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5 Expensive Mistakes HDB Sellers Make

Maelyn Lagman

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Good news for sellers: Statistics show HDB resale prices climbing up steadily as healthy demand from buyers continues to hold. They remain undeterred by the economic slump, snapping up properties all over the city-state. According to recent reports, the price increase points to the entry of newer HDB resale flats into the market, those that have hit their five-year Minimum Occupancy Period (MOP) in 2019 and 2020, which promises handsome profits.

But we have to caution those incentivised by this property outlook. You must not rush into selling your HDB resale flat before you’re ready, lest you make these expensive mistakes:

1. Not getting a proper estimate of the valuation of your property

A property valuation is an estimation of how much your property is worth, typically done by property agents through comparative market analysis; researching the price of units bought and sold around the same area as the property on sale, as well as the prices in surrounding areas. You should take note, however, that they may be prone to error or, in some cases, personal bias.

As home valuations are crucial in a property sales transaction, it’s important to also consider a data-driven, AI-generated report that’s gained from intelligent algorithms made to perform a more accurate estimation of your home valuation in the current market.

At Ohmyhome, you can have both: the professional advice of our Super Agent and an automated property market report, complete with a home valuation.

2. Overpricing

There are common practices done by HDB sellers that have caught our eye, like when they list their HDB resale flat for a higher price in the beginning and lower it later on. But here’s the truth: This move can backfire on you. When buyers are home shopping, they may filter their search up to their maximum budget and not see your home listing in the search results. In this case, you might miss out on a golden opportunity to find a genuine buyer ready to make a serious offer on your home.

Overpricing your flat may also lengthen your stay in the market, which can look suspicious to buyers. The longer your flat remains unsold, despite you lowering the price, the longer buyers have to think there’s something wrong with your property.

Avoid overpricing your property to prevent pricing disputes with your buyer.

As price is one of the most critical considerations buyers will have to make before making an offer, you need to know how to price your unit to gain the most profit at the end of the sale.

When you list your home at a lower price, you can get more enquiries and offers, which can drive up the cost of your unit to what is considered market value. This way, you can eliminate potential pricing disputes with prospective buyers.

We understand how much you love your home, just don’t let your sentiments inflate your selling price. Setting realistic expectations for the sale of your home can accelerate your home sale.

Dive Deeper: Ask Our Agent: How to Sell Your Home FAST?

However, do take note that even if a buyer agrees to your selling price, the Cash Over Valuation (COV) might be too high, which can result in the deal to fall through even after the OTP has been issued. Remember: Your CPF or housing loan cannot be used to cover the COV and will have to be in cash.

For example, let’s say you sell your flat for $500,000 and the HDB valuation is $480,000. The difference of $20,000 is what we call the Cash-over-Valuation (COV), which will have to be paid in cash and cannot be covered by the buyers’ loan or CPF.

3. Poor timeline planning

Don’t underestimate the power of great timing. Planning when to sell your home and buy a new one is a skill you need to master if you intend on progressing in your property journey. You cannot merely expect to secure a place to buy right after you sell, so you need to consider the following factors:

  • The profits you can make from the sales of your house
  • The cost and financing for your new house
  • The legal and contractual aspect of the selling and buying
  • Timing for moving in the new house and moving out of your sold property

This stage is where you can benefit from having the help of the right property agent, who can push you to act on and when to work on it. A professional property agent will construct a customised time plan that best suits your situation.

Dive Deeper: Do I Need to Wait for 5 Years to Sell my HDB Flat?

4. Not decluttering your home

Staging your home is not a flimsy sales gimmick agents throw around for fun. It’s a real factor that can make or break your home sale.

It’s hard to see the potential space of a home when there’s so much furniture in it. Our suggestion is to declutter the areas you’ll be taking pictures of-or even hide taste-specific decor that can alienate other buyers. Remaking your bed with neutral-coloured sheets, organising your rooms, and even arranging things like toothbrushes and other home items in a neat manner can make a world of difference in how a buyer perceives your home.

In fact, an Ohmyhome client was able to sell his home within two weeks, after putting it on the market six months prior. The only difference was he listened to the advice of our Super Agent and invested in painting his home.

Presenting your home as beautifully as possible can score you the right buyer, just like a well-dressed date can score you another. Make sure every room is as organised as it can be, and don’t try to hide defects either. Get the necessary repairs done before you try to sell your home.

Dive Deeper:

5. Not choosing the right agent

You may have friends or family who are property agents but don’t let their familiarity influence you into engaging their services. Just because you know them doesn’t mean they’re the right agent for you. Instead, choose an agent who specialises in the type of your property and location. This is because, someone who specialises in new launch condos may not service you as well as an agent who specialises in selling HDB flats. Or, an agent experienced in selling Toa Payoh properties may not be able to help a seller in Jurong East as well as an agent with first-hand experience and information selling properties in that location.

At Ohmyhome, you won’t have to worry about this. Super Agents are automatically assigned to clients based on their property type and location for you to gain the highest level of real estate advisory service available.

Ohmyhome Super Agents are automatically assigned to clients based on their property type and location.

Also, engaging many agents to market your home listing will not guarantee a faster sale. It can even lead to more complications: When multiple agents are trying to sell your property, they will often undercut the price to attract buyer enquiries to compete with one another. Different agents may even bring the same buyer to view your home for the second time. Not having an exclusive agent also makes your property lose its exclusivity and premium value on the market.

Dive Deeper: What To Expect from Ohmyhome HDB Seller Agents

Finding the right agent to market your home and represent you as a seller to prospective buyers goes a long way in successfully transacting the sale of your HDB resale flat.

A quick recap

Before selling, get a formal valuation report of your home from HDB; price it reasonably; plan your timing; stage your home correctly; find the right property agent to help you out.

Get professional advice from Ohmyhome agents

Need professional advice about selling your property? Let our team of experienced property agents, specialising in specific areas and property types, assist you from advertising, timeline planning, documentation, completion to handover.

Call 6886 9009 to secure an appointment today.

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