How to get your asking price when selling your home

When it comes to selling your home, you’re probably not itching to help anyone get a deal. So if you’re looking to maximize your sale, you’ll need to play hardball.
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You might be a bargain hunter by nature, but when it comes to selling your home, you’re probably not itching to help anyone get a deal.

Fortunately, the real estate market is currently in favor of sellers. All signs indicate 2017 could be the perfect year to offload your home due to lower housing inventory, low but rising interest rates and the increasing cost to rent.

If you’ll be pitching that “for sale” sign in the near future, you’re likely hoping to score your full asking price. However, only about 38 percent of homes sell for 100 percent (or more) of the listing price, according to the National Association of Realtors. So if you’re looking to maximize your sale, you’ll need to play hardball.

Price it right

If your home isn’t priced appropriately from the get-go, you can forget about getting your asking price for it — and you might even sabotage the sale in the process. Buyers who see overpriced home listings are less likely to view the property, much less submit an offer to buy it. Additionally, your home may never even be seen by the folks most likely to buy it because it’s spending wasted time in an inappropriate pricing category.

Counter strategically

Most buyers and sellers recognize a home sale is a negotiation. When you receive an offer for your home, you can usually count on it being lower than the potential buyer is willing to spend. Instead of countering the offer with one lower than your list price but higher than the initial offer, counter with your list price. This shows the buyer you’re serious about the price but still optimistic about making a deal.

Start a war

A lower real estate inventory could work in your favor if you’re looking to get top dollar for your home. It may be possible to start a bidding war — and even get more than your listing price — by refusing to entertain offers until a certain date. Once you’ve generated interest in the property through an open house and online listing, begin accepting offers. Potential buyers will feel the urgency in the situation, and you could end up with a wealth of offers from which to choose.

Give concessions elsewhere

Getting your list price for your home doesn’t necessarily mean you can’t compromise elsewhere. Since buyers are hoping to score a deal themselves, you may want to consider offering other concessions. For example, counter a lower offer with your list price but offer to pay for some (or all) of the closing costs. Or you could offer to make a repair or throw in furniture or appliances not previously part of the deal.

Figure in the figure

While a couple thousand dollars might not mean much in the scope of a real estate transaction, it could mean more than you think when it comes to a buyer’s psyche. Zillow recommends pricing your home in a way that allows it to be found easily in common searches. For example, if your home is priced at $504,000, you could be missing out on a host of potential buyers who cap their price range at $500,000. Pricing the home at $499,999, however, is bound to draw more eyeballs.