Are you thinking about selling your home? Then you’ve probably already discovered the overwhelming flood of information out there on the internet. One source tells you one thing while another tells you the exact opposite. It can be quite confusing. And like the saying goes, “you can’t believe everything you read on the internet.” There’s a lot of bad information out there, consequently that can cost you when you actually put your home on the market.
That’s why I thought I’d take some time to dispel 3 myths that I think are particularly harmful to sellers. They couch themselves as “easy solutions” however, selling your home is anything but easy. If you fall prey to these three “shortcuts” you may find yourself cutting value off your home.
1. Selling Your Home is NOT a D-I-Y Project!
You’ll find plenty of entrepreneurial websites out there that will tell you, with the right amount of effort, you don’t need a Realtor to sell your home. You can do it yourself. That sounds really attractive at first look. That commission check the Realtor gets at closing isn’t exactly a little sum of money. If you could do all the work and keep that for yourself, why not?
But the truth is if your real estate agent is doing the job you’ve contracted them for, then the money he/she gets at closing will be well worth it. Let’s just look at a few things a good real estate agent provides:
- Marketing. Are you going to take the time to post pictures and videos and place ads on social media? In addition are you going to use your extensive real estate network you’ve built up over the years to get your home in front of the eyes that need to see it? Unless you’re in real estate yourself, that’s probably an impossible task. Not to mention it’s one that – assuming you already have a full-time job – would take up too much of your valuable time. Good marketing is the key to selling your home and it’s best left to a professional who’s successfully done this a time or two.
- Determining value. An awful lot of research goes into determining a good asking price, espeically one that will give you fair value and sell quickly. It’s a lot more complex than just comparing recent sales in your neighborhood. A good real estate agent is able to research and factor in a number of variables. They want to give you the best chance at gaining the most value in the shortest amount of time. Again, thousands of dollars are at stake. So it’s not something that should be undertaken without professional guidance and advice.
- Dealing with Buyers. It’s a tedious task but extremely important. A good real estate agent is going to take care of showing your home and dealing with buyers and their agents. That involves a lot of detailed scheduling. It also includes time spent at all hours of the day and night answering questions about your home and negotiating a deal. The agent you choose will hopefully have done this many times and be a pro. They’ll likely manage this critical task much more effectively than you and save you a lot of stress in the process.
There’s a lot more good agents offer to sellers. Of course you want to do your homework – like you would with any investment this important – and hire only the best.
2. Homes Don’t Sell “As-Is”
Your home isn’t something on the clearance rack at Kohl’s. And likely you don’t want someone seeking discounted price either. That’s why it’s vitally important for you to ensure your home presents well to potential buyers.
You’re not really selling your home. You’re selling the home your buyers want to buy, therefore, you’re selling what will become their home. To do that, you’ve got to show your house in a way that allows them to imagine themselves living in it.
That means doing some repairs on things that are broken. It could also mean removing many personal items, things like trinkets and toys. Or it could mean professionally “staging” your home. Did we mention here at the Indianapolis Home Team we are certified experts on home staging? This is an important aspect of the marketing of your home your real estate agent can help with.
3. Big Improvements Don’t Always Mean Big Payoffs
Speaking of repairs, the myth that doing major renovations to your home will drive up your home’s value simply isn’t true. While some major projects can make a difference (i.e. a finished basement vs. unfinished) the reality is “little things mean a lot.”
Instead of focusing on big projects like decks, pools, or room additions, start with making sure everything works. You’re more likely to lose money (or even a buyer) by having a sliding door that doesn’t slide or light fixtures that don’t work than anything you’d gain from investing in a major renovation.
You can also simply make sure your house is clean. Remember, the goal is to get the buyer to imagine living here. A clean home is free from distractions that get in the way of that imagining. Removing carpet stains, keeping the house vacuumed and dusted, and having clean bathrooms will ensure your buyers don’t lose sight of the real selling points of your home.
If you want to invest in small improvements, touch up or add a fresh coat of paint. Sprucing up the landscaping for better curb appeal is a better use of your money, too.
Consider Selling Your Home with Us
Selling your home is an incredibly important decision. How you do it will have a major impact on your family’s finances and life. Don’t fall for these myths and cost yourself time and money that can be better spent elsewhere.
To make sure the sale of your home goes smoothly, you need a quality real estate professional. The Indianapolis Home Team has decades of experience buying and selling homes here in Central Indiana. Most of all, we’re dedicated to ensuring that each and every family we serve gets our full attention. From the time we first talk all the way through closing and beyond, we’ll be by your side.