Some properties are located in prime locations. They're in close proximity to downtown areas, shopping centers or located within an excellent school district. Selling homes in these neighborhood are a breeze, with buyers presenting their offers within days of a listing going live. Other neighborhoods, however, aren't as appealing to homebuyers.
Whether the homes are older and not as attractive, or the neighborhood is located near a noisy, busy highway or in an area with a lot of congestion, prospective buyers may feel a particular home is in a bad location. If you're attempting to sell a property in an area that doesn't have the best reputation, you have your work cut out for you.
You can’t change the location of the house, but you can make the home more appealing.
Here are five tips to sell a home in a bad location:
1. Give desirable directions
Sometimes, buyers can take more than one route to a house. If you're lucky, one of these routes will be more scenic and showcase beautiful parts of the neighborhood.
When you schedule showings for the property, provide driving directions that take buyers and other agents down roads that appeal to the eyes. Maybe one side of the neighborhood has nicely manicured lawns, a park or walking trails, whereas the other side has overgrown yards.
You can’t hide unattractive features of a neighborhood forever. The goal is for buyers to fall in love with a property before they make a judgment call about the neighborhood.
2. Improve curb appeal
To sell a home in a bad location, you have to dazzle buyers from the second they pull into the driveway. If the home is located in an older neighborhood or in an area undergoing revitalization, you’ll have to entice buyers by making the home stands out from the others, or else they won’t give the property a fair amount of attention.
To do this, urge your sellers to improve the property’s curb appeal. This includes keeping the lawn mowed and trimmed, removing dead shrubs and trees, decluttering the yard, painting the shutters and doors, and power washing the outside. The home should appear warm and inviting where buyers envision themselves living there. If the home backs up to a property that isn’t well maintained, suggest putting up a fence or planting shrubbery to provide a clear divide between property lines and hide unappealing views.
3. Stage the home
Not only should the home’s exterior “wow” buyers, they should be impressed by the interior. If you're selling a home in a bad location, recommend your sellers use a professional home staging company. Going the extra mile attracts greater interest. Since selling a home is a numbers game, the more people who tour the property, the sooner you’ll get an offer.
Home staging presents a home in the most favorable light. The process includes strategically positioning furniture to give the illusion of more space, and using home accents, color and decor to make a home cozy and attractive. If the property offers everything a buyer needs, he might overlook unappealing aspects of the neighborhood.
4. Don’t overspend on upgrades
Some home sellers spend a lot of money on upgrades so they can sell their homes for top dollars. This approach can work, but it can also backfire when the property has a bad location.
If you know selling the property will be an uphill battle, encourage clients to scale back or limit money spent on upgrades. They can make improvements to the property, but they shouldn’t overdo it. This way, they can afford a lower asking price. If the price is less than comparable sales, the home will gain more attention and sell faster.
5. Give concessions
Sellers take several factors into consideration when looking for a home, such as the price of the home, square footage and location. Even if your client’s property has a fair price and adequate space, buyers may pass on the home in favor of a property in a good location.
To sell the property faster, your sellers might have to dip into their pockets and offer concessions to compensate for a bad location. This can include paying a percentage of the buyer’s closing costs. FHA home loans allow sellers to contribute up to 6% in a buyer’s closing costs, whereas conventional home loans allows sellers to contribute up to 3%. Sellers can also give buyers a credit toward improvements or repairs, such as replacing the carpet, or offer the buyer a one-year home warranty.
There's a buyer for every house, even one with a challenging location.
Have you sold a home in an undesirable location? Did you use any of the strategies we mentioned above? Let us know in the comments.