Three mistakes home sellers can avoid

09 September 2019 | Economics

There are various pitfalls that can be easily avoided when it comes to selling your property for your full asking price.
According to Adrian Goslett of RE/MAX of Southern Africa, sellers can end up saving themselves thousands of dollars by avoiding the following all-too-common mistakes:
• Over-pricing your property
“The first mistake sellers make is pricing the property above market value. While the seller’s intention in this is usually to leave some room for buyers to come in with lower offers, the result is that fewer buyers show interest in the property, which means that these homes often take longer to sell than homes that are marketed at the correct value.”
He says that an overpriced home simply deters buyers, whereas homes listed at a price that accurately reflects its true market value attract far more attention. “Statistically, homes sell closer to full value if they sell within the first three months of entering the market. Listing the home at the correct value from the get-go is therefore the surest way of securing your full asking price,” Goslett explains.
• Partnering with the wrong agent
“Choosing a real estate agent based on the highest valuation presented is the second most common mistake sellers tend to make. Instead of basing this decision around price, sellers ought to arrive at this decision based on an agent’s track record of previous sales. In addition to this, homeowners should ask about the real estate agent’s proposed marketing plan for the property, as this will better reflect their ability to sell your home,” Goslett says.
• Signing the wrong offer
Goslett says the last and often most damaging mistake a seller can make is to accept the wrong offer or to turn away what could turn out to be their best offer. “Sellers should always have an attorney or experienced and reliable property professional read through the suspensive conditions on the offer to purchase before accepting the offer to make sure that there are no unpleasant surprises awaiting them during the transfer process.”
Similarly, sellers ought to heed the advice of their real estate advisor if he/she informs them that the offer being presented is probably the best they will get. A real estate advisor will be aware of market conditions and will know if a seller stands to get more out of the transaction if they hold out for a little while longer. If you trust your real estate advisor, then you should trust them when they tell you that a better buyer is not likely to come around, Goslett says.
As a final piece of advice, Goslett cautions sellers against rushing a sale, as this is often where mistakes creep in.
“When a seller is in a rush to sell their property, it is easy to neglect doing the necessary homework, which can lead to signing with the first available estate agent, marketing the home at whatever value is presented to them, and accepting the first appealing offer that comes their way. Selling a home can take anywhere between three months to a year depending on the property and market conditions. Sellers should keep this in mind so that they give themselves enough time to market their home without rushing the process,” Goslett concludes.

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