Like thousands of homesellers, you may be discovering that after years of non-stop child traffic in and out of your doors, toys on the floor, music floating throughout, suddenly you can hear a pin drop over the quiet hum of the refrigerator. Your rooms are filled with pictures and memories of this wonderful time in your life, but there are many empty rooms gathering dust now that your children have moved on. The freer years ahead are exciting ones to look forward to, and it may be time for you to move as well.
If you find yourself in this situation, you’re in vast and good company. And what that means is that there are many wonderful opportunities for you to create this new chapter in your life . . . if you know what it takes to get the most out of the equity you’ve built up in your current home. To help you understand the issues involved in making such a move, and how to avoid the most common and costly mistakes most Empty Nesters make, read until the end to help you identify and plan for the move ahead.
Selling your home is one of the most important steps in your life. This 9 step system will give you the tools you need to maximize your profits, maintain control, and reduce the stress that comes with the home selling process:
- Know why you’re selling, and keep it to yourself.
The reasons behind your decision to sell affect everything from setting a price to deciding how much time and money to invest in getting your home ready for sale. What’s more important to you: the money you walk away with, the length of time your property is on the market or both. Different goals will dictate different strategies. However, don’t reveal your motivation to anyone else or they may use it against you at the negotiating table. When asked, simply say that your housing needs have changed.
- Do your homework before setting a price.
Settling on an offering price shouldn’t be done lightly. Once you’ve set your price, you’ve told buyers the absolute maximum they have to pay for your home, but pricing too high is as dangerous as pricing too low. Remember that the average buyer is looking at 15-20 homes at the same time they are considering yours. This means that they have a basis for comparison, and if your home doesn’t compare favorably with others in the price range you’ve set, you won’t be taken seriously by prospects or agents. As a result, your home may sit on the market for a long time, and, knowing this, new buyers will think there must be something wrong with your home.
3. Find Out What Other Homes are Selling For.
(In fact, your agent should do this for you). Find out what comparable homes in your
own and similar neighborhoods have sold for in the past 6-12 months, and research
what current homes are listed for. That’s certainly how prospective buyers will assess
the worth of your home.
4. Find a “good” real estate agent to represent your needs.
Nearly three-quarters of homeowners claim that they wouldn’t use the same realtor who
sold their last home. Dissatisfaction boils down to poor communication which results
in not enough feedback, lower pricing and strained relations.
Find out for seven more mistakes most empty nesters make.