Our house has been listed for about 2 months now, and I have to admit, my frustration level is rising. Not only have we not received any offers, we’ve only had 3 showings! WTF?
My well-meaning friends keep telling me how nice the house looks, what a good job we did on the renovations, and so on, but it makes me wonder when the requests for viewings are so low. And lets face it, the chances of selling the place without at least a walk-through are something less than zero.
So why isn’t anyone interested? Is it that 5 bedrooms is too large? Is it the wood heat? Is the price too high? (We’ve already reduced the price once.) Is it that we chose the wrong real estate agent? (More on this later.) I’m running out of ideas.
The house has never looked better. It takes up a fair portion of my day keeping up on the housecleaning and mess to make sure it’s ready at a moment’s notice. Trust me, with my aptitude for housecleaning, this is no mean feat. As well, Mike has been keeping the yard immaculate, mowing, trimming, and throwing dirty looks at the neighbors if their own lawns haven’t been cut in the last 24 hours.
After each of the showings, the realtor assured us that “the house showed very well”, whatever that means. To me, that’s like when someone asks how you are and you automatically answer “fine.” No real information, just a pat answer. What did they like? What didn’t they like? What could we do to improve the place? The only real feedback we’ve received was from the first couple who looked at it. While they seemed very interested, they did comment that “it was a lot of white.”
Well, it is a lot of white. But the reason for that is because I was painting it for someone else. I knew I wasn’t staying, and rather than choose a color that would no doubt be rejected, I chose to paint all walls white so that whoever moved in next had a clean palette to start with. As well, if they didn’t get around to painting right away, their belongings would still coordinate with the walls, regardless of colors.
I wanted to make it easy for the next owners. I remember too well when we first started shopping for our house. If some of the paint schemes were nasty, others were downright hideous. One house in particular, the living room was a different color on each wall, pastel yellow, dusty purple, vivid chartreuse and a jewel tone ruby red. And the agent was assuring us that it had been freshly painted within the last couple of months. She got the idea I wasn’t interested when I asked “You mean they did that on purpose?”
Next house please. To this day, I can’t conceive what color of furniture or accessories I could/would have put in that room. But I digress.
Without beating about the bush, it’s quite possible that we’ve made a mistake in our choice of a real estate agent. She came highly recommended to us by trusted friends, and at the beginning, she seemed eager and enthusiastic. But once we signed with her, I’ve been less than thrilled with her effectiveness. It seems we have to ask repeatedly (nag) to get things changed/updated, things that were planned haven’t happened at all, and I don’t feel that she’s using websites and social media up to their full potential.
A good example: A week before our first showing, we received our order of firewood. It’s 5+ cord of cut and split seasoned hardwood, more than enough to heat the house for the winter. If the house doesn’t sell, we’ll need it. If it does sell, we’ve decided to throw the wood in on the house sale (a value of over $1000) at no extra charge. Basically, the new owners would heat the first winter for free.
We informed the realtor of this and asked that it be included in the description on the MLS listing, to which she agreed. A week later we made the same request. Still nothing. Last night, Mike asked for the third time that it be included on the website. We were told that heat was an issue that was usually only asked about when prospective buyers were viewing the house. Mike quickly pointed out that we didn’t HAVE anyone viewing the house, and she promised it would be on the website in the morning. (Actually, it was lunchtime, but it did finally appear.)
Our contract runs out at the end of November, and we’ve decided not to renew with this particular company. We’ll leave it off the market until we return from our Holiday trip to Texas early in the new year, and we’ll choose a new realtor then.
I apologize for the rant, but as I said, the frustration level is rising. That being said, the rest is a guessing and waiting game. I’ve never been particularly good at either. If patience is a virtue, Lord help me, I’m in trouble.
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