Several major studies on the effect of language in real estate marketing descriptions have revealed using certain words can result in a lower sales price and longer marketing time. How your home, or your situation, is described may unintentionally imply a sense of desperation, the need for extensive renovations, or that you would accept a low ball offer. If you don’t want home buyers drawing the wrong conclusions, you might want to take a second look at how your home is being described. Here are the 6 words or phrases that you want to make sure to avoid.
While you may genuinely want to sell your home, you’re probably not interested in giving it away. According to the studies, the word “motivated” implies a sense of desperation and invites an opportunity to lowball. Instead of undermining your bargaining position from the get-go, use emotionally charged words that emphasize the merits of the house, rather than your motivation.
There seems to be a lot of baggage associated with using this phase. It makes buyers question. What’s wrong with the house? How much work is needed to make the house suitable? Will a lender make a loan on the property? “Handyman’s special” rules out buyers who are insecure about their ability to make even simplest repairs. The buyers it doesn’t scare off will discount their offers according to their estimate of repair costs. Then, negotiate further after the inspection.
Who determines whether a house is a good buy? In reality, the buyer does. If you are told something is a good buy, don’t you immediately want to ask “why?” Most buyers would, and then would dig deeper, finding more reasons not to buy your home. Using “good buy” in the description leads to more aggressive negotiations and lower sales prices. Instead, describe the merits of the home and let buyers determine whether or not it is a good buy for them.
Feedback from the studies indicate that buyers reading the term “vacant” assumed the seller was financially distressed, struggling to pay two mortgages. Though the buyer will be able to see the house is vacant in photos, use your home’s marketing description to help them focus on the merits of the property rather than its present occupancy. Create a blank slate where they can envision themselves living there.
Extensive Renovations and Repairs
Studies showed using the phrases “extensive renovations,” “recent repairs” or “major repairs” carried a widespread, negative connotation for buyers. Even describing repairs in the agent’s remarks portion of the MLS (not visible to buyers) was damaging to the seller’s negotiating strength and the ultimate sales price. The focus on repairs caused buyers to ask many more questions about the quality and workmanship of the repairs. Moreover if there are some repairs that need to be done, do it before hand.
If the property is, in fact, in a great location, every buyer knows it. If it is not, it’s a lie, and every buyer will wonder what else you are fudging. Consider using the quality of the school district as a direct influence on the home’s value and identify the school. For most home buyers, school quality is their top priority.
How Should Your Home Be Described?
Sell the benefits of your home, not the facts and features. Facts don’t sell homes, feelings do. Buyers want to know what it might be like to live in your home and neighborhood. What have you liked most about living there? What will you miss when you leave? Buying a home for top dollar is about buying a lifestyle. Tell the buyer, in emotional terms, how your home will enhance their lifestyle. Buyers will pay more for the intangibles they can only get with your home.
Looking for a Realtor Who Understands How to Sell to Today’s Buyer?
Today’s buyers are willing to pay more for homes in Austin, especially if they can convince themselves your home is special and not a commodity. We understand how today’s buyers think and can help you market your home in a way that attracts more showings and more money in your pocket. Check out our Austin Home Sellers section for more about our proven home selling system. Then, call us at (512) 827-8323, email us at info@11OaksRealty.com or fill out our Seller Survey to schedule a consultation.
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