How to Make the Most Money when Selling Your Home:
The single most important question I am asked is “How can I get the highest price possible for my home?”. Seems simple right? But there are a number of factors that need to be considered in the final answer. Factors such as: what is the current condition of your home – especially things like the age & condition of your kitchen, bathrooms, floors, paint, roof, etc. Plus: is the home “show ready?”. By that I mean: squeaky clean, clutter-free, de-personalized, properly landscaped with great curb appeal & highly presentable?
Price: Not once have I heard: I got too much for my home (myself included). But I do know that “Price is 80% of the Marketing” of your home. It is so very critical to set the “right price” from the beginning so you don’t have to drop the price later. When the dust settles you or your agent don’t define the final price – the market does. Buyers start getting educated on the real estate market 3-6 months prior to making an offer. They view dozens upon dozens of homes online and then eventually in person prior to making a final decision.
You really want to sell your home the first weekend if at all possible. I call it the “multiple offer weekend”. The first weekend traffic can be as much as 10 times more than 30 days later. The “pricing it lower than market value strategy” to generate a bidding war / multiple offers may work - but what if it doesn’t? Then what? You can’t raise the price the following weekend. The “pricing it slightly higher/buffer strategy” so you can drop the price a couple weeks later if it doesn’t sell a) won’t generate the same first weekend traffic, b) changes the buyers viewing mindset to “what’s wrong with your home that it didn’t sell?” and c) getting multiple offers is out of the question. Offers after the first weekend are typically 95-98% of list price is the norm. Again: educated “right pricing” is essential.
Next is Timing. Are you flexible with regards to the time you sell? You may want to consider selling your home in winter or early spring. Why? Less competition. Buyers are moving to our beautiful area year-round and they need a place to live. As you can imagine, Spring & Summer is when most homeowners sell due to children in school – but it is also when you will find the most competition.
Ask yourself: What can you do to help? Besides keeping the home “show ready” on a daily basis, remaining flexible for last minute showings is huge. Being flexible with perspective Buyer needs helps as well. For example: be available for Home pre-inspections / inspections; appraiser availability, final closing & possession dates, contractor measurement requests, etc – will make for a smoother transaction and can help cement the sale.
An Experienced “Full-Time Agent” (not a friend) is also critical.
Once your home is looking its best, you should hire an experienced full-time agent with a killer marketing plan. See: . And keep in mind, staged homes that have been professional photographed sells homes faster and for more money.
Be Prepared to Negotiate
An experienced listing agent will know a good offer when they see it and can guide you through the whole process and advise you when to negotiate price and terms. An experienced agent will know what’s “normal” when it comes to offers, and when someone is trying to get a bargain. You should consider all the terms of the offer, not just the price, to make sure you get the best deal.
Bottom Line: Your real estate agent’s knowledge of the overall market and what’s selling – or not selling – will be invaluable in helping you determine the price. The objective is to find a price that the market will bear but won’t leave money on the table.
My advice on how to prepare your home to sell, when to list it and how to figure out what price to ask. If you have any questions, or if you’re thinking about selling your home in the Seattle Area, area, please feel free to get in touch with me.
Visit bobpapke.com for more information on selling your home or to request a free, no-obligation consultation on your home’s value. For more information on listing your home, check out the Selling Guide.