Many people think they know, but they have no idea about the real estate industry.
Popular shows like House Hunters or Property Virgins on HGTV make buyers and sellers think buying or selling a home is a piece of cake, but what you don’t see in those shows is what goes on behind the scenes.
Perhaps they’ve learned about the fast-paced and ever changing world of real estate from a coworker’s recent experience or paid close attention to their parent’s home buying/selling experiences.
Should You Always Start with Your Lowest Offer?
There is no set strategy for buying a home, ever—according to Zillow. Sometimes the seller overprices or underprices the home on purpose, so you just never know. Also, no market is the same and you never know what comparable properties in the area are going for. For example, a buyer in a competitive market would not want to extend their lowest offer first because they wouldn’t be taken seriously. But a home that’s priced right and shows well can receive offers over the asking price—if someone wants it badly enough. Our advice is to find an agent you can connect with who also knows the market.
Spring is The Right Time—To Sell a Home?
Historically, real estate seasons are tied to the summer and the end of the school year because families want to move while their kids are out of school. For this reason, spring became the prime selling season—but that doesn’t mean that it’s the absolute best time to sell a home.
The best time to sell is during the holidays in November, December and January. More than half the buyers aren’t married so kids starting school is generally not as much of a concern. Many sellers don’t want to sell their homes during the holidays, but what they don’t realize is that there are many buyers out there during those times looking to buy a home. So what ends up happening is sellers will end up facing less competition and a stronger pool of buyers.
Cash is King, Right?
No. Wrong. There is less risk involved, however, consider this: A seller has a home priced at $399,000 and receives two offers: One is a cash offer of $375,000. The other is an offer for the full asking price, with 25 percent down, a bank pre-approval letter and swift contingency periods.
The second option seems more serious, doesn’t it? The seller must also consider the buyer’s finances.
More on Selling your Home
Also according to Zillow, more people shop online today than ever before so don’t blow off your photo shoot and put up pictures of a dark room, rooms with the blinds drawn or lights out. And clean your home and get rid of clutter before having pictures taken. It’s also in your best interest to hire a professional photographer who can take high resolution photos because if buyers don’t like what they see, they may not give your home a second thought and you want to put your best foot (or room) forward.
Also, have your home inspected before you decide to list because nothing is worse than waiting for an offer only to find out that you need to replace the roof or buy a new hot water heater. This way you can be more transparent with buyers and list the home accordingly. It’s a win-win situation for everyone.