77 Tips To Help Sell Your House Fast (Even in a Slow Market!)
UK Homeowners Ultimate Guide
Several people assume that selling a house in a slow market would be a loss on their part. However, this could actually be an opportunity to seek great finds.
Before that, how would you determine if the housing market is slow? To mention a few, some signs include an increase in price reductions and most listed properties stay longer on the market. With this key knowledge, it’ll be easier for you to market your property.
Selling your house requires a great amount of preparation and deliberation, as it can be life-changing on both ends. There’s a lot to think about, to ensure you’re getting the best deal that is both satisfactory for you as a seller and for your potential buyer. As the statistics show, thousands of homeowners each year struggle to successfully sell their own home when the market slows down. In fact, The Guardian wrote in an article that “the average price of London homes sold by Savills fell by 32%…in the first half of 2019 compared with the previous year”.
Our goal is to provide homeowners with sufficient knowledge in handling these circumstances. To help you with that, we have gathered 77 tips to specifically improve your house selling strategies in such a tough situation. Feel free to use this as your guide or checklist throughout the process.
Sell Your Home Fast By Giving It The Wow Factor
Before anything else, it is always wise to be certain that there will not be any possible hindrance that could turn off the interest of your buyers. With that in mind, start your selling journey with house preparations, making sure the house is decently presentable. This involves the repairing and improvising of features.
- Declutter the space.
One of the easiest ways to make a house look spacious is to get rid of all the clutter that has accumulated around the house after years of residency. This process includes clearing all your personal items, worn-out appliances or furniture, and other items you won’t be using anymore. Most people view decluttering as their way of identifying which items they truly need and help assess their priorities.
- Avoid hoarding too much stuff on storage areas.
Similar to the first tip, decluttering your space also helps you keep things minimal and avoid hoarding unnecessary things in your storage areas, regardless of whether it’s what they’re intended for. As much as possible, it is best to clear everything.
- Remove unnecessary decor.
Especially with a home that was lived in for quite a long time, home sellers tend to forgo decorations that have been put up for ages. However, it is important to keep in mind which things a buyer might consider. You can try putting yourself in the potential buyer’s shoes and ask: “If I were to buy this house, would I want to remove this decor?” This can help you decide which decor to remove.
- Make sure everything is working.
Other than curb appeal, one of the buyer’s main concerns is the functionality of the amenities of a home. As a seller, make sure that everything is working properly. Don’t forget to check showers, hobs, extractor fans, lighting, doors, and many more! It’s good to conduct a few repairs if needed to increase or maintain the value of your home. We surely don’t want to let our buyers feel like the quality they got is not worth their purchase.
- Check the security parameters.
Proving true to a house’ main purpose, which is to provide security, home sellers make sure that the property’s security measures are both standard and functional. Inspect door locks, windows and other openings the house have, to make sure those residing inside feel secure.
- Modernize some house features.
The advancement of technology has created different types of electronic devices that can be accessed online. Take for example the wifi-operated thermostat. It can help you keep your house’s temperature in check without having to be physically present in the area. Smart appliances as such could have an impressive suggestion on buyers.
- Add some outdoor lights.
The chance of selling the house does not only come in daylight. Spice up the front yard with beautifully sorted outdoor lights. Not only does this help potential buyers have an overview of the house at night but also can be of security within the area.
- Check the smell.
We’re sure all of us would agree that no matter how beautiful a place is to live in, it would be unbearable if the surrounding gives off an awful smell. Do the sniff test. If ever you did pick up some certain unpleasant odours, try to fix it as soon as possible.
- Examine the place’s temperature levels.
In places with ever-changing weather and seasons, air quality is as important as the house’ security. Inspect the house’s vents, drains, and humidity levels. Also, having a good heater system, especially during the winter season, could provide comfort for the residents and prevent mold growth. A sterling air quality both inside and outside the property can have a great impact on the property’s overall asset.
- Have your place professionally cleaned.
Of course, you don’t have to DIY all these if you’re incapable of doing so. You can call for the experts to have your place professionally inspected and cleaned.
