Getting Your Home Sold-A Balancing Act

Balancing ActTo sell your home in Northern Virginia you have to find the right balance between price and condition.  Many buyers think that the "bargain" house is the one with the big foreclosure sign in the front yard.  But if they dig a little deeper they may find the gem in the neighborhood may actually be the home that is owned by an individual who has to move for reasons that have nothing to do with their mortgage payments.

When a savvy buyer begins to balance the costs, both real and hidden, of a foreclosure they can often be shocked to learn that a house just a few doors down that is priced well is a better deal in the long run.  Besides just the dollar factors associated with repairs there is the peace of mind factor that comes with something as simple as the ability to conduct a real home inspection.

So what does this mean for most sellers?  It is a fact that in today's market you must price your home right the moment that you put it on the market.  You don't have the option to overprice your home and hope that a buyer will overpay.  Certainly if your home is in top condition then you would expect to get more than the foreclosure down the street, however does that property just need cosmetic work to make it the same as yours or does it need a total overhaul?  If the foreclosure only needs cosmetic work and is priced right then you can't price yours $20,000 more and hope that it will sell.

The market in Northern Virginia is tough.   Homes of all types are selling and many are selling in a reasonable period of time.  Don't be fooled into to thinking that your home is worth more than it is.  Some buyers will pay more for the peace of mind that comes from buying a home where they can talk to the owner.  But they won't overpay.  Appraisers won't overvalue and lenders won't lend more than today's market value.

Find the right balance for your home and the sold sign will follow. 

For more information on selling your home in Northern Virginia give me a call and check out my other articles on selling your home in today's market.

If You List it They Will Come
Pricing Your Home to Sell
Marketing Your Home for All It's Worth


Cindy Jones

As an Associate Broker with RE/MAX Allegiance in Northern Virginia and native of the area I can assist you whether you are buying, selling or renting a home anywhere in Northern Virginia. For more information about the area or my services you can check VaRealEstateTalk or my Northern Virginia website.

Search all homes available in the Northern Virginia area.



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If you are interested in learning more about the Northern Virginia Real Estate market including Alexandria, Arlington, Fairfax and Prince William Counties give Cindy Jones and Integrity Real Estate Group a call at 703-346-2213.

Military Relocation Specialist serving military families relocating to and from the Pentagon, Fort Belvoir, Quantico MCB and all of the Military District of Washington installations. 

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Check out www.varealestatetalk.com and www.cjrealtygroup.com for more information.

Integrity Real Estate Group
Real People*Real Life*Real Estate

Licensed in the Commonwealth of Virginia



Comment balloon 11 commentsCindy Jones • June 20 2008 06:38AM


Right, you are, Cindy.  Price and condition are key and many times it's well worth a little looking to find a nice house that's priced right that doesn't force the buyer to jump throgh hoops and wait inordinate amounts of time to purchase and move in.

I have to admit to being a little stymied.  I have a nice listing in College Park.  It's priced at just $5,000 about a nearby "short sale" that has obviously been abandoned (at least by look of the foot tall grass) and $5,000,and $10,000 less than other short sales in the neighborhood.  Yet no activity.  I'm beginning to worry about the neighborhood itself which used to be  the hot place to live.

Posted by Ken Montville, The MD Suburbs of DC (RE/MAX United Real Estate) over 11 years ago

Agreed.  So many buyers assume the foreclosures and short sales are the best deals.  Just another reason why having such an experienced agent on your side is such a great idea - now more than ever. 

Posted by Steve Scheer, Highlands Ranch Real Estate - Denver Real Estate (Realty Oasis - Metro Brokers) over 11 years ago

Cindy - so often it isn't about what the buyer knows, it's about what the buyer thinks he knows that isn't so. A good real estate agent can often find a better buy than a short sale. Then we have to educate the buyers that if the property is really priced right it's not one they'll get for 50% of the listing price!

Posted by Sharon Simms, St. Petersburg FL - CRS CIPS CLHMS RSPS (Coastal Properties Group International - Christie's International) over 11 years ago

I try to get my clients on normal sales these days where we can actually have a home inspection and it means something.  I feel more comfortable with a home that someone cares about rather than one that someone didn't and walked away after they turned all of the water on in the house on their way out and it runs until the bank notices.

Posted by Stella Barbour, Principal Broker, Serving Virginia and Maryland (NoVa Brokers LLC) over 11 years ago

Ken-there are certainly neighborhoods all over our areas that have been hurt by the mortgage mess.  I try to balance all of the available homes for my clients and help them make the right decision for their needs.

Posted by Cindy Jones, Pentagon, Fort Belvoir & Quantico Real Estate News (Integrity Real Estate Group) over 11 years ago

Steve-I believe that having an agent representing YOU in this market is critical.

Posted by Cindy Jones, Pentagon, Fort Belvoir & Quantico Real Estate News (Integrity Real Estate Group) over 11 years ago

Sharon-properties are priced all over the map these days.  It is hard for a seller to find the right price and for a buyer to know what is the right % of list price to offer.

Posted by Cindy Jones, Pentagon, Fort Belvoir & Quantico Real Estate News (Integrity Real Estate Group) over 11 years ago

Stella-it is hard to believe what someone will do to their property on the way out the door.  We see it all and what I'm boggled by is just how dirty some of the houses are.  Not excessive damage just dirty as if no one ever ran a vacuum cleaner or mopped a floor for years. 

Posted by Cindy Jones, Pentagon, Fort Belvoir & Quantico Real Estate News (Integrity Real Estate Group) over 11 years ago

Cindy:  You hit the nail on the head.  A great way to explain condition and pricing. 

Posted by Chris Ann Cleland, Associate Broker, Bristow, VA (Long and Foster REALTORS®, Gainesville, VA) over 11 years ago

David-there are some many parts to the home buying puzzle.  It helps to take a look at all pieces before you make such a major decision.

Posted by Cindy Jones, Pentagon, Fort Belvoir & Quantico Real Estate News (Integrity Real Estate Group) over 11 years ago

Chris-thanks for stopping by.  Today's market gives buyers so much to think about that making sure they understand as many of the options as possible is important.

Posted by Cindy Jones, Pentagon, Fort Belvoir & Quantico Real Estate News (Integrity Real Estate Group) over 11 years ago

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