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Seven Seller Slip-ups That Send Buyers Packing

Written by Julie Wyss on Tuesday, 02 April 2013 7:00 pm

Sure it's a sellers' market, but that doesn't mean it's a fool proof market.

Sellers who approach the market like a cocky kid who thinks he or she knows it all will soon learn the real estate world isn't his or her oyster.

If you want to sell your home quickly for the maximum sales price, consider these pearls of wisdom to avoid common seller mistakes.

Mistake No. 1: Pricing your property too high - Every seller wants to get the most money for his or her product. Listing with an excessively high price is a mistake.

A high listing price will simply alienate some buyers before they even see your property. Other buyers could expect more than your home really has to offer.

Over-priced properties tend to take an unusually long time and sell for a lower price than a similar home that's priced right.

Mistake No. 2: Mistaking refinance appraisals for market value - In a refinance, lenders often estimate the value of your property at a higher level than the home is worth to encourage refinancing.

It's a good idea to ask your real estate agent for the latest comparable market analysis, based on similar, recently sold properties in the same community.

Mistake No. 3: Forgetting to "showcase" your home - No matter how many times sellers hear this advice, no matter how simple it is to achieve, there's widespread neglect when it comes to getting a property ready for sale.

A poorly maintained home with neglected decor and an unorganized appearance will turn away buyers and slash thousands of dollars off the selling price.

Mistake No. 4: Trying to "hard sell" while showing - Buying a house is an emotional and difficult decision.

Give prospective buyers time and space to examine your property. A home tour or open house event is not the time for pressuring prospective buyers.

Point out subtle issues, but be friendly, be hospitable, be available and be receptive to questions, but only if the potential buyer asks.

Mistake No. 5: Trying to sell to lookers - A prospective buyer who shows interest because of a "for sale" sign likely isn't really interested in your property.

These buyers are more likely six to nine months from really taking the plunge. They are more interested in learning what's available, rather than looking for a home to buy.

Your real estate agent can distinguish between the looky-loos and real buyers by determining a prospective buyer's savings, credit rating, and purchasing power.

If your real estate agent can't make this distinction, and you have to investigate on your own, consider finding a new real estate agent.

Mistake No. 6: Not knowing your rights and responsibilities - It's crucial you are aware of all the details in your real estate contract.

Real estate contracts are legally binding documents and can be complex and confusing, but failing to sweat the details could cost you thousands of dollars in repairs and inspections .

Mistake No. 7: Signing a contract with no escape - You have a right to a contract that allows you to fire your real estate agent - and hire another - if the original agent fails to do the job as promised.

Beware of real estate companies that simply replace an agent with another one, without consulting you. Be in control of your sale before you sign a real estate contract.

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Individual news stories are based upon the opinions of the writer and does not reflect the opinion of Realty Times.