We’ve all seen it – on our drive in to work a For Sale sign pops up in the lawn of a home and gee, months and months go by and it is still there. After several months you may even start to wonder, “What’s wrong with that house?” There must be something wrong, right? Not necessarily. Most likely either seller or their agent made a decision up front that cost them a quick sale. Granted, there are areas and price brackets in every market that move much slower than others. You can’t change that – but you may be able to change whether or not it is the one that does sell.
Aside from hiring an agent with experience and a great marketing plan there are several other factors that will make your home stand out against the competition.
- Price – you need to price it to move. Gone is the day where a home lists way over value and people still flock to it with negotiating on their minds. Buyers have too much knowledge at their fingertips these days; they know values. Price it at market value and negotiate firm. Listen to your agent and look at the comparables. Unfortunately what you wish your value to be isn’t usually what reality is. Pricing slightly below market value is shown to bring a stampede of buyers in the door. This can result in a bidding war which is good news.
- First Impression – there’s only 1! You know the old saying that there’s never a 2nd chance to make a good 1st impression. It doesn’t just apply to people, but your home as well. What are the best ways to make a good impression?
- Create curb appeal. Landscaping is shown to have the highest ROI there is in real estate. Make your entry awesome. Is your doorframe cracked or peeling? Are there cobwebs? Bushes not trimmed? Get it done! Whether you hire a professional or make it a DIY project, it is super important to a good 1st impression.
- Get Rid of Your Junk. Walk around your home with your cell and snap pics – look at them and what do you notice? If you see your “stuff” instead of the features of your home; get a storage unit and get rid of it. If you don’t need it on a daily basis and it isn’t enhancing your home just pack it up. A storage unit is a super cheap way to enhance your home’s value and 1st impression.
- Smell Stinks! Not much worse than opening a front door and being greeted by dog or dirty laundry smell. For that matter, the same goes for potpourri. Take the time to eliminate the source of your odors. Be sure any automatic air fresheners are a natural clean scent. Don’t use something strong that makes the buyer take notice.
- Update Wisely. Don’t go spending a huge amount on updating your home and think you’re going to get it all back. Ask your agent. Do your research but pay attention to what market you’re researching. Just because you find an article that says spending $30K in kitchen updates is a great idea – it doesn’t mean it applies to Mid-Michigan! Kitchen and baths, aside from entrances are the best places to see a good ROI. A good can of neutral paint and new hardware on your cabinetry can do a whole lot to update your look. Have an old nasty appliance? Replace it with a new stainless one. Doesn’t mean you have to replace all – people tend to see one and forget the others.
There are a lot of variables in making your home sell. There’s no one perfect solution. Your best bet is to ask your agent what their ideas would be (assuming you have a good agent). You might also want to invite some friends over and have them look at the house with fresh eyes and tell you what they think. It isn’t a time to be defensive, but open to suggestions. When we get a home ready for the market the idea is to make it look in such a way to be appealing to the highest number of people possible. Sometimes that means making room for people to have their own ideas and not be pre-occupied with all of your personal effects /decor. Neutral with a touch of flair attracts the widest range of buyers and that is what we’re looking for.
Time to list? Feel free to call/text/email me any time. 989-475-2958 firstname.lastname@example.org I look forward to hearing from you.
Based on number of transactions, March 2017 fell short in Saginaw County home sales when compared to a very robust March of last year, and even behind the 5 year March average. Don’t despair! If you are a buyer or seller there is still good news.
Despite the lower number of sales, Saginaw’s 12 month average sales price ending in March 2017 was at $104,314. This is up 3.33% over last year at the same time. I remember back in 2008 when the average home sale was at a whopping $64,143 – so we’ve made a lot of progress getting back to the “Pre-crash” price in 2005 and the average was just over $107,000.
Lots of numbers. What does it mean? Well, we can’t really formulate a trend from the low March sales. I’ll be keeping an eye on it to see if it was a statistical anomaly for the month. A slow March in essence is really a slowdown of activity in January. The plus side is the increase in home values for our various communities. That’s good news for sellers. This in turn, realistically is also good for buyers. Why? Well, all year we’ve seen low inventory of good homes. As word spreads that home prices are continuing to rise, more sellers are likely to get their homes on the market. This gives a buyer more choices, which also gives them more leverage when making an offer.
