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You’ve made the decision — it’s time to put your home up for sale. As excited as you are, a little doubt may start to creep in. Is my home ready to be put on the market? What might keep my home from selling?

It’s completely natural, and a good thing, to have these thoughts. It means that you care a lot about your home and what potential buyers might think. Plus, it’s good to think through these potential issues before you list your home for sale so that you can get some great offers as quickly as possible.

So what prevents a home from selling? Here’s a list of the top reasons homes don’t sell:

Not Pricing it Right

Pricing your home for sale is one of the most challenging parts of the whole sales process. Like it or not, there are a lot of emotions and history involved when it comes to deciding what amount to sell your home for. Especially if you’ve been in your home for a long time, it’s hard to take an objective look at the dollar amount value of your home. You might think it’s worth more than a current appraisal would reveal.

Listing a home too high could turn off potential buyers from wanting to even come check it out. Or you may get a great offer on the table, only to have it fall through when the appraisal comes back too low. A bank is only going to be willing to lend money for what the home is actually worth so that they can recoup their investment if the home ever gets foreclosed on.

The solution to pricing your home right? Working with a good real estate agent to determine a proper listing price. Your Realtor will be able to examine the market and help you come up with a price you can both agree on.

Doing it On Your Own

Some sellers are tempted to try to sell their home without the help of a real estate agent. The idea of paying commission (usually around 6% of the sales price, with half going to the buyer’s agent) can be a tough pill to swallow.

It’s natural to want to save money where you can, but a good real estate agent’s expertise is not an area to scrimp on. Selling a home is not an easy job, and Realtors are trained to navigate the process with you from start to finish.

Trying to sell your home without a real estate agent could lead to a delay in selling (or potentially not selling at all) due to lack of visibility, stressful negotiations, or lots of other hang-ups along the way.

According to research done by Zillow, only 11% of sellers end up selling their home without a real estate agent. Skip the stress from the start and work with a real estate agent you like and trust!

Neglecting Repairs

While it’s probably not necessary to fix up every little problem in your home before listing, neglecting the important repairs could really prevent a home from selling. It can be helpful to have your home inspected before listing it for sale so that you know of any major problems lurking behind the scenes.

Buyers (and their lenders, if applicable) are going to want a home inspection done when they make their offer, so it’s good for you to know what to expect ahead of time. Some major problems that could prevent a home from selling include problems with wiring (electrical work), foundation issues, roof problems, and faulty plumbing. 

While you can probably get away with not doing some smaller repairs (a door that sticks, etc.) don’t ignore the big stuff.

Skipping Renovations

When you’re figuring out what areas of your home to renovate before putting it up for sale, it can be hard to figure out what you should and shouldn’t do. You don’t want to spend too much money that you won’t be able to recoup from the sale, but you also don’t want to neglect doing the right renovations that could prevent your home from selling in a timely manner. It’s important to focus on the right renovations.

According to the National Association of Realtors most recent Remodeling Impact Survey, the top five projects most likely to bring the best resale value to your home are:

  1. Complete kitchen renovation
  2. Kitchen upgrade
  3. HVAC replacement
  4. New master suite
  5. Bathroom renovation

Some other projects on the list include new wood flooring, hardwood flooring refinish, insulation upgrade, and closet renovations. Take a look at these ideas and think about what areas of your home could use some renovating, and what projects would get you the most bang for your buck.

Not Staging

What comes to mind when you think about staging a house? If you think staging means you have to spend lots of money to hire a company to fill your home with perfectly curated furniture and decorations, think again! While this is one way to stage a home, it’s not the only way.

To get a better perspective on home staging, think of it this way: staging your home can simply mean preparing it so your future buyer can picture their own family living in the home. How do you do this? Here are a few simple ways to set the stage:

  • Declutter. This costs nothing (and could even make you money if you choose to sell some of the items in your home you don’t need.)
  • Deep clean. This will take some time and work, but it’s well worth the effort. A clean home feels inviting, brighter, and what you would want to come home to at the end of a long day.
  • De-personalize. If you want a future buyer to really be able to picture living in your home, you’ve got to remove some of the more obvious signs that somebody else already lives there. This can be as simple as removing photos and artwork off the fridge and taking down family portraits from the walls.
  • Add some finishing touches. It only takes a few steps to add those small touches that make a home feel extra inviting. Make sure curtains are hung on all the windows, set the dining room table, and hang up hand towels in the bathrooms. Those are just a few ideas. What makes a home feel cozy to you? There’s a good chance that buyers are thinking the same things.

Staging your home is another great discussion to have with your real estate agent. They can help you determine what areas of your home to really focus on and highlight, and where you can get away with not doing as much.

For more about staging, visit Home Staging Before You Sell: What You Can and Can’t Do Yourself.

What You Should Do to Make Sure Your Home Sells

By tackling problems such as not setting a realistic listing price, not working with a real estate agent, neglecting repairs and renovations, and not properly staging your home, you’ll be well on your way to quickly getting a great offer on your home.

If you’re looking to sell in the Sacramento area, give us a call here at Quantum Real Estate. Our team of friendly professionals would love to learn more about you and answer all of your questions!

Let’s Talk

You’ve got questions and we can’t wait to answer them.

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