Our home has been on the market for 79 days now (Colorado Springs, CO). We have new windows, new paint (interior and exterior), new roof, new carpet, and a remodeled bathroom. It's a small, beginner home (1554 sq. ft.) with 3 bedrooms and 2 bathrooms. 2 of the bedrooms are upstairs and 1 is on the bottom level (basement level), and we use it as a tv room instead of a bedroom. Our house is across from a park, and very close to an elementary school. I believe it is fairly priced $179,995 (price has been dropped twice). The same floor plan 2 streets over is listed for $187,900. We have had 15 showings so far, with 1 second showing. Feedback has been ok, although I think we are dealing with a lot of first time home buyers who expect things to be "perfect". The kitchen is small, 1 car garage, bedrooms not on the same level, etc. is the feedback we have gotten so far. Basically, things we can't change. People seem to love the location. I'm just getting worried because it's been on for 79 days and we haven't had any offers yet. Thoughts? Suggestions?
Have you talked to your agent about what the average time is for starter homes to sell? This can vary from location to location. In my area we have had homes with offers in 24 hours but it wasn't that long ago when things were lingering on the market.
It has been long time since I was selling a starter home but the rules remain the same: keep it clean, clean, clean and keep the clutter down to a minimum and neutralize your decor. It seems that folks can see themselves in a home better without personal photos, etc.
We have sold 6-7 homes over the years. It took 24 hours to get one offer and just over a year to get another. All it takes is the right person(s) to come along and fall in love.
I am sure others will suggest posting a link and they will be happy to make suggestions to make improvements/changes to make it more attractive.
Our last home sold was an expensive rural home sold in a down market. I cleaned, I decluttered, I neutralized before putting it on the market. We went through one agent with very few showings and no offers. We took it off the market for a while and put it back on. The next agent suggested we remove an Axis deer hide from the wall of my husband's aerie (his third floor man cave/study) and put a neutral slipcover on the love seat in that room. We did it. We had maybe five showings, received a firm offer and had two more ready to come to the table in fairly short order. Could this be attributed to the changes of decor or just a freshening mark? Who knows.
I do know this agent had a professional photographer come in and do new photos of the house that made it look like something out of a magazine. Now it was a nice home and I am a decent decorator but I was impressed with the photos. Did this make a difference??
Good luck--sometimes patience and waiting is the hardest part. And yes, hearing through feedback that the concerns about the home are things you can't change is frustrating. You just have to roll with this. Someone will come along and love the split bedrooms and will see that a smaller kitchen can be more efficient.
You have had 2 price drops in just over 2 months? That sounds like it was way overpriced and that is a bad thing. The first days are the most important.
Keep it clean, ready to show at a moments notice. Talk to your agent and see what is average. I know areas that the average was almost a year, not that long ago. The numbers have improved somewhat but not that much.
We have done 2 price drops because we are under contract to build a new home (contingent on the sale of this home). We want to sell quickly.
We started at $185,000, dropped to $182,900, and now $179,995. We won't sell for less than $173,000.
Here is our home.
Unfortunately, the price of similar listings and your lowest acceptable offer have nothing to do with the price a buyer is willing to pay. When was the last similar home sold and at what price? That would be the most significant factor in determining what price you can reasonably expect. Certainly you understand that when you invest in carpet and paint you can't appeal to every potential buyer. I would not have put in beige carpet with so much gray, black and white decor. Some will see past it, others will just move on. Good luck.
3 houses up from us, 2 weeks ago for $174,900 was most recent. Nothing updated at all, inside or out.
I would hope buyers would see past our choices in decor... We aren't leaving our items behind. We did very neutral colors for the purpose of appealing to the masses. If we planned to keep the house longer, we would've done more gray carpet, paint, etc.
That's pretty close if the $174,900 was the actual selling price, not just the last listed price. I'd certainly want my agent to find out what made them choose that one over yours because I would have expected them to see both. If they didn't also see yours there may be a problem with your marketing plan.
I believe they were listed around $182k to begin with and sold for $174,900ish (according to realtor). My fear is they didn't see ours... Although I would hope they did considering we can see that house haha
I have stepped away from our home emotionally, and have really tried to see it from a buyer's point of view. I'm just not seeing what's wrong. I thought the split bedrooms would be the deal breaker, but no one mentioned that on their feedback. We personally don't use the bottom level one as a bedroom though, it's our tv room. Wondering if we should stage it differently.
As any realtor in this message board will tell you it is not the listing price that you should tell us, but the sold price of similar homes in your area. Has your Realtor told you, how much similar homes in your area have sold for?
Here are the reasons houses don't sell - location, condition, floor plan, and lot concerns..and ..the most important PRICE.
