Things to consider if you struggle to sell

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Dear Heather,

My house is on the market. I have recently reduced the price, but showings seem to have slowed down. Why do you think this is?

Seller

Dear Seller,

Well done for adjusting the price, as most of the time houses will sell if priced correctly for the current market. That being said, here are a few things that could be happening:

Seasonal slowdowns affect showings

This is the time of year when many potential buyers take a break from actively visiting properties. July through mid-August can be tougher months to sell a home because of the weather (too hot and humid) and because this is traditionally the time of year families take vacations together. Statistically, summer and Christmas until the New Year are not busy times for showings. Talk to your agent and see if other properties are experiencing a similar drop in showings. That will give you a better idea if the decrease is due to an issue with your listing or the market in general.

Open house visitors aren’t always serious buyers

Your agent may have already held an open house, but sometimes the guests are nosy neighbours and other real- estate agents getting familiar with inventory. That’s not always a bad thing, though. A home that shows well gets a good buzz. Neighbours often know someone who may be looking; I have sold many homes through referral by a neighbour.

Waiting on the “right” buyer

Not every home is suitable for every buyer, but every home is suitable for the right buyer. For example, I am not sure of the condition of your home but, if it needs work, a couple with busy careers may not have the time to renovate. However, it may suit a couple who like to roll up their shirt sleeves at the weekend and really enjoy DIY.

Take time to assess

I would encourage you to hold steady for at least 30 days after your price adjustment. However, be sure your agent gives you feedback on inquiries and any showings to see if any specific reasons keep cropping up such as the property too close to the road, in the wrong area, too far away from the city, needing too much work or having an untidy yard. Together, you can assess this feedback, see if there is anything you can do to improve the property and make the changes that are needed.

Sometimes a further price reduction may be what is needed and will breathe life back into the showings. Other times, you may consider a bonus incentive — such as some seller financing, paying the first three months of condo maintenance fees, or including some furnishings or outdoor furniture that the buyer might be interested in.

Bear in mind it may just be the calm before the storm. Real estate can be surprising in the way that it seems like no one is interested and then suddenly two or three people are interested at the same time. The key here is to find a way to make your property stand out above the rest in a similar price bracket. Be flexible and respond to all offers, even if they are lower than you were hoping for; it does indicate interest and it is something on which you can use as a base for further negotiations.

Heather Chilvers is among Coldwell Banker Bermuda Realty’s leading sales representatives. She has been working in real estate for nearly 30 years. Contact her at hchilvers@brcl.bm or 332-1793. All questions will be treated in confidence. Look for Ask Heather Real Estate on Facebook

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Published Aug 14, 2018 at 8:00 am (Updated Aug 14, 2018 at 7:27 am)

Things to consider if you struggle to sell

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