It’s no secret that selling your home can be stressful!

While it looks easy on HGTV, the truth is that selling a home is complicated. Getting top dollar is a mixture of pricing strategy, timing, staging, and the actual marketing plan.

Here in Austin, some homes sell in less than a week. Others might sit on the market for months and months. It totally depends on the location, price, and the marketing plan. We have a pretty dynamic market in Travis County.

Selling a house is complicated enough—but here’s a quick list I made of the 5 dumbest things sellers do that can make it even harder to sell a home.

  1. Dropping The Price A Little (Instead Of Updating The Interior)

Almost every client I’ve ever worked with makes this mistake: thinking that instead of upgrading the outdated bathroom or kitchen, they’ll just drop the price a little bit….and let the buyer use the extra money to upgrade it themselves. 

Now, I can see how this logic makes sense to them, but the truth is that it is exponentially harder to sell a home that doesn’t “show” well. Most agents know how to manipulate the photography to highlight a home’s strengths, and downplay its weaknesses, but you can’t hide an entire room! If the kitchen is outdated (old cabinets, old countertops, old appliances, etc), no amount of creative photography or “staging” can make up for that! Rather than dropping the price $10,000, it makes much more sense to just FIX THE KITCHEN. Homes with updated kitchens sell much, much, much faster than homes without updated kitchens. The same is true of bathrooms. Here’s the bottom line: if you want your home to sell in a reasonable amount of time (about 3 months or less), don’t be lazy when it comes to updating the kitchen or bathroom! It’s easy to just drop the price a little bit and save yourself the hassle, but it almost guarantees your home will take a long time to sell.

  1. Failing To Stage The Interior

The old cliché is true: a little paint goes a long way!

Even simple upgrades like fresh paint (neutral colors are best), new carpets, tile flooring, etc make a BIG DIFFERENCE. The average home can feel like a completely new house for about $5,000 or less of cosmetic upgrades. And while I’m on the topic of maximizing the interior, make sure to properly “stage” it. If you can, hire a professionally certified home stager. They will maximize the price you get for your home by making sure everything is strategically arranged. In almost every case, the small fee you pay the home stager is far less than the extra money you get by selling your home for more money than you would have otherwise received. If you cannot afford a home stager, make sure the home is always in pristine condition before showings. Get all the carpets professionally cleaned, dust everything, remove as much of your “personal” stuff as possible (family photos, etc).

  1. Taking Amateur Photos Or Video

In the age of the Internet, there is simply no excuse for not having professional photography and video. Recent statistics show that over 90% of homebuyers begin their house-hunting search online.

Honestly, I don’t believe that statistic! I’m guessing it’s 100%.

I don’t know ANYONE who didn’t start their home search online.

When the first impression of your home is almost certainly going to be online, don’t you think it’s a good idea to invest a little bit of money to make sure you make a good first impression? The difference between amateur photos and professional photos? Usually a couple hundred bucks. It costs about the same amount of money to film a video tour of a home, yet most agents don’t invest the time or money to do this! Personally, I always invest in top-notch marketing for my listings.  It helps the homes sell faster, AND for top dollar. It’s not an expense. It’s an investment.

So if you’re considering selling your home, make sure that your agent is willing to invest resources into promoting the listing with photography and video.

Right now in Austin, the average home takes around 150 days to sell.

Of course, the right home at the price can sell much faster than that!

If you’re thinking about listing your home for sale, you can feel free to email me at [email protected] or text me at (512) 785-0698.

Good luck!

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