I didn't read through all the posts but sounds like you are right in there with the price.
Make sure your home is clean,clean clean and light and bright.
Buyers love doll houses...make sure it looks like one. Think like a buyer!!
I suggest setting the TV room up as a Bedroom immediately. Remember, buyers sometimes look at 6 or 8 houses on one trip out and they run together...and what they will remember is "two" bedrooms. Buyers get confused after the 4th house if they don't make notes, which I encourage.
Make sure everything works, and ask for an electronic lockbox...coded..for ez access Coded means the Realtors have to have a special code to imput into the locbox- extra measure.
Best not to be ther for a show so buyers can talk openly with their agent.This message has been edited. Last edited by: real estate lady,
We have been debating staging the tv room as a bedroom, so I think we might go ahead and do that. It can't hurt!
The house is super clean (cleaning lady, plus my husband and I daily) and very bright. We have great natural lighting in the house.
I know listing right before Thanksgiving probably didn't help. I'm hoping things pick up a bit!
Another house a few up from us was listed at $175,000 and sold for $173,200 3 weeks ago. Again, nothing updated and needed some work. Ours is definitely move in ready. We made sure everything that needed fixing/updated was done prior to listing.
Fingers crossed we get an offer here soon!
Highly recommend not referring your home in the listing as starter home. 1500 plus sq. ft. - is not starter, and starter refers to young married couples...leaving out families..seniors, friends buying together... etc.This message has been edited. Last edited by: real estate lady,
Hubby and I said that as well- I think we will ask the realtor to change it.
You have to remember your agent works for you and has a responsibility to you to get you the complete information on sales - 173,900ISH doesn't cut it. Your agent should also be able to tell you whether the people who bought those last two houses ever saw yours. If they didn't, there should be a GOOD reason.
In my experience in selling my homes, I have found out that a good Realtor is what makes your home sell. Don't be afraid to ask questions and to question whatever you think is not right RE is correct, a 1500sf.is really not a started home in most areas. especially if it's well renovated.
And yes you need to find out in the last 6 months what are the comps for your area.
In my opinion I would not consider your house "updated". Paint is something everyone has a different opinion about and someone would be likely to change. The bath was done in very dark, trendy cabinets and will be out of fashion in just a few years. Despite what you want money wise, your house is not worth much more than you paid for it 7 years ago.
I would NoT stage the basement bedroom as a TV room. That is essentially changing your home to a 2 bedroom. You want to show it as a 3 bedroom.
It took 9 months to sell our home. We took the first offer. Our problem was the location. Our house was one of the newest in the subdivision, one owner, & we kept it neutral & clean. It was a starter house & we loved it. Our agent told us that one couple pulled up in the driveway & wouldn't even get out to look at the house because of the neighborhood. We bought there because it was what we could afford & it was brand new.
What do you consider updated then? We have new paint (interior and exterior), new carpet, new tile and vanity in bathroom, new roof, and new windows. I'm just curious what you would say is an update if those aren't. Not trying to be rude, I'm truly curious.
The majority of the things you have done are taste specific such as the paint(everyone likes different colors, the carpet (most people prefer hard surfaces). The roof would be considered necessary.
The windows might be considered an upgrade if they are much better than what was there. Ditto with the bathroom except you choose trendy items.
It is not "update" that increase the value of a house but "upgrades".
Remember most buyers start with the internet in their search - I would guess about 80% of buyers..so terribly important what they see in the listing.
Actually, I like the home through the photos, and thought it was nicer than you first described, so don't worry. However, the photos are not professional and need to be. The fireplace is a little funky..but don't think is a problem.
$179,900 gives you negotiating room too, plus remember - buyers do ask for contribution from sellers
sometimes for closing costs.
Just because those homes sold lower doesn't mean they are comp - check those sq. footages! Did they have a garage, a fireplace, etc. Also make sure they are SOLD comps...not just listings.
Your problem very well could be Realtor marketing - how many Broker opens have you had, how many public open houses? Where is the Realtor advertising? Have you seen the ads?
It is a team effort too..Realtor and Seller. Remember you employed the Realtor..the Realtor works for YOU..so ask questions!!!
How is Realtor access? By Appt.? 24 hour notice? 48 hour notice? Elec. Lockbox? EZ access is key.
I have sold houses with buyers on the way to the airport for their departure, in a thunderstorm while locking up at the end of an open house, and in the dark.
Make sure your Realtor is going the extra mile to get your home sold.
Calling your home a starter home may have wasted valuable marketing time..so please address.. I would suggest.
