7 ways to reduce stress when selling your home

By Mark Rosanes

It’s hard not to feel anxious when you’re selling your home. After all, a single misstep can have huge financial consequences. But with sufficient planning and preparation, you can eliminate much of the stress and worry that often comes with the home-selling process.

Here are some ways you can reduce stress levels when the time comes to sell your home.

1. Manage your expectations when selling your home.

One of the biggest sources of stress when putting your home in the market is the uncertainty. Once you put your house for sale, questions like “what if it doesn’t sell for my asking price” or “what if it sits too long in the market” begin to enter your thoughts. The best way to manage your expectations is increase your understanding of the market. You can do this on your own through research or you can talk to your real estate agent, who can give you useful insights about the industry.

2. Reduce stress by performing due diligence.

Selling your home is a complicated process and there are a lot of things you need to consider ensuring that you navigate it successfully. Before jumping headlong into the home sales process, make sure you practice due diligence to minimise anxiety and avoid committing costly mistakes. Here are some important factors you need to take into account when selling your property.

Hidden costs

Selling your home involves expenses that can easily be overlooked, especially when you are focused too much on the profit that can come from an offer. These expenses can easily add up to several thousands of dollars, so it is crucial for you to factor in all these costs to have a realistic expectation on how much you can gain after a successful transaction. These include:

  • Agents commission
  • Capital gains tax
  • Conveyancer or legal fees
  • Council rates
  • Lender’s fees
  • Property-styling expenses
  • Advertising costs

Value of the property

Price is one of the biggest factors that can lead to a quick sale, yet many homeowners commit the common mistake of setting an unrealistic price, driving away potential buyers. To come up with a realistic asking price, experts advise that you do research on comparable homes in your area to give you an idea on how much properties there are actually worth. It is also advisable to get a professional property valuation, so you can have an accurate estimate of your home’s value.

Timing of the sale

One of the age-old questions that has hounded home sellers is when the right time is to put their property on sale. Many experts say that spring is the prime time to sell because of the good weather and overabundance of properties, with autumn coming in at second. Summer – because it coincides with the holiday season – and winter – because of cold weather – are not considered ideal if you are looking for a quick sale. If you are unsure of when to list your property to get the maximum value, it is best to talk with your real estate agent.

Selling method

Many homeowners enlist the services of a real estate agent to help them sell their properties. This is common for first-time sellers who may feel that they do not have ample industry understanding to navigate the process. But there is a growing trend, called “for sale by owner” or FSBO, where the agent is removed from the equation and homeowners take it upon themselves to sell their property. If you are confident about your housing industry knowledge, then you can afford to go this route.

3. Prepare your home.

When selling your home, creating a positive first impression is one of the most crucial keys to success. Spending time and effort to prepare your home also reduces your stress levels as you are confident that your house is being shown in the best light possible. To stir buyer interest, it is advisable that you invest in good advertising, stage your home to highlight its strengths, and finish the necessary repairs and renovations before putting your home in the market.

4. Be open and flexible.

Your home is place where a lot of memories have been created and selling it can be an emotionally charged process. If you cannot keep your objectivity throughout the transaction, then it will be difficult for you to find a buyer. The key to finding the right buyer is to tune out negative emotions, take feedback constructively, and be flexible. Maybe your heart is set on a specific price for your home, but if the market is indicating something lower, it pays to be adaptable. Keeping an open mind when examining offers can facilitate the sales process.

5. Choose the right agent.

Working with an incompetent real estate agent can sabotage your chances of making a sale and give you lots of unnecessary frustration. They may devalue your property, cause selling delays, and even turn off potential buyers. To avoid this, experts suggest taking your time to find an agent that you can develop a strong working relationship with and who has your best interests at heart. A good agent should also have a deep knowledge of your local market and has a successful selling experience in the area.

6. Take safety precautions.

Selling your home can be a draining endeavour under normal circumstances – and with the pandemic placing the entire housing market in unprecedented times, another layer of concern has been added to the sales process. To minimise worries, it is best to follow COVID-19 safety guidelines. When conducting face-to-face viewings, for example, you should keep the number of people per visit at a minimum, and request visitors to wear masks. You can also provide hand sanitiser. Once the visitors leave, make sure your home is disinfected immediately.

7. Practice self-care.

While it is easy to get overwhelmed with the home-selling process, one thing you should never forget is to take care of yourself. Maintaining a healthy lifestyle throughout the process is also crucial in maintaining mental clarity. By eating well and getting sufficient sleep and exercise, you can have the energy and stamina to take on the challenges that may come your way. It also helps to maintain a positive mindset. Remember, your attitude and responses to the issues you face will inevitably dictate how stressful the process will be.

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