Older home sellers can send the home flippers away while reaping the rewards

Question: We are about to sell our Bay Area house of 50 years. It is an emotional event. It is time for us to move. We bought our house when it was new. We have kept it in pristine condition. Those sold neighborhood properties are remodeled homes. We did not engage in remodeling.   

We cannot sell for a low price. We fear home flippers will buy our house. That is a terrible thought. The house needs work. We also fear homebuyers will not want our home. How can we compete with the beautifully remodeled homes on the market on a shoestring budget? 

Answer: You must take control of the situation. I always turned this situation into an opportunity. You can, too! Marketing must repeat the headline “First time on the market” and subheads should read “Original owners” and “Rare homebuyer opportunity.” Your home-selling plan must take the motto “Honesty is the best policy” to new heights. In other words, create an online presale home seller’s disclosure package that commands the respect and admiration of homebuyers and agents. Consumer confidence in your property will soar. And that is online!

Homebuyers will want to visit your property soon and often. So allow daily access. Hire a seller’s agent who will hold daily open houses before and after the traditional Saturday and Sunday open houses. This exponentially increases foot traffic. That is a fact. Plus, this promotes a bevy of fruitful in-person, on-site, one-on-one discussions between your seller’s agent and interested parties. That is rare. Consumer confidence grows every time a homebuyer returns to your listing online and in person.

If your home is in the suburbs, ensure that you have the following presale seller inspections as the driving force of your disclosure package:

1. Roof inspection2. Chimney cleaning and inspection3. Home inspection, aka property, whole house and general inspection4. Structural pest inspection, aka termite inspection5. Foundation inspection6. Sewer lateral line inspection

A complete set of presale seller inspection reports and flawless seller questionnaires deftly assembled with federal, state, and local advisories command attention, respect, and escalating value.

Lastly, be sure to broadcast everywhere in the marketing that you offer a seller concession, aka credit to homebuyers. It is a lump sum. It is paid out of seller proceeds. The escrow officer handles the accounting. A debit to sellers. A credit to the buyer. Your prospective homebuyers know you will help them pay down the interest on their loan. That is another boost for you. The nearby remodeled homes for sale will offer inferior disclosure packages while lacking seller concessions.

Here is an example of how home sellers help homebuyers buy down the interest rate:

3-2-1 Buydown:  

1. This buydown option spans three years.2. In the first year, the interest rate is reduced by 3% from the standard rate.3. In the second year, the rate is reduced by 2%.4. In the third year, the rate is reduced by 1%.5. After the third year, the rate remains at the standard rate for the remaining loan term.

2-1 Buydown: 

1.This option covers two years.2. In the first year, the interest rate is reduced by 2%.3. In the second year, the rate is reduced by 1%.4. After the second year, the rate remains at the standard rate for the remaining loan term.

1-0 Buydown: 

1. The 1-0 buydown lasts for only the first year.2. In the first year, the interest rate is reduced by 1%.3. After the first year, the rate remains at the standard rate for the remaining loan term.

Make no mistake, a home seller concession is a savvy home-selling strategy. It helps homebuyers buy, and home sellers sell. Take charge. Put this plan into action. Homebuyers will compete to purchase your home. That increases your net proceeds. So, let the home flippers have terrible thoughts. Allow them to fear that a missed opportunity is presenting itself. You see, home flippers know one thing: An overabundance of interested homebuyers will always outbid them.

For Housing Market Data in your area, visit my webpage for trends here. Do you have questions about home buying or selling? Full-service Realtor Pat Kapowich is a Certified Trust and Probate Specialist, Certified Real Estate Brokerage Manager and career-long consumer protection advocate. He is based in his hometown of Sunnyvale, California. Office: 408-245-7700; Broker# 00979413 Pat@SiliconValleyBroker.com

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