“The buyers loved the floor plan and back yard but are not in love with the neighborhood.”
“The home falls in line with my client’s needs, but the house is further than they were expecting.”
“The house showed very well but the buyers aren’t sure about the noise from the proposed road construction.”
Does any of this sound familiar? Perhaps, you have already seen similar feedback from buyers, or you have your own doubts about your home’s appeal. Whichever is the case, now is the time to act.
It’s important you understand there are three things that determine the sale of a home – Price, Condition, and Location – and out of those three, location is the hardest obstacle to overcome. But there are some steps you can take to reduce its impact.
Know Your Potential Buyers
It may not be obvious, but there’s a trend of who’s buying in your neighborhood. It may be investors. It may be people looking to exit a higher populated area. It may be hobby farmers. It may be people who enjoy an urban setting. Whoever it is, you want to get your home in front of them.
A good Realtor knows how to identify and use the tools at their disposal to market to these people. But how can you be sure you are choosing an agent with these skills? Take a look at their selling history and discuss with them how they plan to reach the right buyers. A good agent will have a strong sales history and a detailed marketing plan.
Improve What You Have Power Over
Is there something turning off buyers that you can improve or fix? Do what you can to help alleviate the issue:
- Are buyers worried there will be no privacy with a corner lot? Install a tall fence or some trees to help block the view of the back yard.
- Is there a noisy road that will put a damper on outdoor time? Install a sound barrier or water feature to help improve enjoyment of the outdoor living space.
- Are buyers concerned the home is too close to others? Install window coverings that let in light but block prying eyes and put up privacy screens beside outdoor living spaces, like patios and porches.
While you can’t please everyone, taking steps like these will help alleviate many buyers’ concerns.
Update the Interior of the Home
When a home checks all the boxes for a buyer, they’re more likely to overlook it being outside their preferred driving distance. If feedback on your home shows that buyers are finding it to be too far from their top destinations (work, entertainment, etc.), and your home hasn’t been updated in some time, you may want to consider choosing a room to upgrade. The rooms with the best return on investment are bathrooms and kitchens.
Likewise, if your home is updated but still not snagging buyers, consider adding a unique feature that’s on-trend, like an outdoor grill station or tiki bar – something that will raise the buyer’s enjoyment level. It’ll help them appreciate the home even more.
Of course, you’ll want to speak to your Realtor before taking on any projects. If you over-improve your home, you may not get that money back. They can help you take a look at past sold homes to compare what others have done and what people may expect from the neighborhood.
Price it Right
Every home seller wants top dollar for their home, but buyers determine the home’s value. The fair market value is what a buyer is willing to pay for the home. A listing price (the price a home is when listed) is a prediction of that value based on what similar homes have sold for.
It’s best to start with a competitive price than to start high. Pricing too high can:
- put the home in the wrong price range on third-party websites, thus missing your target buyers,
- give the impression you aren’t willing to negotiate, and
- prolong your home’s time on the market.
The longer a home is on the market, the more likely buyers will expect there’s something wrong and avoid it.
If the home has been on the market for 2-3 weeks and has not received a market-appropriate number of showings or an offer, chances are buyers are not seeing the value in the home. It may be time to lower the price.
A property’s location can be a hard hurdle to overcome. After all, you can’t pick up the home and move it. But if you focus on what you can control and hire a good Realtor, you’ll find you are more likely to find a buyer who can look past it and appreciate the home as much as you have.