Deciding to sell your home isn’t easy, but even harder is figuring out what your house is worth in today’s real estate market. Since no one can tell you for certain how you should price your property, you may feel like you’re in some guessing game. Fortunately, however, there are tools and methods you can use to determine fair market value for your home when listing it for sale.

Remove Yourself from the Equation

The hardest part of pricing your home is removing yourself from the equation. Detaching yourself from the memories you’ve made while living there is painful. You also cannot expect to get what you initially paid for the property – sometimes homes depreciate while other times they appreciate and lead to profitable gain. You can’t calculate your investment plus a specific percentage to determine what you think you can get for your house. Nor can you charge buyers for your experiences in the home. Buyers aren’t concerned with how many holidays you had there, or how many children you have or haven’t raised. Instead, they want to envision themselves making memories of their own. So step one in pricing your home to sell is to detach your emotion and your investment from the process.

Online Home Valuation Tools

The Internet has made many things readily available, including home valuation calculators. Within a few moments time, you can enter certain criteria and receive an estimate of what your home might be worth. Keyword: might. Although home valuation calculators are a great way to get a general idea of your home’s worth, these tools are missing the human factor. The data reflect things like the year the house was built, the square footage, location, etc. but cannot consider things like the condition of the home, upgrades added over time, landscaping, and other factors that figure into your home’s current value. It’s a fabulous starting point, but certainly not a rock solid foundation for placing a price tag on your property.

Pre-Appraisal

It’s a small investment for a large benefit when you order a pre-appraisal for your home. While it’s true that you cannot use this appraisal in the transaction as an official report, you can most certainly use it to gauge fair market value for your property. Furthermore, having the home pre-appraised can also help you find ways to make small, inexpensive repairs and investments that could significantly raise the value of your house.

Comprehensive Market Analysis

When you find the right real estate agent with whom to work on selling your home, that agent will provide you with a report called a Comprehensive Market Analysis, or a CMA. This report details properties similar to yours in size or stature that have recently sold. Furthermore, the analysis includes asking price vs. selling price, the length of stay on the market, and the number of times the price has been reduced.

Asking price and selling price are not the same. The asking price of a home is what the seller initially hoped to gain whereas the sales price determines what buyers are willing to pay. The more times a home’s price is reduced, the less attractive it is to buyers. The same is true with how long a home is on the market. The longer a house is listed for sale on the market, the more unappealing it becomes because people begin to wonder why the house hasn’t sold.

Seeing is Believing

Armed with your online estimate, pre-appraisal, and comprehensive market analysis, you’re ready to set out to personally explore your area’s real estate offerings. Tour some of the properties for sale in your area and assess how those houses stack up in comparison to yours. If you were the buyer, which would you consider the better investment?

Stage Your House to Sell

Staging a house influences perceived value directly. When a potential buyer walks into your space and sees clean and move-in ready, the home is more enticing than a home that looks like it’s full of expensive repair and renovation projects. Give your house the ability to make a lasting first impression that can enhance its worth to buyers.

Your real estate agent is the best source of information about the local community and real estate topics. Give The Pikoff Team a call today at 832-786-1644 to learn more about local areas, discuss selling a house, or tour available homes for sale.