|Before potential buyers tour the home, a seller should take specific steps to help make a strong and positive impression. That will greatly improve the chances of getting a prompt purchase offer at a higher price. Here are some tips from experienced real estate professionals that can enhance success for sellers in any market – including a decidedly lopsided buyer’s market like the one we are experiencing in 2009.
· Pricing Preliminaries
Avoid the strategy of setting the original listing price too high and then gradually lowering it if the house doesn’t generate any immediate interest. Precious days and weeks will be lost as buyers look elsewhere, and during the especially favorable springtime real estate shopping season it is critical to avoid wasting time.
Plus, routinely dropping the price in small increments often sends a subtle message that the house may have issues like needed repairs or other problems that are being uncovered by buyers or inspectors. In other words, the reputation of the property may suffer – even if it is a mistaken impression based on erroneous conjecture. By then it may be too late to overcome the negative marketplace perception because buyers will have moved on to shop elsewhere.
A more efficient and positive strategy is to set the list price not more than 2-3 percent above the desired sales price. Then negotiate down to that level if necessary, without running the risk of missing prime opportunities to attract serious buyers.
· Curb Appeal
Don’t spend money unless it is sure to give a strong return on the dollar. Paint is relatively inexpensive, and a good paint job can dress up even a drab and outdated home. But if the painters are sloppy, even premium designer paint will detract from the way the home looks. Never make the mistake of paying for a bad paint job, because buyers will see it and suspect that it was only done to hurriedly cover up and disguise underlying blemishes. Neat and tidy paint application is the key to success, and the basis of a professional looking job is the meticulous prep work that goes into readying the surface before any paint is applied.