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Top 10 Reasons Homes Don’t Sell

Posted by Scott Layson on October 25, 2017
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You keep hearing that the real estate market is on fire, so you decide that now’s the time to test the waters and put that for sale sign in your front yard.

Now you can just sit back and wait for the offers to roll in……and then…….crickets…..

Nothing. Maybe you got a lot of showings, but no offers or just a few showings with a couple low ball offers. This is not what you had hoped for in this “hot” seller’s market.

So what went wrong?

Actually, in our experience, it can be a variety of factors combining forces to work against you. Here’s a look at our Top 10 Reasons Why Homes Don’t Sell:

1. Photos

In today’s world of constant distractions, you have about a half second to capture someone’s attention. This means that the photos of your home are one of the most important tools in your arsenal. You want to get someone to stop scrolling and take notice of your home, or as we call it, have “thumb-stopping” images. This is why we take professional photos and video for our clients.

(photo from one of our listings at Icon in the Gulch)

2.  Not Clean

This is pretty much a no-brainer, yet we see homes every day that are not show ready. It can be a pain to tidy up the house every time you have a showing, but I can’t stress how important it is. If buyer’s walk into a house that is unkept, there’s a good chance that they may ask themselves what other items of the house have been neglected as well.

Remember, buyer’s are looking for a reason NOT to buy your home. Don’t give them one.

3.  Curb Appeal

There are many psychological elements in the art of selling. One of the most important of these is pre-framing a buyer’s mindset before they enter your home. This is effectively done by setting the stage outside and maximizing your curb appeal.

Did you know that upgraded landscaping provides the highest ROI on home improvements? Here are a few other curb appeal tips you can check out.

4. Marketing (or lack thereof)

MarketingDid your real estate agent show you their detailed marketing plan? Maybe a better questions is….. did they have one?

Even in a hot market, you’re doing yourself an injustice if you or your agent just throws pictures up online and then wait for offers to come in. Sure, you may get some activity and possibley even a few offers.

But is it the best possible offer, with the best possible terms?

This is why we create a custom marketing plan for each of our clients to create maximum exposure and a sense of urgency for potential buyers. This leads to the highest sales price the market will allow with the most acceptable terms (ie: no/limited closing costs paid).

5. The Price is Wrong 

Overpricing your home is a surefire way to prevent it from selling. We’ve seen many times where a home was priced too high, but still received an offer on it anyways, only for the deal to fall through because the bank came back with a lower appraisal amount.

It’s not just about what people are willing to pay for your home, but also if the bank will appraise it for the value that’s on the contract…..(unless it’s a cash buyer, but of course your pool of prospective buyers will be much smaller depending on your price range.

There’s actually a lot of strategy that goes into pricing a property correctly and we always present 3 different scenarios so that our clients make a smart and informed decision.

? Not so fun fact: Did you know FHA appraisals stick with a home for 4 months? This means that if any other buyer comes back with an FHA loan, the bank will only approve the loan for what the last appraisal came in at.

6.  Home Not Staged

Most of the time staging consists of decluttering, removing personal items and creating functional design in the home. Before we list a home, we always have our stager work with our clients to help them show their home in the best light possible.

We also offer virtual staging options which may be beneficial and more economical if the home is vacant.

7. Repairs Needed

BOOM! You got a contract on your home. Life is good…..then the home inspection happens.

One of the main reasons real estate deals fall apart is due to inspections. Usually it’s because the buyer gets spooked because there are a lot of items on the inspection report or the two sides can’t come to an agreement on which items to fix.

Fortunately, much of this can be avoided. We suggest having an inspection done before listing your home and fixing any glaring issues.

Remember, we don’t want to give them any reason NOT to buy your home.

8. Your House Has All the Colors of the Rainbow

The idea is to stand out among the other homes that you’re competing with and be memorable, but we don’t want them to remember us for the amount of repainting they will have to do.

When in doubt, “builder beige” as they say is the color of choice

9.  Bad Remodels

bad remodel

Not much else needs to be said about this one.

10.  Lien on Property

Without going into too much legal mumbo jumbo, a lien can be placed on a property for unpaid debts or special assessments from an HOA. Mortgage companies will not finance a home for the buyer until the seller has paid off these debts.

If the seller refuses or is unable to pay, this usually results in the buyer walking away from the deal.

If you have a lien on your property and you’re serious about selling your home, make sure you have the funds to pay off the debt before the closing date on the contract.


Send us a quick message and we will contact you to go over our marketing plan for your home.

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