Selling Your Home Means Letting It Go
Your home has it all—ultimate location, great price, excellent condition. So why isn’t it selling? Many sellers put their house on the market, sit back and as the weeks pass begin to wonder why there have been some nibbles but no bites. A common explanation people jump to is price. Perhaps if it were a lower price it would sell. Listen to the expert—if your agent is telling you the price is right based on researched comps and market stats, something else is wrong. The problem could most likely be due to a challenge many sellers face: not letting go.
The longer a homeowner has been in their home, the more emotionally attached they become. To a seller, it is not just about selling a property, it is also about selling all the memories they have made there. Oftentimes, this leads the seller to believe their home is worth more than it is, and when offers come in they are quick to say, “That’s too low” and “a higher bid will come along”. Regret settles in when higher offers do not come in and sellers start kicking themselves for not accepting previous bids. It is vital not to look at an offer as a concrete price but as the beginning of a negotiation, and countering back and forth with the buyers is a normal part of the real estate transaction. Again, listen to your agent when offers and requests come in, they are there to advise you on how reasonable they are.
Furthermore, emotionally attached sellers often expect buyers to see what they see in their home. This is an unrealistic viewpoint that can create a big barrier in the selling process. The fact of the matter is buyers look at a home to see how they can live their lives in it, not how the seller has lived theirs. For this reason, the seller’s ultimate task is all about presentation. To sell a home quickly, a property must be presented in a way that enables potential buyers to visualize it as their own. Buyers want to feel comfortable, not like they are invading the privacy of someone else’s house. Staging techniques like taking down personalized décor and your family pictures can keep buyers from getting distracted from seeing the actual space and its potential. Understand that you are going through a transition, and even though you may not want to take down all your family photos and strip the walls of your favorite wallpaper, it is temporary! The quicker you sell, the quicker you can make your mark in a new home!
Sacrifices you have to make as a seller can be frustrating and seem unnecessary, but if you truly want to sell, they must be made! Not all showings, for example, will give you 24-hour notice; some may want to stop by in the next 20 minutes. You have the power to say no and insist they come at a different time, but by then they could have already found another house to buy and no longer have the need to see yours. While it may be stressful running around like a maniac, cleaning up your half-eaten lunch, making beds, and throwing the kids and pets in the car, sellers who are sufficiently motivated to go through such challenges are successful!
As a good rule of thumb, when selling you should realize the minute you put your house on the market, it is no longer your house. The sooner you let go emotionally, the smoother your journey as a seller will be.