Selling Your Home? Pay Attention to Comps

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When preparing to sell a home you might have lived in for years and that you’ve adapted to fit your own tastes and needs, it’s only natural to think that the home is worth more than other people are willing to pay. That’s where comparable home sales — comps, in the lingo — come in.

The potential buyers’ lender will request several comps when it is considering making a mortgage loan on the house and even if the buyers have agreed to pay a certain amount, if the house is priced too far out of line with the comps, the lender could deny the loan.

But even before you start to rope in potential buyers, it’s important to price your home at a point that is neither too high nor too low. That Goldilocks price increases your chances of selling at the highest possible price.

You can do some research on your own, but there are good reasons to talk to the pros. Wendy Helfenbaum at Trulia.com offers up three issues to consider as you get ready to list your home for sale.

Stick to the facts — and expert advice — when pricing a home
Even when you’ve studied comps and have noted relevant details about recent nearby home sales, it’s often easy for sellers to overlook important information when setting a price.

Understanding how agents set prices can help buyers score the perfect home
[B]uyers sometimes overlook other crucial details in their quest to zero in on the best price.

Buyers should bring their best offers from the start
In today’s market, lowball offers will get a potential buyer exactly nowhere. Don’t jump at the first offer you get unless it’s one you can’t refuse.