Magnify Further On Design
After all that hard labour, it’s time to take your home’s interior design to the next level by making a few adjustments both in the interior and exterior appearance of the house. Of course, this too would require effort to increase the residence’ attractiveness. Nonetheless, such methods are proven to be worth the work.
11. Plan it out.
We don’t want the overall design to be disastrous and contradictory on appearance. Even minimal designs can bring out the best of the house’ features if utilized properly. Before making any changes, major or minor, plan out everything. In this way, it’ll save you time and resources.
12. Make changes that are functional rather than aesthetic.
Improving the assets of every part of the house can be disastrous. Don’t go overboard with the design that purposely makes a more creative approach to the interiors and exteriors. Wouldn’t it be better to focus on how you can efficiently make use of the limited space you have?
13. The curb appeal is vital.
While everything is not up to the external appearance of the house, curb appeal has a huge impact when buyers choose their future home. It’s the very first thing that will appear to the eyes, so a seller must do their best to leave a great first impression.
14. Search for trendy designs.
Browsing and getting ideas from popular designs can help you make creative adjustments on the house. You can try using Pinterest or other social media platforms to get inspiration.
15. Add a fresh coat of paint.
One of the most obvious methods in redesigning a house is repainting. Not just mere repainting, but trying out different hues or other colour combinations that would be pleasing to the eyes. Avoid colours that are very bright or flashy. You can always add paint, but it takes a huge amount of energy redoing it. Therefore, serious planning and preparation are vital.
16. Get plenty of quotes.
If you ultimately decide to leave the painting job to contract workers, you need to make wise decisions. Don’t just hire the first company that shows up in your options. Give it careful thought before choosing a contractor. Get quotes or estimates (they are usually free) before making a decision. Even if they’re professionals in this field, they mostly heed to your direction on how the house would turn out.
17. Play up your home’s best features.
If you have fireplaces or gourmet kitchens, use these beautiful features to amplify the house’ attributes.
This is one of the ultimate ways to freshen up or upgrade a home’s mood. Use plant decor, whether real or not, to complete the puzzle of a home’s comfort.
19. Invest in minor decor.
We want to make the house look pretty and furnished but we also need to refrain from being overboard. If you just thoughtlessly add random pretty decor around the house, it might do the opposite of what you’re going for. Overdecoration can make the house feel stuffy and stifling. So, don’t overdo it. Keep it simple and proportioned.
20. Make the garden pretty.
As mentioned in previous tips, the house’ front (specifically the front yard) is one of the first things a potential buyer sees. You could plant flowers or do a little landscaping if you want. As long as it complements the structure of the house.
21. Hang up mirrors.
A popular tip in making a space seem spacious is to put up mirrors. It is noticeable that this hack creates the illusion of more space. Different types of mirror sizes can have different impacts. Make sure to choose the right one.
22. Make use of glass.
Doesn’t glass make a building look modern and sophisticated? Aside from installing glass doors or windows, try adding glass tables, bannisters, and other glass furniture to give the house an elegant-stylish finish.
23. Don’t stray too far.
This tip is entirely up to you or the buyer. However, it is often suggested not to stray too far from the original design for various reasons. A few of those reasons involve safety and abiding by the building’s original foundations. These are to make sure the renovations wouldn’t be obstacles during emergency situations.
24. Embrace the quirks.
If you choose not to renovate, you can highlight its unique features instead. Especially with a house that has been built for quite some time, it may possess quirks that are not often seen on the present day. Some quirks might be decorated fireplaces, coal chutes, Jerkinhead roofing and milk doors.
25. Watch out for water damages.
Has the house been leaking? If so, it can certainly leave some ugly watermarks on the walls or ceilings. While there are a lot of ways of removing such stains, it’s important to fix those leakage issues firsthand.
26. Offer your buyer design plans.
Try suggesting good designs to your potential buyers so they’ll get an idea on how to improve the place. Aside from taking charge of the design, you can also include in your listing the opportunity for buyers’ to design the home however they please.
27. Stick to your budget religiously.
All that improves has a limit. Don’t needlessly or recklessly spend too many resources on these new designs. Remember, the more you spend can either make you gain or lose more. Always be mindful of your budget. If you have a budget in mind, stick with it. Avoid deciding based on chance.
