Listing your house for sale in Buffalo can be both expensive and time-consuming. If you want top dollar you will have to do repairs and make upgrades. Even if you are asking for a more moderate price you will still have fees. There are closing costs, agent commissions, and holding costs.
For many homeowners, it makes sense to go the traditional route to sell their homes. For others, it may be smart to sell directly to a real estate investor. If you hire an agent, make sure you know what to list your house for. A competitive price makes it more marketable.
Before you hire an agent and sign a listing agreement, read on to learn about the 6 things you must know.
Here are the 6 things they don’t tell you about listing your house in Buffalo NY
1. Marketing may cost extra
When selling your house with a real estate agent in Buffalo, be clear on what is included in your agreement. Often the agent’s commission and closing costs do not include extra marketing.
What qualifies as extra marketing? Professional photography, virtual tours, and premium listings may all come with extra cost. Some agents include these in the listing agreement, but others do not.
A strong online presence is vital in getting your house seen and sold. Make sure you know how much extra your marketing will cost before you sign anything.
2. Your costs add up fast
Even if extra marketing costs don’t apply, there are other things that pop up that can eat into your profit.
Does the home need repairs before it is listed? Repairs can get quite expensive. You should spend as little as possible to make your home marketable. Remember you are also responsible for commissions and closing costs.
If you are not living in the home you may have to rent staging furniture. The house cleaner your realtor recommends will make your house SHINE, but the bill will shock you. While you wait for the house to sell you are still responsible for property taxes, utilities, and insurance.
Individually these don’t seem like much. Added together they can be crippling.
3. Showings can be inconvenient
Picture this: You list your house for sale and a few days later your agent calls and says she has a potential buyer. The buyer wants to see your house as soon as possible. Exciting! There’s only one problem: you’re in the middle of your work-from-home day. If you tell your agent she can’t show the house today, the buyer is going to see other houses and maybe even put in an offer.
If you are a motivated seller you will do everything in your power to make the house ready for a showing. This means you are ready whenever a buyer wants to see it. Often that means dropping everything and speed cleaning.
You have to keep your house always clean. You can never leave the house messy and expect to clean it up when you get home. If your realtor calls while you are out you do not want to refuse the showing.
While waiting for your house to sell, you are living on other people’s schedules, not your own.
4. Buyers often negotiate after inspections
Once you accept an offer on your house, the buyer has a set timeframe to order an inspection and decide whether to continue with the purchase. If the inspection comes back with anything that worries the buyer, they have a few options. They can request you make the repair before closing, negotiate a lower price, or back out of the contract.
As the seller, this puts you in a tight spot. You do not want to lose the contract and start over, but you don’t want to lose more money either.
5. The sale may fall through
When an offer is accepted it feels like a success, and it is, but it is not all said and done yet. There are many factors that can cancel a contract.
The most common reason a sale falls through is that the property appraises for lower than the loan amount. In this case, you either have to lower the price or find a new buyer who can put up more capital.
Another common reason is a contingency offer. The buyer needs their house to sell in order to purchase your house. In this case, if their sale falls through they will have to back out of the contract and you will be on the hunt for a new buyer.
Remember what we said about the inspection period? If the home inspection comes back with unexpected necessary repairs, you can lose the sale. The buyer has a set amount of time to back out of the contract with no penalty.
6. Your house may not sell
Listing your house is not a guarantee that it will sell. In some cases, a property is not as sought after as others. It is important to know the value of your house. Just because the house down the street sells for $200,000, does not mean your house will as well. You have to know what to list your house for. The right asking price will help, but even that is not a sure thing. Even if it does sell, it could take months.
Many factors come into play when a house does not sell. If your house needs too many repairs or is too dated it will not get as much buyer attention. If the neighborhood is less desirable many buyers will look elsewhere.
How to avoid these pitfalls
Before you list your house on the MLS in Buffalo, make sure you understand these 6 things. There are additional costs, time involved and uncertainties to consider. For many Buffalo homeowners, selling their homes to a direct buyer makes more sense. A real estate investor may ultimately be your best buyer.