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Sellers Beware: 10 Mistakes that Can Cost You

Sellers Beware: 10 Mistakes that Can Cost You


Eager buyers are browsing new listings online, viewing homes and making offers. Eager sellers are contacting their real estate agents, prepping their homes for showings and working toward closings. It’s official: the spring home buying and selling season is in full swing!

In a seller’s market, it can be very easy for sellers to get caught up in the favorable market trend; but, there are costly mistakes that every seller can easily avoid.

Here are 10 top mistakes that can cost sellers a potential sale… or more:

1. Not Preparing a Home for Sale

Most homeowners are (and should be) proud of the way that they’ve taken care of their homes. But, that doesn’t mean that no effort should be put forth when it comes time to list. Cleaning a home before showings is an absolute must and, if necessary, painting should be touched up, too. It is important to maintain curb appeal and stay on top of any small repairs during a home sale. Ideally, a buyer can walk into a home and start envisioning their own things in that space.

2.  Letting Emotions Run Wild

Certainly, a seller will feel an amount of attachment to the home that they’ve decided to part with. But, that feeling should not take over during the sales process. Again, it is best for buyers to be able to walk into a home and envision it as their own. A clingy seller, who follows potential buyers around, may as quickly follow them out the front door.

3. Avoiding a Pre-Sale Home Inspection

As a rule of thumb, it is better to go into the home sale process by knowing and telling a home’s whole story. So, by all means, sellers should have a thorough home inspection completed before they even list. That way, it is all on paper and they can deal with any potential issues before they are surprised by them later on during the closing process.

4. Setting a Price Too High

Even if the market in a seller’s area is currently in their favor, it is still important to maintain a realistic expectation about the price a home is worth and what buyers will be willing to pay for it. A trusted realtor will help to set a reasonable price that is on par with comparable homes in the area. Remember, it is not always best to be the most expensive house on the block.

5. Choosing the Wrong Realtor

Hand-in-hand with setting a realistic price tag for a home sale is working with the right real estate agent. You know, the one with the right experience, marketing tools and personality to list and sell a home while helping a seller to find a new one. Contact Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices The Preferred Realty today to find an agent you can trust.

6. Not Knowing Home Loan Payoff

Unless a home is completely paid off, to ensure there are no surprises during the home sale process, sellers should also check the balance on their current mortgage. It is best to get the information straight from the lender and be sure that there are no penalties for paying a home loan off early.

7. Forgetting About Closing Costs

While many sellers stand to make money off of their home sale during a seller’s market, it is still important to remember that there are costs that go along with closing on a sale. There are realtor commissions, prorated property taxes and utilities, plus possible appraisal and inspection fees. Those items should be factored in to closing and a real estate agent can help calculate an estimate of a seller’s total cost at closing.

8. Not Getting Qualified or Pre-Approved on the Next Home

Unfortunately, if a seller’s financial picture has changed since buying their first home, they may not qualify for the type of home or area that they are envisioning for their next home purchase. Here, again, transparency is the key. It is absolutely better to get preapproved on the next home purchase before signing a contract or even setting a price on a current home.

9. Forgetting to Switch the Utilities

When completing a transaction as large as selling a home, remembering to switch the utilities or cancel the cable and internet may seem like small tasks. But, they are not ones that should be forgotten. Why pay for services that are no long being used or, worse yet, that someone else is using? Don’t forget about these “little” tasks during the home sale process.

10. Rejecting an Offer

Finally, in a hot seller’s market, it can be easy to get a little greedy. If a seller is fortunate enough to have tons of showings and one or several offers from the get-go, it is not safe to automatically assume that a better one is bound to come along. Yes, it may, but, it may not; and, that is a potentially costly gamble that many sellers may not want to make.

Selling a home can be a personally and financially rewarding experience and preparation is often a key to success. To start your home-selling process, contact an experienced Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices The Preferred Realty agent today.