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When its not selling

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If your house has been on the market for ages, you may well have to consider lowering your asking price. It's possible that you were a little over ambitious in the first place, or it may be that the market conditions quickly changed whilst your house was on the market. Or it may simply be that you are unlucky not to find a buyer.

Whatever the reason for the lack of interested buyers, you are faced with the same three options:

Sit it out
Having faith that a buyer will come along and meet the asking price is a strategy that few would recommend. Buyers tend to get more and more wary of properties that have been on the market for a some time and the longer it stays unsold, the worse this effect is going to become. However, sometimes it pays to persevere and you never know when you are going to get lucky and if time is not a factor for you, then a bit of patience could pay off.

Lower the price
This is the option that most people tend to take, especially if they need to sell their home in a hurry in order to co-ordinate with a property purchase. If you are going to lower the price, make sure that you do it in increments that are large enough to make a difference to prospective buyers, but small enough not to deprive you of too much money should you get instantly renewed interest.

Take it off the market
If you are selling out of choice rather than necessity, it can be worth thinking about taking your home off the market for a few months or even years. Waiting until the broader market conditions can help make sure that you get the price you are looking for, but only if your property is valued correctly in the first place. If you are simply asking more than the property is worth, you are going to have trouble finding a buyer whatever the market conditions.

To decide which course of action you should take, you'll have to try to assess for yourself why the property has not been sold. Talk to your agent and get their view. They will be able to tell you whether your problem is symptomatic of the market as a whole or whether it would appear to be as a result of your property-price combination and should advise you on a course of action to take.

Of course, another option that it may be worth trying is changing your estate agent, or at least opening up the sale to multiple agents. It is perfectly possible that for one reason or another the agent you have selected may not have been the most suitable. Allowing other agents to try and sell the property will broaden the number of potential buyers that are reached with your property details and may give your original agents a bit more urgency. Of course, the new agents may recommend an entirely different valuation…

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