Right now in New Hanover County, there is about 2.5 month’s worth of inventory. That means if every home sold, there would be no more homes left on the market in 2.5 months.
Houses have been selling like hotcakes! If you have been keeping up with Melanie’s market updates, you know that homes have been going under contract just as quickly as they are coming on the market. But with the holidays upon us, sales are slowing down a bit.
Buy you may be wondering, if so many homes in the Wilmington area are going under contract, why isn’t yours?
If your home has been sitting on the market, the answer may be as simple as:
1. The Price Does Not Match the Condition
In other words, it is overpriced. While homes are selling quickly, buyers are still not willing to pay more than what they see a home being worth. If they are viewing similar homes in the neighborhood and see properties with newer or better features, they are more likely to bypass making an offer on your home.
Some people jump to the idea that a home that goes under contract quickly is underpriced. But that just is not the case in this market. Interest rates are so low, it has become an ideal time to buy, so fairly priced homes are going just as quickly as any that would be considered underpriced.
2. The Location is Not Ideal
The Wilmington area has changed greatly over the past 10 years. Public roadway projects are being built to accommodate the population growth and bringing roadways much closer to some neighborhoods. Many buyers try to avoid the impacts of larger roads (traffic, litter, sounds, etc.), so these improvements can actually lower the value of a home.
Additionally, flooding in past hurricanes has caused concerns with homeowners who feel some neighborhoods do not have proper drainage. While we’ve seen developers make changes to help alleviate these issues, some people are not willing to purchase a home in any flood zone, even if it’s low-risk.
A property affected be either one of these issues, is harder to sell. Certain lot improvements can help, but they do cost time and money. A price reduction may entice some buyers who are willing to live with the effects or put in the money to make the improvements.
If the home has neither of these issues, it just may be that you need to…
Align Your Home with Today’s Buyer Expectations
The pandemic has greatly affected which features buyers are looking for. The lockdowns and social distancing have forced people to spend more time in their homes. Not only have many realized their homes are too small, but lacking features they’ve easily supplement outside the home in the past. As our lifestyles have changed, so have the features we consider must-haves.
We are not suggesting you do any big renovations, but there are a few changes and updates that you can do to make your home more appealing to buyers.
1. Stage a Home Office
Thanks to Covid-19, more people are telecommuting (i.e. working from home) in an effort to social distance. While the vaccine is supposed to get the country back to normal, there are already large companies that are permanently allowing employees in specific positions to work from home. Likewise, in an effort to reduce the need for costly road projects due to congestion, Wilmington-area officials are encouraging local companies to allow more employees to work from home. As a result, home offices have become popular features. If you do not currently have an office, stage a room (formal dining room or den) or nook (loft or bedroom sitting area) as one. It will appeal to buyers who need a space for work.
2. Update Your Outdoor Spaces
With many entertainment options on lockdown or limiting capacity, people are spending more time in their back yards, so outdoor spaces are much more important. Luckily for you, they are usually some of the lowest cost upgrades you can complete. If you have not already done so, make your back yard more inviting with fresh landscaping, a patio, and/or a fire pit. Trim overgrown trees and bushes, and stage it with some furniture to show potential buyers how they can use it.
3. Add Healthful Features
Keeping a healthy home has become more important to people. Providing features that make that easier to do will make your home more appealing to buyers. This includes building a drop zone next to a main entrance to allow family members to remove outerwear and bags and installing touchless faucets and smart home technology that limits hands-on controls. All of these are relatively simple and low-cost projects.
If you are considering making a change to your listing, we encourage you to speak with your Realtor first. They should have access to data that will guide you in narrowing down what may be keeping your home from being sold. They can also help you decide which updates will be the most cost-effective for your neighborhood and give you an edge over the competition.
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