How to Sell Your House...to me.

I'm a buyer, not a seller, and I am frustrated. No existing house to sell, excellent credit, 20% down payment, flexible on occupancy and yet...no house. I can't find anything I love. And yes, I have to love it, I will be there a while.

I have some requirements and I'm in a position to wait until I find them. That said, I'm also one of those people that can see potential, therefore flexible in some of those requirements, price pending. Just look at our lake house. Total. Shit. Hole. When purchased, that is. Today, perfect weekend home wanting for nothing (except maybe some gravel around the house and an outdoor shower).

So why can't I find anything? Well, first let me state that there are zero homes on MLS that I am not aware of in desired neighborhoods. I have been watching for some time. Inventory in this middle tier (i.e. not $100K and not $1M) seems to be lacking--either too old (Garden Hills, VA Highlands, Dunwoody) or too cookie cutter (Roswell, Alpharetta, Marietta, wretch). There are several foreclosures and short sales of beautiful homes but I just don't know that I have the will and patience to wait for the bank to approve my offer...that is if they ever respond in the first place.

So, outside of access to bank-owned homes, I have a method. I find them online, then do a drive by before I call in the agent for the tour. Trial and error has taught me that pictures only show so much and I have wasted much time looking at homes that I know I won't buy the minute I drive down the street. The pictures either tell too little or there simply aren't enough of them. I get it, highlight the appealing aspects of your home. But know that the not so appealing aspects aren't going to disappear just because you don't put them in pictures.

And damn, it's frustrating. When we sold our home, we took picutres of everything...inside, outside and from every perspective...even the funky little hand painted (while probably drunk) brick wall that very few people would actually appreciate.  We wanted people to know what our home had to offer and exactly what they were getting, therefore ensuring that outside of open houses anyone that came to look at our house was seriously interested and no surprises were waiting for them upon arrival.

We sold our house, very quickly. And even closed the day the market tanked in 2008. We did also take the time to stage our home (ourselves, with some fresh paint, a few candles and a couple pillows), which I highly recommend. Style is subjective, so go neutral and inviting. Oh, and although you might think this is common sense, please keep it clean. I assure you I won't want to buy a house with dirty pots and pans on the stove or laundry on the bedroom floor. Yes, I've seen this...in pictures to sell the house nonetheless.

As I said, I'm the buyer. And all I want is the same courtesy I extended when I sold my house. Be descriptive, put it out there, and don't waste my time. A few of my favorites:


What does this tell me? The room is green, it has some carpet, two windows and a ceiling fan. That's it. Is it a bedroom, dining room, office? You get my point. And there are nine million pictures just like this out there. 





Again. WTF? Beyond the hideous color, it's a bathtub. And it's dirty. Seriously. 





Now this, this is what I am talking about. Upon first glance, classic Collier Hills 1960's era ranch. Look to the left. That would be Interstate 75. They could have taken this picture to omit that little detail, but they didn't, and therefore I did not waste my time. 




...and the flip side. Beautiful home, inside and out. What they don't show you is the eyesore accross the street in the form of a metal fence that looks like something you might find at the state pen. Not to mention, I don't think I'd ever want to meet the people that live there.  






There has to be an easier way to buy a house. 

Comments

  1. courtney! do you have a buyer's agent??? rob has the best buyer's agent in atlanta! his team is not number one in not only many intown neighborhoods, but also number one in their kw office by a long shot (seriously a long shot! ) so.. why not give him a call and talk. i am sure not only can his buyer's agent save you time and hassle by pre-viewing homes and going thru your lists of must haves etc, i am sure you WILL find a home (in YOUR desired neighborhoods) and get a GREAT deal on it. well, i will leave the last part up to them. just a thought.

    - carl

    (rob@redrobingroup.com) or.. 404.906.5857

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