The March trend was different for Bay and Midland Counties, despite how closely tied our Mid-Michigan communities are. Bay County saw 25% more transactions this March over last year which is great; however the average sales price rose less than 1%. Midland also saw about a 20% increase in number of transactions over last March plus had a 6.13% increase in values.
Quarterly reports should be out soon and that will perhaps give a little more insight as to whether March was a trend or an anomaly. Always good to keep in touch with the heartbeat of your community. If you would like to know more specific information for your area, please feel free to call or email me. If you’d like to receive a free home market analysis – I’d love to hear from you.
~Build a better world by building a better you
- Monique Gilbert – Your Real Estate Matchmaker – Connecting Buyers & Sellers for a Perfect Match
Fall has been beautiful thus far and soon the festivities of Thanksgiving shall begin. We shall see gourds, pumpkins, shocks of corn, cornucopias, and turkeys galore. Though I personally am not much looking forward to the wintry mix that is sure to soon follow; Thanksgiving is definitely my favorite day of the year.
It is a time I am able to take just a very short break and surround myself with family, my extended family. All five of my siblings, their children, and grandchildren gather at my parents for a day or two of full tabletops, glorious wafting smells arising from the oven, mixed with laughter of children and adults alike. We have pillow fights, card games, leaf wars, football, and more. I am blessed to have a family who loves to share these types of days together. I am blessed also that we have a wonderful home to gather in and enough in the bank to put whatever we’d like in the oven and on that table.
I encourage you, even if you aren’t a Thanksgiving Day “celebrator”, to take this opportunity to inventory those things in which you can be thankful. As we watch the leaves turn from their bright greens to ravishing reds, glorious golds, and soft yellows we can turn our thoughts to the changes in our own lives from the past year. Maybe it wasn’t an easy year – those struggles leaving you stronger in the end, giving your character that ravishing red. Maybe there were wonderful celebrations providing you with glorious golden memories, and those little moments to cherish like the soft yellow leaves twirling down in the fall winds. Whatever has transpired this year; we all have things to be thankful for.
“Gratitude can transform common days into thanksgivings, turn routine jobs into joy, & change ordinary opportunities into blessings” – William Arthur Ward
Blessings to you and yours,
Spring, spring! It’s gotta be Spring or it’s too late! That’s what sellers often think of in regard to home sales. Reality says, it isn’t so. Sure, the highest peak months might be May and June, but looking at the graphs you will most likely be surprised that the only two really low months for closed sales are January and February.
Sales in Saginaw & Midland Counties are up in general this year (yay!) Looking at the graphic below; you can see two things. First you’ll see the difference between the 5 year average and 2016. Most importantly if you’re thinking of selling, you will see there is not a huge drop-off. Homes are being sold EVERY month.
There is always a market for good inventory. I would love to give you a free market analysis on your home if you’re thinking of selling or be your buyer agent for those of you looking for that new home of your dreams. Call me today! 989-475-2958!
Spring, Spring, Spring!!! That’s what people think about when you mention the best time to sell real estate. Is it true? If you’re thinking about putting your home on the market, should you wait til spring? Well, my response to people in the past has always been that if April is the month with the highest number of closings, then people are obviously looking in February and putting offers in during March in order to close in April or May. I’ve looked at our Mid-Michigan stats before, but I thought recently that I’d study them a bit closer in regard to when people are most likely to buy. The truth is – it’s not Spring! At least not here in the Great Lakes Bay Region.
According to the closing stats, each of our three counties vary slightly. Midland County has a highest number of closings in June, with May & August tied in second and September coming in slightly after them. Saginaw County #1 closing month is August, with June being second and September & May being tied for third. Bay county is almost the same as Saginaw, with August being 1st, May being 2nd and June & September tie for 3rd.
The biggest margin between the 1st and 4th most popular month is only 9 sales. So, in reality there are several great months to sell. Tis true that January is markedly the slowest month in all three counties, but things still sell. So what would my advice be to sellers? Get it on the market now! You can’t sell a house that’s not on the market. Your biggest asset is going to be your agent and their marketing plan, not the month. And for buyers, go on out and keep looking. Inventory is good. Been listing like hotcakes. Truth is; whenever you’re ready to buy or sell – that’s the BEST time to do it!
Remember, if you’d like a free market analysis I’m only a call/text/email away. And if you’re ready to find your next perfect home – same applies to you! 🙂 I would love to assist you.
Until next week – Monique, Your Real Estate Matchmaker; Connecting buyers and sellers for a perfect match.