The housing market has received a reset. What was an incredibly strong seller’s market a year ago has shifted – buyers now hold power. Sellers who want to sell their homes quickly will have to pay attention to the details now, and not just rely on the super-hot market to accomplish things for them.
Interested in selling a house in Colorado? Contrary to what the media doom-and-gloom messaging may have led you to believe, it’s not a terrible time to sell. Prices haven’t dropped dramatically – they’ve just reverted slightly down from their peak last year. In fact, many homes are still selling above listing price.
Here’s what you should know before listing your home.
Is now a good time to sell a house in CO?
When it comes to the Colorado real estate market, there’s good news and bad news. Let’s review the stats, based on Redfin’s latest data.
- Median sale price: $546,400 (-1.8% year-over-year)
- Median days on market: 45 (+20 YoY)
- Months supply of inventory: 3 months (+2 YoY)
- Homes for sale: 20,857 (+24.3% YoY)
- Homes with price drops: 25.5% (+14.6% YoY)
- Homes sold above list price: 18.4% (-26% YoY)
If you were hoping to get in at the peak of the market when buyers were routinely offering 20% over asking, the reality is you missed that – rising interest rates killed the buying fervor.
However, the quick ascent can ultimately help your home sell for more – because its market value will be based in part on recent sales nearby. Just because you don’t get 20% over asking, doesn’t mean you don’t stand to gain some serious profit.
While days on market are up, it’s fairly in line with a more typical timeline (as compared to last year’s craziness).
Also, look at the last stat above: nearly 20% of sellers are still seeing their homes sell for above asking price.
“It is not as good of a time as it was last year, but people are still selling houses,” notes Sequeeta Robinson, an experienced Denver Realtor. “Be patient, and you need to focus on price. Being patient is not always the easiest thing for sellers when they’re used to the market being so rapid-paced.”
Most sellers are also buyers, and last year was not a great time to be a buyer. Plenty of people who wanted to sell couldn’t, because the chance of selling and then having nothing to buy were just too great. Ultimately, the market is moving in a less stressful direction for people who have to buy and sell at the same time.
Currently, the hottest local markets in Colorado are:
- Derby, CO
- Meridian Village, CO
- Winter Park, CO
- Cherry Hills Village, CO
- Granby, CO
CO median home sale price over the past 5 years, via Redfin
How do I sell a house in Colorado?
Once you’ve decided to sell your home, the next step is: “how?” Your goals for your home sale should be to sell your home quickly, maintain maximum profit, and reduce stress during the transaction. Here are the steps you should take.
Get in touch with a Realtor
Choose an agent who’s knowledgeable about the local area, has experience with negotiating, has positive reviews from past clients, and strong communication skills. We have several such agents on our team.
Find out what your home is worth and list it
Once you have an agent, you’ll meet up to discuss what your home is worth. They’ll explain to you what the market value of your home is based on recent purchase activity and local comps. They will also make suggestions as to how you can update or declutter your home in order to maximize buyer interest. You may not agree with their pricing recommendation – ultimately the list price is your decision.
The next step is signing a binding listing agreement with that Realtor and their brokerage.
Then, your house will be photographed, listed on the MLS, receive a lockbox for showings, and buyers will come with their agents to see it.
From beginning to end, you can expect this process to take about three months to complete. About half of that time will be spent on closing (negotiations and financing).
Resource: 15 Essential Questions to Ask a Realtor
Colorado closing costs
It costs money to sell your home, which impacts your profits – so what sort of expenses can you expect?
Typical seller closing costs in Colorado include:
- Agent commissions
- Title insurance
- Title service fees
- Outstanding amounts owed on the property
- Escrow fees
- Recording fees
Closing costs can be roughly estimated as a percentage of the home’s selling price. On average, selling a house costs 7-9% of the home’s selling price (that includes commission fees).
As an example, the current median listing price of a home is $560,000 in Colorado. For this home, sellers should spend somewhere from $33,600 – $50,400 to cover closing costs.
