Top 7 Things You Need to Know Before Selling Your Home in 2022
The Massachusetts real estate market is still busy! The pandemic has caused people to rethink their lifestyles and look for more space. Aided by state-of-the-art technology, many companies have found that their staff can easily do their jobs remotely. As a result, it's no longer necessary for them to live within easy commuting distance of an office. They can live anywhere they want: even in another state, hundreds or even thousands of miles away. This trend is likely to continue long after the pandemic has become a memory. This work-at-home trend has had a tremendous effect on real estate sales in Massachusetts, so if you are planning to sell your home in 2022, here's what you need to know.
1. You'll Need a Good Real Estate Agent To Market Your Home
Even though you'll be listing your home during a hot sellers' market, you will still need an agent with strong, creative, and effective property marketing skills to ensure you get top price. You'll want someone who will make an investment in presenting your home to its best advantage by hiring a team of talented home stagers as well as a professional photographer to capture compelling images and video, so that your home looks as appealing as a magazine cover.
You'll want a seasoned agent who knows how to manage multiple offers and handle negotiations so your trip to the closing table will be a smooth one. You'll want an agent like me. . .
2. Prices Are Rising, But There's a Catch
The good news is that home prices are still rising, and are predicted to stay on an upward trend in 2022. Work-at-home buyers are looking for homes with more space--homes with an office (or two!) are in great demand.
The downside is that you'll have to pay more for the home you're buying, too, unless you're willing to tackle a fixer upper.
3. Be Prepared for a Fast Sale
In this fast-moving sellers' market, the best homes are going under contract before you can blink--often in a week or less.
Less time on market means less disruption of your daily routine, but it also means you've got to have a game plan as to where you'll be going next. For mortgaged deals, the time between an accepted offer and closing can typically be six to eight weeks. Cash deals can close even more quickly.
If your home is served by a septic system, it would be wise to have completed your Title V inspection before you list, so that your sale won't be held up if repairs are required.
If your home is served by a private well and you live in a town where the local Board of Health requires sellers to furnish an acceptable water test performed by an accredited local lab, it's a good idea to arrange for that well sampling to be completed before your home hits the market.
4. What if You Need to Sell Before You can Buy?
It's possible. But it will take some planning and assistance from a real estate agent who knows how to set you up for success.
That means preparing your current home to be ready to hit the market literally on a moment's notice once you've spotted the home you want to buy, with staging done, photos taken, and video in the can.
I've managed this tricky dance on behalf of many clients who went on to sell their home and close on a new one on the same day. I'd love to talk with you to develop a plan for you, too.
5. Buyers Embrace Space and Light
Scroll through listings on any real estate site and what do you notice? Subconsciously, you'll be attracted to homes with two key characteristics: space and light. It doesn't matter if you're looking at an 800-square-foot condo or an 8000-square-foot mansion, those key attributes rule.
With that in mind, consider removing heavy window treatments, dark rugs, and hanging baskets that can give an impression of low ceilings. Add mirrors across from windows to amplify natural light, and remove any furniture that may be blocking them.
6. Buyers Shun Clutter
You've heard it before, I'm sure. But when it comes to presenting your home for sale, it's critical to be ruthless about giving prospective buyers a clear line of sight.
Think beyond just the paper clutter on your desk. Kitchen counters should be mostly naked, except for coffee makers and toasters. Bathroom sinks should be devoid of toothbrushes and cups. Laundry rooms should be pristine and fresh-smelling, with no signs of dirty clothes. Waste baskets should be empty. And front doors should be able to open wide without bumping into shoe racks or umbrella stands.
Taking these extra steps will make your home feel larger and expansive and inviting and make buyers feel like it's a place they can grow into.
7. Having Accurate Market Data is a Must
If you got a Market Analysis for your home three months ago, chances are it's already out of date. In reviewing comparable sales, it's important to take a close look at the properties that are currently under agreement, not just those that have recently sold. When homes attract offers within days of their market debut, it's a good bet that they'll sell for more than the original list price. We expect that trend to continue in 2022.
Among the best sources of local market information are the weekly reports published by Altos Research, which tracks every single family home sale in every town throughout the U.S. I offer these reports to my sellers--and prospective sellers--so they can monitor swings and surges that might affect their home's value. Click on any of these links if you'd like to see the current at-a-glance "Market Action Index" reports for Berlin, Bolton, Carlisle, Concord, Harvard, Princeton, Sterling or Stow.
There is always a lot to do when selling your home.
I've developed proven systems and techniques for presenting homes in their most beautiful light.
Let's talk about how I can put them to work for you!