Common Mistakes To Avoid When Selling Your Home

Are you wanting to downsize, or are you looking for an upgrade? Before you answer either of those questions, you have another major milestone to contend with, and that is selling your current residence. However, before you start filling out the details on an online real estate platform, you’ll want to learn how to avoid some common mistakes when selling your home. By staying clear of these missteps, you can save hundreds (if not thousands) of dollars, and secure a quick and legitimate sale while making a sizable profit.

Pricing Your Home Correctly

Along with the curbside photo of your home, a prospective buyer will immediately look at the price in your listing. This aspect will either lead shoppers to click for more details and perhaps schedule a showing or prompt them to keep scrolling along. Hence, one of the biggest mistakes when selling your home is pricing it too high–or even too low. While you may have researched comparable properties in your neighborhood, getting an accurate valuation from an experienced agent helps you to reach that median between the fair market value and the price that you would want. Best of all, setting the right price will more likely result in a quicker sale.

Neglecting Home Staging

Additionally, you have to strike a delicate balance when it comes to staging your home. On the one hand, you want browsers to be able to visualize their own setup (i.e. decor, furnishings, etc) in the house. So, if you’re no longer living there, then it’s easy to keep the house empty. This is not a good idea because a few basic items still allow viewers to picture their belongings in each room.

At the same time, if you still live in the house, then make sure to keep clutter at bay and store away personal items, like photos, knick-knacks, and so forth. You might also revert back to having a neutral tone on your walls instead of wallpaper and bright colors. All of these distractions keep potential buyers from visualizing themselves in the space, which is a huge turn-off.

Ignoring Repairs and Maintenance

Another visual and structural aspect that you can’t ignore involves maintenance and repairs of the property. Having outdated systems and finding structural issues can slow down the sales process. However, you should get the necessary repairs and upgrades completed before putting your house on the market. For instance, the most vital features that you’ll need to check include the roof, foundation, and HVAC system since they relate to the safety and structural integrity of the home along with its climate control. Other important features include the breaker box and panels, the water heater, and major appliances that you plan to include in the sale. And finally, you’ll need to consider any changes to the interior and exterior features such as walls, windows, and doors, plus getting issues with pests under control.

Poor Marketing and Listing Presentation

You also need to fine tune the property’s listing on all marketing platforms. More specifically, all descriptions need to be vivid yet concise. You’ll want to give just enough information to peak the audience’s interest while not divulging so many characteristics that may overwhelm potential buyers. Additionally, you’ll need to choose platforms where your audience would most likely browse for a new home–from social media to real estate sites. For instance, if you’re targeting young families with children, both social media and websites would work, but in the case of targeting retirees who want to downsize, you might consider an ad in your local publications. And don’t forget a specific call to action with easy-to-find contact information.

Not Hiring a Real Estate Agent

Skipping the agent may appear to be a money-saver, but it becomes more of an obstacle–unless you are the licensed agent. An experienced, high-performing agent has access to a valuable network, marketing expertise, and strong knowledge of current pricing trends. The commission that you’ll pay to an agent far outweighs any savings from working alone. After all, you would be the one to handle the listing, phone calls and emails, showings, offers, and the legal factors that accompany a FSBO situation. Hence, working with an agent saves you time and money throughout the duration of the sales process.

Failing to Negotiate Effectively

Another error to avoid when selling your home is failing to negotiate effectively. While you want your listing price and no less, potential buyers will try to get the lowest price possible. However, both parties have to meet in the middle to be able to make a deal. Thus, you want to keep your emotions completely out of the decision and simply focus on the numbers. If you honestly believe that the buyer is offering too low of a price, you can walk away or present a counteroffer. Likewise, the buyer can turn that down. The key to negotiating is determining ahead of time what you’ll accept without being too stubborn about your asking price and missing out on a sale.

Overlooking Legal and Documentation Requirements

Out of all the errors addressed, overlooking the documents that are required by law proves to be one of the worst mistakes to avoid. For instance, you’ll need a detailed Seller’s Disclosure Statement that lists any previous problems with the property and how they were rectified. This also includes receipts and documents from the contractors who completed the repairs or renovations among other items which an experienced agent would assist you with. Other requirements include:

  • Tax records
  • All mortgage information
  • Property surveys
  • Inspections
  • HOA and information on neighborhood covenants

Many more documents are also required, depending on your state’s disclosure laws, but an agent or broker can guide you through that part of the process.

Ignoring the Importance of Curb Appeal

And of course, you can’t forget the first visual that home buyers encounter–your home’s yard and facade. Your home’s exterior gives buyers that first impression that can make or break a deal. In the case of an online listing, it can motivate them to schedule a viewing or to keep swiping. Nonetheless, curb appeal is one of the simplest features to maintain and/or improve without spending a great deal of money. Keeping the roof, front door, windows, and exterior finish in good condition is an excellent start. If you have mature landscaping, then you’ll want to keep it well-manicured. Plus, when you stage the home for a photo shoot, remember to put away any lawn equipment, hoses, and bikes.

Selling Your Home


All in all, when it comes to selling your home, all bases must be covered from the condition of the structure, its utilities, and its appearance to the legal aspects such as coming up with a fair price and being forthcoming about any previous major issues that have been repaired. For these reasons and to ensure effective negotiations, you need a real estate agent who has the experience and marketing skills to help you meet your home selling goals. Our realtors at Raleigh Custom Homes possess the expertise necessary for a quick sale and a solid deal. Plus, as you search for your new abode and decide upon a new construction or would like to peruse through our listings, our team can help with that as well. As you embark on your home selling journey, don’t go it alone. Contact our expert realtors and project managers, and we’ll walk through the process and to your new home.

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