Selling Your Home to Avoid Foreclosure
When foreclosure is on the horizon, many homeowners find it in their best interest to sell their home quickly. The goal is simple: sell the home as quickly as possible. Unfortunately, as a seller, you do not control how quickly your home sells. On the bright side, you DO control the three major factors that influence whether your home sells quickly or sits on the market. Those three things, pricing, marketing and condition, are key to the rapid sale of a home.
Pricing Your Home
• Don’t create equity that doesn’t exist. It is a common misnomer that because a seller bought their home for thousands more than homes are currently selling for in their neighborhood, that home should sell for that price. It is irrelevant how much a home was purchased for. What matters is the current fair market value of a home, or the price homes around the home are selling for. Holding out for the highest price is often the kiss of death for a looming foreclosure, often leaving the homeowner out of time before earning the seven-year black mark that a foreclosure will leave on their credit report.
• Don’t overprice your home. Pricing a home aggressively, meaning low, is the key to getting a home sold quickly. Overpriced homes tend to attract less traffic because it is out of the price range of buyers who can afford it and it lacks the amenities that buyers within that price range are looking for. If you choose to overprice your home, be aware of the fact that your house will sit on the market longer than it should, resulting in low ball offers. • Become educated on what your home is worth. Your Keller Williams REALTOR® will prepare a Comparative Market Analysis (CMA) that shows recently sold, similar homes in your neighborhood. Take the numbers in this analysis and get serious about pricing the home low in order to sell it quickly. The best way to do this is to take the sales prices from the most recently sold homes in your area, and price your home around 10 percent lower than those. A slightly under priced home seems like a bargain, and what buyer doesn’t want a bargain?
• Keep in mind how much you owe. If pricing your home low is not an option due to the fact that you owe more than what your home is worth, consult your lender and ask them to advise you on how low of a sale price they will accept. Use that number to set your list price. Although this is considered a short sale at this point, don’t forget that a foreclosure is worse!
Marketing Your House
• Make sure your REALTOR® is marketing your home on the Internet. All Keller Williams RELATORS® have the ability to syndicate listings on the Internet. This is important considering that over 80 percent of buyers begin their home search on the Web.
• Add as many pictures as possible. Buyers who cannot see pictures of the property for sale will likely skip over it and move on to the next listing. The more photos the listing has on it, the longer buyers will spend looking, and the more likely they will be to want to see your home.
• Clean, stage, fix. Have your Keller Williams REALTOR® advise you on the best ways to spruce op your home for the least amount of money. If you are facing foreclosure, you are probably not in the position to spend a lot of money. In this case, focus on the things that are inexpensive, but make a huge difference in the cosmetic appeal of the home. Touch up the paint, caulk cracks in the tile, and patch up scrapes and holes in the walls. Leaving these things for the buyer to see will leave a bad impression, which will most likely result in very few, if any, offers. Clean the home from top to bottom and make sure it stays clean. It should be immaculate every time someone comes to see it. Not doing so may cost you a sale.
Above all, keep your top priority in mind: sell the home quickly before it enters foreclosure. Remember that, although it may be difficult to do what it takes to get your home sold quickly, it save you from having a foreclosure on your credit report in the future.