Buying? Don’t Scare Your Sellers!

We may just be having fun with the Halloween holiday just a few days away, but if you are buying in this market, you want to make sure you don’t scare away the sellers. We aren’t the hottest market in the nation, but homes for sale in South Lake Tahoe are still low. We are consistently at a 3 month supply and the need for a balanced market is 6 months! So appropriately priced homes for sale in South Lake Tahoe are moving and doing so quickly. Which means the sellers still have the upper hand, which means buyers have to try and stand out above the competition. Looking to make a good impression? Check out these tips! 

1.) You aren’t Pre-APPROVED

“Approved” is meant to be in all caps. Pre-qualified and pre-approved are two different things. Approved means you have the loan approval, you can spend that much and you are good to go. Qualified is a “guesstimate”. We have seen the head aches Zestimates cause and this is no exception. A seller wants a buyer who is ready to go and committed. Don’t make an offer when you aren’t REALLY ready. 

2.) You low ball your initial offer

Listen, we all want a good deal. No one wants to spend more money than they have to. However! When you low ball on the offer price, the down payment or the earnest money, this suggests you are tight on cash. Not to mention, a low offer price can offend the seller. So don’t come in with a low price when making an offer on homes for sale in South Lake Tahoe. Also, consult your South Lake Tahoe realtor on your offer strategy. This is what we do for a living. Let us help you. Otherwise, that seller may disappear without a trace. 

3.) You work with a sketchy lender

While we are still on the money topic, work with a legit lender. Your realtor in South Lake Tahoe should be able to help you with this area by giving you a good recommendation. Since sellers generally want a quick close, they want to work with someone who’s lending won’t go bump in the night. Also, don’t switch lenders mid-deal. It once again suggests your financing is on shaky ground. 


4.) You send a novel length list of repairs

While you are touring the homes for sale in South Lake Tahoe, you may see some things you want fixed before move in. That list may increase once the home inspection comes back. It is unrealistic to expect them to make the home perfect though so pick and choose your battles. A high maintenance buyer can be a real nightmare so handle the “deal killers”, close and make the home yours. 


5.) A list of contingencies

Speaking of a “deal killer”, this is another “pick & choose” your battles scenario. In fact, one of the number one tips a realtor in South Lake Tahoe suggests is removing as many contingencies so long as it is reasonable and doesn’t negatively impact you down the line. If you suspect the home of having lead paint, have it tested. If it comes back negative, move the transaction along. If it comes back positive, ask that it be removed. If you think the fire place isn’t up to code, or their is mold, or whatever you are scared of lurking below, let the home inspector do their job and wait for the results. Then use them as negotiations if appropriate. The scariest contingency of all is when a buyer wants to wait until their current home sells. Sellers want to move on their timeline, not yours. 

6.) Asking for their stuff

That antique chandelier from Harrod’s in London is a show stopper, isn’t it? And that floor to ceiling mirror in the entryway is hard to find! Not so fast. Not everything stays with the house and don’t ask for all their belongings. There will likely be a list of what stays. If there is one item that you can’t stop thinking about that isn’t included in the listing agreement, have your South Lake Tahoe realtor ask their South Lake Tahoe realtor if they are interested in parting ways. If not, don’t make a big deal about it. It can really put off sellers when a buyer is continually asking for their things. 

For more information on buying in this market, give me a call. As a long time local realtor in South Lake Tahoe, I would be happy to help! 


Selling? Don’t Scare Your Buyers!

In honor of Halloween, we thought we’d put together a list of things that can scare buyers away from your home for sale in South Lake Tahoe. As a South Lake Tahoe realtor, I understand how much time and effort goes into preparing a home for the market. However, there could be something sinister still lurking about your home that gives buyer’s the willies. And they are likely things you didn’t even think about. Let’s look at the suspects!

1.) Mystery Scents

This is the first thing you notice when you walk in the door. Whether you are a master chef in the kitchen or one of the kiddos left a perishable treat under their bed a bit too long, you will want to make sure you create a clean smell. We tend to get used to our surroundings so it is easy to overlook this. Don’t go to heavy on the perfume and instead, after a deep clean, choose a light scented candle like clean cotton, cool breeze or a light vanilla. If something smells off for a showing, a buyer might not stay for the whole tour of your home for sale in South Lake Tahoe.

2.) Mean Pets

We know, it is hard to imagine that not everyone loves your fur friend. But if yours aren’t that friendly to anyone outside the family, you will want to take extra precaution to have them secured during a showing. You may have a guard dog that doesn’t take to strangers or a sassy cat that likes to scratch. Even if that isn’t the case and your fur ball is the most loving thing on the planet, put them away for tours and let the buyers know where they are located. Whether in a kennel out back or a crate in the garage.

3.) Dust, Cobwebs and Dirt-Oh My!

You might be justifying this one and thinking “But it is built in Halloween decor!”. Sorry folks, not when you are selling! During the winter months, these may go unnoticed, but when light is streaming in, it highlights dusty blinds, dirt in the entryway and cobwebs in the corner. When people buy, they want it shiny and new, whether it is a car or a South Lake Tahoe home for sale. So be sure to pay attention to these areas and clean up!

4.) Awkward Wall Decor

Listen, your home for sale in South Lake Tahoe is your personal space, so having your personal taste present is somewhat expected. We get it, we really do! While a South Lake Tahoe realtor will always recommend you make it as neutral as possible, we understand that isn’t always possible. However, there are some items that must go! All things politics, taxidermy and awkward artwork needs to go in storage. You are moving anyway, may as well get a head start! 

5.) Half Done Repairs

Nothing is scarier to a buyer looking for a South Lake Tahoe home for sale than unfinished repairs. It suggests a few things: 1.) There are a lot of things wrong with the home. 2.) They will have to inherit these issues, which is more money out of their pockets. So, do everyone a favor and finish what you started. If you can’t, hire a professional. Your local realtor can likely give you some great recommendations. After all, one of the perks of aligning yourself with a true professional is that they have good working relationships with all the local vendors. Even if you are selling “as is”, consider taking care of a few things so someone doesn’t feel like they are taking on a major project or a total tear down.

6.) Lots of Locks

By all means, secure your home. After all, you can never be too safe. However, if your home feels like Fort Knox, you could be suggesting to buyers that they have something to fear. If the front door has 6 heavy duty locks in addition to an alarm system and extra enforcement on every window and exterior door, they may wonder what you are trying to keep out. Not to mention, it could make the South Lake Tahoe home for sale hard to show. If there is one thing us South Lake Tahoe realtors suggest, it is to make it easy for the buyers to view your home. Don’t leave the door wide open while you are gone, but don’t make it so hard that they have to call a lock smith just to get inside for a tour.

For more information on how to get your home ready for the market, give me a call! I would be happy to help!