Nancy Ware: Sold in 19 days

Nancy Ware
Nancy took over a listing that had been sitting on the market for a year. The prior agent’s listing photos didn’t sell the home. Here she describes what she did to get a jam-packed initial open house and multiple offers for her seller in only 19 days.  

DOM: 19

List/Sale: 97%

Neighborhood: Energy Corridor

Style of Home: Traditional (1980)

Type of Stage: Vacant

Listing Price: $347,900

Getting multiple offers is ideal- then the seller can choose what suits their needs.”

How can sellers manage their expectations and sell well?

Don’t wait to do updates until someone requests them– make your home as turn-key as possible.  Get it ready the first time and improve whatever you can to get the list price you want.

List competitively instead of coming down on price later.  Resist the urge to price at the top of your range because when you’re just a little bit under- you’re open to more buyers.  The more offers you get, the more likely you’ll get the sale price you want. 
  • When your agent gives you a list range, and you expect the highest price on that range, you have to be ready to do everything your agent suggests.  

Remove clutter and de-personalize.  No one wants to feel like the home is lived in. The goal is to neutralize and cast a wide net.

Do what you can to get it clean.  If you can’t do anything else, make sure the home is clean.  Anyone walking into the home needs to feel like the home is fresh.  
Don’t use shiny wall paint! Use satin or eggshell matte finish.  The minor details make an overall difference.

What challenges did you face prior to listing Woodnook?

The home was previously on the market for over a year with another agent. During that time, the seller could count on one hand how many times it had a showing.

Part of the problem was the photos did not present the home well (drapes, colors, etc). It was clear the seller put time and money into it, but it wasn’t being presented very well. 

When I took the listing, the client was happy to do whatever I suggested to better present the home- like staging.  

Besides staging, what updates did you perform to make the home more marketable?

Because it was an older home, it was important to do some whitening and brightening.  
  • We changed out the light fixtures to basic white ceiling fans, new white A/C vents, new light fixtures, removed drapes, painted the primary bedroom,  painted the mantel bright white, stairwell also painted white. Also painted the inside of the fireplace.

I also had them change the carpet, had windows cleaned, minor landscaping, bonsai at the front door for a more modern look. Small updates go a long way in overall feel.

How did you decide on the list price?

Comparisons in the neighborhood. Your agent will look at many factors when doing comps (what has been sold, the condition of the home, the market, etc) and from that will give you a range. 

You mentioned this home had previously sat on the market for over a year. How were you able to sell it so quickly?

Part of the issue was that the family room was a bit awkward in layout, so we needed to make sure anyone would understand where the TV would go and could imagine living there.
  • You don’t want people walking in front of you while you’re watching TV so it needed to be clear what the setup would look like. 
  • You want the room to be user friendly. Family functional.  So Shelley brought in a TV and voila- problem solved.  

The staging complemented the updates so it made for better listing photos- you could finally see the beauty of the home! It wasn’t apparent in the previous listing photos.  My first open house had tons of people wanting to see the home.

How did you acquire the buyer?  

I acquired the buyer at my first open house.  Once the home was staged and on the market, I had my first open house. I had 60 people come through in one day!  My assistant and I couldn’t keep up with everyone, it was so packed. 

A person who was interested before had come back and she couldn’t believe it was the same home.
You got multiple offers- what happened in the end?

After receiving multiple offers, the seller opted for a cash offer that allowed them to close sooner.  They were willing to take the quickest offer over the highest offer because they had been on the market for a while and it suited their timeline.

Getting multiple offers is ideal- then the seller can choose what suits their needs.
Did you consider virtual staging?

No. Typically, homes with furniture (neutral, good-looking) sell faster or get better offers.  The buyer needs furniture to visualize a space.

What do you look for in a stager?

Flexibility in terms of the staging timeline; being able to get in or out in a timely manner is important.

Providing professional photos is definitely a plus because I know that you’re also going to be using these photos for marketing as well. Any marketing that the staging company can do to spread a wider net for my listing is fabulous.

Connect with Nancy


Read next: Sold in 12 Days (Rachel Thompson)

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