11 Common Mistakes by DC Home Sellers and How to Avoid Them

Washington, D.C., is one of the best places to live in America. As the capital of the United States, the city is filled with a rich history and culture. Many historical monuments, buildings, and museums showcase the nation’s proud history and culture. Residents enjoy close proximity to numerous art and natural history museums, as well as attractions like the United States Botanical Gardens and the Smithsonian National Zoological Park.
Washington, D.C., has terrific amenities and an incredible dining and bar scene filled with unique dishes developed by critically acclaimed chefs. Residents enjoy a highly successful public transportation system, which makes commuting to work, a restaurant, or a nightlife venue a breeze. Homes here are a mix of luxurious modern construction and renovated historical architecture. With so many incredible amenities, it’s no wonder that people love living in Washington, D.C.
If you’re considering adding your home to the list of Washington, D.C. homes for sale, you’ll want to ensure you get the best offer possible. Our guide will walk you through the common mistakes that home sellers make and how to avoid them.

1. Selling your home yourself

One of the biggest mistakes you can make is selling your home yourself. When carrying out a real estate transaction, it’s important to always work with an experienced real estate agent. Real estate agents are knowledgeable professionals with extensive experience in the field and can help you through every step, whether buying or selling a home.

2. Choosing the wrong agent

When you choose a real estate agent, it’s important to pick the right one. A great real estate agent will have ample experience in the area you want to sell in and the type of property you’re selling. For example, in the Washington, D.C., area, there is no better realtor than Desmond McKenna. Desmond McKenna has ample experience selling and purchasing properties in Washington, D.C.’s luxury market and boasts a portfolio filled with amazing properties to help you find your next home.

3. Taking on large remodeling projects

Selling your home is not the time to take on large remodeling projects. These projects typically require too much money and time. If you’re trying to sell your home as soon as possible, undergoing significant renovations will ensure your home-selling process takes longer.

4. Avoiding basic upgrades

While large projects should generally be avoided when selling your home, choosing to undertake several minor home upgrades can make a huge difference in the perceived value of your home. For example, sprucing up the walls with a fresh coat of paint, cleaning the floors, and updating the appliances or the bathroom vanity are all excellent ways to quickly add value to your home before selling.

5. Showing your home as-is

When you’re ready to sell your home, you will want to work with a home stager. These design professionals will help you declutter and organize your home, sometimes bringing in new furniture and art pieces that will make your home attractive to buyers. Stagers understand what design trends buyers are looking for and can help create an open, stylish design. The living room is one of the most important spaces to stage in your home, as it’s often used the most.

6. Skipping landscaping

Your home's curb appeal is just as important as the interior. It’s essential that you spend time updating and sprucing up the exterior of your home, as this will create a beautiful and lasting impression on buyers. Pressure washing the exterior and driveway, planting flowers, trimming hedges, and mowing the lawn are all easy ways to ensure your home’s curb appeal is attractive to buyers.

7. Taking photographs yourself

While you probably have a smartphone equipped to take pictures, it’s not a good idea to use it when photographing your home. We recommend hiring a professional. Real estate photographers have the right equipment and knowledge to capture your home’s best features and accurately portray the value of your home.

8. Pricing your home incorrectly

It’s essential to make sure you price your home competitively for the market you are selling in. If you price your home too low, buyers may think there’s something fundamentally wrong with it. On the other hand, overpricing your home can lead to a longer time on the market and less buyer interest. This is why you should work with a qualified real estate agent. Your real estate agent will help you price your home appropriately for the market using their expertise and knowledge of market dynamics. For example, an agent will know the best selling points for luxury homes for sale in Washington, D.C., and can use that information to help determine a listing price.

9. Selling your home at the wrong time

Another common mistake new sellers make is trying to sell their homes at the wrong time. Although you can sell your home anytime, some seasons and months work better than others. For example, spring and summer are the best times to sell a home. During this time, warm weather is driving eager buyers from their homes. Children are usually on spring or summer break, which can make moving easier for parents. Selling your home during peak seasons can help you secure more buyers and ultimately get a top-dollar offer.

10. Sticking around during the open house

When selling your home, you should leave the sale to your realtor. While it might be tempting to stick around your home’s open house or viewings, it’s generally not recommended for several reasons. Buyers often feel awkward when the seller is present during a viewing or open house, ultimately leading to a short, less-than-stellar visit. Potential buyers want to look around the home and ask questions, which is challenging to do when the seller is there. One of the best decisions you’ll make as a seller is to leave scheduled viewings and open houses to your realtor and enjoy your time elsewhere.

11. Underestimating agent commission fees

Closing costs are fees associated with the finalization of your real estate transaction. Usually, the buyer pays most of the closing costs, but as the seller, you will be expected to pay the commission fees of both your agent and the buyer’s agent. Budgeting for these costs and including them in your financial plan is critical.
If you’re considering selling your home in the Washington, D.C., area, there is no better choice than The McKenna Group, a full-service team of talented real estate professionals eager to help sellers list their homes on the market. The McKenna Group’s extensive knowledge of the Washington D.C. market, attention to detail, focus on client satisfaction, and years of experience will make selling your home as seamless as possible.

Work With Us

An uncompromising level of customer service that results in clients having a truly positive and memorable journey while buying or selling their home.
Contact Us
Follow Us