Are you an “Empty Nester” who needs a home for the future? Is it time to downsize or move into another home more suitable for your glorious retirement years?
Like thousands of home sellers, you may be discovering that after years of non-stop child traffic in and out of your doors, toys on the floor, music floating throughout, suddenly you can hear a pin drop over the quiet hum of the refrigerator. Your rooms are filled with pictures and memories of this wonderful time in your life, but there are many empty rooms gathering dust now that your children have moved on. The freer years ahead are exciting ones to look forward to, and it may be time for you to move as well.
If you find yourself in this situation, you’re in vast and good company. And what that means is that there are many wonderful opportunities for you to create in this new chapter in your life—if you know what it takes to get the most out of the equity you’ve built up in your current home.
To help you understand the issues involved in making such a move, and how to avoid the most common and costly mistakes most Empty Nesters make, we’ve prepared this special report to help you identify and plan for the move ahead.
Selling your home is one of the most important steps in your life. This 9 step system will give you the tools you need to maximize your profits, maintain control, and reduce the stress that comes with the home selling process:
1. Know why you’re selling—and keep it to yourself: The reasons behind your decision to sell affect everything from setting a price to deciding how much time and money to invest in getting your home ready for sale. What’s more important to you: the money you walk away with, the length of time your property is on the market, or both? Different goals will dictate different strategies. However, don’t reveal your motivation to anyone else, or they may use it against you at the negotiating table. When asked, simply say that your housing needs have changed.
2. Do your homework before setting a price: Settling on an offering price shouldn’t be done lightly. Once you’ve set your price, you’ve told buyers the absolute maximum they have to pay for your home, but pricing too high is as dangerous as pricing too low. Remember that the average buyer is looking at 15-20 homes at the same time they are considering yours. This means they have a basis for comparison, and if your home doesn’t compare favorably with others in the price range you’ve set, you won’t be taken seriously by prospects or agents. As a result, your home may sit on the market for a long time, and, knowing this, new buyers will think there must be something wrong with your home.
3. Find out what other homes are selling for: (In fact, your agent should do this for you). Find out what comparable homes in your own and similar neighborhoods have sold for in the last 6-12 months, and research what current homes are listed for. That’s certainly how prospective buyers will assess the worth of your home.
4. Find a proven, successful real estate agent to represent your needs: Nearly three-quarters of homeowners claim that they wouldn’t use the same realtor who sold their last home. Dissatisfaction boils down to poor communication, which results in not enough feedback, lower pricing, and strained relations.
5. Maximize your home’s sales potential: Each year, corporate North America spends billions on product and packaging design. Appearance is critical, and it would be foolish to ignore this when selling your home. You may not be able to change your home’s location or floor plan, but you can do a lot to improve its appearance. The look and feel of your home generate a greater emotional response than any other factor. Before a showing, clean like you’ve never cleaned before. Pick up, straighten, declutter, scrub, scour, and dust. Fix everything, no matter how insignificant it may appear. Aim to get a “Wow” response from prospective buyers. Allow the buyers to imagine themselves living in your home. The decision to buy a home is based on emotion, not logic. Prospective buyers want to try on your home just like they would a new suit of clothes. If you follow them around pointing out improvements or if your decor is so different that it’s difficult for a buyer to strip it away in his or her own mind, you make it difficult for them to feel comfortable enough to imagine themselves as an owner.
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