While properties for sale in Western Colorado vary in size, features, and price, buyer and seller behavior remains one of the only constants in the real estate industry. Sellers always want to get the most money possible from their property, and buyers always want to pay as little as possible. That leaves sellers, and seller’s agents like me, in the tricky position of strategically pricing a property to sell it quickly and for a fair price.
Another constant in real estate? Advising sellers to eliminate buyer’s objections before putting their property on the market is always part of my initial meeting.
Buyer’s objections are any variables that could surface while a property is on the market or under contract that could change the contracted price or cause the sale to fall through. For example, say a home inspection reveals that the roof is in desperate need of a replacement. Buyers might turn the other way or renegotiate a much lower price.
Most real estate contracts give buyers time to conduct these inspections and take precautions to price the property right and ensure there's nothing unacceptable about it. However, sellers shouldn’t take that as an opportunity to default on doing things like getting a home inspection, survey, or ILC themselves.
Eliminating buyer’s objections guarantee a swifter sale of your property. As a seller, if you’ve already done your due diligence when your property hits the market, this gives buyers peace of mind and usually results in fewer negotiations since there’s nothing explicitly wrong with the property.
If you’re selling your property and want to put as much money as possible back in your pocket you might want to spend a little money up front in order to net more money at closing. Here’s a list of what you need to do:
Get a Home Inspection Before You List
Paying $300 - $400 for a home inspection could save you thousands if something unexpected comes up when your property is already under contract. A typical home inspection often uncovers dozens of items, even on a property that is in good condition. Most of these items require little to no money to fix. Furthermore, addressing major problems before you list your home will ultimately cost you less than compromising on the contracted price when the buyer brings them up. If you can’t afford to make major repairs, offer an allowance to buyers which acknowledges the problem before it becomes a point of renegotiation on the way to closing.
Pay For a Survey or ILC
Buyers commonly request a survey or ILC in their offer. These legal instruments identify the property and all of its boundaries, easements, fences, improvements, encroachments, and more. The problem is that these reports often uncover surprises for sellers too.
I have seen deals unravel at the eleventh hour due to survey issues like unrecorded easements, fences either on or off the property, or encroachments that weren’t mentioned in the listing.
As a seller, paying a surveyor to update a prior survey or to perform an ILC puts you in a position to warrant what you are selling. Knowing all potential legal issues upfront will eliminate the buyer from having to ask you to correct things that were advertised incorrectly in the listing due to misinformation. Bottom line--prove what you are selling!
Get Your Home Tested for Radon
In Colorado, radon is a problem whether you’re selling your home or living in it. Buyer’s objections aside, you’d sleep much better at night knowing that you and your family aren’t being exposed to harmful radon gases.
However, if you haven’t already invested in a radon test for your peace of mind, getting your home tested for radon before you list it is appealing to buyers. I’ve had buyers’ home inspections uncover unacceptable radon levels several times over the years, and it forces the seller to pay for radon mitigation to close the deal.
Radon is a less expensive buyer’s objection to fix, but it’s also one of the most powerful forces to cause a deal to fall through. Nobody likes the sound of too much radon in a home. Spend under $100, get your home tested for radon, and avoid a host of problems for yourself and future buyers.
Invest in a Home Warranty
You never know when something will break or malfunction in your home, and that’s where having a home warranty protects you. Studies show that 66% of home buyers experience two major failures or breakdowns during the first year of homeownership.
Having a home warranty is the best practice for buyers and sellers alike. A home warranty adds value to the home, making it more attractive to buyers. Plus, the seller and the buyer get peace of mind protecting the home from unexpected, costly damages.
If you’re selling your home and have a home warranty, it usually covers the seller during the listing period, and then you pay the premium at closing for the buyers. Your home warranty could offset costs that surface from the home inspection, and it’s a huge perk to set your property above the competition.
The Key To a Faster, Higher Sale
When you’re selling your home, getting in front of potential problems ensures they won’t get in the way of the transaction and helps your broker set a fair list price that’s less likely to change.
Don’t fall into the trap of thinking you’ve done enough once you accept an offer. If you haven’t gotten a home inspection, a survey or ILC, and a radon test, you might encounter a few surprises that reduce the offer, extend the timeline, or cause the deal to fall through entirely. Even if you’re not selling your home immediately, addressing some of these buyer’s objections, like having a home warranty or getting a radon test, benefits you and your family too.
Future you will thank you when you walk away from closing with more money in your pocket.