It’s not easy to follow all those tips above, as it requires resources and willingness to spend. However, the design is not everything. Sometimes, it can depend on how you market the property. But before that, let’s talk about how you should price your home..
Finding Value And Pricing Your Home
28. Know the current status of the property market.
Aside from keeping up with your home’s maintenance, you also need to be updated on the current status of the property market and examine even the small changes whether in price or interest. In this way, you’ll be aware of which specific time or day it would be most profitable to sell the house.
29. Be aware of your property’s value.
In a slow market, it’s easy to get anxious while waiting for the right time. However, being conscious of your property’s value will firmly ground you on keeping steady on your decisions. Don’t be too hasty.
30. Acknowledge the disadvantages.
Acknowledging the disadvantages and flaws of the place would mean a lot to your potential buyers. They might even appreciate your honesty and that will help them make sound decisions and assess what they would need if they were to purchase the property.
31. Assess the location.
A property’s price can differ greatly just because of its location and how close it is to local amenities. With that in mind, you have to assess how the property is located. You might ask yourself: “Is the location prone to natural disasters?” or “How close is the nearest grocery store?”
32. Dominate your competition.
Specifically speaking, you can dominate your competitor (if there’s any) by offering a better bargain. This might include giving a discount or offering to compensate for the house’ damages. Simple as such can help you sell the house faster than others.
33. Compare your property’s value from others.
Aside from dominating the competition, using other property’s value helps assess your own property’s value.
34. Consider the resale value.
In some cases, houses are resold after buying and residing on it for a while. Clearly, the new price wouldn’t be exactly the same as the previous one, as these numbers change over time. That’s why you need to consider the resale value and choose the best deal possible.
35. Price your home right.
Estimating a reasonable price for your home may need more time, for you to analyze its perks, available functions, how much you’ve invested in it, and its location. With that, you might actually prefer hiring someone to evaluate it for you. Whatever the case, be certain that it’s not too pricey nor cheap for its value.
Now that you have given your home a proper house based on its value and location, it’s now time for you to market the property in various ways possible.
Maximize Exposure Through Marketing
Now, the first thing that probably comes into people’s minds in house selling is putting up a quite noticeable sign in the window or garden. While it’s true that this is an effective method, there are a lot of other ways to market your property besides the traditional methods. Especially in this technology-driven generation, online marketing has risen and developed its functionality and efficiency. These advances have made marketing much easier and more convenient for homeowners.
36. Devise a thorough marketing plan. Failing to plan is planning to fail. When selling your home, it is best to take advantage of all forms of marketing and making specific and detailed objectives. Try making a flow chart of how you are planning to advertise your home. Research marketing tactics and set a budget on how much you should spend on advertisement, and write them all down like a checklist.
37. Avoid mediocre marketing. Your willingness to sell the property reflects on the extent of your efforts in marketing it. It can be said, therefore, that the success rate of selling your home depends on how much you put into it.
38. Establish a unique selling point. Like any other product in the market, your house needs to stand out above other “products”. You need to establish USPs and prescribe your exact target market with absolute clarity. Remember that potential buyers are not just searching for homes but are also scouting for data that may support their decision.
39. Market your home with slight aggression. Of course, we don’t want to be rude or forceful in making transactions. The point is that you have to be convincing or persuasive to your buyers. Lying is clearly not an option but you can emphasize characteristics of the house that particularly piques their interest.
40. Offer buyer incentives. Offer incentives to your buyers. There are a lot of ways to do that. For example, you could offer to allow the buyer to have some or all of the furniture in your house a large discount or for FREE. You could also offer them a discount if they’ll pay the property in a smaller amount of time.
41. Ask your neighbours. Your friends and neighbours can do so much to help you sell the property. You can ask them directly if they wanted to buy your house. This might actually be better than selling your property to a complete stranger. It’ll be easier for you to discern the right prospect since you have sufficient knowledge of their background.
42. Inform coworkers or company, if possible. Aside from your friends and neighbours, informing your coworkers or company staff would be a great opportunity to reach more people with their influential connections. This will also help filter out potential buyers from frauds, as they already have a background or recommendation from legitimate sources.
