Home Auctions in the Boston Area Real Estate Market

You may have read about auctions as a unique way of selling certain homes in the Boston area real estate market. Some creative home sellers have employed this option as an alternative to a traditional listing.

A Closer Look at Boston Area Real Estate Auctions

Auctions are often used to sell Boston area real estate when a home is difficult to appraise

There are basically two different types of auctions: “with reserve” and “without reserve.” An auction without reserve is also referred to as an absolute auction. An absolute auction is one in which the property seller has not established a reserve, or minimum price, and will accept and agree to the highest bid. A reserve auction implies there is a minimum price threshold that the seller has no obligation to accept. For example, on a home the seller feels should fetch, say, $500,000, he may refuse any and all bids less than the $500,000 reserve.

Auctioning real estate does, however, have certain challenges and an auction may not be the right fit for all properties. Three major factors must be examined before selecting an auction as the best method to sell a property: the home being offered for sale, the seller’s situations and desire to sell in a non-traditional manner, and the condition of the real estate market.

  • Unique Boston area real estate that is difficult to appraise may be good prospects for an auction. Often large estates comprised of substantial acreage in addition to a huge house are candidates for auctions.
  • The seller needs to be committed to the concept of an auction and be prepared to act swiftly to accept the highest bidder in the case of an absolute auction.
  • The Boston area real estate market should have a healthy demand for comparable homes even if the inventory is scarce. And when conditions exist that characterize the real estate market as a “seller’s market,” that’s usually a good sign that an auction may be a good idea. Many experts suggest that a home that hasn’t sold after a substantial time on the market may be a prospective candidate for an auction.

When a home is scheduled for auction, sellers often enjoy higher prices fueled by competing bids between buyers who are both motivated to buy and bid with the serious intention of being prepared to act quickly.

On the downside, there are several potential pitfalls that sellers need to consider:

  1. The seller must pay for the cost to advertise the property in the Boston area real estate market even if it isn’t sold.
  2. In the case of a reserve auction, there are no guarantees that the auction will generate a price that meets the reserve.
  3. There is always a risk that the advertising and promotional activities won’t deliver a sufficient number of bidders.

From the buyer’s perspective, financing — if the purchase isn’t a cash transaction — is required to be arranged beforehand. Typically, auctions do not accept bids that are contingent on financing.

Buyers may also experience some prospective problems in the auction process:

  1. Of course, they may be outbid and may lose their chance to purchase the property.
  2. They may incur the expense of property inspections or even appraisal estimates before the auction date, with no guarantee they will be the successful bidder.
  3. They may have to pay required or desired repairs of improvements if they are the winning bidder.

In summary, if you’re intrigued by the idea of auctioning your home for sale, it could possibly be something to consider. An auction could potentially reduce the time your property would be on the Boston area real estate market. Experts recommend visiting other auctions to see how they are conducted. Consult a real estate agent and interview professional auctioneers. Armed with a little knowledge and preparation, you will be better equipped to determine if an auction is the best way to sell your home in the Boston area real estate market.

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Selling Your Boston Area Home

If you’re contemplating selling your Boston area home, there are several steps you can take that may help sell it faster than simply lowering the sales price. Here are a few tips that may pique interest from prospective purchasers and maintain your asking price.

Tips for selling your Boston area home

Boston Area Home Selling Tips:

Be Different Than Others in Your Neighborhood

Remember, one of your first jobs is to make your home as appealing to as many potential homebuyers as possible. To do that, you may have to make your home memorable compared to others in your same neighborhood. Home improvements such as upscale windows, a new roof, or new landscaping may not only help differentiate your Boston area home from the rest of the pack, but they could add value to your home and even increase your asking price.

But, be careful and show restraint. Not every improvement will pay for itself. Some “improvements” are expected by potential home purchasers. For example, adding a bathroom to a three-bedroom, one-bath home may not increase the value, because those homes are “expected” to have at least two bathrooms. So, before you commit to any improvement you think may enhance your property, consult a Boston area home expert to find out the cost versus the reward.

De-Clutter Your House and Yard

Real estate agents say that it’s vitally important to present your home in as pristine a condition as possible. Even though prospects expect your home to have a ”lived-in” look, they want to imagine themselves, their furniture and decor in your home. So it’s probably best to remove excess furniture to create the illusion of larger rooms, as well as storing personal items like “knick-knacks,” trophies and family photographs or portraits. You may also consider hiring a professional Boston area home stager to set up your home for the best first impression possible. De-clutter your yard, too. Bikes, toys and yard maintenance equipment should be stored in the garage, tool shed, or temporarily removed during the home-showing process.

Be Prepared to Deal

Offering concessions to prospective purchasers may be an excellent way to move your home faster than others. Things like offering to pay some or even all closing costs will let homebuyers know you’re serious and ready to make a deal. Whenever you can, however, be prepared to figure such concessions into the asking price. Another attractive feature to home shoppers is for you to consider a quicker closing date. Making your Boston area home available for a new family to move in sooner may separate you from other properties and lead to a quicker sale.

Create Optimum Curb Appeal

Your home’s curb appeal is more than just a popular real estate phrase. Prospective purchasers often size up a home based solely on what it looks like from their car. A home that doesn’t give a good first impression is probably a home that won’t get a second look. Simple things such as a fresh coat of paint on the trim or shutters and a well maintained lawn, flower garden and shrubbery will go a long way in the eyes of the prospective buyer.

Prepare Your Home for a Smooth Move-in

In addition to curb appeal, aesthetics and de-cluttering, it’s also important that everything be in working order. If you have electrical, plumbing or heating and air conditioning issues, address them before you list your home. Even if you disclose those problems it may dissuade Boston area home buyers. They may write your home off as just being too much trouble or too expensive to make it “move-in ready.”

