Buying or selling a home is not something the average person does very often. In fact, you might be surprised by the number of people who only experience buying or selling real estate once or twice in their lifetimes.
Because it’s not a common occurrence, it’s easy to get confused and even overwhelmed by the amount of information that’s readily available on the Internet. And as you’ve no doubt heard and likely witnessed firsthand, not everything you read on the Internet is accurate.
So we encourage you to take everything you find online with a grain of salt. It’s always best to talk things over with a real estate professional and gather all of the facts you can before deciding to either buy or sell a home, whether it’s here in the beautiful coastal region or somewhere else entirely.
Taking information you read online and automatically assuming it to be true can really hamper your efforts when it comes to real estate. There are many myths and misconceptions out there, and we’re going to discuss some of the more common ones right now…
Myth # 1 – You can get a better deal on a home if you don’t use a real estate agent
Unless the home is listed as a “For Sale By Owner,” then this is entirely false. If the home you’re making an offer on is listed with a real estate agency, then the commission is already built into the price. So if you buy the home without an agent, the amount of the commission will still be the same, it will just go entirely to the seller’s agent.
If you’re looking to buy a piece of property, it always makes good sense to use a real estate agent who can look out for your interests. The buyer pays the commissions anyway, so you might as well have someone working on your behalf.
Myth # 2 – The market only goes up
Ask anyone who bought a home in 2005 or 2006 if this statement is true and they’ll likely look at you like you’re from another planet. While real estate has proven to be an extremely good investment over time, there are certainly periods when the market struggles.
So you’ll want to keep this in mind when buying a home. Don’t make the purchase assuming that prices will automatically go up every year that you own the home. Most years it probably will, but all investments go through up and down swings over time.
Buy your home, enjoy it and be comfortable in it. Only time will tell how it does in terms of investment growth.
Myth # 3 – You should renovate your kitchen and bathroom before listing your home for sale
You’ve probably heard before that kitchens and bathrooms are the best rooms to renovate in terms of increasing the value of your property. And this is absolutely true, but you shouldn’t undertake this type of project with the purpose of making more on the sale of your home.
Real estate surveys have indicated that it’s usually better to simply adjust the selling price of the home accordingly, rather than completing a remodeling project that will appeal to some buyers, but may turn off others.
This is the same concept as painting the walls of your home neutral colors before selling – many buyers want to put their own unique spin on things, so it’s usually a good idea to let them do just that.
Myth # 4 – You should price your home higher than the amount you expect to get
This can work sometimes, but it can also work against you. Many buyers are looking at homes based on the amount that they’ve been pre-approved for by their bank. As such, if your home is listed above that threshold, they’re never even going to see your home in their initial search.
It’s best to work with an experienced and knowledgeable real estate agent, someone who knows the local market and will be able to guide you in terms of setting a good asking price for your home.
Myth # 5 – You can save money by selling your home yourself
Unless you have the specific skills and a background in real estate, this will almost certainly not by the case. There’s a lot more involved in selling a home that simply putting a sign in the front yard and waiting for people to knock on your door.
Realtors are specifically trained, many for several years, to buy and sell real estate in your local area. They know how to get your home listed, they know how to market the property, they can negotiate the best possible price and they can deal with issues that arise during the inspection and financing phases.
Can you sell your home without using an agent? Absolutely! Should you? Absolutely not!
You’ll find that many buyers won’t take you seriously and will expect substantial discounts because you don’t have an agent representing you. So you could end up with an even lower net price for your home that you would have had to begin with.
The bottom line – you may be able to sell your home without an agent, but it’s certainly not going to be easy.
If you’re buying or selling a home, just be sure that the information you’re gathering is accurate and that you’re not being led down a bad road.
And if you’d like to chat with a local real estate professional, give the Oldfather Group a ring today at 302-260-2000. Our team has decades of experience in the coastal real estate markets and we’d be happy to answer any questions you have.
And above all else – please have a great day here at the Delaware and Maryland beaches!