We probably don’t need to tell you that the housing market is in flux. Current news headlines are screaming that the 6% slide in home sales in July signals a slide into a “housing market recession.”
Although we are far more optimistic about the market, we can’t deny that it is changing, and that selling a home during a market in flux can pose difficulties.
If that home is a condo, the rules change. Selling a condo is a bit different than selling a single-family home.
“The good news is that condos tend to sell faster than single-family homes even in a down market, because condos are typically smaller, cost less, and have lower maintenance costs,” according to Lisa Johnson Mandell at realtor.com.
The trick is to make your condo stand out from all the others on the market. Whether the unique feature is location, condition or amenities, it’s important to market the property to appeal to what buyers are looking for.
An experienced, knowledgeable listing agent can help you, but if you know what to expect, it may free you to be more motivated to get that condo sold.
Step 1: Price the condo competitively
The list price of your condo can make or break a successful sale. Buyers’ agents know what local property values are and they won’t bother showing their clients yours if it’s overpriced.
An overpriced property also invites counter offers which, if you’re in a hurry to sell, can significantly slow down the process.
Your real estate agent will offer his or her opinion of price, but, ultimately, it’s up to you to say yay or nay.
If you’re tempted to start high in the hopes of coming down in price later, keep in mind that over-priced properties tend to remain on the market longer and may eventually end up selling for less than market value.
Step 2: Get your condo move-in ready
Perception is so important in the home selling process that according to a study by Maritz Research, 63 percent of homebuyers surveyed said they are willing to pay more for a home that they feel is in turnkey condition.
By “turnkey” they may mean “… that it has been fully and newly renovated,” according to Liz Smith at smartasset.com.
But, not always. If the home is impeccably clean, tastefully presented and gives the impression that they won’t have to do much to it when they move in, it may be perceived as move-in ready.
Replace ratty carpets, update lighting and add fresh paint to make the condo more appealing.
If you have room in your budget for a professional home stager, consider hiring one.
Not only do these pros understand the latest decorating trends but they also understand who your target buyer is and can create a specific impression to attract that buyer.
Best of all, as little as $300 to $400 spent on staging returns a 586% return on your investment, according to the Home Sale Maximizer Guide.
Step 3: Out-compete your competition
This step is for informational purposes because the tasks outlined are ours. This is one reason why your choice of listing agent is so important.
Condo shoppers may get the impression that all complexes are alike. Although many do look similar, amenities vary.
If your complex boasts a pool, so do many others. But, in our marketing materials, we’ll turn that pool into an oasis of sparkling blue, clean and heated luxury.
We’ll do the same for the other amenities in your complex to make the descriptions irresistible.
Step 4: Be proactive
While none of us has a crystal ball, it pays to think of what might happen in the future. If the market should take a sudden turn in favor of buyers, you will be kicked out of the driver’s seat.
Decide now if you will offer incentives to the buyer should that scenario come to pass.
This might include paying closing costs, including some of the furniture that the buyer has her eye on or a home warranty. We once read about a home seller who included their dog in the purchase because the buyers fell in love with it!
Hopefully, it won’t come to that but at least you are aware of the possibility. We can do this.
Let’s get started.