The Price is Right

So, you’ve done all the things suggested and now you’re ready to sell. One last — vital — thing… make sure your price is right! If you’re too high for the market or neighborhood, your home will be ignored. Price it too low and you’ll leave money on the table. It’s best to talk to a real estate agent before you list your Boston area home. They can provide comparable sales for your neighborhood. That will assist you in knowing where to start, what to ask for and what to be prepared to sell it for. Remember, all you want is the best price for the value of your home and its improvements — don’t get greedy, that will prolong the time your home is on the market. And “don’t give away the farm,” either. Consider paying for an appraisal in advance to assist with a sales price if you’re unsure of where to start.

To get more Boston area home selling tips, check out our other articles over in the Boston Home Selling Tips section under Boston Real Estate Categories.

We also offer tips on a daily basis on Twitter and our Facebook Page. Some of which may deal with Boston area home selling tips. Check us out there as well.

Staging Your Boston Area Home When Selling

When trying to sell your Boston area home, you need for it to look its best. Just like when you visit a store and all the goods are arranged on the shelves and display units to make the best possible impression, the same rules apply to you when trying to sell your Boston area home. You want your home to look its very best, which is why you should consider a professional stager to help.

Home stagers are usually brought in before a Boston area home is ever listed for sale, but they may also be able to help with a home that isn’t getting much interest. There are different levels of home staging services available, from simple verbal consultation and suggestions, to complete staging services where rooms are completely rearranged.
If a home stager makes significant changes, ask your agent to take new pictures of your home, since the bulk of home buyers start their search on the Internet these days.
Get more tips and articles pertaining to selling a Boston area home in the Boston Home Selling Tips section of our site below Boston Real Estate Categories in the column to your right.
Remember, we also post tips daily on Twitter and Facebook. We’d love you to check us out there too.

Staging Your Boston Area Home to Sell

Staging your Boston area home for sale can pay off big. On average, redecorating and remodeling a home can bring three times the return on investment at closing.

Staging Your Boston Area Home Integral to Selling

3 tips for staging your Boston area home to sell quicker

Staging your Boston area home is a science more than an art, and has become an integral part of selling homes. Unlike interior design, staging is done not to suit the current homeowners’ tastes, but to make the home appealing to a wide range of prospective buyers.

Bringing out the positive features of the property and improving its show quality should be the lone goal when staging your Boston area home. You want to show the buyer the potential the home has for them.

Three Tips For Staging Your Boston Area Home to Sell

1. Update carpets, wall paint and countertops.
Remodeling is costly, but replacing the carpets, putting on a fresh coat of paint and upgrading the countertops can really make a difference in selling a home. Carpet should be low-profile, sleek and don’t take over the space; light, neutral paint colors; and light-colored quartzite or Carerra marble countertops that are more durable and dense than dark granite countertops.

Today’s buyers don’t generally want fixer-uppers, they want move-in ready.

2. Declutter. Less is more.
Consider using a few focal point pieces to bring buyers’ eyes to the space, but not detract from it. In particular, buyers pay close attention to the kitchen and master suite, which are often cluttered with nick-knacks. Declutter the kitchen and create a spa-like atmosphere in the master bedroom and bathroom. That means: removing unused appliances from kitchen countertops, getting rid of decorative pillows from the bed and putting clean white towels in the bathroom.

3. Homes need a lived-in look.
Vacant homes often take longer to sell because buyers think the homeowner is desperate to sell.
Getting a so-called “home manager” to live on the property to give it a lived-in look can help reduce the chance of getting low-ball offers. Even when staging your Boston area home, the changes should feel organic. Homes shouldn’t have that staged look. They should look like someone lives there.

Get more information as it pertains to staging your Boston area home in our section on Boston Home Selling Tips to your right under Boston Real Estate Categories.

Remember, we post tips daily to Twitter, and also on our Facebook Page. We’d love you to check us out there too.

Selling Your Boston Area Home: Lock Up Valuables

If you’re selling your Boston area home, part of the staging process is removing valuables and anything that could be harmful before you start showing your home. Buyers do not need the distractions and unfortunately, not everyone is honest.

Preparations for Selling Your Boston Area Home

When selling your Boston area home, put away all valuables

Prepare for selling your Boston area home by putting away and locking up valuables like money, jewelry, silverware and collectibles. This makes the home show better and buyers won’t become fixated on the things in the home instead of the home itself. Your Boston area home will sell faster and not linger on the market when it is is in prime selling condition.

Potentially harmful items like guns, ammunition, knives and prescription drugs are items that can tempt a less than honest person. They could also tempt a child that may be along for the ride and none of us wants a child to get hurt. Even something innocent like aspirin or cough syrup could cause physical harm in the wrong hands. To be safe, put it away and totally out of sight when selling your Boston area home.

Alcoholic beverages should not be left out either. It’s easy enough to put them away in a cabinet so they will not be a distraction. Liquor sitting out shouts at the buyers that the seller really likes to drink. Nothing should stand in the way of a buyer thinking about the house instead of wondering about the seller’s personal living habits.

By removing these items before selling your Boston area home, the home is in the spotlight, not the valuables, firearms or prescriptions. Think smart and make your Boston area home show ready with all valuables and harmful items locked up and safely put away.

Get more tips and articles pertaining to selling your Boston area home in the Boston Home Selling Tips section of our site below Boston Real Estate Categories in the column to your right.

Remember, we also post tips on Facebook and Twitter. Follow us there for more tips on selling your Boston area home.