Ann Motz
Ann Motz
Ann Motz Realtors
892 Goodman Rd. East Ste. 4
Southaven, MS 38671

Market Awareness Bolsters

With Labor Day behind us, the serious fall home buying season is upon us. If you will be scouring the market for a new residence, you are likely to be in luck: across the nation, more sellers are being coaxed off of the sidelines. According to the Associated Press, “A fourth straight monthly increase of sales in existing homes provided the latest evidence…that the U.S. housing market is rebounding…” The rise comprised “the highest annual rate since September of last year.”

With temptingly low interest rates and batches of homes hitting the market from sellers motivated to complete their sales before the holidays, home buying consumers have ample reason to think their timing is good. Once the right property has been found, success in home buying negotiations determine what happens next:

The Asking Price

When the subject property is one that has just recently come onto the market, the asking price may or may not be negotiable. The odds of encountering more price flexibility increase once a property has lingered on the market for 60 days or more: depending on their own timing requirements, sellers may be more inclined to entertain a lower offer as time passes. In today’s market, if a property falls into that category, many buyers will offer 1% to 10% below the asking price—especially if recently closed comparables provide support.


If the seller isn’t budging on price, consider negotiating through other aspects of the transaction—seller-paid closing costs, repairs to the home, moving costs, or asking that appliances be included in the deal. This won’t lower the asking price, but the resulting savings can have the same effect.

Market Awareness

Being prepared to work with your agent by taking advantage of the research that is made available. By becoming aware of home buying conditions in each of your target neighborhoods, you’ll be well prepared for gauging the range of offers likely to be found acceptable. Is new housing construction underway that will increase the supply of homes? Are there many homes that have sold quickly in recent history? Or is the neighborhood less in demand? It’s important to understand the climate you will be negotiating in so you can land a superior home and at a superior price.

If you’re preparing for the home buying process this fall, I’d like to invite you to give me a call to discuss current and upcoming inventory. We can set out a home buying strategy that you feel comfortable with—one that puts you in your next home!

Sprucing Up for Fall!

So…should you give up on selling your home as we move into the cooler months?

Far from it! In fact, many agents with years of experience under their belts have done the math and consider autumn to be the second best season to sell a home. When you think about it, it’s logical. For one thing, there certainly are prospects who won’t wait—buyers who will be happily mowing their new lawns by the time next spring rolls around. Weather is another reason: fall brings many moderate, perfect-for-home-touring days. Then there’s the calendar itself, providing extra motivation to buy (e.g., everyone who wants to be in their new home before the holidays, or who needs to complete the sale in tax year 2014).

For those who aren’t falling for the wait-until-spring notion, here are a few tips that will help you spruce up your property for the fall sales market:

First off, make sure all of the personal summertime clutter—the kids’ camp gear, pool floats, the by-now thoroughly bent croquet wickets—are out of sight. Put the yard into tip-top condition with grass cut, shrubbery tamed, and lawn raked. You should be able to step out the back door and view an uncluttered vista. As always, the object is to enable anyone who visits to readily visualize their own family’s stuff in the cleared outdoor space.

Shorter days means waning natural light, so selling your home in autumn requires a little extra attention to lighting touches. To guarantee the home looks it’s best even in late afternoon, open the draperies, blinds, and shutters, and make sure lights and lamps are all turned on. Outside, anywhere the summer’s growing season has resulted in plantings that have overgrown windows, now is the time to trim them—it’s always amazing how less than an hour of snipping can brighten up a home’s interior. You may also consider adding some lighting along walkways, or a well-placed floodlight over the driveway. As we move deeper toward winter, those features will give a subtle boost to after-workday early evening showings.

You don’t have to have hired a professional stager to take advantage of the positive seasonal touches that go with the advent of autumn. Colorful mums, warm-hued candles, pumpkins (or just about any harvest-themed table décor items)—all are familiar details that have the predictable effect of helping people feel more at home. A few well-placed accents don’t take nearly as much effort as some other aspects of selling yourhome, but taken together, all contribute to a welcoming presentation.

Where is the nearest pumpkin patch? Where are the closest autumn-themed school or community festivities? Selling a home in fall can benefit when you leave some material about our local seasonal activities in the entryway. Sometimes the charm of a neighborhood winds up being the deciding factor for a waffling prospective buyer.

If you’ve been undecided about whether selling your home now—or waiting until next spring—is the best course of action, why not contact me today for a preliminary walk-through and pricing evaluation. I think we can put together a plan in action to get your home sold for top dollar sooner rather than later!