22762 Westheimer Pkwy #420
Katy, Texas 77450
Monday to Friday: 9AM - 5PM
Weekend: 10AM - 5PM
22762 Westheimer Pkwy #420
Katy, Texas 77450
Monday to Friday: 9AM - 5PM
Weekend: 10AM - 5PM
All of your neighbors were selling their homes, so you decided to put your home on the market. And you expected it to sell quickly, but in your case that just hasn’t been reality. Many times, home-sellers are left asking themselves, Why Didn’t My Home Sell? Offers, if there were any, didn’t meet your expectations and showing requests have trickled to a crawl. It’s disappointing, and more than that, frustrating… but you shouldn’t wait any longer to make a change. Particularly if your home has been on the market for longer than a month.
In general, most homes are going to receive the most number of showings and highest offers within the first thirty days.
For every day that a home doesn’t sell, it will statistically sell for less money. A recent analysis (early 2022) found that homes in our area that sold within 10 days of being listed, sold for 102.25% of the list price. After 120 days, the sale-to-list price ratio dropped to 97%. Considering the average sales price in our area is $325,000, that’s a difference of $332,312 to $315,250, a difference of over $17,000.
If attempts to sell your home haven’t produced the result you’re looking for, start by determining whether one of these 12 common problems could be the cause and make quick course corrections to get your sale back on the right path:
By far the number one reason for a property not selling is price. Even in hyper-inflated real estate markets where buyers are paying (sometimes) well over list price, as many as 54% of real estate agents have seen their buyers back out of contracts with buyers remorse over inflated home values. So how do you know if your home is priced too high? Pricing a home, particularly in hot seller’s markets is becoming increasingly complex. To predict what buyers would be willing to pay, a careful review of recent comparable sales needs to happen with adjustments made for competitive differences.
Our online tool, What’s My Home Worth can be a great jumping off point. Simply enter your home address, and answer a few simple questions, and we’ll provide a preliminary home valuation straight to your inbox. You can also browse local listings on HAR.com. If your home is priced higher than nearby homes in better condition and with better features and more upgrades, it’s a surefire sign that your problem is likely the asking price.
Another option would be to take a deep dive into the feedback you’re receiving from potential buyers during showings or open houses. Do the comments include words like ‘the last house had this…’ or ‘this home is more expensive than the others’? Was there a disconnect between the quality of your home and your asking price that showed itself during your showings?
So how much of a price drop is going to be enough to get the job done? You don’t want to be the home seller that is making tiny, incremental price drops each and every week. This has you chasing the market downwards. Significant price reductions will be needed turn the tide. There’s a general rule that we follow for price reductions: If you’re getting a lot of showings but no offers, start with a 1% price reduction. If you’re not even getting many showings, you’re likely considerably overpriced and a 2 – 3% price reduction is what is needed.
It’s also important to be aware of how online pricing filters work with real estate search portals. Buyers typically search in increments of $25,000 – $50,000 price points. If pricing is on the cusp of one of these increments, rounding to the nearest increment might be the most efficient means to opening new eyes to your listing. For example, if a home is currently priced at $310,000 and not getting any offers, a 1% decrease will drop it to $306,900. If buyers are searching from $300,000 – $350,000, it will show up in search results, but will NOT show up for buyers searching from $250,000 – $300,000. Setting the list price to $300,000 will get BOTH sets of buyers.
Even if the stream of buyers touring your home doesn’t produce a contract, it does produce information in the form of showing feedback. The questions your agent should be getting answers for might include, “What’s wrong with this home? What changes could be made that would make your client want to buy it? If you start seeing a lot of the same feedback, you know you’ve got something to address.
Problems can include simple fixes like cluttered areas, dark rooms, or messy landscaping. A solid cleaning, offloading personal items to garages or storage spaces, and cleaning windows and adding lighting can resolve a lot of the smaller complaints that we often see.
Even larger ticket items like framing repairs, outdated countertops, or worn carpet don’t necessarily need to be paid for up-front. Some contractors have been known to perform their work and receive their payment at the closing table. Most experienced real estate agents have preferred vendors that they work with regularly, so ask yours if this is an option.