43. Try virtual touring! Those with busy schedules can also have an opportunity to showcase their property without taking much of their time with virtual touring. This allows buyers to explore the house without actually being there. For instance, you could use video mediums such as Youtube or Facebook Live that exhibits your home’s features.
44. Partner with a local estate agent. There are a lot of advantages in hiring agents in selling your home, as they are experts in that specific field. Other tips that are explicitly associated with that subject are explained more on the last tips.
45. No to amateur photography. A bad photo of your house can be so trivial that it might ruin its chance of being sold. Don’t shoot random parts of the house. Make sure every photo is angled precisely to highlight the house’ key features. Of course, you shouldn’t needlessly stage and increase the buyer’s expectations by making it look perfect, only to see that it looks a lot different in actuality. Your goal is to make the photo very much similar in the actual building.
46. Try car marketing. The great thing about car marketing is that it’s convenient, effective, and most of all, free. Just by writing a poster or a sign of your home that’s on sale and sticking it to your car could already work. This type of marketing tactic is especially effective because it’s portable, and so whether you’re driving to work, or to another place, you get to make sure people know about your house on sale.
47. Use Google. Something as basic using Google can be of help. Google offers services for specific advertising, so you can make use of that. A feature in Google called Adwords might be a good aid in advertising. These are the text advertising that you see in Google search engine results pages and they usually appear at the very top of the search results. You can utilize this feature by directing the user to a link to your account or website when they click on it.
48. Cover the major online advertisers. Take advantage of today’s online marketing sites. Take Gumtree.com as an example. It is a site for free classifieds ads in the UK where you can buy and sell items, cars, properties, and find or offer jobs in your area.
49. Explore Youtube marketing. If you want to showcase your property by not just mere photos, you can actually just take a video of it and post it on YouTube. It is your best channel to use for video marketing and it can boost your social reach.
50. Post your property for sale on the Facebook Marketplace. Facebook has a feature that allows you to buy or sell items (or in your case properties) without listing fees or taxes. However, you might need to be more careful since not everyone on Facebook uses their legal name or a legit profile picture.
51. Target life events from social media. As we know, life events are usually posted on social media platforms such as Facebook or Instagram. Do a little skip-tracing of users who recently got married, recently had a baby or planning to move to your area. These major life events are what usually moves them to make major changes (such as moving houses). Further, if you sign up for Facebook as an advertiser, you have access to all of these events within the geographic area you serve.
52. Make use of your street frontage. A frontage is the width of a lot, measured at the front part of the lot. With this, you could directly put up a sign in your garden that promotes the property as being up for sale.
53. Use local images. As mentioned in tip #31, you’re not just selling the property but the entire town or area it is located. You can use local images from nearest parks or images of the town that are nicely taken. Such photos can either be found on the Internet or you’d have to take them yourself.
54. Do a flyer drop around the neighbourhood. Make use of a basic marketing strategy such as posting flyers and posters around the neighbourhood or town. There are agencies and companies that specifically do the job for you. Nevertheless, it’s completely up to you whether to ring up the nearest leaflet distribution services or handle it yourself.
55. Create an amazing business card. Aside from flyers, why not try handing business cards? This will definitely impress on potential buyers how serious you are in selling the property. Apart from that, it will also give strangers enough information, not just on the property, but also about the seller.
56. Take SMS texting to a higher level. Remember how important it is if interested people contact you. You could hold an SMS campaign to let others know that you’re selling your property. On average, 90% of all SMS messages are read within 3 minutes of being received. This is a great opportunity for further exposure. Keep in mind, though, your words on the message. Make sure they are well-written and respectful.
57. Host a business-friendly gathering. This is a great way not just to showcase the area, but also speak to potential buyers and build a rapport with them before proceeding to the transaction. You could invite anyone you know or simply put up a sign outside that says: “Interested buyers are welcome.” Of course, be security conscious of your surroundings to avoid drawing bad people.
58. Create your own website. If you don’t mind creating an actual website or hiring someone to do it, this would be a good tip. List your property for the world to see. You can then, also, make use of tip #47 and boost your rating through effective SEO strategies.
