5 Worst Things Sellers Do When Listing Their Homes

When you list your home for sale, you have just one thing on your mind – the biggest bang for your buck. You want to earn the maximum money possible, after spending the least amount of money. That’s exactly why you’ve listed your home on the money-saving Flat Fee MLS.

While it saves you a whole lot of money (agent commissions are in the range of 2 – 3%), it also means that you’ve got to do most of the work yourself. 

The list of responsibilities when listing your home on your own is vast. Right from the listing details to photography and staging, everything rests on your inexperienced shoulders. The average realtor has 8 years of experience and has sold many houses.

You, on the other hand, have not. That’s why you’re likely to make the mistakes listed below. So read on to avoid these pitfalls. And when you successfully sell your home for the best price possible, here are some tips for the vacation you deserve!

Going Overboard With the Pricing

Obviously, you want to sell your house for the highest money possible. But you could price your home out of the market. When the price is too high, a lot of potential buyers feel it’s above their budget, and so don’t even bother to take a look. It’s not easy to get right, considering it’s both an art as well as a science.

That’s why it’s important to take a look at the going rates for properties in your area. Looking at other houses on the listing itself is a good way to figure it out. You must also factor in the location, the age of the house, the square footage, and amenities that come along with the house.

Not Hiring the Right MLS Agent

Selling house
Image by Free-Photos from Pixabay

Even though you’re selling the house yourself, you need an MLS agent who will list your house. Thinking that any Tom, Dick or Harry would do the perfect job, is a big mistake. Every MLS  company has different areas of expertise. So choose the right one for your needs. Also, be wary of discounts. After all, if something is too good to be true, it usually is.

Using an agent that someone you know has had a good experience with is a smart way to start. Other things to look out for are a good, up-to-date website, vast experience, and an impressive track record in the kind of home you’re selling. You could check out this MLS listing guide, for the complete lowdown on picking a good agent.

Trying to Hide the Major Flaws

This is very much a rookie mistake. You hide a critical flaw and think that no one will find out until it’s too late. But if and when they do, it will only spell trouble. Laws often require sellers to disclose major issues. Not disclosing it falls under the purview of real estate fraud

And besides the laws, there’s always the question of trust. Once a buyer finds out that something has been hidden, they will look at everything you say with suspicion. Even if everything else is perfect, just one dishonest act, however minor, can break the deal. 

Listing Before Everything is Perfect

Selling house
Photo by Eduard Militaru on Unsplash

It’s important that potential buyers get the best possible impression. Home staging plays a critical role in this, and you should never list your home before it is ready to be listed. No buyer will be impressed with dirty walls, cluttered spaces, and your personal effects strewn all over the place. List your house only after you’re sure everything is in place.

It’s vital to keep the colors and decor as neutral as possible. Also, try to minimize the size and amount of furniture, to create the impression of space. Another important factor is to improve upon is the curb appeal. And whatever you do, ensure that your home doesn’t end up in the collection of terrible real estate agent photographs!

Not Playing the Patient Game

Making Money
Photo by Karolina Grabowska from Pexels

As a novice seller, you’re also liable to make two mistakes while closing a sale. One is accepting the first offer you get without negotiating for a higher price. Often, you’re so excited about the money you’re going to get, that you start dreaming about all that you could do with it. Big mistake. Instead, think about how much more you could negotiate for. Always ensure that you make a genuine attempt to up the price, and follow expert tips.

The second is accepting the highest price you get, without considering other factors. You need to consider how financially strong the buyer is. A person with weak financials might get into a monetary tangle, and delay payments, or even back out at the last moment. In addition, do weigh the payment terms.

Listing your home to sell it under the FSBO category is certainly a moneywise move. But while you’re at it, do remember that you’re doing away with the services of very experienced real estate brokers. So ensure you do the groundwork right, to profit fully. Wondering what to do with the sale proceeds? Here are some tips on making the right investments.

Josh founded Money Buffalo in 2015 to help people get out of debt and make smart financial decisions. He is currently a full-time personal finance writer with work featured in Forbes Advisor, Fox Business, and Credible.