FOUR STEP PLAN TO SELL YOUR HOME IN A BUYERS MARKET
You want to sell your home. You need to sell your home. But just how do you sell your home in the strongest buyers market America has seen in decades? How do you compete with the hundreds of other houses for sale? Here are a few tips to help you get started.
- Let go emotionally. One of the biggest obstacles to selling your home is your own emotional attachment to it. The moment you decide to sell, you must stop thinking of this house as your home and begin thinking of it as a commodity that you must sell in order to move on with your life.
- Make a plan. Selling a house (remember, we are not calling it your “home” anymore) requires far more than simply sticking a sign in the yard and waiting for someone to come along and purchase it. You need a plan which involves a number of steps including determining market value, developing a pricing strategy, developing and implementing a marketing program, choosing contingency options for various possible obstacles you are likely to encounter, developing a strategy for negotiating contract terms, choosing a professional to assist you in making sure all is done in accordance with your state laws and more.
- Prepare the property. Keep in mind that you have been living in this house for a number of years and over time we all begin to overlook little things that potential buyers will see as negatives. In a buyer’s market, buyers have the luxury of being very discriminating (picky). They go through homes scrutinizing every little flaw as if they are looking for reasons to not buy rather than reasons to buy. You may want to pay for a professional home inspection so that you can address any ‘hidden’ issues that could cause a problem down the road. You may also consider purchasing a Home Warranty which can be transferred to the new owners after the sale.
- Work your plan patiently. In many markets, the average time for even the most aggressively marketed properties, in the most pristine condition to sell is several hundred days. You will need to have a way to track the effectiveness of your marketing, work your plan methodically and do your best to not get discouraged.
With the right mindset, a proper plan and effective execution of the plan, you can be successful and get your home sold; even in this buyers market.
Experienced, forward thinking real estate agents will help you with each of these things and even do most of them for you. Remember that the quicker you sell, the higher the price you’ll receive. You’ll then be ready and able to move on with your life.
You’ve decided to sell your Jacksonville real estate for whatever reasons. If you’re like most folks I’ve met you probably have said to yourself and anyone who’ll listen, ‘I’m not going to just give it away’.
We had the privilege of selling my parent’s house this past year. It was the house that my sister and I grew up in. In fact, we moved to Jacksonville and my parents bought the house in 1960. I was only 4 years old at the time so that vast majority of my memories were wrapped up in the walls of that fine old building.
Now anyone who knows my dad knows that he kept that house in top condition through the years. When he added on to make it larger and give mom a nice size kitchen to do her magic with the cooking, he did it right. He kept it freshly painted every 4-5 years and always made needed repairs before they got out of hand.
In his mind, this house was a treasure and whoever bought it should consider themselves fortunate to be getting such a fine piece of real estate… and he was right. When thinking back over all he had done to nurture and maintain the house from foundation to roof, he was absolutely certain that it was worth thousands more than any other house in the neighborhood… but it wasn’t.
Nope, I had to say “sorry dad but as nice as it is, your house isn’t worth any more than fair market value and the market determines what that value is from day to day.” I wish I could say that he believed me and set the price at fair market value from the get go, but like many other sellers he wanted to try to sell it for far more.
I’ll not go into the details but suffice it to say that after several months and numerous price adjustments he finally allowed us to price it at fair market value. And, EUREKA, it sold quickly and he and the buyers were delighted. That’s the good news. The bad news is that if my dad had been willing to price at fair market value when first listed, it would have sold for about $15,000 more. While he was sticking to his guns, the market continued to decline. Unfortunately, this same scenario has played out time and again all over Jacksonville the past few years.
The point of this post is merely to say that if you need to sell but don’t want to “give it away” we can help. You won’t have to give it away but you will need to be realistic because regardless of how much you want for it or think that you “need” for it, the fact is that every house sells at market value. The quicker you price it at market value, the quicker you’ll get it sold, the higher the price you’ll receive and you’ll be able to move on with your life.
Give me a call and I’ll help you determine fair market value based on objective market criteria so that you won’t end up “giving it away!”
Selling a home in Jacksonville involves many critical and personal decisions. However, one of the most important decisions is the first decision you need to make — a decision that impacts your entire home sale: Which real estate agent should you employ to list your home?
Unfortunately, many people make this decision based on the idea that all real estate agents are basically the same. They sign with the first agent to come along, only to realize toolate that they should have shopped around.
Start by asking your friends and family for the names of agents they know. Check the internet for agents who know the value and power of internet marketing. Once you’ve compiled a list of several names, ask questions – lots of questions.
One of the best you can ask before you ever even meet in person is,
“Could you send me some information about yourself?”
You can often get a good idea of which agents are most professional and most committed by looking at their personal marketing materials, brochures, and internet presence. “Personal” means stuff they developed (or had developed) for themselves – not the stuff they get from their office and/or franchise brokerage.
Call each name on your list and ask them to send out any information they can before you actually meet with them for a listing presentation. And do an internet search for them… see where they are listing and how they are posting information about their listings. When looking at their websites (and they should have more than one) and their personal brochure or other materials, look them over and determine your initial impression of this person.
