Pricing your home to sell

By Pat Lairson

October 22, 2012 - 10:12 am
Pat Lairson writes about real estate for InMaricopa News.

Do you keep your eye on the real estate market? Do you notice real estate ads and how many “For Sale” signs are in your neighborhood? You may even dip inside an “Open House” just for fun to see what the home looks like and sells for.

A home purchase often is the largest investment a person will make. When it comes time to sell your home you can easily find out how much you owe on it, but how do you determine the selling price?

Pricing a house is not an emotional decision. You know how much money you invested into your home, but the way you value your home may not be the way a buyer values it.

Pricing a home is a joint venture between you and your Realtor. Many factors can affect the value of a home and the Realtor and seller should work as a team to understand the market based on the seller’s home and the seller’s needs. The end result should be to price the home with a realistic and accurate price to sell the home in today’s market.

How is this done?

Study past sales. This is the starting point for any successful pricing strategy. Even if you think your home is worth more, appraisers are going to look at a three-month history of what has been sold in your neighborhood. Your home must appraise.

Look at active listings. This is your competition. Your Realtor will give you this information and I like to set my clients up to receive automatic email listings to help educate them on the market.

Overpricing your home. It is OK in a rising market to price accordingly, betting on the market to continually increase. Be realistic, though. Overpricing your home and then having multiple price reductions is not good and a buyer could think, “Why is this home not selling? What is wrong with it?” Overpricing costs you money in the long run. Price it right the first time around.

Think like a buyer. The shape your home is in has a great effect on pricing. What would you want to see in a home you purchase? Sometimes the simplest things can make a big difference.

The single most important thing you can do to your home to get it ready to sell is to make sure it is clean and uncluttered. So even if there are no upgrades and it needs paint, a clean home well organized may sell faster than one that is not.

These steps will help ensure you are pricing your home correctly and at market value. Selling a home is exciting and there is a shortage of inventory in Maricopa, which makes it a great time to sell.

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