An individually owned, single-family dwelling with at least two floors and usually sharing a wall with another such dwelling, a townhouse is a different animal from a single-family detached house or a condominium.
As a result, selling a townhouse requires targeting a different kind of buyer with different needs. That’s why we want you to be aware of these 3 things to expect when selling a townhouse in Shoreline, WA.
3 Things To Expect When Selling A Townhouse In Shoreline, Washington
1. Unique Marketing
When it comes to pricing issues, selling a townhouse can, in many cases, be easier than selling a single-family house. The townhouse exists as part of a very close community of similar dwellings, so determining comparable fair market value is much easier. You can easily assure buyers that your sale price isn’t too high.
But you do need to be aware that buyers will be looking at both the townhouse itself and the townhouse community. In reality, then, you will be marketing both. Of the 3 things to expect when selling a townhouse in WA, this one is often overlooked by sellers who try to do it all on their own – usually to their detriment.
Further, potential townhouse buyers are looking to escape many of the tasks involved in traditional homeownership. So use as a selling point all those things the HOA fees will get them: security, garbage collection, snow removal, and so on. Some real estate experts even recommend offering to pay the first year’s association dues to sweeten the deal.
2. HOA Concerns
While the HOA can be an asset for marketing purposes, prospective buyers will usually have some related concerns you’ll need to address. Townhouse communities vary in both their personalities and their rules. Some are pretty lenient while others have strict rules about regular maintenance and pets, for example.
Certainly, buyers will want to know about fees, regulations, and penalties for non-compliance. That is, they will want to know whether they are getting enough in return to justify the yearly dues. Potential buyers will also be concerned about what HOA regulations will require them to do and prohibit them from doing. Will they have to paint yearly? Will there be restrictions on dressing and ornamentation?
In addition, the purchase agreement is often contingent on the buyers agreeing to the HOA regulations and usually by a set deadline. If the documents aren’t submitted on time and the deadline isn’t met, it could result in revocation of the offer.
3. Agent Specialization
A common recommendation for successfully selling a townhouse is to seek out a real estate agent who specializes in townhouses. As we mentioned above, these are entirely different animals with a different target market, which calls for the services of a specialist.
Townhouses fall somewhere in the middle between single-family homes and condos with respect to security, property responsibilities, and annual costs. So you need an agent with specialized knowledge and experience to market and sell to townhouse buyers.
This is especially the case when it comes to pricing. Because of all the comparable units in a townhouse community, you probably won’t have much wiggling room for pricing. An experienced agent can help you set a price that is both competitive and that will allow you to get what you need. She can also help you determine which features to emphasize to this special set of buyers in order to increase the chances of a sale.
Knowing these 3 things to expect when selling a townhouse in WA will help you reach your target market with better results. And a real estate professional can be a huge asset when you’re trying to sell a townhouse because it’s so different.
How We Can Help
My first home that I bought with my husband when we were just starting out was a townhouse in Lynnwood, WA. We thought it would be a “Starter Home” for us, and we ended up selling it after 10 years (and two kids) when we moved to Lake Forest Park, WA to be closer to my folks. (Built-in babysitters!). We loved our townhouse condo – I was on the board of Home Owners Association there, and it was a great experience at the time. Now I’m glad we were able to sell and move onward and upward. Maybe we’ll downsize again in the future when the kids are grown and we want something lower-maintenance.
If you need a real estate agent in your corner, I’m Emily Cressey of HomeProAssociates.com – with HomeSmart in Seattle. We’re right here – ready, willing and able. Let me know how I can help!