I am currently in the process of selling my home and I look forward to sharing with you many of the insights I’ve gained by being on the other side of the home selling process in today’s market.
This first lesson, so to speak, taps into the emotional and psychological standpoint of your prospective buyers. Unlike most advice in this arena, it does not involve your having to fix, paint, clean or even stage anything. Well, maybe you do have to do a little staging…but not the way you think. You’ll understand in just a few more sentences. Now don’t get me wrong, those factors come into play, but today I’m going to share with you a simple strategy that I used to Immediately Increase Home Buyer’s Desire for my Property. This is such a no-brainer that you must try it yourself right away…you’ll be amazed at how great it works!
Just to give you a little background, my house is being sold via short sale. After careful consideration and a lot of research, this was the best way for my “ex” and I to handle this particular joint property. If you’re wondering what a short sale is, it’s basically us as homeowners, allowing the marketplace to determine what the “fair market value” is of our property since based on “comps”, our property is worth less than what we owe on it. A traditional sale would not benefit us because we would be out of pocket for the difference. In a short sale, the lenders will have to agree to accept less than what we owe on our mortgages.
It’s a tough pill to swallow, but ultimately, your house is only worth what someone is willing to pay for it…at the time you are selling it. A short sale is the best way to determine that. I opted not to have a sign in the yard, no lockbox and chose to do the showings myself. Since I work from home and have a lot of experience with the real estate process, this arrangement worked for me. I am not suggesting that this would be the best arrangement for you should you find yourself in a similar situation.
It was no surprise that we received a lot of interest in the house. There is an extreme amount of value for the money in this house (oh well!). I was getting a ton of phone calls requesting to come see the property. Although I wanted to be flexible with the showings, it became evident quickly that this process was becoming very disruptive and it was making it difficult for me to get anything done so I decided to practice what I preach…LEVERAGE. The next few callers requesting to see the property were all requested to arrive at 4:30pm.
What did this do?
1) It allowed me to kill 6 birds with one stone. (yes, we had 6 different groups of interested buyers come through at the same time).
2) This leveraged my time so I wasn’t opening the door multiple times during the day.
And the best part of all…
3) It immediately increased the level of interest and ultimately, the desire for my property.
Think about it…I had over a dozen people touring the property at the same time. They all arrived at the same time so they were standing at the door waiting to come in…together! Everyone LOVED the house. So, I had 12+ people oohing and aahing over my house and asking me questions. It was great.
One of the real estate agent’s actually asked if I planned that. Well…yes, of course! It works! I don’t know for sure, but since we received over 30 offers in a span of 5 days (we chose to impose a deadline for offers), I would imagine that all, if not most of those folks submitted an offer. And don’t you think that knowing there are so many other interested parties, these buyers would therefore submit a higher offer than they may have otherwise? Plus, having their real estate agents there also helped them encourage their buyers to put in the best offer possible…if they were serious about buying the house.
Okay, so how can you easily do this for yourself? Here are a few tips:
1) If you’re having an open house, limit the amount of time that the property will be open. In general, open houses last about 3-4 hours (1-4 or 5pm on a Sunday afternoon). I would decrease that time span to 2 hours and make sure you indicate that on all your marketing messages. Although we did not have a scheduled open house, I was not available that weekend before offers were due and since this was the only weekend buyers had the opportunity to view the property, my agent made room in her schedule to be here from 1:30-3:30pm on that Sunday. So everyone who was calling to see the property over the weekend was told very specifically that the property will be open ONLY between 1:30-3:30pm on Sunday. If they arrived before or after that time, they will most likely not have a chance to see the property. I wasn’t here for that open house, but I heard it was very successful!
2) This same concept can be applied for broker’s open houses and weekday viewings. Rather than having people trickle in at random times, schedule a specific time frame. This is called appointment based marketing and it is VERY effective.
3) Even though I said that with this specific strategy you would not have to repair, repaint, clean or stage the property, these things are part of the process, not independent of it. Sorry to disappoint you. I’ll discuss those processes in future articles/blog posts, so stay tuned.
Hope this helps and I’d love to hear your thoughts on it. Leave a comment below.