Thursday, September 01, 2016
Everyone says selling your home is one of life’s great emotional rollercoasters. From making the leap to moving day, the process is one of surprises, anticipation, and (hopefully) celebration. But what happens if your home doesn’t sell?
If your home’s been on the market for the length of your contract with your real estate agent and it hasn’t sold, your home is on its way to becoming “an expired listing.” At this point, you have to make a choice whether to continue with your agent, find a new agent, or delay your dreams and take your home off the market. Still, the sting of the experience lingers. How do you move on from an expired listing? Here are some tips to learn and even grow from the experience:
1. Admit it happened and acknowledge it’s not uncommon. It can be tough to tell people that your home didn’t sell. But you’re not alone. It happens often and it happens for a variety of reasons. Many factors influence this, but if you’re going to make your next move, you have to be open to learning what you can from the heartbreak.
2. Look for lessons, but avoid blame. The number one reason homes don’t sell is a failure to price accurately. This isn’t your fault and it isn’t your agent’s fault… it’s a shared responsibility. Did you feel a price was one you “had to get”? Did your agent fail to present a compelling case for an accurate price? Were there other factors besides price you should consider as part of the whole package?
3. Abandon worrying about what is beyond your control. If you’re selling in a buyer’s market, there’s nothing you can do about it. If the market crashes, or they discover pesticides in your neighborhood’s aquifer and values plummet, you aren’t responsible and shouldn’t feel the burden of guilt or anxiety. It’s not easy, but sort through what’s truly not your fault and try to distance yourself from those factors.
4. Decide on what you can do next. Review your agent’s approach to selling and your comfort with the relationship. Was there enough communication? Do you feel the home was marketed to the standards of the market? Did you do all you could to make the house welcoming to buyers? Were there curb appeal issues you might want to resolve? Do you want to try again, or should you take a break?
5. Act on next steps. Decide if you’d like to keep your agent or find a new one. If you move on, take your lessons with you, but don’t demonize the past. Accept, forgive, and get back to the dream!
Listing expire? I can help:
If you know someone who recently tried to sell their home and couldn’t get it to move in today’s market, you know it can be heartbreaking. Maybe this piece I wrote about helping frustrated sellers move on can help, so please pass it along.