Detach To Sell Your Home!

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By Erika M. Kay, Broker/Owner, for over 30 years dealing with distressed real estate markets.

Selling a home can feel like you're cutting off your right arm for some sellers. They feel a sense of loss, and go on an emotional ride that takes them plummeting into the uncertainty of a move and another new home. Even if there's excitement building about the new place, leaving behind their home and its memories can cause some turmoil. And if it turns out to be a distressed sale situation, it gets even worse.

Telling sellers to detach to sell their home is like telling the kid whose cat has a litter to stay emotionally reserved from the kittens. You lived in the house, cared for it, raised your children in it and now you're being told to detach from it. Especially families who have raised their children and watched many firsts happen in their home, they stay much more connected. These are the sellers that often put a greater value on their home simply because they have a strong emotional attachment. Selling a home is a business transaction and likely the largest financial commitment many buyers will ever make. So understanding how to not get caught up in an emotional turmoil will help you keep your home as a real estate transaction, not an emotional roller coaster ride.

First make sure you price your home based on comps of other homes sold in your area only! Sounds sensible but a lot of times, emotions come into play causing sellers to overprice their home. Instead, turn to a reliable professional real estate expert with years of experience for advice and guidance. Pricing your home to sell is critical. Homes for sale usually get the most traffic in the first two weeks of being listed. If you price it too high, you'll turn off potential buyers. Often sellers base their home value on an emotional feeling they have about their beloved home or the fact that they paid top dollar for the home. However, in today's market, a home that was purchased at the peak might not nearly recoup that price.

Give buyers space! There's a term for parents who tend to over-parent. It's called helicopter parenting–appropriately named because these parents hover over their children and essentially smother them. This could apply to sellers who tend to linger while buyers are viewing their home. This makes buyers uneasy. They feel like they have to cut short their visit to the home. They don't feel comfortable to talk openly about the things they like or don't like about the home in the presence of the owners. The lesson here is don't hover and leave the buyer alone with their agent and if it is an “Open House” event, leave your home and let your experienced agent handle all.

Consider all offers! Yes, it's a catch-22. Sellers want to sell but when the early offers come they're a bit uncertain. Be diligent, review all offers with your agent who knows the market value in your neighborhood. You never know which one will be satisfactory until you see all of them.

Emotionally detach! Remember, when you're selling your home it's just a “product” to a potential buyer. They will see the things you loved about your home but they also will see the things they don't love about it and they'll share those things with their agent. They may criticize the very things you love. Here's where you detach and let the criticism wash over you. If you need to take action, such as repairing something, take the advice of your experienced agent and do it if it means your offer to go through or not. For buyers in our present market, financing is very difficult to obtain. If it's just a matter of opinion, don't become emotionally caught up in it. This isn't's business. Sometimes that's hard to remember because with real estate, the home we buy is, in the end, our personal sanctuary but at the time of the sale–it's business. Keep the emotions out of it and detach to sell your home.!

Erika M. Kay, Broker/Owner, Property Manager
Short Sale & Foreclosure Specialist (NARSFR)
SRES (Senior Real Estate Specialist)
Certified e-PRO

Independent Broker Consultants
1655 E 6th St. Ste A-1, Corona, CA, 92879
Office: 951-734-6447 - Direct: 951-545-3786
E-mail: - Website:
CAL BRE #008047509