Getting The Best Deal - Pawleys Island Home Buying and Selling, What to Expect
What to expect when buying a property in Pawleys Island, SC - Tara Melech, Keller Willliams Realty, (843) 907-8787
It depends on several factors. The type of financing that will be used can significantly affect the bottom line. The seller can also have an affect on the bottom line. Given that most sellers know that our current market here in Pawleys Island, it is somewhat of a buyer's market. That should not affect wether you can sell your home, but it should influence the seller on how to more effectively keep a buyer from putting a bid on a house beside their own. In other words, if the seller is motivated, it is up to the realtor to not only bring the buyer into the picture, but to capture the buyer's attention on this home. There are so many aspects and ways to do this, but today, I am only focusing on the basics involved. In Pawleys Island, currently it is a buyer's market. The statistics indicate that there has been an increase in sales, but at what cost? The prices have fallen and somewhat stabilized and foreclosures and short sales make up a signifigant portion of the real estate sales in the last 12 months. For such a small community known for the lowcountry beachy lifestyle and southern hospitality, this may come as a shock. On the other hand, if a buyer is currently looking, it now puts Pawleys Island on their list of possibilities. Sellers(and local realtors) should recognize this potential and market their properties to those who can buy and those who realize the true value and nature of the beast known as "the current real estate market". With rates at all time lows, and prices now matching, a flood of buyers should be saturating the Pawleys Island market, even with all the doom and gloom, there has never been a better time to capture or realize a dream of owning property on the coast. When you are comparing several places to live, prices may have a much stronger impact than sellers like to think, but realtors know better. Buyers today know they can find a good buy; but getting a good buy is different. That is why it is so important to educate homeowners about the ways to attract buyers not only with the beautiful property and lifestyle they have to offer, but with an incentive to make an offer: What is it that will make your home sell faster? If Joe Smith down the road also has his beautiful property for sale, what is it about your home that is going to get the buyer to purchase your property instead? After considering both homes in condition, price is the next big factor. If both homes are listed equally, then what is it that will motivate the buyer to buy your home?
1) Property condition and location - Property condition and location - this is where the buyer weighs each home against their own personal preferences, criteria, and what they like and don't like about your property. That is why it is so very important that the property be in its best possible condition and depersonalizing, neutralizing, and sprucing up. Most buyers I have worked with make up their mind within the first minute of walking into your home, and sometimes before you even make it in the door. For instance, I was showing property the other day, and the first thing I noticed is the yard; it was a mess. I knew it was going to be a bad one, but decided to take a look anyway. I first had to walk around to the back to find the lockbox. Then, I had to let my clients in the front door (as the key would only work in the backdoor). I couldn't even get the door all the way open because of so much stuff. Regardless of the price, which was the motivating factor, the buyer could not look over the fact of so much clutter. We spent less than 30 seconds in the home, and never looked back. The point is, you can be the lowest price home in the area. But, a buyer will still discount the property if it looks to be poorly taken care of.
2) Price - Must match condition - Offering price is tied into the condition of a property and can either make a property look like a really good deal or a really terrible deal. Overpricing property does not do anyone any favors. The market conditions will predict the selling price, and utilizing this information to your advantage only helps the buyer and seller realize the potential to not only sell the property, but have realistic expectations. Sharing this information with the buyer will also help to create a bigger picture, and to see the value behind the price. Suggested list price and selling price are two different things. It is typical to see a much lower offer than what the property is listed for from a motivated buyer. If the property is priced well to begin with, then the buyer should be educated by their realtor or yours. If you provide this information up front, it may stop the lower bids from coming in altogether. So, how do you get the buyer to offer your asking price? Make sure they realize the signifigance of your property and the great deal they are getting.
3) Incentives - Since it is a buyer's market in Pawleys Island, why not recognize this and offer an incentive to make an offer in the first place. Not only will the buyer navigate towards your home because it shows well, and price is right, but also because you are going to pay a portion of their closing costs (ask your CPA what tax incentives this allows for). Doesn't that sound like a property and homeowner you would want to work with if you were the buyer. Pretty soon, you may be in their shoes (assuming you need to find your next place to live) too.
4) Market trends and statistics - having this knowledge on hand for both yourself and the buyer can help alleviate the long drawn out negotiations by showing that the property is well worth what it is listed at based not only on your own beliefs, but on true, hard facts. Trends can easily move up or down, and it is very important that these trends and statistics are tracked and kept current. To know which way the market is going can help produce a sale instead of kill a potential one.
5) Information - Serious buyers want to find as much information on the property as possible. It is up to the realtor to provide this information; if the seller does not provide it to the realtor, then the buyer can not see it for himself. There are so many things that you may know about the property that may seem insifigant to you, but to a buyer, may make the difference in making the initial offer. Provide as much information as possible - sellers disclosures, cost of utilities, homeowners assocation documents, tax information, school information, neighborhood profile, costs of upkeep, contacts for recurring maintenance, names of appliances, if furniture is for sale, names of plants on your property, care and maintenance records...the list can go on and on. The more you provide, the faster you can get to the closing table.
6) Negotiation - If you happen to be the one to get the offer much lower than your expectations, the last thing you want to have happen is to have no negotiation skills. At this point, this is when the realtor will play a signifigant role in getting to the closing. Negotiation skills is not rocket science. Just like 2+2 is four. This is a fact that can't be denied. Don't be afraid to ask questions, and when negotiating be sure that you can prove your point when making your offer/counters. Don't be afraid to ask - but realize that what you ask for should have some stability and incentive. I am certified in negotiation skills and utilize them on every transaction. I also wish to educate the public about common practices in and facts when it comes to buying and selling real estate. Thank you for taking time out of your day to read this, as I hope to gain your trust as your local Pawleys Island Real Estate advisor. If you or anyone you know looking to buy or sell, please don't hesitate to contact me at (843)907-8787 - I look forward to hearing from you.