5 Ways Selling Your Home Has Changed In The Last 5 Years
by Eric Peterson
on Thursday, January 24th, 2019 at 10:04am.
It’s said most people move about every 5 years. The real estate market has seen dramatic changes in the last 5 years. If you are planning to sell your home this year you should be aware of 5 changes and how these changes will affect your sale.
1. Buyers Have More Data Than Ever Before
Buyers are often searching for a home years before they are ready to buy. There is so much more information about neighborhoods, upgrades and home values compared to 5 years ago. Buyers often have a better understanding of the real estate market than people who are selling their home.
How it affects you is buyers will be comparing features, upgrades and condition of your home to other homes they have seen. They often make spreadsheets including calculations comparing sale prices of homes they have seen against your home. If the pricing of your home is out of whack with their calculations they will pass on buying your home.
2. Buyers Are Even Pickier Than Before
Buyers are comparing your home to new homes and an ideal they see on HGTV. Often they are turned off by the idea of making repairs or having to do minor updating when they are considering buying a home. Although some buyers are willing to buy a “fixer-upper” that’s usually because they want a deal.
How it affects you is buyers who will pay a premium price for your home want a move-in ready home. Sellers have to decide if they want to sell their home for top dollar or sell it to someone who wants a deal.
3. Buyers Start The Home Buying Process Without A Realtor
5 years ago when a buyer wanted to buy a home their Realtor would pick out the homes for showings. Now that listings are online that has changed to the buyer usually picking out the homes to see. What we are seeing today is buyers are starting the process without a Realtor. Instead buyers are visiting our open houses and calling me directly as the listing agent.
How it affects you is many old school Realtors will tell you holding an open house won’t attract a buyer. They will also refuse to show your home to a buyer that doesn’t have a Realtor because they think it’s a waste of time. If you hire a Realtor who thinks this way you will miss out on many serious buyers who will never see your home in person.
4. Standard Contracts Are Even More Buyer Friendly
Most home sellers are surprised at how buyer friendly the contracts given to us by the Texas Real Estate Commission are. 5 years ago there were 25 ways for a buyer to terminate a standard real estate contract and receive a refund of their earnest money. Today there are 32 ways.
How it affects you is if you don’t have an experienced listing agent who works with these contracts every day you won’t be protected. You may go under contract with a buyer thinking the deal is solid only to be disappointed shortly before the closing date when the buyer cancels.
5. Buyers Are More Cautious
Many first time homebuyers grew up during the financial crisis watching their family struggle. As real estate prices have gone up and affordability is becoming a concern buyers are more cautious than any other time in this economic cycle.
How it affects you is buyers look for signals for when it’s safe for them to act. Homes that are priced right and in good condition should sell quickly when they come on the market. If you miss the mark on either of those areas and your home stays on the market an extended period of time buyers will be cautious. They assume if your home hasn’t sold there must be a problem. Essentially they are saying if nobody else wants your home they don’t want it either.