Top Delaware County Realtor Identifies 10 Common Mistakes made by Home Sellers

Top Delaware County PA real estate agent Don Dowd provides insight into some of the most common mistakes home sellers should avoid.

Online PR News – 04-June-2014 – West Chester, PA – As summer begins the weather is heating up and the housing market in Pennsylvania and in most parts of the East Coast remains strong. This year, home sellers are finding it much easier to receive a reasonable asking price for their house. But while the market has shifted into the sellers’ favor, many still fail to successfully sell their home.

Top Delaware County PA realtor Don Dowd provides some insights into why this still happens.According to Dowd, home sellers who struggle to find a buyer usually make one or more of these 10 common mistakes:

Mistake #1: Failure to Make the Home Attractive

“It is important for the home to have curb appeal,” Dowd says. “For example, if a prospective buyer shows up and sees the lawn uncut and/or overgrown with weeds, they will wonder what other parts of the home have been neglected. First impressions are critical, so make sure to make the home as attractive as possible both inside and out.”

Mistake #2: Listing the Home far Above Market Value

“In the late 1990s and early 2000s, it was not uncommon for sellers to receive far above their asking price,” Dowd continues. “Unfortunately, many home sellers mistakenly believe we have returned to those days; pricing their homes much higher than comparables in the area and thereby significantly reducing their pool of potential buyers. At the end of the day, these homes usually end up with several price reductions and buyers wondering why the house has been on the market so long. Price your home appropriately and you will avoid this problem.”

Mistake #3: Refusal to Leave the Home during Showings

“Sellers that do not stay out of the way of buyers during a showing or open house are highly likely to limit their success in selling the home. Buyers want to be able to picture themselves living in the home, and this is difficult when the seller is present. The seller’s presence also makes the prospective buyer very uncomfortable.”

Mistake #4: Hiring an Unqualified Family Member or Friend as their Realtor

“Hiring a friend or family member to list your home is great, as long as they are qualified. But far too often, I run into situations where the home was previously listed by someone the seller knew, but they were not able achieve the desired results. This can cause serious delays in getting your home sold as well as strains on close relationships.”

Mistake #5: Hiring a Part Time instead of a Full Time Agent

“Along the same lines as friends & family, agents that are ‘weekend warriors’ and have another full time job during the week should be avoided if you are serious about selling your home. In Chester County, Delaware County and Montgomery County where I work, there are many part timers trying to break into the business. And though they may be good people, most times they will not have the time and/or resources to devote to effectively getting your house sold.”

Mistake #6: Hiring the Agent with the Lowest Commission

“The agent’s commission from your home sale is not the most important number. Instead, you need to look at how much of the overall commission they are keeping. Most agents have a 50/50 split with the company they represent. But those that have been able to negotiate a higher percentage for themselves (ideally above 75%) will have more incentives and resources to dedicate to the sale of your home. Before you list, always ask your agent what percentage of the overall commission they are keeping.”

Mistake #7: Hiring a Buyer’s Agent instead of a Listing/Selling Agent

“I see this one happen a lot; many sellers do not realize that there is a big difference between buyer’s agents (an agent that primarily represents those looking to purchase a home) and seller’s/listing agents (those that primarily list homes for sellers). Listing agents are far more experienced with home sales in your area, and have a much better idea of how to appropriately price the home as well as effectively market the home to your targeted pool of buyers.”

Mistake #8: Failure to Have a Clear Marketing Plan

“Some sellers hook up with agents that do not have a comprehensive plan on how they will put the home in front of as many prospective buyers as possible. These days, there are numerous ways to market a home – both online and offline. A good selling agent will employ a wide range of cutting edge marketing techniques to ensure that your home receives maximum exposure; be certain that your agent is doing this and if not, look for one who is.”

Mistake #9: Hiring an Agent that Demands a Long Listing Period

“This is a sign of what is commonly referred to as a ‘list it and forget it’ agent; if they ask for an unreasonably long listing period without an out clause for both the seller and the agent, then it is time to look for another realtor.”

Mistake #10: Failure to Fully Vet the Agent they Hire

“Many sellers hire an agent with very few questions around their credentials and outside references. Before you list, you should know the agent’s track record with their company as far as sales rankings and commissions go. Ask to see their rankings and statistics on how many homes sold/how much commission earned in the past year or two. You should also ask for a couple references you can call to find out other sellers’ experiences with this agent.”

About Don Dowd Top Realtor West Chester PA:

Don Dowd is a RE/MAX Main Line real estate agent and member of the prestigious National Association of Realtors. Don has been in sales for almost his entire adult life and he began his career in real estate at age 22. From 2010 through 2013, Don consistently ranked in the top 5 in sales out of over 3200 RE/MAX agents in the Philadelphia and Delaware areas, and he is poised to surpass those figures in 2014. What sets Don apart from most realtors is his ability and willingness to invest the resources necessary to properly market his clients’ homes. He accomplishes this by retaining 99% of the commissions he earns as opposed to most real estate agents that keep only 50%. His superior resources and exceptional negotiating skills make Don Dowd one of the top realtors in the region.

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