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Your Guide to Selling a Home

Everything you need to know to buy a home without an agent.

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Your Buyers

Now that you’ve analyzed your home, location, amenities, and surrounding area, next up is to understand who your likely buyers would be.  This will guide you in deciding how to prep your home for sale, and how to market your home and who to target with your marketing.

Note: be careful of violating fair housing laws. The Fair Housing Act (FHA) is a federal law that prohibits discrimination in housing-related activities, including selling, based on race, color, religion, sex, national origin, disability, familial status, or handicap.

If you are going to spend money on updating your home, staging, and advertising, you want to make sure your are spending your money wisely on what is most likely needed and wanted from a home like yours by the buyers most likely going to buy your home. For example, if your home is in a resort location, you will more likely need something turn-key with repairs and updates and set up advertising to people in other cities and even states and countries to find buyers looking for that second home in a resort location. That is completely different than a small 1 bedroom condo right next to a university where either an investor of rentals would buy, or perhaps the parents of kids heading to that university for 4 years. The goal is to determine how to spend money to get you the highest sales price and/or quickest sale for your home.

If your home is 3 bedrooms or more, there is a higher likelihood that a family would be looking to buy your home. Families with young children may not have the time to live through renovations if the home is really out of date (or broken faucets and appliances). Families may be interested to know how the kids get to the schools - walk or school bus? Is there a park walking distance away where they can take the kids out? Is the yard safe for the kids to play in, and can they keep an eye on them from inside the home? 

Student housing tend to be walking distance to universities and the neighborhoods are primarily rentals with students. 

If your home is near a university, a key time to market your home is early spring and while parents are picking up their kids from the dorms before summer break. You also want to reach out to investors who may be anywhere in the US or world who invest or would like to invest in the area. Definitely reach out to other investors who own properties in the same area, as they will understand the rental potential of your home. We'll cover how to do this when you get to the marketing your home section of the guide!

If your home is near a military base, your marketing will want to be directed to those moving to the area to serve at the base. 

If your home is in a resort town then your marketing typically needs to include reaching out to potential buyers in other cities and states as well as the local area. Many people look for a second home in resort towns, whether it is to be a snow-bird heading south for the winter, winter oasis by a ski resort, cabin getaway in the woods, or the family's lake house. Most of these buyers are looking for turn-key ready to go so they can use it right away, and because many of them live hours away they don't want to have to manage updating the home. You will want to market locally as well as within a few hours drive and possibly nationwide to find potential buyers!

Action Items
  • You know who your likely buyer demographics are.
  • You know what they are looking for in a home.
  • You will use this information to help decide what to repair and update and help you price your home.
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