If you own or live in Queens, then you already know that we do things differently here. Not only are we the most diverse county in the world, but we also are part of New York City which means that we have a whole different set of rules when it comes to real estate. In our experience, we’ve seen the Department of Buildings, Environmental Control Board, Housing Preservation & Development, Zoning, Air Rights, etc. To add to that, we have buyers coming here from all over the world. The good news is that there is a simple formula that will guarantee you sell your home for top dollar in Queens NY. With the Spring season right around the corner, we felt it very appropriate to compile and share a list of what we believe you must do in order to make sure you net the most profit from the sale of your Queens home.
1. Price Right
In our industry we have a few sayings, one is that “Price + Condition = Value”, the other is that “80% of Marketing is Price”. So, the importance of setting the right price for your property cannot be understated. Pricing is a science, especially in Queens because we have Coops, Condos, One Families, Multi Families, Building Possibilities, etc. To set the right price you really need to go through a thorough market analysis of sales, pendings, active listings, and month’s supply. We meet with Sellers all the time and when we go through comps with them, we see listing after listing that were on the market for 100, 200, 300 days, etc. These are people who set the wrong listing price to begin with, and as a result, end up chasing the market. You never want to chase the market because the longer you are on the market, the more stale your listing gets and the lower the eventual selling price.
2. Maximize Listing Exposure
In Queens, we have buyers and agents coming from all parts of the world. Some are coming from Overseas to live, some are foreign investors, some are being priced out from Brooklyn & Manhattan, and some are your classic first time/repeat buyer. As a result, it’s very important that you give your property maximum exposure to these groups if you really want to sell for the most money possible. The reason why is because you really never know how much a buyer is willing to pay for your property until you open it up to the market place. We see this time and time again with our own listings. For example, last year we had a listing that sold for $60K over asking price! Appraisal came in at $750K and the buyer was still willing to buy. This may seem like common sense, and it may seem like something anyone can do, but the truth is that it requires a lot of time, research, and money to do so.
When we say Agent cooperation, we mean listing agents cooperating with Buyer & Broker agents. This is extremely important if you want to get maximum exposure, however, due to traditional practices here in Queens, it’s something that unfortunately doesn’t always happen. This is a big problem that we see in the industry and one reason why is because some listing agents take a listing with the objective of getting both sides of the deal, because that means double the commission. This is a win-lose situation because while the agent makes out with a large commission, the seller ends up selling below market value which means less profit. We see this a lot, and we believe it is the high price points in Queens that can make some agents compromise their own values and violate their fiduciary duty. That’s why whenever we take a listing, we invite every single agent we know to bring their buyers, and as agents call us for availability, we are very cooperative in helping them get their buuers in to see it. As a result, most of our listings sell to other agents because most of the time, someone else has the buyer that is willing to pay the most money.
4. Make your Home Accessible for Showings
Accessibility is huge in Queens. Why? Because we are in a very desirable area of NYC, so if you price a property right, you will definitely have people calling you to see the place. The problem comes when we can’t get in to see the place, either due to an owner’s limited availability, or because of tenant issues. Either way, this can be disastrous if your goal is to sell for the best price possible. Ideally, you want to make sure that there will be plenty of access available so that every buyer that wants to see the house, actually gets to see it. There are strategies we use for gaining accessibility, especially if you have tenants. If your property is owner occupied, then just know that you need to make your home accessible, and if you have tenants, you need decide whether you will sell without tenants, or make sure that they will cooperate with showing appts. This will help you get the most offers possible.
5. Prepare the Home (Condition)
You only get one chance to make a first impression, this is true in life, and true in real estate. If you want to net the most money from your sale, you need to make sure the home shows in it’s best light. That doesn’t mean you have to go and renovate the whole house, but you do need to prep the home for the sale. If your property is in good condition, then stage it using your furniture and de-clutter to showcase the space, and maximize lighting. This will help you sell faster. If your property needs work, then just make sure you touch up old damage areas and make sure it is de-cluttered, this way the renovation projects seem less daunting and more cosmetic to potential buyers.
Blog and Site Courtesy of George and Abigail Herrera, Realtors & Owners of one of the Highest Rated Real Estate Agents in Queens, the Queens Home Team at Keller Williams Realty Landmark II.