Common Mistakes in Real Estate Sales and Purchases

Avoid common pitfalls in real estate transactions with these valuable tips. Learn how to optimize your sales and purchases for better results.

With 15 years of experience in the real estate market, I have gained enough insights to share with you. Today, I want to discuss common mistakes made during the process of selling and buying real estate and provide some tips to help you become a more informed seller or buyer.

Selling real estate may seem simple – just post an ad online and wait for interested parties. However, the reality is often more complex. Both the selling and buying processes involve several factors that can significantly impact the transaction’s timing, success, or even drive potential clients away.

Selling an apartment goes beyond merely posting an advertisement. The role of a real estate agent is more crucial than ever, especially when there are numerous listings and fierce competition. While the level of real estate agents in Estonia has improved, I caution that some agents charge a commission fee only for publishing an ad. In reality, the agent’s service should encompass several stages.

Firstly, it’s important to conduct a market analysis and determine the property’s value. Market analysis involves more than just an agent telling you how much your property is worth. It requires comparative offers, price statistics, and actual market transactions.

Next, a clear sales and marketing plan should be established. The sales and marketing plan precisely outlines what the agent will do for you and when.

Feedback reports are also essential, indicating the actions taken and what needs to be done next. It’s a common practice that if a sale is not progressing and there are no buyers after three months, a price reduction is suggested. However, paying attention to feedback that highlights the actions taken and suggests improvements is worthwhile.

When it comes to purchasing real estate, it’s crucial to ascertain your financial capabilities before visiting properties. Often, people contact agents and start visiting multiple properties, spending hours reviewing them. However, later it turns out that their financial means do not allow them to purchase the desired property. Therefore, it’s important to clarify your financial situation before property viewings to save time and avoid disappointment.

After determining your financial capabilities, it’s advisable to conduct a market analysis and explore the possibilities in different areas. Sit down, make a list of options, and prioritize properties based on your needs. Agents can provide valuable advice in this process, and if you’re using their services, they can also perform a market analysis for you.

It’s also important to understand that relying solely on pictures may not always be reliable. Even with well-presented photos, the property may leave a different impression in person. Let me share an example where a client wanted to exclude an apartment they had seen multiple times online because they had a negative impression of it. However, I suggested we go and see it anyway. In the end, that apartment turned out to be their dream home. Therefore, do not exclude properties based solely on pictures.

Sellers often sell emotions, while buyers are actually purchasing real estate. In the best case scenario, the seller and buyer would meet only at the notary’s office, so I recommend that property owners leave their homes when potential buyers come to view them. It’s common for people not to like each other from the first seconds, which makes the rest of the process very challenging. Imagine being a buyer and visiting someone’s home. Often, this happens in the evening when the buyer is hungry and wants to quickly return home for dinner, unable to focus on what they want to buy. Meanwhile, the sellers are cooking pancakes on the stove, and the only thing the buyer thinks about is leaving. Therefore, it’s advisable for sellers not to be present at home to avoid putting the buyer in an uncomfortable situation.

Another important tip is to create a written price proposal. Based on my experience, a written and signed price proposal holds more weight for the seller than a verbal agreement alone. When a reservation agreement is required, communicating based on a written purchase offer makes the process significantly easier.

In conclusion, there are several mistakes that can impact the progress and success of real estate transactions. With my 15 years of experience in the real estate market, I highly recommend following the tips I have shared to optimize your sales and purchases. Avoiding these common pitfalls will increase your chances of a smooth and successful transaction.

Thank you for reading, and I wish you the best of luck in your real estate endeavors!

Leanika Järve

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