31 Mar 15
People put their homes on the market every day for all kinds of reasons, and every seller wants the best price they can get in the prevailing market conditions. Sometimes there are very logical and practical reasons for the sale, and making the decision is easy. At other times, the decision may have been difficult, the sale conditions unpalatable and the whole experience draining.
Irrespective of the circumstances, the experts tells us that selling the family home is up there among the top five stressful life experiences. Selling is even more difficult when there are many years of history and happy memories attached to the property. These experiences have created strong emotional attachments that must be dealt with before the property is placed on the market.
Our sales people at All Residential Real Estate come up against this issue all the time. For many sellers, these emotional attachments cause them to place a value on the property that the market will not support, simply because in their minds, their memories are priceless. When we identify this early in our dealings with a new client, we need to help them find a more realistic balance between their expectations and the market realities.
The most common behaviour we experience in these situations is a refusal to accept advice about changes needed to the property to present it for sale. To the seller, the home is perfect as it is because they have been living there happily for many years. To a prospective buyer, it may have dated décor, or require obvious repairs or have far too many personal items in the house. Buyers find it difficult to see past these issues, and often pass up otherwise suitable homes because they cannot see themselves living there.
We have found that the first step to change the attitude of the sellers is to talk through the reasons for the sale in person with them. We encourage them to share all the wonderful things they love about the property, to bring their feelings to the surface. Many people are embarrassed to admit that they have formed such a strong attachment to their home, but we assure them that this is perfectly normal.
Next, we invite them to share their hopes and dreams for the new place they will call home. This shifts their focus from the past to the future, and creates an environment where we can make some suggestions about the staging of their home. We advise them that most buyers want a home they can move into immediately without having to do work such as repainting or major repairs.
We know they are really ready to sell when they start packing away personal mementos and family photographs, get out the paint brushes and cleaning materials and hide some of their years of clutter in the shed. This is when our people at All Residential Real Estate get to work to find the perfect buyer who will pay the top market price.