59. Set up an auction on eBay to list and sell your property. Try exploring known online shops (like eBay) and ask if you can sell property on their platform.
60. List the property in a classified newspaper ad. Make use of the newspapers or other public brochures for more exposure.
61. Ensure you have professional copywriting. Copywriting is a great aid for putting up advertisements, as copywriters are the ones to determine the right word or phrase to connect with your target audience or buyers.
62. Be meticulous and detail-oriented. Avoid leaving out even the tiniest detail. This also assures the buyers that your offer is legitimate.
Other Effective Strategies
Marketing is not the only aspect of house selling you can try. Often, some small useful tips are all you need to have successful transactions. While some require you to step out from the convenience, most of these tips expect only slight adjustments of schedule or rules. You might want to jot these points down as it is mostly applicable to the actual transaction.
63. Be flexible.
Even on such a tight schedule, selling a home in a slow market requires you to be flexible whenever a buyer would like to see the property. Try to adjust your schedule in doing so.
64. Make yourself easy to contact.
While this doesn’t necessarily mean you have to be on the phone at all times, making yourself easy to contact involves being vigilant to potential calls or leads. Avoid setting the phone on silent, if possible. If ever the circumstances won’t allow you to answer the phone immediately, send them a quick text stating that you’ll contact them later. Usually, it’s not about how fast you respond, it’s how you give the buyer assurance that you’re interested in transacting with them.
65. Be open to flexible terms.
A good deal embodies a series of terms that are both agreeable to both the seller and buyer. It’s not wrong to adjust the terms to cater to both parties.
66. Remember the first offer rule.
This gives the right holder the opportunity to purchase the property before anyone else. This is usually written on a contract such as a lease agreement.
67. Be consistent.
Selling a house requires patience. You don’t expect results to arrive at a lightning speed. A house is a huge purchase for most individuals, it just can’t be rushed. Patience also moves you to be consistent. Don’t give up after not hearing any feedback for weeks or even months.
68. Seriously counteroffer.
Don’t be afraid to counteroffer when a buyer offers a certain amount that would seem inadequate for you. It’s your property, after all.
69. Phone a friend.
If you opt not using professional assistance, you can directly phone your friends and ask them if they or someone they know are interested in purchasing a property. Of course, their recommendations would greatly help you.
70. Try referrals from trusted individuals.
Start by making a list of your acquaintances who have enough connections to refer you to a number of potential buyers. Make sure that these persons would convey valid information and refer serious individuals to avoid wasting your time.
71. Don’t ignore the lowball offers.
As the seller, you don’t have to immediately refuse the lowball offers. As said in tip #68, you can counteroffer to make a better deal.
If you’re willing to seal the deal with a proper agency, then that’ll be great. Oftentimes, professional help can provide a more productive approach in this field. After all, they have more expertise and skills in the profession. Their wide array of networks conveniently walks you through a variety of suitable options without having to worry about the complex factors in selling a home. If you’re thinking of hiring an estate agent, these tips can help guide your decisions.
72. Join some investor forums.
This can help you converse with other investors who may be interested.
73. Compare agents by ratings, reviews and references.
Like how you choose the right contractor, the same goes for the process of finding an estate agent. Feel free to browse their data and compare.
74. Interview multiple agents.
If possible, meet the agents that stood from the rest when browsing their data. This process will help you actually interview and get to know more of the person you’re working with.
75. Seek referrals.
When you have the chance to converse with other sellers, ask them for referrals. They surely wouldn’t recommend an agent that has a poor rating.
76. Set clear expectations when hiring an estate agent.
State clearly your expectations and policies regarding the sale. This will help the agent adjust and apply appropriate contracts to the deal.
77. Clarify your motivation to sell.
Let the agent know the allotted time you set out. The longer you wait, the more great deals the agent is able to pick up.
It won’t be easy to sell in a slow market, but it doesn’t mean it’s impossible. You just need to put in extra effort since simply listing your property won’t be enough times like this. We hope that all of these tips help you in that situation.
What’s your favourite idea?
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