The Basics of Successfully Selling Louisville Homes

Selling Louisville Homes

Selling a home in today’s housing market is no easy task. Housing values have fallen dramatically – by as much as 40 percent or more in some markets – since they hit their peak in 2006. This means that many owners who bought their residences during the housing boom years might have to take a loss when selling their homes today.

But there are several strategies you can employ to increase your odds of selling your home quickly and at the highest price possible. The key is to have a realistic understanding of today’s market.

Getting Your Home Ready

Buyers today are choosy. They know that many sellers are desperate to unload their homes. That’s why you need to do whatever you can to make sure that your home stands out in a crowded market.

You want your home to shine during showings. You want potential buyers to remember your home for its open spaces, cleanliness and well-tended lawns. You don’t want buyers to remember crowded bedrooms, unmade beds, dirty bathrooms and weed-choked flower beds.

It’s always been important to remove clutter, add fresh paint, clean windows, mow lawns and pull weeds whenever you are trying to sell your home. But in today’s market, these tasks are more important than ever.

Homes filled with excess furniture, knick-knacks and personal items seem small. Buyers will move on to homes that appear larger. Homes with weedy lawns look neglected. Many buyers will simply move on without even entering your home.

So do your part to help your home sell: remove clutter. Hire a landscaping service if necessary. Add fresh coats of paint to your kitchen, bathrooms and bedrooms. This extra work will pay off when the offers start coming in.

Setting the Right Price

Price is a key factor in today’s housing market. If you price your residence too high, you simply won’t receive any realistic offers. Remember, buyers know that housing values have fallen dramatically since late 2006. You’ll have little success trying to convince them to pay more than what other homes in your market are fetching.

The right real estate agent will help you set the correct price for your home or Louisville condo for sale. Agents study housing markets carefully. They’ll analyze the sales prices that similar homes in your neighborhood have earned. They’ll then present these “comps” to you.

You then have a choice: you can either accept your real estate agent’s advice and set a price that accurately reflects today’s housing market or you can force your own higher asking price on your home.

What will probably happen if you go the latter route? Your property will receive few showings and even fewer offers. You’ll then have to drop the asking price anyway. This results in a significant amount of wasted time, and also puts your home in a bad light. Buyers are wary of homes that have sat on the market for too long. They naturally wonder what problems such residences have.

By setting the right asking price for your home, you’re taking an important step in increasing the odds of a timely sale.<

Selecting Your Real Estate Agent

You can try to sell your house on your own. But going the for-sale-by-owner route, or FSBO, is a tricky one, especially in today’s challenging market. It might make more financial sense to hire a real estate agent to list and market your home.

Yes, hiring an agent will cost you. Most agents charge a commission of 5 percent of your home’s eventual sales price once your residence sells. But a good agent will help you set the right asking price for your home, will list your residence on the Multiple Listing Service and will market your property to other agents, on websites and in print publications.

Your agent will also set up showings and pre-screen potential buyers who want to tour your home. Once an offer comes in, your agent will handle the often tense negotiation process, taking your offers and counter-offers back to the agent representing the buyers.

If you accept an offer, your agent will handle the preparation of the paperwork that moves the sale toward the real estate closing table.

In short, an agent does plenty of work for that commission, work that can place a lot of stress on any homeowners who try to tackle it by themselves.

Choosing the right real estate agent, though, does require research. You want to work with an agent who has experience selling homes in your neighborhood. And ideally, you want to work with an agent who has a history of fetching final sales prices that are close to the original asking prices set by homeowners.

Making the Decision

Making the decision to sell a home is not an easy one in today’s challenging housing market. Depending upon where you purchased your home, your residence might be worth less today than it was worth when you bought it.

That’s why you have to think carefully today before putting your home on the market.

There are times when you have little choice but to sell. Maybe you’ve been transferred to a new position by your company and you have to move across the country. Maybe you want to move closer to your grandchildren. Or maybe your large home has simply become too much work and you need a smaller residence, or condo, that doesn’t require as much maintenance.

But if you don’t have to move? Then it’s time to take a realistic look at the current state of the housing market. You might have to be willing to take a loss on your home. If that’s something you’re not willing to do, it might make sense to wait until the housing market experiences a stronger rebound and your home’s value starts to inch up again.

But if you are willing to brave today’s uncertain real estate market? Then it’s time to take the steps necessary to give yourself the best chance of enjoying a successful sale. Make sure your home is spotless. Find the right real estate agent, and set the right price.