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Don't Let Neighbors Downgrade Your Listing

Posted on: in [ home selling process, home value ]


It’s a dilemma in which no real estate professional wants to be stuck: snagging the perfect listing in a desirable area—right next door to the neighborhood eyesore. Whether it’s an unkempt property neglected by messy owners or an abandoned home falling into disarray, the ugly house next door can have a real and negative effect on the curb appeal of your listing. Your first instinct might be to ignore it and focus on the home you’re selling. But potential buyers don’t have blinders on, and they’ll see the nearby nuisance right off the bat. So, it’s best to address the problem head-on. With a little creative thinking, you can keep potential buyers’ attention on your listing and work through objections to any unsightliness next door. Here’s how.

Find the Silver Lining

Sometimes, you need to reframe the way potential buyers perceive a nearby eyesore. If the house next door to yours looks littered with lawn equipment, try telling your borrowers that on occasions it is convenient to be able to borrow a tool or piece of equipment when finishing your project.

Create a Buffer

If the neighboring eyesore isn’t something that can be reframed, see if you can take measures to hide or downplay it. Perform a land survey to establish clear boundary lines between your seller’s property and the neighbors, and then erect a fence or landscape buffer, which can draw attention away from neighboring properties and add to the attributes of your listing. Do not pretend that potentially intrusive problems with a neighbor’s property don’t exist. Be honest about them; address the issue in the best way you can and move on. Remember that the key to selling your listing is highlighting its strengths. If the neighboring property appears poorly maintained, take measures to show that your listing is in better condition.

Offer Help with Compassion

In other cases, rundown homes and overgrown yards may be a sign that the neighbors could use a little help. Perhaps it’s an older couple who are no longer able to maintain the property; maybe it’s a family who has fallen on hard financial times. Either way, you should be prepared to put on your “part-time investigator hat” to find out what’s going on. For unsightly yards, consider offering some lawn care work. It could be as simple as recruiting a few teenagers in the neighborhood for a few hours of cleanup. Gently let the neighbors know that you are preparing to sell your home. Offer to have work done on their property in return for being great neighbors.