Swing a sale in a slow real es­tate mar­ket

To stim­u­late a sale, sell­ing your prop­erty for a price lower than pre­vail­ing mar­ket rates can gen­er­ate more in­ter­est

HT Estates - - HTESTATES - Om Ahuja

IIn a slow real es­tate mar­ket, sell­ing a house can be a daunt­ing task. Nev­er­the­less, do­ing so is some­times nec­es­sary or de­sir­able de­spite mar­ket cir­cum­stances. A sale makes sense when the home’s mort­gage value is higher than its mar­ket worth, when one has to pur­chase an­other house and pay two mort­gages, if one wants to up­grade to a big­ger and bet­ter house or if there is a need to down­size. Other cir­cum­stances such as job re­lo­ca­tion and fam­ily is­sues can also ne­ces­si­tate the sale of one’s home - with an ex­press need for a quick sale.

As a rule of thumb, it is never a good idea to sell any­thing when the mar­ket is bad and shows no signs of re­cov­ery. That said, if there is no al­ter­na­tive but to sell de­spite un­favourable mar­ket con­di­tions, it is not enough to sim­ply list the house and wait for an of­fer.

In such a sit­u­a­tion, the seller should keep in mind that even though the mar­ket has de­cel­er­ated, there are still plenty of home­buy­ers ea­ger to find a house. There are some key tac­tics to help in­crease the pos­si­bil­ity of a sale, and th­ese per­tain to pre­par­ing both the prop­erty and one’s mind to in­crease the prob­a­bil­ity of a sale:

Know your mar­ket

Be­fore putting a house for sale on a de­pressed mar­ket you should un­der­stand what is re­ally hap­pen­ing and why it is hap­pen­ing. Un­der­stand­ing gives ob­jec­tiv­ity, and an ob­jec­tive mind is more con­ducive to­wards a suc­cess­ful sale than a des­per­ate one. Above all, it is im­por­tant to know the true mar­ket value of one’s home, which is of­ten very dif­fer­ent from what one hopes or thinks it is. Most sell­ers op­er­ate in the dark and are sim­ply of­fer­ing their prop­erty for the price they want, re­gard­less of what other homes in the same lo­ca­tion are be­ing sold for or are cur­rent- ly sell­ing for. Un­der­valu­ing or over­pric­ing your prop­erty while try­ing to sell it in a slow mar­ket is a se­ri­ous mis­take.

Be com­pet­i­tive in your pric­ing in a slow mar­ket. Prop­erty prices dip and the pos­si­bil­ity of ob­tain­ing a re­ally good price is re­mote at best. It is es­sen­tial to price your home rea­son­ably by look­ing at sim­i­lar op­tions avail­able in the cur­rent mar­ket. If you take a look at the homes in your project or neigh­bour­hood which are listed with bro­kers but are not sell­ing, chances are that their owners’ ex­pec­ta­tions are just too high. To stim­u­late a sale, un­der-pric­ing your prop­erty when com­pared to pre­vail­ing mar­ket rates by just a lit­tle can gen­er­ate more in­ter­est from buy­ers. For high- end prop­er­ties – ie lux­ury units in metro cities val­ued at over R5 crore, one should con­sider us­ing the closed bid process. Un­der this, prop­erty con­sul­tants in­vite bids from prospec­tive buy­ers with the ob­jec­tive of achiev­ing the best pos­si­ble price. High-end and land­mark prop­er­ties are nor­mally sold us­ing this process, which in­vari­ably helps sell­ers to ar­rive at an op­ti­mal sale price.

A pre­sentable home

Apart from right pric­ing, noth­ing will at­tract po­ten­tial buy­ers more than a well-main­tained house. This goes be­yond just clean­ing and spruc­ing it up. Re­tain only the things that ac­tu­ally add value to the flat. A small in­vest­ment in mak­ing your prop­erty pre­sentable is more cost-ef­fec­tive than a price re­duc­tion. Make the en­trance pre­sentable and ad­dress is­sues re­lated to plumb­ing, wa­ter seep­ages, cracks in the ma­sonry, loose rail­ings and ill-fit­ting win­dow frames. When there are many op­tions avail­able in the mar­ket, buy­ers will look for homes that are ready-to-move-in rather than units that re­quire sig­nif­i­cant ef­fort and ex­pense on re­pairs and re­fur­bish­ing.

Be flex­i­ble with show­ings

It is es­sen­tial to keep your home avail­able for in­spec­tion through­out the time it is listed on the mar­ket. Re­mem­ber, it takes only one buyer to get your home sold. Keep your home avail­able for view­ing at mo­ment’s no­tice, and do not restrict ac­cess solely to the times you are per­son­ally avail­able. The more of­ten your home is shown to po­ten­tial buy­ers, the like­lier is a quick sale.

En­gage the right agent

In a slow mar­ket, us­ing the ser­vices of a top- of- the- line real es­tate con­sul­tancy can be a faster route to a quick sale than rop­ing in mul­ti­ple small-time bro­kers. A first-class prop­erty con­sul­tancy em­ploys more op­er­a­tives and has a larger and more dy­namic data­base of projects than smaller agents.

THINKSTOCK

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