How long do houses take to sell in Lancaster?
A question I’m asked quite often is how long will my house take to sell? It’s almost like I have a crystal ball up my sleeve and the answer you often get is how long is a piece of string.
Truth is the length of time it takes to sell a house is directly correlated with 3 things
Price it too high and you’ll hang around longer, anything less than perfect presentation and you will find that your buyer’s are turning down the opportunity to buy in search of something more ‘finished’.
Grab a cup of tea and let me show you why.
There is another thing at play too…demand! You may be priced perfectly, have the most amazing presentation, be promoted so well you couldn’t fault it, but who is looking?
Let me show you…
Here’s a chart of all the buyers in the market for a new home at any one time.
At number one are all the people looking for a 3 bedroom semi. Always popular. At the very tip is a quirky house, a house that hasn’t sold and been on the market for years, one with subsidence, or requiring renovation, those that have acres and acres of land, trying to attract a family, EVEN ones that are so highly priced they don’t attract any attention.
If you have a 3 bedroom semi there’s a lot of buyer demand, therefore you should be able to sell your home much more quickly than those in a 5 bedroom home in the countryside. If a sale falls through, you’ll find another buyer relatively quickly. Good isn’t it? Well, that is until you make the wrong choice over the price, presentation or promotion.
If you price too high, you lose a choice of buyer, less will come to see and there’ll be less demand. You’ll move up the scale to a 2. Let’s say you then, in comparison to other equally expensive properties are a little bit dated, perhaps have an older kitchen or tired décor. The demand will wane again moving the demand for your home up the scale. Reducing the number of buyer’s that your home will appeal too.
Are you at the top of the pyramid?? These properties are usually over the logical price, perhaps you went with an agent that told you the highest price and now haven’t sold. Perhaps you think your buyers will want to redecorate anyway so you left in the flowery blue carpet and terracotta wallpapers, or even let your property launch when you weren’t happy with the photographs or the leading image was the wrong one. Each time you made a choice you affected the outcome of where you landed on this scale.
The further up the pyramid you sit, the longer your house will take to sell.
I’ve had a client recently who had a steep ‘cliff like’ garden, not good for those with impending limited mobility. Their house was priced at £600,000 in an area where they are likely to have a mature buyer, one with grandchildren perhaps. There was a dwarf wall to the front of the home with a 30ft drop onto trees and the main road, a frightening thing when you have visiting grandchildren. The entrance to the home had a turning you had to take wide with a normal or low sports car or you’d scratch the car every time. The most likely buyers would have a sports car, lots of buyers that viewed had classic cars that would struggle with this entrance, and they also had caravans and motorhomes!! Nooo, I hear you cry. It was the perfect recipe for the home to be at the number one pyramid place for demand. The very tip!
This means: It’s going to take much longer to sell. They were a number 6 home!
As predicted they did indeed take longer to sell. In fact, they had 3 different agents and were on the market for a whopping 1345 days, that’s a whopping 3 years and 8 months with no hint of a sale.
Their price was correct, the presentation was fabulous, (there were some things buyers would change for personal taste, but it was in amazing condition and clearly very looked after) but the promotion of the home was lacking. The truth was, that the homeowners had made the wrong choice of agent. Each agent had said how lovely it was, how they could send the buyers as they had loads looking, but none of them cut the mustard. They had very little interest at all. The last agent who had them on for 791 days only managed 10 potential buyers in that time.
We made a few adjustments to the interior presentation and promoted the home very differently. We moved them from a 6 to a 5 home, tried to attract a buyer who was still working and had bigger cars (4 wheeled drive ones) or preferred holidays abroad so there were no caravans, as this home clearly wasn’t right for the original buyer. It worked. We had 34 viewings over 14 months. 2 of which offered, reaching a whopping 99.2% of asking price. They sold for £595,000.
Being clear on your home, the demand and how to attract from other areas of the pyramid will increase the buying potential on your home and help you achieve higher prices.
How PRICE Affects Your Buyer Pool
If you start as a 4 bedroom detached home in Lancaster and you price too high, you’ll move up the scale. Your pool of buyers will be smaller.
One key thing to note here is your comparative properties. You’ll suddenly be sat with comparable properties that offer far more than yours. If there are people searching in the higher bracket and see your house offering an average size garden, no garage and a single room, it doesn’t compare to those, with a home office, 4 double bedrooms and a larger garden. These ones might even be in a more desirable area than yours. So who would come and look? Not many, if any at all.
If this happens you’ll often find that you get far less viewings than the other properties that belong in this bracket. You are giving your buyers far less value for money, and harming your potential of a sale, it won’t be quick or hassle free, that’s IF you get one at all. This equates to a Longer time to achieve a sale.
How PRESENTATION Affects Your Buyer Pool
Each time you have something that requires attention, needs replacing or isn’t up to the standard such as blown double glazing etc, your pool of buyers shrinks too. There’s less chance of selling the house with ‘updating required’ than there would be from the ‘stunning décor with Modern gleaming kitchens and Bathrooms’ achieving a sale.
As agents, we see this all the time, when there’s something that requires doing, or fixing, or changing or any effort required from the buyer they make excuses, to not offer, or offer far too low. Which means, in turn, you are less likely to accept the offer because it’s lower or you just won’t get one at all. That blown double glazing window may be just small to you, but to your buyer, it may be a mountain. Therefore you’ll sit on the market for longer!
Each DIY job that is left undone reduces potential purchasers.
The same can be said for the promotion too. A carefully styled property, photographed by a professional, written up in an enticing way, then promoted on different platforms to the right buyers, will absolutely increase the desirability, get more people through the door and ultimately achieve a sale in the shortest time.
I’ll explain this more when we meet.
Where does your home sit? Does it match up with where I think it sits?
If you’d love to know, I’m happy to jump on a quick call with you to find out. Send me your Rightmove link and your phone number and we can see! Send it to firstname.lastname@example.org
Have a great day