2014 has had it’s ups and downs for sellers and buyers alike, but the real estate industry has finally settled down enough for many to return to consider selling their home. The sluggish recovery in housing starts is impacted by construction costs rising faster than inflation, labor shortages in the building trades, and the difficulty for small local home builders to obtain construction loans. According to the National Association of REALTORS existing home sales in 2015 are expected to rise to over 5 million.
Here are 5 great tips to help you stay ahead of the trends:
Get Off the Sidelines
For sellers waiting for market improvements, they are here – so jump back in the game if the price is right. Buyers may have already missed the rock bottom deals that were around and that said, the rules have changed a bit; expect higher down payments than we saw in previous years. Sellers too should be aware that many buyers may now have a harder time qualifying as well due to these changes.
Even though renovation and remodeling can add value to your home not all upgrades are created equal. Consider your options before making costly changes that might not actually benefit your selling price. Believe it or not sometimes it’s best to focus on the small things like repainting or minor fixes rather than extravagant builds that may or may not even be to your potential buyers tastes.
Make a Good Impression
Over 84% of potential buyers start their search for homes online, before they even talk to a REALTOR. Investing a few extra dollars from the get-go by paying for professional photos or video of your home can pay of big time in the long run.A REALTOR.COM survey showed that homes marketed with professional quality photographs sold for nearly 12% more than homes with bad or no images.
Don’t Be Afraid to Market
If you’re selling you need to put it out there! Give your agent the go ahead to market your home creatively throughout a number of venues. This includes traditional venues like print ads as well as newer options like social media. Show your listing on the agents website; ask them to blog about it or post it on their Facebook and Twitter pages as well. The internet is a global platform and can exponentially increase your homes exposure to a vast audience.
Little Details Make Big Differences
If you’re a buyer little things can make a world of difference. When you do a walk through switch on the stove, run the faucets, flush the toilets, run the air conditioning and put feet on the ground in the neighborhood. You aren’t just buying the house, you’re buying the area as well so get familiar with it.