Charlie Glahe WIN Broomfield

Sellers eager to put homes on auction block


Though housing inventory levels aren't as robust as they have been in the past, they are increasingly being replenished, as recent polling data indicates more people are putting their properties up for sale.

According to the Seattle-based real estate broker Redfin, approximately 45 percent of the 2,000 people it surveyed in late April said that they are contemplating listing their homes as for-sale, confident that prospective homeowners are interested in buying. When a similar survey was conducted as the first quarter got underway, just 22 percent said they had a great deal of home-seller confidence.

Due to reduced demand or job insecurity, sellers will often have some concerns about how likely it is that their house will be sold. But in approximately one-third of cases, sellers had no major anxieties about selling now.

Chad Dierickx, a housing agent at Redfin, suggested that this type of optimism so many sellers have may be driven by what they've witnessed among friends or acquaintances who've put their properties on the auction block.

"When sellers see their neighbors' homes selling quickly and for prices they never would have imagined a couple of years ago, they can't help but be optimistic about the market," said Dierickx.

He added that many of the people who originally purchased their home before the housing collapse are as bullish as they've ever been since buying, and as such, are listing their homes now to take advantage of favorable conditions.

While there are a variety of factors sellers can do to increase the likelihood of their residences being purchased, one of the most crucial ones is getting a pre-listing home inspection done.

David Tamny, president of the American Society of Home Inspectors, told AOL Real Estate that because purchasing a home is often the biggest buy someone will make in their lifetime, they want to be as certain as possible that what they're investing in is reliable and built to last.

"There's a huge psychological dynamic that happens in this whole process," said Tamny. "The buyers are making a big purchase and they're obviously going through a whole host of emotions, and then you've got the inspector there, and it's their job to deliver up to the buyer's expectations."

He added that there's a lot riding on the home inspection, as what the inspector finds can influence how quickly the property can go up for sale.

Better to be aware of flaws before sale than after
Homeowners may be worried that certain flaws they weren't aware of that the inspector spots may delay a sale, but it's best to be aware of these sooner rather than later.

"A kitchen faucet dripping is hardly a material defect, but if you have a foundation problem or the house needs a new roof, that's material because somebody could decide not to buy a house if they knew it needed a large repair like that," said Tamny.

Professional inspectors largely agree that the foundation is perhaps the most crucial component of sellers' ability to get their residences listed sooner rather than later.

Tom Schlotter, a New England-based home inspection professional, told the Connecticut Post that the big things in the home are the most important to fully inspect, such as the foundation and the roof. For example, holes that are found in the roof are a tell-tale sign that it may need to be replaced, and if cracks are spotted in the foundation, flooding is often the consequence.

These issues may give sellers some pause, worried that a home inspection might throw a wrench into the immediacy with which they can put their home up for sale, but experts agree that it's better to be safe than sorry.