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Your apartment in New York City reflects your lifestyle and your taste. So when your apartment isn’t selling, it’s easy to take it personally. Plus, being unable to sell your home can cause tension and anxiety. When your apartment is not selling, consider some factors below that might keep it unsold on the market.
Great Expectations and PriceGreat Expectations and Price
Your home has been a labor of love since you first moved in. It’s not just the money you’ve put into it, but the time and attention. The number one reason homes in New York don’t sell is that they’re priced too high. When pricing your home, it’s easy to go astray, thinking about what it’s worth to you or what you need to get for it to finance your next home. However, your home’s selling price should be based on comparables in the building and neighborhood. Therefore, visit some open houses in your area to see what other sellers ask. It gives you a better idea of the competition and the actual value of your home.
Homes that are Over Customized and Not SellingHomes that are Over Customized and Not Selling
Part of the joy in owning an apartment is that it is 100% yours. Gone are the days when you have to deal with your landlord’s ugly countertop choice or your landlord’s definition of “modern appliances.” When you own a home, you can ensure everything is up to your standard. However, remember, perhaps not to your prospective buyer’s taste.
Most importantly, in New York City, appliances with stainless steel, walls will be neutral colors, and toilets won’t have that old metal handle.
The owner’s taste isn’t in line with everyone else’sThe owner’s taste isn’t in line with everyone else’s
We see more and more of this, specifically in expensive apartments. The more space an owner has, the more likely they can customize it to their personality. Always wanted to bathe in a tub of gold? No problem. Want a one-bedroom in a fiery red? That’s fine; there are four others.
However, when these owners are ready to sell, their prospective buyer’s pool often doesn’t agree with the aesthetic choices – or, more importantly, the price tag behind the aesthetics.
A big misconception about property value is that any money a seller puts into a home will automatically translate into a higher sales price. But unless you find someone with the same style, you might have to factor in the cost for the new buyer to rip out your customized ideas.
Too Much PersonalityToo Much Personality
When buyers come into your home, they’re trying to envision themselves in your space. However, if too many of you are in your home, buyers can find it difficult to see themselves living there.
Consider taking you out of the equation when selling your apartment, especially if it’s been on the market longer. You should take down personal photos, and the walls should be painted neutral. Quirky accents should be removed. Make your apartment a blank slate so that potential buyers can more easily picture themselves at home in your apartment.
Too Rich for My TasteToo Rich for My Taste
For example, a listing in Soho recently hit the market showcasing a $140,000 customized gold bathroom, with everything from a gold-plated tub to a gold money sign on the wall. No matter how technically expensive or high-end this is, a buyer will want to rip it out – unless this buyer has always dreamed of having their bath mimic a music video.
In Greenwich Village, an owner recently installed a 30-foot saltwater pool on his townhouse’s bottom floor on Cornelia Street. Most people don’t need to swim indoors, so the owner must acknowledge that his home will likely take longer to sell. He’ll have to find a specific buyer who wants to throw indoor pool parties.
Not just a problem in big homesNot just a problem in big homes
This fact holds even in a small apartment. For example, owners who buy an $800,000 one-bedroom and love to cook may go all out on their kitchen – Viking stoves with six burners, top-of-the-line appliances, etc. While this is great, when the apartment hits the market, likely, the pool of buyers coming to look at a one-bedroom with a small kitchen is going to say, “Well, it’s pretty – but I’m not a chef, so I’m not willing to chip in extra thousands just for this appliance.”
You Don’t Realize It’s Dirty.You Don’t Realize It’s Dirty.
If you’re selling your home, you know you have to clean. Anyone that’s ever watched HGTV will tell you that a home should be pristine when you’re trying to sell. But, everyday cleaning and decluttering are different from getting ready for a showing or an open house.
Hiring a professional cleaning service can be essential in selling your apartment. Professional cleaners can get the spots you don’t see and give it a top to bottom shine to get your home off the market.
Not Properly RepresentedNot Properly Represented
You hire an agent to help sell your home because they are professionals who understand the market and have the resources to get your home sold. However, if homes in your neighborhood are selling while yours remain static, it may be that your listing agent hasn’t done everything they could to represent you and sell your apartment.
Please look at your listing to ensure it’s represented honestly and professionally. Ensure the agent has used professional photos highlighting your space in the best light. Then ask yourself if your agent has initiative and is an excellent communicator.
When selling your New York City apartment, you may think you’re doing everything possible. But if it’s sitting on the market, these few tweaks can make the difference between another week on the market and getting your home sold.
Is this only true in New York City?Is this only true in New York City?
Once you leave the apartment world and head to the houses, the amenities only get crazier and crazier.
50 Cent’s home was recently showcased on Million Dollar Listing New York. In addition to being one of the largest houses based on square footage in the area, it also had a nightclub in the basement, complete with a stripper pole.
In Los Angeles, Slash’s home was remodeled with a DJ booth, skate ramp, and a nightclub. Along with these amenities come wild stylistic choices like leopard carpets and light show effects – but the people who can afford to take over these homes often have more conservative tastes.
Final Thoughts on why your Home May Not Be SellingFinal Thoughts on why your Home May Not Be Selling
If you go to sell and don’t have the time to wait for the “right” buyer who will appreciate all the house’s nuances, you’ll likely be forced into a price reduction. So if you’re planning to purchase a home and make custom choices, make sure you have a reality check with yourself and not over-customize.
Will you hold your home long enough that customization is worth it? Or might you be looking to flip your home in a couple of years and regret pouring money into a retractable roof over your main bedroom?