Not ALL problems can be resolved though. What if your home backs to an apartment complex? Or is located across the street from a water treatment plant? Or your HOA dues and/or property taxes are higher than most? For these types of problems, there’s an age old adage that applies… price cures all.
Showings serve two primary purposes for most buyers. First, they allow buyers to see what photos cannot show them – how a home is laid out and how it flows. Secondly, it gives potential homebuyers the opportunity to imagine the space as their own. Both are hard to do if the home is cluttered and unorganized.
Worse yet, if the outdoor presentation turns them off, they’ll never even make it inside your home. We’ve been on plenty of showings where homebuyers were so turned off by the landscaping and yard that they passed completely on even going inside. The yard should always be freshly cut, edged and weedeated; flowerbeds should be freshly mulched; and trees and shrubs should be appropriately trimmed. Adding a splash of color can help too!
According to the National Association of Realtors 2021 Profile of Home Staging, 82% of buyer’s agents said staging made it easier for buyers to visualize the property as a future home. Unstaged homes in today’s market feel cluttered, cramped, dark and small. What’s more, 67% of top agents agree that staged homes sell for 1% to 5% more than non-staged homes.
Successful agents know that a staging consult should happen prior to photos ever being scheduled. Part of the process for the sellers is to pack up everything you won’t need for the next several months and just as importantly to de-personalize the space. Remove all your family photos, trinkets, kitchen gadgets, and declutter floors, walls, bookshelves, and countertops. The same goes for your closets, if you don’t see yourself wearing it in the next two months, pack it up and put it all in storage.
Once your home is cleared of all the things you won’t need, you’ll have plenty of opportunity to see the things that need repairing and repainting. Staging consults are often times paid for by listing agents. More in depth staging, with furniture if needed is typically the responsibility of the seller.
The golden rule for staging is ‘less is more’. When it’s all said and done, your home should be light, bright, open, cool, and smell great! And a little soft music during showings never hurt either.
The days of the 3P’s are over. LONG over. Inexperienced or part-time agents are still out there, and those are the ones that think that all it takes to sell a home is to (P)ut a sign in the yard, (P)ut the listing in MLS, and (P)ray. If you’re relying on these old school tactics, you’re simply not generating enough excitement to reach today’s buyers.
More than 38% of buyers find photos, interactive maps, virtual open houses, virtual tours, and videos helpful. Through the use of these digital tools, the 2021 National Association of Realtor’s Home Buyer and Seller Generational Trends report tells us that 51% of today’s buyers find their homes on the internet. We believe it’s actually a lot higher.
If you’re not able to find your listing with a simple Google search, you should ask your agent to spell out the marketing channels that they’re currently using to get your home the exposure it deserves. Today’s marketing plans should incorporate elements of print, search, social, and good old fashioned prospecting to an agents existing databases. Want to see what OUR marketing plan consists of, take a look at A Winning Marketing Plan.
Nearly every issue in our list could have been avoided by working with an experienced local Realtor. Your real estate agent should listen AT LEAST as much as they talk. Realtors are fiduciaries, and are held to a higher standard than just your average real estate agent, so make sure you ask.
Your agent should collaborate with you on pricing, staging, and curb appeal as well as drive the marketing efforts. And once your listing is live, should regularly analyze market changes to ensure your home is positioned in the best possible. These changes should include current sales conditions, current showing conditions, ensuring good feedback from showings, and implementing changes derived from that feedback.
Make sure you’re working with an agent who is an expert in your area or the kind of home you’re trying to sell. Whether it comes from a well-meaning agent friend or relative from across town or on the other side of the country, advice from out-of-area agents or those that specialize in a different property type can be a gamble.
It’s frustrating to see a string of buyers come through your home and never see an offer come from them. It’s even worse when you see neighbors listings go up one day, and sell the next. But remember, there’s a buyer for every home.
If your current plan isn’t working, maybe a reset is in order:
And as always, if you have questions anywhere along the road, feel free to reach out to us here, or call us at (281) 846-5936.