9 Things That May Be Scaring Your Buyers Away

As the housing market starts to cool, home sellers may find it more difficult to sell their homes. When getting your house ready for potential buyers to view many small steps can be easily overlooked. It’s important that home buyers can envision themselves in the home, so try looking at your house with fresh eyes.


We’ll walk you through some of the top reasons your home may be unintentionally scaring potential buyers away and explain how to easily fix them.

1. Your house isn’t as clean as you think

When you’ve lived in a home for many years, you become blind to some of its faults. If the kitchen floor isn’t perfectly white, the windows have streaks, or the wall trim is covered in dust, you may not even notice.


You can take a closer look at your house room by room to see if there are any problem areas and deep-clean them yourself. Or you could consider hiring a cleaning service to help you get your house in shape to impress potential buyers when touring your home.

2. There’s too much clutter

Clutter looks different to everyone. Those with a more minimal style might see a small stack of mail and feel it makes a room look too messy. Others are fine with small piles of books or collectibles here and there. But when showing your home to buyers, it’s better to let them imagine their belongings in the space.


Pack away any loose papers, extra decor, clothing, and even extra linens, and throw pillows. Pare down your decor items so that it’s easier for buyers to see the full layout of the home, without getting distracted by clutter. If you don’t have spaces to store extra clutter and you plan on getting rid of it, you can also call a removal service ahead of time.

3. Odors may be lingering

Just like you may be blind to your home’s faults, you might also have grown accustomed to unwelcome odors. Maybe there’s an odd smell from your vent that you no longer sense or perhaps there are lingering pet odors in carpets or certain rooms.


Invite friends or even your real estate agent over to help you inspect your house beforehand, allowing them to point out any weird smells.

4. There’s too much of your personality in the home

You may have poured your heart and soul into decorating your house, but when selling a property, it’s important to try to keep the home as plain as possible so buyers can imagine their own style in your house.


If you have, for instance, a very dark or bright paint color on your walls, or maybe even an intense wallpaper, it might be worthwhile to repaint or remove the wallpaper beforehand.

5. Lack of curb appeal

Making sure the inside of your space looks fresh and clean is key, but you don’t want to neglect the outside. Your house only gets one shot at making its first impression, so making sure it has great curb appeal is essential.


This could mean adding a fresh coat of paint to your siding, fixing any obvious damage, power-washing the siding and any porches or decks, and making sure there are no holes or large cracks in your sidewalk or driveway. Hiring a landscaper to make your outside look even more appealing with fresh plants and flowers can also add a more inviting vibe.

6. You’re selling the home without appliances

Maybe you spent thousands on your current appliances and want to take them to your new home. Or maybe the stove broke and you thought it would be faster to try to sell them home without one. Whatever the reason, selling without standard appliances like a refrigerator or stove may be pushing buyers away.


Home buyers are already spending a large sum of money to buy a home — many don’t want to think about investing in appliances also. So, try adding basic, but nice model appliances to replace the ones you’re taking or that broke.

7. The street or neighbors are loud

In some cases, your house may look great, but if the street seems too loud or you have a particularly loud neighbor, potential buyers might be turned off. This may seem like a difficult problem to solve, but there are ways to work around this problem.


First, consider when your neighbors make the most noise. Is it on nights when football games are on? Is it on the weekend? Try to arrange for a showing that accommodates this schedule. Next, if you’re on good terms with your neighbors, let them know you’re having an open house and ask them if they could keep the noise down during your showing. A friendly gift or baked goods is always a nice gesture.


If your noise problem is a major issue — and perhaps a reason why you’re moving — it’s better to be upfront with your agent and potential buyers. You may need to lower the price of your home, but it’s possible to get into a legal issue if you sell your home to buyers under false pretenses.

8. You’re not working with the right real estate agent

Your real estate agent should make the selling process smoother for you. They should not be pushy or try to push buyers into agreements too fast. If you’re worried your agent is scaring potential buyers away, it’s probably time to find a new one.


A good real estate agent will partner with you and offer advice on how to prep your home for a showing. Some even work for a low commission and may even help you stage your home for potential buyers.

9. The sales price is too high

At the end of the day, if your home isn’t selling and there doesn’t seem to be a good reason, the sales price might be too high. Take a look at similar homes in your neighborhood and compare listing prices to understand if you’ve overpriced your house. Remember to also lean on your agent — they can perform a competitive analysis to help you understand the right sales price for your home.


You may need to wait it out a bit, but selling to a buyer, rather than selling your home for less than it’s worth to a company that buys houses for cash is usually better for most home sellers.

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