Tips for Selling Your Home During a Slow Real Estate Market

The real estate market constantly fluctuates, but you can’t always time the sale of your home with a favorable market trend. If you’re trying to sell your home in a slow market, you’re probably frustrated with the process. Selling in a sluggish market isn’t impossible, though. You might have to be more flexible and concede on more points, but you can find a buyer if you’re patient. Here are some key tips for selling in a slow market:


Set the Right Price


In hot real estate markets, homeowners often sell for more than their asking price. In a slow market, though, you’re probably not going to get more than you ask for. Setting a competitive price is key to selling your home. You need prospective buyers to take interest in your home as soon as possible, and a low price is the easiest way to accomplish this. When a house is priced too high and sits on the market for weeks or months, buyers will avoid it because they think that something is wrong with it.

To set a competitive but realistic price, you and your real estate agent should thoroughly research comparable houses in your area. Your agent can conduct a market analysis, which uses recent data to determine the likely sales price of the house. Try to slightly undercut similar homes in the area to generate interest.


Drop the Price Strategically



If you don’t get any offers with your current price point, it’s time to strategically drop the price. Sometimes, real estate agents recommend cutting the price significantly. When the price decreases by 5% or 10%, buyers take note and will show more interest. Everyone wants to get the best possible deal in a slow market, so buyers love seeing discounts.

In other cases, agents recommend dropping the price in much smaller quantities. For example, you and your agent may decide to decrease the price by 1% each month. Even a 1% increase can generate interest, so prepare to be available for showings right after your price drop.


Stage the House



On average, staged homes sell faster and for higher prices than comparable non-staged homes. Staging a house involves rearranging furniture, eliminating clutter, replacing decor, and any other tasks that help you showcase the house to prospective buyers.

The goal of staging is to allow buyers to envision themselves and their families living in the home. Everything should be perfectly clean and arranged in a pleasing way. Remove personal photos and decorations so that the buyer can project their own ideas onto the house. If you have any brightly painted rooms, consider repainting to a softer or more generic color.


Hire a Photographer



First impressions are vital, so your listing photos can have a massive impact on how your home performs on the market. Homeowners and real estate agents sometimes take their own photos to save some money and have more control over the process. This may be fine in a hot real estate market, but you have to go above and beyond in a slow market. Hire a photographer to take high-quality pictures of your home so that you have the best possible online listing.


Always Be Ready



You should always be prepared to schedule a showing at a moment’s notice. In a slow real estate market, buyers have a great deal of power. If someone wants to see your house on short notice, do your best to accommodate. Being ready at all times means you won’t miss any opportunities.

Try to keep your home as clean and organized as possible. Make sure clutter and personal items are always put away, and keep your driveway, yard, and porch clear. Although living for weeks or months in a staged house isn’t ideal, you never know when a prospective buyer will want to stop by.


Make Repairs



Your home probably has a number of small problems that are easy for you to ignore, but they’ll be obvious to prospective buyers. Repairing any minor issues in the house can make your home far more appealing. Dripping faucets, squeaky cabinet doors, chipped paint, and other small concerns are fairly easy to fix and can offer a great return on investment.


Replace a Major System or Appliance



One of the best ways to win over a buyer is to offer to repair or replace a system in the house that’s outdated. For example, if the furnace is more than 15 years old, you could offer to replace it before closing or set up a repair escrow to replace it with the proceeds of the home sale. You could offer the same for the roof, HVAC system, kitchen appliances, or anything else in the house that’s aging.


Offer an Interest Rate Buydown



Rising mortgage rates are a major contributor to real estate market slowdowns. As interest rates keep getting higher, fewer prospective buyers find themselves in the position to purchase a home. One solution is to negotiate an interest rate buydown with the buyer and their lender. A buydown involves contributing money toward the mortgage at closing so that the buyer gets more points. This allows the buyer to secure a lower interest rate, which makes the deal much more favorable for them.



Selling a home in a slow real estate market will always be more difficult than selling in a hot market. You’ll probably have to work hard to appeal to buyers and negotiate a deal. However, if you’re persistent and flexible, you can make the sale. A slow market REQUIRES a very keen eye for the traditional 4 P’s of Marketing – Product, Positioning, Price and Promotion. Hire a professional who understands the market and how to communicate with the market to draw the best value for your home.

(1) POSITIONING:  You must know your buyer, message and present accordingly

(2) PRODUCT:          Shine up the product to create the sense of home rather than a project

(3) PRICE:                  Set the price at market value to create competition

(4) PROMOTE:         Promote the home to the market and buyers where they search



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About the Author

In the vast tapestry of Northern Virginia, Michele's roots run deep, with an unyielding passion to help her clients make smart moves. This region is a sprawling masterpiece, each corner radiating a unique personality that caters to diverse lifestyles. Michele's unwavering mission is to delve into the essence of her clients' aspirations, meticulously curating the perfect match between their dreams and the vibrant tapestry of Northern Virginia, even as lifestyles evolve and dreams take new forms. 

Armed with a formidable arsenal of market analysis, strategic prowess, and unrivaled consulting expertise, Michele empowers her clients to navigate the ever-shifting currents of the real estate landscape. She unveils the intricate dynamics and fierce competition that shape the market, providing her clients with a profound understanding that fuels their success. While the emotional tides of property transactions can easily sway hearts, Michele stands unwavering as the guardian of her clients' best interests, ensuring they relish every precious moment along the way.

Michele has forged an alliance with the industry's trailblazers, joining forces with Real Broker, LLC, a groundbreaking startup that challenges the very fabric of conventional practices. With an expanding network of exceptional agents nationwide, armed with cutting-edge resources, Michele remains at the vanguard of the evolving real estate industry, poised to transform dreams into concrete reality. 

Discover the unparalleled service, the unwavering commitment, and the magnetic spirit that will guide you towards finding not just a home, but a sanctuary where dreams flourish. 

Are you ready to unlock the door to your NVA destiny?