First let me say that Northeast Florida has some of the most amazing professionals practicing real estate. I'm thankful to call many of them friends from every company albeit ReMax to Prudential, Coldwell Banker to Watson and of course my personal favorite VANGUARD/GMAC
However there are still those left over from the order taker days of the real estate BOOM! One thing that drives me crazy is why in the day of digital technology can't we get an interior picture or two of a listing. Consumers have so many choices to pick through to determine what they will look at. When a listing has only a front shot it tells the buyer one of two things, one it would be anti productive do to condition or two the agent is lazy. Either way the listing loses. Digital pictures are free. You take the picture, upload then delete from your camera then start over, wallah!
Now if the house needs straightened up or staged then time to get the seller on the team. This is no time to not care about the difference a little elbow grease can make you! Even if a home is not a show stopper, cleaning up all the clutter, doing a little pre-packing (boxes in the garage are much better than too much clutter you can't see the house), washing the windows and cleaning up the landscape can not only make the difference of if you sell or not it will make you money with little or no investment other than time!
If you want to take it to the next level, stage it! Look at the pictures below and compare then I will tell you a story about market and staging!
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Both slides say the exact same thing, both homes are in the exact same neighborhood, interestingly though the house on the left was listed for 35,000 dollars more. Both homes are 3 bedrooms 2 baths. The home on the right was 200 sq ft smaller and big surprise SOLD. The home on left is now off the market.
How a home is presented makes all the difference in the world. It is not a judgement on the owners taste or style. Too many times the seller will take this personally. This is the seller recognizing that they are taking their home and transforming it into a product that will be the most expensive purchase that the prospective buyer will make and it needs to be appealing to the masses not only a select few. It's a a bad plan to say the buyer will just have to get over it. Remember it is the seller that is trying to entice the buyer.
Let's look at it like this. What is the first thing you do when you go to sell your car? Hmmmm? You wash it, detail it, vacuum it, maybe Armor-All it. Why? To attract buyers and get top dollar. Now there is something else you do. You go to the Kelly Blue Book and see what kind of price you are looking at based on condition and features and mileage.
Now after you have done that you take that information and look at your local swap sheet and see what your competition is. Now if you're smart you will position yourself accordingly.
Mercury Mountaineer 2001 65,000 miles Value $7,500. Current listing range from $6,800 to $8,000. There are 10 for sale in your zip code. You strategize and decide to list your SUV for $10,200 just to give you negotiating room. The problem is there isn't anyone to negotiate with. Why? The buyers have the same information you do. There are 10 others to choose from in the right range, why call on an overpriced one you anticipate will be difficult to deal with ?
We come to next and most important point. PRICING! This has never been more important than it is today. You cannot market an overpriced house into the hearts of the consumer. It's a false lie. LOL Just think about it. Buyers will buy value, Buyers will work with reasonable people, Buyers enjoy a home that is appealing (smells nice, clean, uncluttered) If you were buying what would you do?
It kills me when I hear sellers insult Buyers from California. They act as if they are totally detached from reality, they will hire a clueless agent and overpay no matter what because everything in Florida is a deal. If that is your pricing plan don't start packing. So what am I saying?
Your listing agent is not supposed to be your best friend that tells you what you want to hear and agrees with you on everything to get your listing. They need to be like a Doctor delivering the diagnosis along with the prescibed treatment good, bad or indifferent because it's in your best interest not theirs.
What if your Doctor had bad news? He read your chart and discovered you had a chronic disease. He knew you would not receive this very well so he walk into the room and says " Hello Mr. Patient everything looks great, see you again in 6 months" You leave and he hopes maybe before then if you don't change Doctors he will find a way to tell you next time. In the meantime this is affecting your life in a real way. NOT GOOD!
When you choose a listing agent make sure they've got game! What kind of a track record do they have? Can they look you in the eye and tell you the hard stuff.? If they can't do it now will they be able to do it later? Get a referral from a friend. Make sure they have a marketing plan. Comps, Sold-Pending and Active should factor in to your competitive position. They should have helpful thoughts on staging and preparation. If you don't have a direction to go in we would love to compete for your business or if your an out of town agent receive your referral.
Kim Knapp 904-334-7425