Monday, November 29, 2010

Selling Your Home In A Slow Market - Pass This On...

As housing sales begin to slow, sellers find it more difficult to attract any of the buyers that are still looking. Here are some ideas on how to attract buyers when others cannot.

1) Spruce up the first thing(s) a buyer sees - often the front entrance and driveway. This is their first impression - if it is not a good one, the showing will go downhill from there.

2) Have the place well-lit when being shown, and eliminate clutter, even if you must rent a storage unit to keep excess furnishings. Buyers like free space.

3) People buy because of the unseen things that attract them. Just before a showing, bake apple pie, or cookies, or brownies. The aroma pleases the senses, and triggers nostalgic memories that can help induce a buyer to buy. If you do not have time to bake, boil some water and drop in a couple cinnamon sticks.

4) Most Realtors simply mention the features of a property. But buyers do not buy features - they buy the benefits produced by features. Get a leg up on other sellers by promoting the benefits of owning your home. For example, if close to schools (feature), Mom can sleep late (benefit). If close to a lake or pond (feature), advertise lazy Saturdays fishing from the canoe that is included with the property (cost: about $300). The canoe becomes another perk.

I recently sold a home that had acres of lawn area. Now, most people do not look forward to mowing such an expanse, so the first thing I showed potential buyers was the shed - which housed a nice lawn tractor, power trimmer, garden cart and all the "toys" that make the yard work a cinch. When hubby saw those toys and heard I was "throwing them in" for free, he just could not control himself. I had him signed that same day. So, don't forget those little perks if you need help getting a property sold.

Finally - know exactly what you really need to get from the sale. If you become more aware of what the money will be used for, you will be in a position to offer better terms, increasing your chance of selling. For example, you may be planning on investing $20,000 of the proceeds into Treasuries or CD's. So, if necessary to cinch a buyer, you can offer to "carry back" $20,000 in a second mortgage. You'll get a better interest rate and still be able to invest the monthly payments you collect back into Treasuries. By carrying a second mortgage, you make it easier for the buyer to buy.


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