Turning your “For Sale” sign to SOLD

During the course of my daily travels, I pass this house three or four times a week, that has been listed for sale with a real estate agent for almost a year now.

At this point, the “for sale” sign seems to be nothing more than a lawn ornament to daily passers-by like myself. For some reason, today, I looked at the sign and thought to myself, is that house ever going to sell?

The house is a corner property in a well established Montgomery County neighborhood, with above average curb appeal as you drive by. The fact that this property has been for sale so long tells me one thing… it’s priced too high for the area and condition.

We’re heading into the spring real estate market, when many individuals and families will be kicking around the idea of purchasing a new home. If you have a house to sell before the new dream house can become a reality, keep this in mind:

  1. Your house is worth what it’s worth. You’re not going to get an extra $25,000 just because you need the money.
  2. No matter how good your real estate sales person is, don’t expect that she or he could wave a magic wand to increase the value of your home.
  3. The comps don’t lie. Unless you own a unique property, the recent sales in your area will give you a good indication of what your house is worth. The new roof, heater and carpets may get you an offer faster than your neighbor, but not necessarily more money.

If you enter into the selling process with realistic expectations, your prospects of success will increase significantly. If your strategy is one of “wishing and hoping” for a special buyer to come along with a wheelbarrow full of cash, you might want to purchase a Power-Ball ticket; the odds may be better.

Bottom line:  Don’t base your asking price on emotion or nostalgia, but on measurable facts like location, number of rooms and square footage, along with the age and condition of the home.   When it’s time to list your home for sale, price it right and it will sell.

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