Advertiser Disclosure

How to Sell Your Home Fast

July 23, 2014
Many or all of the products featured here are from our partners who compensate us. This may influence which products we write about and where and how the product appears on a page. However, this does not influence our evaluations. Our opinions are our own.

Written by Cait Klein

If you want to sell your home fast, you need a plan to complete the sometimes confusing process. From pricing to timing, you have to make many decisions that will affect how much your house ultimately sells for, when it sells – or whether it sells at all.  Here are five strategies for selling your home fast, according to real estate brokerage Redfin:

1. Get the price right

When it comes to buying a house, no one wants to play games. Listing your house at a higher price initially may seem like a good idea, but it actually counteracts your goal of selling your home fast. Your house will attract about four times the amount of traffic on real estates websites in the first week it is listed than in later months, even if you lower the price. If you choose the right price first, even if it’s lower than the market value, you will quickly attract competitive bids, selling the house faster and at a higher price.

2. Make a good first impression

First impressions are everything when it comes to selling your house. Start by decluttering, which makes the house look bigger and allows the buyers to have a blank canvas on which to imagine their own belongings. It can be hard to part with a house full of memories and treasures, but most buyers will not appreciate the crayon murals on the walls or the broken fence post you keep meaning to fix. Take the time to make repairs and make the house move-in ready, including lawn maintenance, so when people drive by your home, they want to go inside.

Once the house is decluttered and clean, hire a professional photographer to snap pictures. Professional photos can earn you nearly $1,000 or more than amateur photos, driving more traffic to your website page and encouraging more competitive bids.  Although the upfront cost of hiring a professional photographer may seem steep, it will earn you higher dividends at the final sale.

3. Post your home strategically

Homes that are posted on a Thursday or Friday have the best chance of selling closest to their original asking price. Most homebuyers plan on looking at homes with their agents over the weekend, perusing their options and planning home viewings at the end of the week. If you post on a Thursday or Friday, your home will be fresh in buyers’ minds as they plan their house-hunting excursions. If you post your home too early in the week or over the weekend, people will either forget about your home or will have already found another place.

4. List your house before summer

Homes listed after June and into the summer sell at an average of 3% less than their original asking price. Homes posted between March and June have the highest chance of being sold within 90 days. You are 70% more likely to sell your home in March than in November, as people are gearing up for the holidays. Take advantage of the prime selling time.

5. Use an agent

We all have things we are good at. You probably wouldn’t try to replace your own roof — you’d hire a roofer. Similarly, enlisting the aid of a real estate agent can help you with complicated matters such as attracting potential buyers, buyer financing and selling within the planned length of time.

The typical “for sale by owner” home sold for $184,000 compared with $230,000 for an agent-assisted home sale, according to a 2013 National Association of Realtors study. The top three most difficult tasks for DIY sellers were understanding paperwork, getting the right price and preparing the home for sale, according to the study.

And Redfin’s study suggests that homes sold by its agents were 12% more likely to sell than with other agents and that Redfin agents typically sold homes an average of six days faster and for $2,700 more than the competition, all while charging $8,500 less in commission.

Even if you still are not sold on using an agent, check out the other useful tools Redfin has to offer, including the Home Selling Guide.

Home image via Shutterstock