A New Years Resolution Challenge for the Chicago Home Seller for 2011
We all make resolutions at the end of the year. Loosing weight, going to clean out that one closet that has been on our list for the last ten years. But here's a New Years Resolution that I am asking all of you former sellers that expired this past year or who canceled your listing with your real estate agent for whatever reason.
This is what I saw on the list of roughly 1,341 properties that expired today here in Chicago, or better yet ... well, the stats are showing that roughly 20% of the listings in Chicago's north side closed this past year.
My New Years Resolution Challenge to YOU:
- Make sure that your coordinates are correct! I have done an analysis for an REO property (not a BPO) and one of the things that hurt that property selling with a top company here in Chicago was that the agent had the wrong coordinates! If the coordinates are incorrect, and the consumer or agents search by coordinates, you are out of luck! Granted, this home is now owned by the bank.
- Very rarely, do I see a kitchen in the basement of a single family home. Again, this property was owned by a Real Estate Agent as a short sale (which it is a "no-no" for a real estate agent to sell their own property if distressed, or sell a short sale home of a relative under the Federal Guidelines for HAFA). This property was put in as "DILO". The sad part is that it now affects the values of all her former neighbors. Oh, back on track here ... Make sure your rooms are where they are on the proper floor!
- The reason why another property expired was more then likely that the Bedroom Count was "2" and the Bathroom Count was "4". Slight glitch as I know the property before it was "remodeled" and there were only 1.5 bathrooms at that time but 4 bedrooms.
- Make sure that you understand what the agent will be putting in for comments about your property. I always love the call to "urgency" with "Seller is extremely motivated and will entertain any reasonable offer". "Seller is highly motivated". Here's a message to you, the Seller: Everybody has a motivation to sell. This market is tough and when a producing agent sees these comments, it is a turn-off. Yet, it is our responsibility to make sure that our buyers see every property out there even when the call to "urgency" is announced.
- What is it with only external photos with five different view of the front and the back that sends a message: "Ah, the house is not the greatest inside and so we didn't bother to take photos but appreciate all the different angles and we hope you will sell it. NOTICE: Multiple photos of the exterior of any home without any good photos of the inside ... just doesn't move your home!
- Clean UP/declutter: I cannot say this enough. Have you ever look at your home on the internet and there is your weeks worth of laundry? You are baking and there are ingredients and boxes and dishes all over the place? You have got every magazine that you subscribed to prior to 1980 and they are out there in the open for the whole world to see (I am serious, the world) that you (a) don't care about selling your home; (b) you didn't realize that your Realtor took those photos and you never really checked up on them; (c) you think having all these things out there on the internet will show what you can do when living in your home. DECLUTTER PEOPLE.
- Make sure that the information on your MLS Listing is correct but more importantly, COMPLETE! It is a turn-off to the buyers and real estate agents when the information about your home is incomplete. What is your heating system? Central Air? Finished Basement? What type of flooring do you have? Do you have an attic? Is it accessible via pull down stairs, scuttle ... what?!!!!
- Accessible: What's with these hours? I saw one listing that expired and I knew right off the bat why it didn't sell: The Seller requested only Tuesday showings between 2-5 p.m. You have got to be kidding me?!!! Q: When do you negotiate on a contract? My thinking it is probably Saturday between 8:30 a.m. and 9:45 a.m.
Accept my New Years Resolution for Change in 2011. If you make these resolutions to change, you will sell your home in 2011.