Now’s the time to list your home, but make sure you’re ready
The housing market has been hot in Evanston this
spring, and a shortage of homes for sale has led to a situation where sellers are often getting the full asking price for their homes.
“In the current market, sellers are averaging 95 to 105 percent of asking price,” said Noah Seidenberg, a real estate broker with Coldwell Banker Evanston.
This trend seems likely to continue into in the summer market, but don’t wait too long to list your house, warns Mary Summerville, senior vice president of sales for The MS Group at Jameson
Sotheby’s International Realty Evanston.
“If you’re thinking of selling, get it on the market as quickly as possible,” she advised. “Every day, you’re losing valuable market time.”
Summerville and Seidenberg also offered the following advice to homeowners thinking of selling:
• Work with an experienced, well connected Realtor: “Because we’re in such a rapid market, a lot of things are selling without hitting the MLS (Multiple Listings Service, a database used in
real estate,)” Summerville said. “There’s an underground MLS going on right now where brokers are sharing information with each other on properties they haven’t put on the MLS yet.”
• Use technology to your benefit: More buyers than ever are house shopping online now. A good Realtor will arrange for professional- quality photos of your home and promote those photos
among the many online real estate outlets available. “Presentation is everything,” Seidenberg said. “It’s so important to have good pictures, and a lot of Realtors are doing either videos or video
slide shows — something that really shows off the house or condo.”
• Don’t worry about renovations or repainting: Both Seidenberg and Summerville agree that unless you’ve got noticeable damage or a startlingly bright wall, it’s not necessary to put money
into paint and renovations. “Even if you do what you think will help sell the house, the new owners might not like it,” Seidenberg explained. “You’re better off to give a credit and let the buyer do
exactly what they want. You never know what their taste will be.”
• Pay attention to “curb appeal”: Landscaping is a relatively inexpensive way to show your house in its best light. “Make sure you’ve had a good clean- up on your yard,” Summerville
advised. “Put mulch down, plant some flowers or set potted flowers out front. Landscaping is so important. Even the smallest house, when you put some pretty plants around it, becomes a cute
cottage. And don’t forget to wash your windows and clean the gutters.”