Tips for Buying & Selling a House in Today’s Real Estate Market

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I’ve lived in Waxhaw and been part of the local community here for more than five years and I have watched it grow by leaps and bounds. We have great schools, safe neighborhoods, and a thriving Main Street area in historic downtown, which has really put this area on the map.

The appeal of Waxhaw and its proximity to south Charlotte, Ballantyne, Indian Land, and Fort Mill, along with the influx of people moving to the Charlotte area has contributed to the growth and the competitive housing market here.

Selling in Today’s Market

Today’s sellers need to make their house as visually appealing and move-in ready as possible, because today’s buyers know exactly what they want thanks to 24/7 access to home improvement shows on cable and with apps like Pinterest and Houzz. The problem is most buyers have no clue how to update a home, so they end up going the new construction route which is more expensive, but easier than updating a home themselves. 

In addition to going to open houses in their neighborhood, I often advise sellers in Waxhaw to look at new construction homes in their price range and up to 10 or 15% higher, because those homes are their competition just as much as the ones down the street. Then hire professionals—whether that’s a painter, carpenter, or handyman—who can help you make inexpensive changes that will help your home compete aesthetically.  

Also, understand that unless your home has massive upgrades and improvements, you’ll still likely need to price your lived-in house 8% to 10% below that comparable brand-new one. Pushing the market is one thing, but severely overpricing your house is one of the worst things you can do, because you’re overshooting the market for your home and missing out on your most likely buyers.

Buying in Today’s Market

I always advise buyers to be prepared to buy as soon as you go out with your agent on the very first showing appointment, because if a house is priced well and shows well, there’s a good chance that A) it won’t last long, or B) you could end up in a multiple-offer situation in which you’re competing against other buyers. Contact Michael Curtis and get pre-approved for a mortgage before you start home shopping. 

Do your homework early on by going to open houses and driving through the neighborhoods you are considering as early as possible so you can be laser-focused on your favorite neighborhoods and give yourself the best chance for a positive outcome.  I often work with clients for up to a year before they purchase during this investigative stage.

Finally, understand that the perfect house for you may not look exactly how you want it to now, but there are people you can hire once you close to make it your dream home. There is also a really cool loan product called the 203K that actually allows you to finance repairs, home improvements, upgrades, and add-ons into your mortgage when you purchase the home.

If you are thinking about buying or selling a house and are seeking professional guidance, contact the author at or (980) 298-9385. Grappone is a licensed real estate agent in North and South Carolina and specializes in the Tri-W News readership area.

Congrats to Marvin Ridge High School, which was recently named the best high school in the Charlotte region by U.S. News & World Report!

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