Man sitting on lawn with hands on face very sad and frustrated.
For sale by owner having problem with selling their house
For sale by owner having problem with selling their house

How do you not lose money when selling your house? It’s all about the price. Seriously, more people selling their homes themselves lose money because of price. They overprice it and the house doesn’t sell.

It’s a well known fact among real estate agents that overpricing a house and letting it sit to long on the market loses money. Many For Sale By Owners don’t get this. They put the house up for sale at what they need to get or what they think it’s worth.

What they need to get means they need the money for something. Either a downpayment on the next house or sometimes just to break even. Whatever the reason it’s not the right way to price a house.

What they think it’s worth has nothing to do with what the house is actually worth. Even if you finished the basement yourself and did a $15000 remodel job on the kitchen the market is still what determines price. Not the homeowner.

When a home doesn’t sell potential buyers start to wonder why. As a result they automatically think something is wrong with the property. The only reason it isn’t selling is because of price. The only reason any house doesn’t sell is because of price and everything is relative to price. For instance location, condition, features and updating are all relative to price.

You may have a really nice and updated house in a neighborhood that does not support your price.

How To Tell When Your House Is Overpriced

I’ve seen many times homeowners selling their house themselves let it sit for months and months at the price they think it should be. Only the market knows what the price should be. The way to not lose money selling your house is to do the research, be objective and price it right.

Most of the time buyers won’t even bother with an offer. They see a house that is way overpriced and they bypass it. Sometimes they’ll call their real estate agent about it but the agent will convince them not to even bother. For instance a client may call me about an overpriced house and say maybe we can talk them down. My response is if they are willing to take less money they would have priced it right to begin with.

The way to tell your house is overpriced is simple. It’s not getting showings and it’s not selling. When I’m working with a homeowner and they insist on overpricing the house I have a prepared speech. It goes something like this:

“It’s ultimately your decision what we price your house at. I am here to advice you. I’ll put it on the market at this price but we need to agree that after 7 days if it hasn’t had at least _____ showings or has had _____ showings with no offers than we lower the price to what will sell it. The price I recommended.”

I put spaces where the numbers go because different situations such as location, market conditions, condition of property ect. determine how many days we wait or how many showings before an offer is not made..

We almost always end up lowering price. (or taking a lower offer if it one is made) The trick is to not let it sit to long. Even worse if it happens to be a strong sellers market. People will expect it to sell fast.

If Your Just Not Sure

If your just not sure and you don’t want to risk leaving money on the table it’s OK to go a little high but only for a very limited amount of time. Make a plan and stick to the plan. You’ll know if your overpriced. Make sure you don’t sit on the market to long. If no one is coming to look at your For Sale By Owner you’re probably priced to high.

That’s how to not lose money when selling your house. Even better the way to make the most money selling your house is to do it right the first time. Price your house right!


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