More than a dozen reasons to explain why your house is still sitting on the market – and what you can do about it.
13. Listening to the advice of a well-meaning friend or relative.
Solution: Stop. Make decisions based on market conditions, not emotion.
12. Unqualified or Untruthful buyers who don’t follow through.
Solution: Accept offers based on facts, not emotion. Also, don’t just reject all lowball offers. Use them as a starting point for negotiation.
11. Failure to disclose.
Solution: If there are potential deal breakers, disclose them! Whether it is a leasing issue, death on the property, or a settling foundation, being up front with the information will save you in the long run.
10. It’s Ugly.
Solution: Make it pretty. The current Orange County real estate market is a beauty contest. Remove the shag carpeting, old wallpaper, and ugly appliances. Apply paint in fresh, neutral colors.
9. You make it difficult to schedule showings.
Solution: Show it! Yes, it may be incredibly inconvenient to have your home shown at 8 o’clock on a Saturday morning. Do it anyway. Remember, this is a buyer’s market. If they can’t see your house at their convenience, they’ll just go see one of the many other houses in your neighborhood for sale and open for viewing.
8. You participate in showings.
Solution: Leave. (And take the dog with you.) Let the professional agent or broker do their job.
7. It smells bad.
Solution: Get rid of odors in your home. Potential buyers do not want to walk into a house that smells of wet cat, mildew, cigarette smoke, or remnants of the previous night’s dinner. Remember, Smells Kill Sales!
Solution: If it’s personal, pack it up. Photos, collections, kids artwork – all of it. Clear off counter tops and trim down closet contents. Remember, Clutter Eats Equity!
5. Uninviting exterior.
Solution: Create curb appeal! Power wash the siding and driveway. Have your roof professionally cleaned. Trim the trees and hedges. Plant some flowers. When buyers see your house for the first time, it should say, “Welcome!”
4. It’s not clean.
Solution: Clean it – and keep it clean! Make sure everything stays clean and clutter free, particularly the front entrance, kitchens, bathrooms, and windows.
Solution: Make reasonable repairs. All major items should be in good working condition. Major issues you will not have fixed should be disclosed and repair estimates obtained.
2. Lousy Locale.
Solution: Your selling price should reflect the reality of the lousy location. Follow the above solutions for making your home warm and inviting and you will have interested buyers.
And the #1 reason your house has not sold:
1. Not priced for current market conditions.
Solution: Enlist a Orange County real estate professional to price your home to sell fast. Keep the CDOM (Cumulative Days on Market) index in mind. The longer your house is on the market, the more quickly your selling price declines.
Note on Cultural Issues: You cannot possibly cater to all of the many cultural and individual preferences. Don’t worry about it. Use the solutions above as a guide for making your house appeal to the widest range of potential buyers possible.