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If there’s one thing we know about homeowners, it’s that they want to get the most money possible when it’s time to sell. I can’t ever recall a seller client saying to me, “You know, Cari, this offer that came in is too much money. Let’s negotiate it down a bit.” ?

There’s a lot that goes into helping a homeowner maximize her home’s value at selling time, but here are two tips that will set the stage for that to happen — tips that I think a lot of homeowners would consider surprising.

1.) Price your home a little low.

A lot of homeowners begin the selling process with a mistaken assumption. They think that listing their home a little above its value will leave them room to negotiate and still get their desired sale price. But that’s not usually the case. In reality, overpricing your home from the beginning will only serve to limit the number of buyers who’ll be interested.

As this graphic from the National Association of Realtors® shows, if you price your home just 10 percent above market value, you’ll only reach about 30 percent of potential buyers. If you price it 15 percent above market value, only 10 percent of potential buyers will see it.

pricing home visibility

What you want to do is price your home so it reaches as many potential buyers as possible and maximizes demand. By pricing a little under market value, you won’t be fighting with one buyer over the price; instead, you’ll have multiple buyers fighting with each other over the home. When that happens, you create a bidding war and likely sell your home for above market value.

I agree with this HGTV advice:

“First impressions are everything when selling your home. Studies have shown that the first two weeks on the market are the most crucial to your success. During these initial days, your home will be exposed to all active buyers. If your price is perceived as too high, you will quickly lose this initial audience and find yourself relying only on the trickle of new buyers entering the market each day. Markets are dynamic, and your price has an expiration date. You have one chance to grab attention. Make sure your pricing helps you stand out on the shelf — in a positive way.”

2.) Use a Realtor®.

Again, this may seem counter-intuitive. And yes, I’m biased. But here’s where homeowners often begin with another mistaken assumption. They think they’ll save money by going the FSBO (for sale by owner) route, by avoiding having to pay the listing agent a commission. It sounds logical, but studies have shown that homes typically sell for more money when handled by a real estate professional.

Data from the National Association of Realtors’ 2018 Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers revealed that…

“…the median selling price for all FSBO homes was $200,000 last year. However, homes that were sold with the assistance of an agent had a median selling price of $264,900 — nearly $65,000 more for the typical home sale.”

So if you’re selling your home this year, don’t begin with these common misconceptions. Pricing your home a little below market value and using a Realtor® to market and sell your home are two smart ways to make sure you get the most money from your home.

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Cari McGee

Hi, I'm Cari McGee. 👋 I've lived in the Tri-Cities since 1994 and I've been a licensed Realtor® since 2004. That's a lot of local knowledge and real estate experience that I put into every article you read on my website! We've helped more than 560 families buy or sell property in the Tri-Cities. In 2023, our community voted us the bronze winner for Best Real Estate Team in the Tri-Cities Best voting. Learn more about me by clicking the link right above. And if you have any questions, get in touch anytime!

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