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6 reasons the home won’t sell (besides price)


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At the right price, any and every home will sell, regardless of what it looks like and where it is. With price as the single most important factor in putting a home on the market, it never hurts to tip the scales in your sellers’ favor, increase their bottom line and potentially expedite the home sale timeline with all the levers you’ve got at your disposal as a listing agent.

Here are six factors that could be contributing to buyers’ reluctance to bite.

1. Location

We are not just talking about location within the city, but the location within the neighborhood, too.

Here are a few things you can do to showcase a home’s location:

Check the Walk Score of the home (100 is the highest). Take a compass to the property and note in the listing which side of the house the sun rises and sets on. Take photos at night, as well as during the day, to highlight the night view. Pay a company such as TourBuzz (see demo here) to create an aerial view with a drone to highlight areas that can’t be seen from the ground. 2. Negative energy

There are many different reasons why your property might need a positive shift in energy.

There are metaphysical, earthly and technology-related issues that could be causing negative energy — including, but not limited to:

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Negative thoughts Disturbed energy from current or previous owners Faulting pressures Negative magnetic fields Disturbances from naturally occurring underground water Electrical appliance overusages such as cellphones, computers, microwave ovens and hair dryers Antiques residing in the home for long periods Secondhand furniture Ancient works of art around the house

To alleviate these issues, hire a professional vibrational consultant, someone who works with energy-clearing solutions for problem properties.

You’d be surprised how many top resorts, businesses, commercial buildings and yes, homes, have been “cleared” when a new buyer takes ownership and/or to prepare for selling.

3. Showing restrictions

Set up appointments if you have to, but not as a common practice. The more complicated it is to get inside a home, the more likely a buyer is to keep looking.

Having as many eyes on the property as possible, and making it easy for buyers to view it, is the absolute best way to get offers quickly.

4. Commission

There is no standard commission rate for real estate agents, but the less you offer, the more likely you are going to influence whether that property gets to the top of the list of homes to view that day.

Try offering a higher-than-average commission split or a bonus for the buyer’s agent to try to influence who comes in and when.

5. The lived-in vibe

Homeowners who live in the property while trying to show it daily bring a unique set of challenges, as buyers are always trying to envision themselves in the home without personal items and furniture.

Hire a professional cleaning service and ask that most of the furniture pieces be put into storage during the listing period. Or you could hire an interior decorator to give advice your homeowner will listen to and appreciate.

6. Animals

I realize that animals are like children to many people, but as the homeowner is moving out, the buyer will want to see, feel, smell and imagine the home without a pet in it.

The best solution is to remove the animal from the home during showings or altogether during the listing period. The second best option is to keep the animal safe inside the home during showings by providing a crate for them to rest comfortably in while people walk through.

Lastly, make sure any animal feces is picked up, or hire someone to do it, in the front and backyard for potential buyers to walk the property.

It comes down to getting the home into a show-ready state by having it staged, cleaned and neutralized to the best of your ability.

Then, show off the home’s best assets and get as many buyers as possible to see it. These six tips should help you accomplish these tasks and make your seller happy.

Editor’s note: This story originally published in 2015 and has been updated.

Cheryl Spangler is the principal broker and co-owner of FORBZ Real Estate Group located in Alexandria, Virginia (serving Virginia, Washington, D.C., and Maryland). You can follow her on Twitter or LinkedIn.

Email Cheryl Spangler.

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