5 Mistakes Made by Bay Area Home Sellers

Whether your Bay Area home is already on the market, or you’re considering listing your property for sale, there are some things that you should consider. One of the hottest topics that impacts Bay Area home sellers is the mistakes that are made when trying to sell a property. There are five things that you should avoid doing when you’re selling your Bay Area home. 

1. Don’t Overprice the Property

The biggest mistake that people make when selling their home in the Bay Area is overpricing the property. Obviously, you have a sentimental attachment to your home, and you’re aware of all the time, effort, and money that you’ve put into the property to make it what it is today. Unfortunately, those factors don’t really matter to the potential buyers. When you overprice a property, you actually end up costing yourself money and increasing your personal stress levels during the already stressful process of listing and selling a home.

Obviously, you don’t want to cheat yourself out of getting as much money as possible out of your listing. However, when you list your property on the lower side of comparable properties, you actually put yourself in a position to get more out of the property? How is that possible? Because when you list your property on the low side of comparable sells, you can end up receiving somewhere between 10 and 20 offers on the property. This creates a bidding war and may allow you to receive one of the million-dollar offers that have become so common in the Bay Area. Ultimately, refusing to overprice the property allows the market to do the work for you, and can result in more money in your pocket.

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2. Don’t Just Dump Your House on the Market

It’s not uncommon for people who are selling their home to try to get it on the market as fast as possible. That results in sellers throwing a “For Sale” sign in the yard and bringing in a real estate agent who is going to take some quick pictures with their cellphone before putting the property online. Obviously, cellphone cameras have come a long way, but it’s still a good idea to take the time to prepare your home and have professional photographs taken.

When you try to rush your home to the market, you end up with photos of the inside of the property that include poor lighting, cluttered surfaces, and other factors that can decrease the home’s appeal to buyers. Photos are the second most important factor when selling a home, so taking the time plan for professional photography is an investment in the likelihood that your home gets sold. 

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3. Don’t Forget the Landscaping

If you’re selling a home in the Bay Area, you already have one major factor on your side. We live in one of the most beautiful areas in the United States, so the area outside of your home is already going to attract plenty of buyers. However, just because the natural beauty of California is already there, that doesn’t mean that there aren’t some steps that you can take to make your home even more attractive to potential buyers.

Go outside and stand on the sidewalk in front of your house so you can take an objective look at the property? Do you have large trees that block natural light from coming through the windows of the property? Speaking of trees, do you have a lot of leaves laying in the yard that make the outside of the home appear cluttered? Even more simplistically, does your yard need to be mowed? If the answer to those questions is yes, there’s good news: you can fix those issues yourself. The process of improving the landscaping around your home is quick and affordable. Spend some time investing in the curb appeal of your home.

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4. Don’t Be Home When Buyers Come to Look

One of the worst things that people can do when selling a home is being present when buyers come to look at the property. For the last couple of years, this one was easy to avoid because COVID made it illegal to be home when buyers came to your home. However, now that some orders are being lifted, this point needs to be discussed. If you’re at home when buyers come to check out the listing, they feel like they’re intruding into your space, meaning that they want to get out quicker. They never really get the chance to connect with the property, reducing the likelihood that they will put in an offer.

This point is even more important if you’re selling a property that you’ve been renting. If someone comes to view your listing and a tenant is there, the tenant will not paint the property out in the best possible light. Eat the cost of the property for a month or two and only show the property once you have removed any tenants from the property. 

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5. Don’t Accept an Offer Too Quickly

Finally, it’s important that you don’t jump all over the first offer that comes in for your property. With the housing market in California being as hot as it is right now, it’s not uncommon for people to make quick offers on a property. In fact, some people who catch wind of you selling your home may try to make an offer before you even get the property on the market. Resist the temptation to take those offers, as you need to make sure that your property receives adequate market exposure.

Based on market data, the “sweet spot” for a listing window is somewhere between seven and 14 days. This ensures that all potential buyers have a chance to check out your home so they can make an offer. Ultimately, if you take the first offer, there’s no way for you to know if you’re getting the best offer on your home. Don’t jump on the first offer.

So, there you have it. There are plenty of other mistakes that you should avoid making when selling your Bay Area home, but those are the five most common.

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About the Author
Seb Frey helps long-time Bay Area homeowners make their next move easily the next one yet. If you're looking for a minimum of hassle, maximum net cash on sale, and certain results, contact Seb today.