After several years of diligently saving money, I’m nearly ready to purchase my first home. Because I’ve been thinking about buying a home for so long, I know exactly what I want my house to look like. I desire a place that has three bedrooms and three bathrooms. I also need a quiet space to set up my home office in. I want a massive, walk-in closet in my master bedroom. My master bathroom needs to have double vanities, a tiled, walk-in shower, and a Jacuzzi tub. On this blog, I hope you will discover how to set priorities during your new home search. Enjoy!
On average, homes in the United States are listed on the market for 46 to 55 days before they sell. However, in some markets, the process takes much longer. If you live somewhere where it takes months or even a year to sell a home, it can be frustrating. Luckily, there are ways to speed up the process. Take a look at these tips:
1. Lower the price
If you want your home to sell faster than the other homes in your area, you need to price it competitively. Price it under similar homes in your area, and think carefully about how much you can afford to lower the price.
For example, if you have to move and your home is going to sit empty, you will be responsible for the upkeep costs of two homes at once. Heat, electricity, taxes and other expenses can add up over the course of several months -- instead of spending the money on upkeep, lower your asking price right away. Use estimated future upkeep costs to estimate how much you can afford to lower your asking price.
2. Figure out why your market is slow.
Markets are slow for different reasons in different areas. In some places, lack of jobs may keep prices low while lack of people moving into the area make it hard to sell quickly. In other areas, there may be a lot of vacation homes, and an owner selling a vacation home often can take more time waiting for a higher price. To explain, they already have a main home to live in, and they've been absorbing the cost of two homes for a while so waiting a few extra months doesn't hurt their pocketbooks like it may with someone who is selling their primary residence.
3. Reach out to buyers.
In addition to the work your real estate agent does to find buyers, take some initiative to reach out to buyers on your own. Use your analysis of the market in your area to determine which buyers you should target.
For example, if there are a lot of vacation homes in your area, make sure your home is listed on websites focused on vacation real estate or second homes. Similarly, if there are no jobs in your area, try to find buyers who telecommute and could enjoy other aspects of your area. For example, join a few forums for people who work at home, and post links to your property listings there.
4. Get creative.
If you make it easier for buyers to purchase your home, you may be able to sell it faster. Get creative and explore options beyond the typical real estate exchange. For example, if you can afford to, offer owner-financing to potential buyers.
Owner financing is where you carry the mortgage, and the buyer pays you every month. If they default, you own the home again, making the proposition relatively risk-free. Most importantly, however, if you offer owner financing, you increase the pool of eligible buyers. Instead of relying on buyers who have cash or who have been approved by a bank, you can also accept buyers who have slightly marred credit.
Alternatively, consider trading your home for a home in another area, or talk with a real estate agent about other creative selling options.
5. Profit from the house while it's on the market.
If you cannot sell your home relatively quickly using the tips above, don't let your house sit empty. Instead, turn it into a profit maker for yourself, or at least, try to cut your losses.
Talk with a property management company about renting out your home until it sells. To convince a renter to live in your home while it's on the market, write a clause in the lease that the lease is terminated if the home sells, but offer the last month of rent free plus a bit of cash for moving. Alternatively, list your home on a vacation rentals website and let guests book themselves into it for a few nights or weeks in exchange for cash.