking because of termites. If the buyer finds out that you knew about it and did not mention any hidden defects during the sale process, he can withdraw from the purchase agreement.


Not staying in contact with your agent

Relying on your agent and not being involved with the selling process can be a mistake. Insist on regular reports about how your property is doing on the market and what your competitors’ prices are like. You are not the agent’s only customer and therefore want to make sure he or she keeps you top of mind.


Being impatient

It takes some time to sell a house. Do not expect to sell your home after a couple of weeks. Importantly, when the property does not sell quickly, remember there is no need to adjust the price too early. Stay in contact with your agent and discuss the next steps. On average, a house sells after three to six months. Exceptions prove the rule.


Not being willing to negotiate

Have in mind that properties normally never sell at the price you have set.

Do not take a lower offer to heart and keep insisting on your initial pricing. At some point you will have to negotiate. Be mindful that buyers often try to find defects with your property in order to have an advantage in the negotiation.


Not investigating the potential buyer


You receive a fair offer and the buyer even seems nice, but do not get ahead of yourself. You can get excited once you have letters of pre-qualification or loan approval from the would-be buyer. These documents should state that the buyer is capable to purchase and that his credit history has been checked. It is not uncommon for buyers to fool property owners because the seller did not do any digging beforehand.


Making last-minute mistakes


Once you have agreed on the price and the general conditions, you have to draw up a contract. This is the most important step of the whole process. Unfortunately, people are likely to make last-minute mistakes during this crucial step. Take your time and carefully proofread the final contract before you sign. This will stop you from having any trouble or facing any extra expenses once the property is sold.