5 Reasons Homes Don’t Sell & How to Avoid Them

Homes have been a hot commodity over the better part of the last decade. In Los Angeles County, home values have gone from an average of $439k in 2013, to $815K in 2023. It is no secret that real estate in California, particularly in Southern California’s South Bay, is in high demand. With such demand for property coupled with limited inventory, you would think practically every home that goes up for sale gets sold, but this is not always the case.

There are certain things we have control over when selling your home, such as how it looks and feels. Likewise, there are other things that are beyond our control, such as where it is. To give your home the best chance at a successful sale, we want to address anything that is within our control to make your home more appealing to buyers. Here are 5 reasons homes do not sell and how we avoid them for our sellers.

1. The Price is Too High

The vast majority of buyers search for homes based on price. One of the quickest ways to discourage potential buyers from seeing your home is by pricing the home too high. Overpricing your home when selling is something we strongly discourage because the first few weeks on the market are crucial, and if your price is scaring potential buyers away, you could find yourself without offers.

Pricing Homes Accordingly

Pricing is a key component when selling a home. Everything about the home should be taken into consideration when setting the price; the condition, location, home market, and several other factors, like school districts, should all be considered when setting the price of a home.

When setting a price, we suggest comparing the home to similar properties that have sold recently in the area. Doing so should give you a range of what similar-sized homes are selling for in our area. If your home just had work done prior to going on the market, has a fresh coat of paint on the walls, and looks neat and tidy, odds are you can set your price on the higher end of the spectrum. If your home needs some work, adjusting your price to reflect that can be the difference between a successful sale and staying on the market for months and months.

2. Home is in Rough Shape

A significant factor that often dissuades potential home buyers, particularly first-time buyers, from making a purchase is the condition of the property. The vast majority of buyers today are looking for turn-key homes that need very little before moving in. Dealing with dated appliances, worn flooring, countertops, cabinets, and or vanities can often put-off many potential buyers.

Repairs & Upgrades Before Selling

Sometimes, a seller is more interested in a quick, easy sale and may prefer to lower the price of the home to compensate for the condition. This works! However, the seller has to be willing to price the home according to its condition, and that is often a challenge.

On the other hand, if a seller is willing to spend a bit of time to get the property cleaned, decluttered, repaired, or maybe even upgraded before selling, the investment is often WELL worth it. We have been facilitating home remodels for our clients who are selling their homes for over 20 years and know where your money goes the furthest. Simply cleaning up and decluttering the property can make a huge difference in the appeal to buyers. Other things such as replacing flooring, countertops, and applying new paint are among the biggest bang-for-your-buck repairs/upgrades you can do to a property before selling.

Doing this will not only improve your appeal with buyers but may even facilitate certain loan types, such as FHA or VA, which tend to be more strict with the condition of the property during an appraisal.

3. Ineffective Marketing

The four principles of marketing are product, price, placement, and promotion. Successful marketing involves the cohesion of these four principles; they must work together or else you risk losing engagement with your audience! If any of these areas are out of alignment on your home, it could be said that we are not marketing effectively.

When marketing real estate, we take the product (the home), come up with a price (sale price), determine the placement (showings/viewings/photos/videos/etc.), and run promotions (open houses, ads, etc). Reaching potential buyers is a key aspect when selling a home, and that has gotten easier with sites like Zillow and Redfin, but that is just one piece of the puzzle. Reaching a potential buyer with a high sale price, sub-par placement, and a property that is in poor condition is not likely to result in a transaction.

Effective Marketing

For the best chance at a successful sale, the price, product, placement, and promotion must all be in sync. If our property is a fixer, we should be marketing towards experienced buyers or investors, who have the capability of handling such projects, and price the home accordingly. High-end luxury homes require different marketing techniques compared to a one-bedroom condo, so make sure your marketing matches the home we are trying to sell.

4. Presentation – or lack of

Improper presentation is one of the worst ways to scare off a potential buyer when selling your home. Trying to sell a home that is not visually appealing is difficult because the majority of buyers will not be able to see past the lack of presentation. Presentation issues can range from improper furniture layout, cluttered areas or counters, inaccessable areas or rooms, dirty carpets, flooring, or walls, excessive family or religious decore, and anything else that prevents a potential buyer from imagining themselves living there.

Proper Presentation

In some cases, the most important thing you can do to sell your home is to improve its presentation. Just clean and tidy up a bit! Declutter the home to show off its space, clean dirt and grime from areas that have likely not been cleaned in years, and give the place a good amount of elbow grease. Odds are, you’ll end up significantly better than where you started and your buyer appeal will skyrocket. Proper presentation also includes the ability to show the home. If your home looks nice but is hard to show, it could be difficult to sell.

5. Location Issues

Last on the list of the reasons your home may not sell is due to location issues. Unlike the other items on this list, there really is not much that can be done to overcome a bad location. The best way to avoid selling a home with location issues is to buy a home that does not have location issues. Overcoming location issues is difficult, and often impossible. There is little that can be done about the busy street you live on aside from dual pane windows and perhaps some landscaping.

Selling a home successfully takes all five of these variables working together. It can be a lot to manage, but we do this and more for all our clients looking to sell their home. Not every property needs to be 100% move in ready in order to sell, but appropriate consessions need to be made to make up for that and other shortcomings. If you have a home that needs some love and would like to make some updates prior to selling, we’d love to speak with you! Contact us and learn more about our concierge services, included with ALL our listings!

Who is The Prestige Team?

Rancho Palos Verdes Realtor Broker Associate Karen Anderson, along with her Real Estate Team, The Prestige Team, has been selling residential real estate in the South Bay, including Rancho Palos Verdes, San Pedro, and far beyond LA County for over 27 years and is ranked in the top 1% of realtors in Rancho Palos Verdes.  We specialize in transforming homes into impeccably presented real estate listings that command top dollar in the shortest amount of time!  

Learn more about us below!

Before After

For our Buyers:

Added Benefits When Working With Us

Contract Knowledge

The Residential Purchase Agreement is 10 pages of terms and conditions that stipulate every aspect of the purchase, and we know exactly how to use them to your complete advantage!

Expert Negotiators

As experienced Full-Service Realtors, we know how to leverage you buying and bargain power. Whether competing to get your offer accepted or negotiating repairs, our goal is to get you a great deal!

Team = Always Available

The added benefit of working with The Prestige Team is that one of our Real Estate Professionals is always available to help. No missed opportunities!

On Every Listing:

Need Additional Assistance? We Specialize in that!

Decluttering & Emptying Properties

Need help with decluttering? Whether you need a few boxes and an extra set of hands, have a house full of items that need to go, we have the resources in place ready to assist with your needs!

Schedule Management

Schedule Management is crucial if you have a time frame in mind for the sale of your home. Let us use our experience to ensure every aspect of preparing your home for the market stays on schedule!

Team = Always Available

The added benefit of working with The Prestige Team is that one of our Real Estate Professionals is always available to help. No missed opportunities!

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