Don’t let a slow home sale spoil your plans

The success of your offer to purchase a new home may well hinge on your ability to sell your existing property within a relatively short time, and not being able to do so could prove extremely disruptive in many ways, not to mention costly.
You might not be able to move in time to start a new job, for example, or to relocate your family and get your children into their new school at the start of a year. Or you might have to rent accommodation in a new location until you can sell your old home and secure the proceeds.
In addition, even if you aren’t living there anymore, you will have to pay the bond as well as the rates and service charges on your old home until it is sold – which will in all likelihood take longer because it is unoccupied.
“In short, no-one wants to go through months of the anxiety and upheaval when selling their home,” says Jan Davel, MD of the RealNet estate agency group. “What everyone in this situation hopes for is a quick, clean transaction so they can move on without looking back.”
And apart from location, the asking price is still the most important factor in selling a house quickly,so you need to get it right, first time. If your price is too high the property will linger on the market and if it is too low you will certainly sell quickly but probably lose money.”
However the value of the home, on which you will base your asking price,is determined by a very wide range of factors, and you would be well advised to seek the advice of a trained and experienced estate agent who is familiar with your area, he says.
“The number of bedrooms and bathrooms as well as the dimensions of all rooms will play a role. The appearance of the home, the building materials and the finishes are also important, while improvements such as newly-renovated bathrooms and kitchens could increase the value somewhat.”
Then no matter how lovely and well-maintained your home is, the condition of the surrounding homes in the area will also influence the value, says Davel, so location will come back into play in this regard. “And of course a home should also ‘fit in’ with others in the neighbourhood. For instance, a large family home may not attract its full value if it is surrounded by high-rise apartments or located in an area that mainly attracts retirees.”
By now, he says, determining the market value of your home may start to sound like a tall order – and this is where a free comparative market analysis (CMA) drawn up by a RealNet agent with expert knowledge of your area is likely to prove an invaluable tool.
“Reviewing recent asking prices and selling prices of similar homes in your neighbourhood, as well as the length of time it took to sell these properties,a CMA will give you a really good indication of where you should pitch your price to achieve a satisfactory sale within a reasonable amount of time – and of how much you may need to lower it if you need to sell really quickly.”

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