A good Realtor will find solutions...This message has been edited. Last edited by: real estate lady,
Thanks for the positivity! The photos were done by a professional though
I know I will get slammed for saying this again, but I truly think we are dealing with a lot of first time home buyers who think a home should be perfect. They are expecting a 3 bedroom home, with a formal living room, formal dining room, and a huge kitchen. And in this price range. Good luck. I am barely getting that with my new home for $260,000. We live in an expensive area. Homes are not cheap here.
Our realtor pulled all sold comps, and for sale comps, in the area and we are right in line with them. We were originally going to list at $179,000, but she said she was comfortable going up to $185,000 because of the new roof and paint, so we did that instead. We knew it was probably a bit high, and are ok going down 1-2 more price changes if we need to.
I do think marketing might be an issue. We have 1 broker open, and 1 open house so far. We did list the week before Thanksgiving, and have had 2 major snow storms since listing, so I understand that could effect stuff a bit too. But I do think marketing is an issue. Our realtor is somewhat responsive. I am a bit upset though because I asked for feedback from this weekend's showings (Monday morning- hey, I was excited and hopeful haha) and got a kind of snippy response about how she follows up a total of 5 times to try and obtain feedback. I probably took it a bit personally, but I feel that I should see the feedback immediately when it comes available. We had another showing last night, and there was feedback left (I can see that it was left on showings.com, however, she needs to make it available for me to see what it says, if that makes sense). Also, we have had 3 parties say that the home was in their top 3, but they were still deciding. I think we deserve to know what kind of follow up is being done in that area as well.
We do have an electronic box (card swipe or something I think she said) and showings are ok from 8am-9pm, with a 30 minute notice required (we have a baby so I need that).
I wouldn't be so concerned if we weren't under contract for a new build house already. We have some time still (close June 20), but I would hate to lose our dream home we are building.
"Feedback" is a automatic request thru our MLS system here
in Florida. Sometimes you get it, sometimes not. Even if you call the Buyers' Realtor, they may not call back.
Sometimes, they make an appointment and at the last minute, don't show - buyer had to work late, whatever.
That why it is very important the Realtor leave a bus. card to know for sure there was a showing.
We, Realtors, here, usually put that statement in the Realtor Remarks.
Sure weather there is an issue, now that I see your state..and snow in photos.
I would concentrate on that 3rd Bedroom and get that set up- and get the "starter home" mention out of the listing through conversations with your Realtor.
I would also recommend a thousand dollar bonus to the selling office.This message has been edited. Last edited by: real estate lady,
Gee RE I had forgotten about that bonus to the selling agent. to me, that is a great idea. and I would also like you say, get her realtor to aggressively market her property, I didn't find anything wrong with her house at the price offered. Still think that she should watch the sold comps. and like you say, require feedback. And yes take out that started home, sorry, but to me it didn't look like one. and also remember that your comps.. are homes like yours that have sold in the last 6 months.This message has been edited. Last edited by: rker321,
I had thought about offering some kind of bonus, but wasn't sure who it would go to (selling agent for my house, the buyer's agent, the actual buyer's themselves, etc). How does all that work and what is a good amount?
$1000 bonus to selling office at full price..would be my suggestion --talk with your Realtor.This message has been edited. Last edited by: real estate lady,
A thought here, do you have city sewer? If not make sure your septic is rated for 3 bedrooms. Unfortunately if I were shopping for a 3br, I would want the bedrooms on the same floor. Just easier in the middle of the night when there are sick kiddos in the house. I know, nothing you can change.
Wishing you an offer soon.
We do have city sewer
We have had 5 showings in the last 24 hours. Fingers crossed!
Well, we finally got an offer yesterday- a great offer! Just under asking price
My guess is your Realtor was motivated by the advice you were passing on to her!!! Probably wondered who in the heck is she talking to. Surely think the changes in MLS..worked.
Wonderful news! Hoping the closing goes without a hitch. Isn't this place great?
Congratulations. Hope all goes well.
Congrats!!! I hope things go well.
We have our appraisal coming up here shortly. I'm going to ask our realtor too, but I figured I would ask here as well
How do you know what comps the appraiser will use? Is there somewhere online to look? Our address is 8188 Chancellor Dr. Colorado Springs, CO 80920 if that helps.
The appraiser will typically find the 3 - 4 most recent closings of properties similar to yours. Locally they try for a 1 mile radius, but will go further if they have to. Depending on your market they might have to include short sales or even foreclosures. If you've had an active market and you are priced near the competition, you should come out okay.
keep our fingers crossed!
Fun and Info
I don't know why your house isn't selling except that the right person hasn't come along yet.
As far as feedback goes I really wouldn't expect any. If you do it will be silly stuff that are only excuses they use because they really can't afford the house to begin with. That's been our experience anyway.
I was going through this discussion and it's been nearly 3 months and you haven't given any update. Is your property sold? If yes, then the deal got finalized at what price?
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