Top 5 Rookie Mistakes to Avoid When Selling Your Home

by Keri Shull

Whether you’re a first-timer or feel like a seasoned pro, there are a lot of factors that can contribute to a successful sale. So how can you help ensure smooth sailing when you try to sell your home? We’d recommend working with an agent to identify the best plan for selling. In most cases, these five mistakes can have a major impact on how quickly you’re able to sell...so make sure you’re not guilty of any of them below!

1. You’re not doing anything to stage your house.

This may seem like a minor issue, but it’s actually a pretty big deal. You want potential buyers to be able to picture themselves in the house...which can be hard to do if it’s cluttered or heavily decorated to fit your taste. Buyers need a blank canvas so that they can paint a mental picture of what they’d do with the space. 

So make sure to remove your personal items, photos, and any loudly colored or patterned items. Eliminate as much clutter as possible to highlight the size of the space. You should also make sure to paint the walls neutral colors and update the flooring if possible.

2. You’re ignoring your curb appeal.

Curb appeal is like a first impression...you get one shot and people judge quickly. Yes, you can recover from a less-than-stellar first impression, but it’s a lot harder. When a potential buyer comes to tour your house, or even drives by it in passing, what will they see?

Stand at the edge of your property and look for anything that’s not great - the landscaping, sidewalk and driveway condition, siding, shutters, etc. - then fix any problem areas.

3. You’re not pricing to sell.

First-time sellers often think that buyers will love the idea of a discount, so they overprice the home initially. In reality, your house will just end up being seen by the wrong group of buyers. People who would be a good fit at market-price won’t see your house when they’re searching if it’s out of their budget. Similarly, buyers who are looking for something bigger will find your property in their search and wonder why.

You can get a quick valuation on your home to help you price to sell here.

4. You’re only focusing on pricing, not the terms.

Yes, the price you’re selling for is important. BUT there’s a lot more that goes into a great offer beyond the price itself. This can be an issue on both sides of the deal. Finding an offer that has the best possible terms for all parties means looking beyond the price, which can be difficult, particularly for inexperienced sellers.

5. You’re trying to save money by selling yourself.

Working with an agent is worth every penny...and we’re not just saying that to make more money. Think of it this way: would you walk into a courtroom and represent yourself in a felony case without any legal background? Would you trust someone to perform surgery that never went to medical school? Have you ever tried to cut your own hair? Of course not...because all of these things really call for an expert. 

Selling a house is no different! Rather than trying to navigate through the complex process and mountains of paperwork on your own, bring in an expert to ensure the process is smooth, legal, and stress-free.

Ready to sell?

Now that you know what mistakes to avoid, you need an agent to help you sell your home quickly and for the best deal possible. Our sales team knows the DC market inside and out and will work tirelessly to get you the most money in the least amount of time, so give us a call today. We can help you sell your home to the right buyer fast, with our Instant Offer program. And if you’re looking to sell your old house AND buy a new home, check out our Move-Up Buyer Guarantee program here!

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