Have you noticed that some attractive houses are on the market these days? Have you put your home on the market only to see it sit unsold for much longer than you expected? It’s not as easy to sell a home in today’s economic environment as it used to be. Here’s a look at ten possible reasons why your home may not sell in this market and what you can do about it.

Reason #1: Overpricing

One possible reason a house stays on the market is because it is too expensive compared to the competition. Be sure to look for other similar homes on the market and adjust your price as necessary to make it more competitive. Today’s savvy shoppers have a lot of information at their disposal and are likely to be very well informed about their options. If a home is obviously overpriced, many buyers in today’s market won’t even bother to look at it.

Reason #2: Need Maintenance/Repairs

Most people who are interested in buying a home don’t want to move into a house that needs fixing. If your home’s condition is below par, you may want to consider doing some repairs to make it more attractive to potential buyers. In the buyer’s market, buyers often look for the “one” – the home that offers the best combination of location, condition, and price.

Reason #3: Lack of Curb Appeal

The way your home looks from the road will create the first impression for potential buyers. So you want to make sure you remove any clutter from your yard and address any issues with the exterior, such as poor design or siding issues. If you can’t afford to correct exterior flaws, be sure to discuss it with your real estate agent and make appropriate adjustments to the sales price up front. If you can’t afford landscaping, purchase two identical pots with flowers or mixed foliage and place them on either side of the front entrance to create an attractive, symmetrical look. Best of all, you can take the pots with you when the house sells!

Reason #4: Excess clutter

A messy house is not only unattractive but also makes the house look small and cramped. Reduce clutter to create a more open and welcoming look. A great place to prepare to remove items from your home is your garage. If you have more than one garage full of items, you may want to consider getting an inexpensive storage locker or POD. Back the POD up to the garage entrance and voila! You can have everything charged up in a matter of a few hours, depending on the size of the POD. Other options for decluttering your home are to donate items to charities (many will pick up the items for free at your home if you can’t drop them off) or free sale (that’s when you advertise items for take-away as long as someone picks them up). free).

Reason #5: Staging issues

While you certainly want the interior of your home to be free of clutter, you also want it to be warm and inviting. Dirty or extremely outdated furniture, cheap items hanging on the wall (as opposed to a well-chosen piece of art), or a lack of color on the wall can prevent potential buyers from forming the emotional connection that is often necessary to make. a sale. Finally, make sure living spaces are set up with furniture and other items that define them properly. For example, don’t place a desk in front of the fireplace thus blocking the focal point of the room. And don’t put a chest of drawers in the kitchen instead of a table and chairs, which would distract potential buyers from realizing that you actually have an eat-in kitchen that will accommodate a certain number of people.

Reason #6: Lack of storage

Buyers love homes with lots of storage opportunities, so create more storage space if possible and remove items from current storage areas so they don’t look like they’re overflowing. An easy trick is to remove half of the clothes from all the closets in the house. Small cabinets often found in old houses will suddenly seem really huge!

Reason #7: Limited display opportunities

If you’re turning down multiple viewing requests, require too much advance notice for viewings, or have excessive restrictions on accommodating viewings, it can be difficult to persuade agents and buyers to visit your home, let alone succeed. all the hoops to buy it. If possible, do your best to accommodate all visit requests, even those with short notice. Remember, it only takes one prospective buyer to come in, walk through your home, and decide to buy it!

Reason #8: Struggling Tenants

If your home is currently rented to tenants, laws may apply where tenants must be given 24-hour notice before all viewings. In some cases, you can work out an agreement with your tenants whereby you can call and leave a message and then go ahead and show the property. But if you don’t have such an understanding, you’ll need to make sure your tenants receive at least 24-hour written notice before all visits or hazard reports. A tenant who has not received proper notice may make things difficult for you by refusing to let the buyer and his agent in for a showing. Once that happens, it’s very difficult to lure the buyer back into the property a second time. Make sure your tenants get ample notice to ensure their rights are protected. And be sure to get feedback from the showing agent to make sure tenants are cooperating with the process.

Reason #9: Pet issues

Dogs left inside while you or your tenants are out can be a huge turnoff for potential buyers (not to mention potential legal liability), especially if the dog barks all the time the potential buyer looks at the home. A barking dog is not only a nuisance from a noise perspective, but some people are afraid of dogs, especially dogs they don’t know or are unfamiliar with. The problem is compounded when the dog owner is not around to take control of the situation. Be sure to make arrangements to remove dogs from the home when showings are scheduled or arrange for someone to watch your dog while the home is being shown so you don’t have to worry about your pets being a nuisance. Also, many prospective buyers are allergic to cats. Ideally, cats should also be removed from the home for all showings. Finally, make sure pet odors are kept to a minimum. If you have cats, be sure to change the litter box at least twice a day so odors are kept to a minimum. The same goes for kennels. Be sure to pick up after your dog to keep unpleasant odors and pet waste to a minimum.

Reason #10: Problems with Locks and Doors

Leaving the doors locked inside the house makes it impossible for the agent to show the house in its entirety. Clearly, no one is going to make such a major purchase without a thorough inspection of the property, so be sure to leave all the doors open to show them off. When doors get locked, either accidentally or on purpose, it’s often difficult to lure the buyer back into the home for a second visit. Many buyers will abandon a showing if they cannot easily access every room in the house. Similarly, agents who cannot easily locate the safe, easily enter the home, or access every room in the home, including the basement and garage, will have a hard time showing the home in its best light.

As a real estate agent, I have seen many homes on the market these days fall victim to one of the above shortcomings. Take the time to address these issues before your home goes on the market so you can minimize the time your home spends on the market and maximize your bottom line.