It’s no secret; Northern Michigan is experiencing an unprecedented seller’s market right now. The shortage of housing inventory, paired with the incredible demand on the part of buyers (not to mention historically low interest rates) are presenting a huge opportunity for anyone considering selling a home right now.
That being said, not every seller is walking away with the highest and best price. There are a handful of strategies that savvy sellers are using to maximize their sale’s price and make the selling experience as smooth as possible.
Price Your Property Strategically
When it comes to selling a home, no single factor is more important than the price. The launching list price puts your property in front of the right buyers at the right time, it prevents your listing from suffering “market fatigue”, where a prolonged listing without the right kind of activity prompts buyers to think something is wrong with the home, and maybe most importantly, gives you as a seller a chance to compete with the other properly valued homes on the market.
Remember, even in the most competitive of markets, buyers still have choices. They may not be great choices, but a buyer is more likely to make an offer on a home that isn’t perfect for them than to pay the wrong price for something that is closer to their needs.
How the Brick & Corbett Team Gets This Right: Our expert team of Realtors spends A LOT of time working through our comparative market analysis strategy. We train together, we have regular conversations about success and challenge, and we are constantly improving our pricing strategy so that our buyers and sellers get the best price the market will bear. We’re so confident in our process that we’ll tell you all about it, just ask.
If you want to know more about our pricing strategy, click here to get started.
Use the “Thursday Listing Strategy”
On a recent Facebook Live event, B&C team member and 2020 Re/MAX Bayshore New Agent of the Year Eric Levanduski outlined his strategy for timing a new listing; something he calls the “Thursday Listing Strategy”.
According to Eric, most active buyers are firming up their plans for weekend showings, open houses, and neighborhood tours on Thursday. By dropping a new listing on Thursday, including getting all the information about the home to the most active buyer’s agents in our market, blasting social media, getting the word out via ads, etc, you expose the home to the biggest audience possible right as they’re getting ready for a decision on plans for the weekend.
To hear more about this success, check out the Facebook Live that Eric, Tommy, and BJ did discussing the hot streak the south side of Traverse City has been on recently and Eric’s recent success there.
Vacate the Home During Opening Weekend
In a hot seller’s market, it’s not uncommon for a new listing to yield a dozen showings in a single day. Usually, the limiting factor in the number of showings that occur in a single day isn’t the buyers, it’s actually the sellers. This makes sense; there’s only so many trips to the grocery store, the dog park, or your best friend’s house you can make before you and your family need a place to land again.
To avoid this situation and give your property the greatest chance for maximum showings, consider vacating your newly listed home for opening weekend. By grabbing a nice hotel room or shacking up the grandparents for the weekend, you give buyer’s agents the coveted “go-and-show” classification, meaning showings can happen at any time of the day or night.
This strategy also can sometimes negate the need for an open house; something that a lot of agents / sellers / buyers aren’t super excited about right now anyway.
Invest in Curb Appeal
We know what you’re thinking: “Curb appeal? It’s the middle of the freaking winter!” Hear us out though.
If you happen to live in a neighborhood where real estate is very popular right now, we’re sure you’ve noticed a little more car traffic in the last year. That’s because there are a lot of buyers doing self-guided “neighborhood tours”, cruising by listings, getting a feel for a property from the outside before they make an appointment to see the inside.
This means that a first blush reaction to the outside of your home is more important than ever, especially if you plan on getting the highest and best price. During the winter months, that means investing in a snow plow driver who is going to keep your driveway (and walkways) consistently clear. This means make sure the Christmas decorations are down, that trees are neatly trimmed, that the outside of the house is clean, and the garage is neat and tidy.
Losing a showing because someone didn’t think it looked like you take care of the outside of the house isn’t a great way to operate.
Invest in Professional Staging / Cleaning
If you’re like us, you’ve been living HARD in your home for the last 11 months. As a result, there are few more scuffs on the kitchen floor, the furniture may be a little more worn than normal, and the deep clean scrubbing that the tub was supposed to get? It just didn’t happen.
We totally get it, this is very understandable. But this can also be a roadblock to your highest and best price. Investing in a professional cleaning crew to help get your home in tip-top shape before opening weekend will make your listing feel more inviting, will give buyers confidence that you take great care of your property, and leave you feeling confident that you did everything you can to be ready.
If your furniture or decor need a little refresh, some professional staging can help with that. The Brick & Corbett team has a fantastic design and style experts ready to assist with all of your staging needs, just ask!
Give a Little to Get a Lot
When it comes to property negotiation, especially in a seller’s market, it’s easy to get over-confident. You’ve probably heard tales of offers $20,000 over asking price, no inspection, no appraisal. While anything is possible, being realistic about your negotiation strategy ahead of time is the best way to get the most for your listing.
Start by talking with your Brick & Corbett agent about what your negotiation strategy should be, even before you get an offer. Where are you willing to bend? Where are you standing fast? What is the most important aspect of an offer? What is your walk-away number? Knowing what you can give is a great step to getting all your listing deserves.
Use Occupancy as a Bargaining Chip
Occupancy is a contract term that is vastly under-appreciated when it comes to your negotiating power as a seller. We know that buyers are desperate to get into homes, so much so that they may be willing to give you a little more money in order to close by a certain date.
To maximize this value, talk with your B&C teammate before your listing goes live about how soon you could vacate should the perfect offer come along. Do you need to buy something after you sell your home? Get started on that process early so you can be ready to jump when your buyers are ready to get the keys; it may just net you an extra couple grand.
Interested in learning more about the Brick & Corbett approach to selling your home?