3 Common Home Seller Mistakes

home selling mistakes3 Common Homes Seller Mistakes or we could say 3 Common Mistakes “GREEDY” Home Sellers Make as the real title of this one.  It’s greed or ignorance that causes these decisions.  I know that’s really a lot of tough love right out of the gate, but don’t you deserve the truth? Right now it’s 2013 and we’ve had 2 full quarters of increase in sold prices!  The market for the first time in the 11 years I’ve been doing real estate has shifted to a home sellers market.  However, with great power comes great responsibility.

Home Seller Mistake #1: Overpricing the Home

Everyone falls for this one.  It starts like this – you’re out walking the dog and you see your neighbors home for sell and pull the flyer and it’s listed at a price that you’d love to sell your home for.  You then do some “due diligence” and look at Zillow and find that, the price is “in line” with their zestimate (which is only 10-20% off per their own disclaimer).  Then in some versions of this story, your friend/neighbor sells their home…. so they must have gotten full price, right.  

Then it happens… You see the market go up, so what’s asking for a little bit more, after all your home is nicer then theirs, you’ve got some nice “molding,” or upgraded padding in your carpet.

Solution: In this scenario and all versions of it, the home seller is getting faulty sources of information.  It’s not what is FOR SALE, it’s what has sold.  The seeminly innocent thought of “I’ll just try to ask for more, I can always come down,” is deadly as it will cost you on average 3% for every 30 days you “overprice” your home.  The solution is clear, Know your home value. 

Home Seller Mistake #2: Under Market The Home

This is pretty common among 15% of the home sellers.  They start off, For Sale By Owner.  It’s a great thought, save the commission and pocket the change, afterall you’ve bought and sold maybe a home or two.  Agents don’t really do much anyway.  You’d be right by the way, MOST agents don’t.   In fact, for sale by owners aren’t the only ones that suffer from this mistake.  Many sellers, even those in luxury homes such as Chateau Elan don’t even pay attention to their agent’s effort to market the home and thus are left with bad cell phone photos of their home.

Solution:  Not marketing the home properly means you’re not getting to every buyer and that buyer’s searching for your home won’t want to see it with those cell phone photos.  Not even instagram can help.  This problem is compounded when a seller tries to do the marketing on their own, as even zillow only contains 60% of the available listings.   The key here is getting an proactive, action oriented agent.  We’re not talking about the glamour shots person or the flat fee company that puts you on the MLS.  Statistics show a good real estate agent will outperform every other way of selling your home by over 3% to your bottom line.

Home Seller Mistake #3:  Wrong Action Taken, Wrong Market Interpretation

This is my “catch-all.”   I’ve heard so many thoughts that it’ll be fun to list them here:

  • Market is up, let’s ask for more
  • It’s a seller’s market, “I NEED XX Dollars”
  • Market is Up, my mortgage is…
  • Market is up, let’s do it by appointment only

All of these ideas, from “My home is different” to “I need a certain amount of money” based on the market being up are just the wrong action.   You need to know you’re home’s value and that’s what it is.   In many cases, selling is not the best option, or taking less might be the ultimate option so you can alleviate yourself of the mortgage. All of these mistakes could have been prevented by simply knowing your home’s value and moving on from that.  I know it’s your “home” and it’s emotional, but a home isn’t more valuable because you and I live there.  It’s value is determined by what a buyer will pay for it. What other mistakes or solutions can you think of for our home sellers?

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Joshua Jarvis

Joshua and his family have served Gwinnett County for over 20 years, specializing in homes for sale in Buford, Braselton, Hoschton and areas in the north Gwinnett area. Jarvis Team Realty has sold over 1,000 homes all over Atlanta