Are the materials they presented professional? Are the materials they presented unique and personal – or are they materials that their parent company put together for any agent to use?
If not, you might ask yourself…
”If they don’t have the wherewithal to properly market themselves, how will they know how to market my home?”
Also, keep track of how quickly and efficiently they respond to your request for information. Are they friendly and helpful, or just pushy and hungry for a listing? Does this seem like someone you’d be interested in talking with? If they aren’t organized and professional enough to respond promptly to your first request to find out more about them, they’ll probably handle potential buyers for your home the same way. If you like the way they respond to you and are impressed with the information they supply, call them and invite them to meet with you in your home. You can learn a lot from looking at websites and other marketing info but there’s nothing that equals a good face-to-face meeting to really get a feel for their personal integrity and work ethic.
In this tough real estate market, you’ll be glad that you took the time to find the right real estate agent to work for you!
There’s one problem………… the answer takes much longer than most people are willing to sit and listen. You see, I am passionate about my work and the marketing tools and techniques I use to get Jacksonville real estate SOLD! I spend countless hours investigating new and more effective means to get our listings in front of potential buyers and then spend many more hours developing the framework required to get the job done right.
So, in order to give you a quick overview of where and how I market your listings, I put together this short video to just show you. I’m more than happy to go into more detail and explain “why” I go to such extremes in marketing your Jacksonville real estate if you’re interested but for now, why not just take a look at the video?
I can’t begin to tell you how many frustrated people I’ve met lately. They’re frustrated because they’ve been trying to sell their homes in Jacksonville without any success. Some have tried to sell on their own but most have tried by listing with an agent. The story I hear is pretty much the same from one person to the next.
The fact of the matter is that the Jacksonville real estate market has not been kind to sellers over the past few years. Kind or not, though, the market is what it is and it isn’t going to adjust for you or me just because we need or want to sell our homes for a certain amount. There’s an axiom in our business that sums it up pretty nicely… “The market may not be kind but the market is never wrong.”
These frustrated sellers typically ask me to take a look at their ‘listing’ and give them my opinion. Because I practice real estate ethically, you should know that I never discuss a listing while the seller is under contract with another agent. However, if their listing has expired I am happy to take a look and offer my opinion.
Most of these frustrated sellers come to me because they’ve heard that I take a different approach to selling real estate than most Jacksonville area agents – apparently they’ve heard that I’m aggressive in my approach. None of these sellers need me to tell them that this real estate market demands a very different and very aggressive approach in order to make the sale. They just don’t know what that approach needs to be.
Whether or not that’s true, I’ll leave to others to decide. I do know that each of us brings a different set of skills to the table based on their own experiences, education, training and philosophy so I imagine we all take a different approach in some ways. I can’t speak for any other listing agents but I can tell you that I study the market daily and I study progressive ways of exposing listings to the general buying public… and then I implement the things I learn.
It often takes no more than a quick look at the history of most listings in order to identify several weaknesses in the marketing strategy that need immediate adjustment in order to get any kind of attention and activity.
That’s where I come in… I am a listing and internet marketing specialist. Listing and marketing is the focus of my business. My wife (and business partner) works with buyers so that I can focus on the needs of sellers. By primarily concentrating on marketing listings, I am afforded the time to carefully study the intricacies of specific markets and develop extensive marketing programs tailored to each specific market and listing.
I do NOT simply take a few photos, stick the listing in MLS and on my website and then “hope for a bit of luck.” I make a careful analysis of the specific market conditions and trends for each listing, take numerous photos, write effective ad copy, make a video (for most of our listings), develop several individual websites for the listing customized for effective SEO, submit to several dozen local, national and international real estate websites and search engines and even manually post to sites such as Craigslist and Backpage several times every week to keep you listing at the top of those buyer’s minds.
I then track the effectiveness of the ads and adjust strategy as needed. This continuous re-evaluation is absolutely essential in today’s market and it is where many agents have been weak. You see, it take a lot of time, planning and effort to do this and that takes a commitment to excellence on the part of the agent.
When looking at most listings, I am immediately struck by the fact that they are simply over-priced for the market and under-exposed to the buying public. With the seller’s permission and cooperation, both are fixes which I can begin to implement immediately.
While I don’t want to downplay the importance of setting the right price (which is a strategy in and of itself – the lowest price is not always the ‘right’ price), price alone is not enough in today’s crowded market. Strategic steps must be taken and strategic adjustments must be continuously made in order to ensure that the buying public sees the listing and is enticed to explore purchasing the listing.
If the agents you’ve spoken to so far can’t tell you SPECIFICALLY and IN DETAIL what they are doing PERSONALLY to market your home and if they can’t explain WHY they are doing what they are doing then call me. I have a plan and I work that plan to your benefit.
Obviously I don’t have time or space to go into all the details of how I go about the process of marketing Jacksonville real estate but you can learn a little more about Susan and me and our business methods and philosophy by visiting the following site: