7 Reasons Your Home is Lingering on the Market

If your home has been sitting on the market for a while with no bites, you might want to figure out what the problem is. The longer your home is listed without any offers, the more frustrating and costly it’ll be.

There are plenty of factors that can stand in the way of a property getting sold in a timely manner, including the following.


1. The Listing Price is Way Too High

If your home’s got the goods and it’s located in a desirable area, you can probably command a decent price, especially if you’re in the middle of a seller’s market. But that doesn’t mean you can arbitrarily pick any number you want. Sure, you’d like to get the highest possible dollar amount, but the listing price has to coincide with the current market value of your home.

Coming up with an ideal listing price is one of the most important factors in selling a house. Buyers are not going to give you what you’re asking for if they can get something similar for a lot less. If you price your house too high, you’ll miss out on attracting prospective buyers. Make sure you and your real estate agent accurately determine the value of your home in your market and get the price right the first time around so you don’t end up having to drop the price in the near future.

2. The Photos Are of Poor Quality

Buyers are likely to hit the internet when looking for a new home when they start the house-hunting process. In fact, 90% of buyers begin their home search on the internet before deciding whether or not they want to see a particular home.

When searching online, buyers expect to see professional photos of homes. If the images you’ve got published on the internet are dim, blurry, or look like they’ve been taken with your smartphone, buyers won’t be impressed.

Make sure you get your home professionally staged so it’s ready to be photographed. Hire a professional photographer to take plenty of high-quality pictures of your property inside and out. Listings that feature professional images generate 118% more online views compared to listings without them.

3. The Curb Appeal is Lacking

Before buyers even step foot in your home, they’ll be greeted with the exterior of your property first. If they pull up to your house and are met with overgrown grass, unkempt bushes, a worn-out front door, or peeling paint on the siding, they’ll probably want to cut the visit short. Curb appeal says a lot about a home. If it’s in serious need of TLC, you’ll be missing out on a lot of offers.

Properly staged homes sell 73% faster than homes that have been left as is. If you want to speed the process along, make sure you set the stage for buyers.

4. There’s an Issue With the Title

If there’s a problem with the title of your property, you’ll have a tough time selling. Buyers will typically look into the title of a property before they buy, and if they find any issues, they could walk away from the deal.

There are many issues that can tarnish a home’s title. Liens are among the more common, and are placed on the title of home if the owners owe a creditor money.

But there could also be a problem with ownership. For instance, if you owned the home with an ex-spouse who’s also on title, and didn’t get permission to list and sell the property, free and clear title can’t really be transferred until all owners’ signatures are on the contract.

Do yourself a favor before you list your property, and make sure the title is squeaky clean first so you don’t run into issues later. 

5. Your Finishes Are Dated

Beige kitchen appliances, rusty brass light fixtures, old-fashioned wood cabinets, and pink toilets haven’t been in style in decades. If your home is still featuring these finishes, you’ll have a tougher time selling.

Most buyers want a home they can buy without having to lift a finger to update. If your finishes look like they stepped right out of the 70s and 80s, it’s time to make some changes before you list.

6. There’s a Funky Odor Lurking

Your place could look great, but if it smells bad, buyers will certainly be turned off. Unless it smells like fresh flowers or warm apple pie, your home shouldn’t smell like anything. Buyers shouldn’t be able to pinpoint exactly what you had for dinner last night.

Any odors from food, cigarette smoke, pets, or anything else that could turn someone’s stomach should be eliminated before you let any buyer step foot in your home. 

7. Your Closing Date is Too Far Out

Most buyers expect to want to close a deal within 30 to 90 days after agreeing to purchase. Any more than that will likely send buyers looking elsewhere.

The majority of active buyers who are currently looking for a home and put in an offer today would be less likely to entertain a closing date 6 months out. If you’re not ready to close within 90 days, you’re better off waiting until you’re ready to sell in a time frame that most buyers expect.

The Bottom Line

Sitting on the sidelines waiting for offers to come in can be agonizing if there doesn’t seem to be any interest. Find out the average number of days similar homes in the area have taken to sell: if your property has been on the market for much longer, it’s time to take a closer look at your listing.