Tag Archives: Selling your home

The Appraisal Gap

We’ve been hearing a lot about the Appraisal Gap lately and how buyers have been using it to win in multiple offer situations but what is it and what does it mean?

The appraisal gap comes into play when the home appraises at a lower value than your offer price. When this happens in a normal situation you have options. You can pay the difference in cash between the appraised value and your offer or you can try to renegotiate a lower price with the seller. The first option assumes you have the cash to make this work and keep it together. The second option requires a seller who is willing to negotiate.

If the seller is not willing to negotiate you can request a second appraisal, which does come with an additional cost. The downside to this is that all parties need to agree because it may delay the transaction and the close date. If the parties don’t agree the transaction is cancelled due to the appraisal contingency clause.

If you have included an appraisal gap clause with your offer, you would automatically adjust the sales price and move forward. The appraisal gap clause was popular for sellers because it came with less risk of the deal falling apart and the seller having to go back on the market.

Using the appraisal gap is not always an option for buyers and some just simply don’t like the idea of paying more for the house than what it appraises for. This is why it’s important in a real estate transaction to understand all your options and what they mean for you.

Decorating for the Holidays

Decorating for the holidays can be a challenge especially if your house is listed for sale.  If you find yourself in this situation it’s a good idea to keep things simple, with a few minor adjustments to your holiday decor, your decorations won’t negate all the work you just did to get your home ready for sale and it will still feel festive.

Create a warm welcome. Place a beautiful evergreen holiday pot next to your front door, be careful not to block the entrance, you don’t want to create a tripping hazard.  Place a wreath on the door.

Decorate your mantle. Fireplaces rate high on the list with many buyers. Use this opportunity to transform your mantle into the focal point, use candles, greenery, pinecones and a mirror to capture the season.

Place the tree in and out of the way corner.  Make sure not to block the flow of the room or add back the clutter you just worked so hard to remove. If the room feels small with the addition of the tree, think about removing a chair or end table to re-open up the space.

If possible try to keep the religious elements to a minimum and keep the decorations to one room of the house. And most importantly please try not to feel guilty if you don’t put out everything you have. You want your house to feel holiday ready but you still want it to appeal to buyers.


Preparing your Home to Sell

Does your house feel too small, too large? Are you dreaming about moving to a warmer climates? Whatever the reason, if you’re thinking about moving it’s a good time to start thinking about your home differently. Every homeowner tends to overlook things in their own home. When you start thinking about selling your home try to start thinking about your home as a potential buyer would and get ready to prepare your home for sale.

Clean. Cleaning your house for sale goes above and beyond, dusting and vacuuming the rugs. You must clean every square inch of your house and make it appear new, it must sparkle, it must smell and feel clean because buyers can feel clean and clean makes people good. It makes them feel like you have taken good care of the house. If you don’t have time to clean as deeply as recommended hire a professional. It’s worth it.

Declutter. This is important. You want and need the buyers to be able to visualize living in your home, you want and need your home to feel spacious to the potential new buyer, if your stuff doesn’t fit, how will theirs? Our ‘stuff’ tends to get in the way and buyers can’t look past it. As home owners we can look past the ‘stuff’ because we’ve become used to it and simply don’t see it anymore, but trust me buyers do.  Almost every client we’ve worked with have actually thanked us for having them declutter,believe it or not, it makes moving easier.

Make the necessary repairs. Like cleaning your home, fixing that leaking faucet, or scraping and painting the peeling paint on your front door shows the buyer that you’ve taken good care of your home and this makes them feel good. You will often hear buyers express enthusiasm and excitement that they won’t have to do anything, they can move right in! We can help you decide which repairs are necessary.

Stage. We only have so many seconds to make a first impression. Staging your home will help you show off your homes potential to buyers. Always remember that the way you live in your home and the way you stage your home are two different things.

Only after you’ve cleaned, decluttered, fixed the necessary repairs and staged will your home will be in the right condition to sell.