Home not selling? 3 Steps to Get it Sold Fast.

how to sell a home now

Unless you have avoided the news for the last eight months, it is clear that the real estate market is hot for sellers around the country.

However, this can only make things feel even more frustrating if you’re one of the few homes that are not selling.

Not so fun fact, did you know that in Portland of the 1067 detached Portland homes currently for sale a full 387 have been on the Portland market active for more than 30 days? That means 36% off all homes for sale in Portland right now have been sitting active, fingers crossed for an offer, for more than 30 days.

Of those 387 homes that have been sitting on the market for more than 30 days, the longest on the market in Portland right now has collected a whopping 692 days on market and about 10% of the 387 homes sitting have been listed longer than 120 days on market.

So while most are selling fast, there are plenty of frustrated home sellers in Portland and plenty more to come as the fall and winter months in the Portland real estate market are consistently, historically slower than the spring and summer months. So without further explanation, here is our three step guide to selling your home after it failed to sell right away.

Step 1. Improve the house and lot, if possible.

If your Realtor hasn’t already made suggestions on how to improve the look and feel of the home, get them back in there to give you some advice. If the Realtor’s advice isn’t enough, consult with a local interior designer. Some Realtors offer free in-home interior designer consultation with every home sale (hint hint) because they know sometimes the best expert is the person who performs interior design for a living. Clutter is a major problem (buyers can’t visualize themselves inside). Bad curb appeal is a major problem (home buyers won’t look past the first photo to see the rest of the house). Be sure to explore all your options including physical and virtual staging.

Step 2. Improve the presentation of the house online, if needed.

I’ve been licensed since 2003 and my team of 12 has completed more than 2,000 home sales. We’re expert marketers and know what to do to put a home in its best possible light online. If the presentation of the home is already complete (meaning the buyer can see all the major highlights online) and the photos and 3D (3D should be a standard feature now) are good, then it won’t help to keep changing the photos around. Leave them alone. But if you don’t have 3D or the photos are not really professional, or if the major highlights of the home aren’t clean in the online presentation – get your Realtor to fix it. Finally, double check all the data. Make sure the lot size and sq. ft. is correct. Make sure the property type is correct, it shows up on the right spot on map searches, and that the buyer’s agent commission being offered by your selling Realtor is competitive for the area (it is an important part of the presentation).

Step 3. If the first two don’t work, change the price and here’s when and how to do so.

If you’ve exhausted your options above, then it is time to change the price. We recommend changing the price on a Wed. or Thursday in advance of the coming weekend since most buyer traffic is over the weekend. Then wait. If after at least two weekends pass, consider dropping the price again. It takes at least two weeks for any potential buyers to see the price drop and make arrangements to see the home.

Change the price based on leading numbers. If you’re changing the first number in a price, of course, that would make a huge difference. While it is not often possible, a home that isn’t selling at $510,000 for example, may sell right away at 499,000 – because you changed the first number. This has a massive psychological impact, and it also has a massive effect on online search results, which is the primary way in which homes are sold across the country. If you can’t change the first number, ask yourself if you can change the second one, and so on until you’ve made a change you can live with.

August 6, 2021

Stephen FitzMaurice

Stephen FitzMaurice, Realtor is a top 5% real estate agent in the U.S. A Principal Broker in Oregon, Managing Broker in Washington, he has been licensed since 2003 for residential real estate sales. Call his team in Oregon at 503-714-1111 or in Washington at 360-345-3833.

4% max to sell a home in Portland and SW Washington.
4.25% max to sell a home in Salem and Bend.
Over 2,000 homes sold.