“The taxes tend to be the most confusing part of closing costs – depending on the time of the year, you may still owe half of 2022 plus a few months here of 2023,” explains Sequeeta.
Trelora is a top real estate company in Colorado
For sellers worried about closing costs eating into their hard-earned equity, there’s Trelora. We’re focused on helping sellers sell for less, while still providing great service.
- We charge a 1% fee (with 2-3% for the buyer’s agent) regardless of how much your home sells for. Compared to a traditional brokerage that charges 3% for each agent (a total of 6%), Trelora clients stand to save up to 50% on commission costs.
- On average, home sellers save $12,000 by working with us.
- Trelora agents are salaried employees who receive benefits. This means that they can focus on client goals, rather than commissions.
- If you opt to sell and buy with us, you can save an additional $2,500 – that’s money you can put towards renovations, family vacations, or simply your rainy day fund.
“We’re doing everything a traditional brokerage would do, but for less. So I think at the end of the day, people often go with us because they realize they want to save money,” notes Sequeeta.
How can you sell your Colorado home quickly and profit the most?
Every home seller has different goals for their timeline and property, but overall, most homeowners want to sell for maximum profit without having to linger on the market too long and complicate their plans going forward. Here are three things you can do to ensure you sell your home quickly, while pocketing the most cash.
Treat professional marketing as a must
These days a buyer’s search begins online, so their experience there is essential for guiding a successful sale.
“The listing matters – the photography, the description, how it’s built out – because that’s the first place that people are really going to see the information for that home. And I find that if the photos are not very good or the description of the homes are not very good, it may get skipped or overlooked,” notes Sequeeta.
It’s not an exaggeration to say that sellers who opt for low quality phone photos are throwing profit out the window. Opt for professional photography – the spend is worth the gain – and make sure your description includes everything. What might not matter to you (like a tiny extra room that can be used as a work station) may be a must-have for a buyer.
Employ a strategic pricing plan
Be realistic about your home’s market value, and don’t price it $30,000 over what your agent recommends just to see what happens. 99% of the time, it hurts your bottom line to spend your first week on market (which is the week where the most potential buyers will see your home) priced far beyond the budget of people who will actually be interested in your home.
Rising interest rates mean a smaller and more discerning group of buyers, so you don’t want to risk well-qualified buyers passing over your home. Sellers in 2023 need to try and make their home prices competitive – not aspirational.
“At the end of the day, we can’t change location or layout, but we absolutely can change price and condition,” explains Sequeeta. “Make sure the price is based off of the condition of the home. We cannot be priced based off the condition of your neighbor. Keep that in mind and eventually, the buyer will walk in the door.”
Use your time to improve your home’s appearance
In a competitive market, dingy and dirty homes stand out – but not in the way you want. When low interest rates were inspiring buyers to pay 20% over asking, sellers could put a cluttered house with broken windows on the market and buyers bought it anyway.
The market has shifted, though, and buyers are more discerning. Getting rid of dingy old carpet is a must – even if it means simply replacing it with the cheapest carpeting available. Similarly, fresh paint can do wonders to refresh a lived-in space. Get rid of clutter and look for easy ways to update your space, whether that’s new hardware for your kitchen cabinets or a vanity to replace the cracked one in your bathroom.
So: Should I sell my house in Colorado?
When you look at the stats rather than just read the clickbait headlines, it’s not a terrible time to sell. If you bought your home several years ago, the slight drop in average price compared to the extreme highs of last year aren’t going to make much of a difference to your bottom line. If you approach the housing market with a competitive mindset, it’s more than possible to sell your home quickly – while maximizing your profit.
Looking to connect with an agent and get the ball rolling? Start here.
Mari Rogers is an experienced content manager specializing in real estate. She provides valuable perspectives on the latest trends and news in the field. In the moments she’s not imagining the possibilities of every derelict property on Realtor.com, she’s hanging out with her longtime (feline) companion Olivia Benson.