CategoriesBuying & Selling

Home is where the heart is, so it is no surprise that people experience strong feelings when it comes time to pack up and sell the family home.

The emotional connection between you and your home is completely normal, however, as a seller, you cannot afford to let feelings get in the way.

Regardless of whether you are a baby boomer downsizing, an owner-occupier upgrading or an investor looking to make a profit, your personal feelings must be kept in check in order to sell your property quickly and for the best possible price.

Why people become emotionally attached to their property

For most people, a house is not just an asset. It is a place you associate family, security, happiness, and comfort. There is a growing body of research that says selling a home can be one of the most stressful events of your lifetime.

here are the most common reasons why this process is so emotional:

It is where you created childhood memories

Homes are the backdrop for our lives. You spend many happy hours growing up, spending time with family and friends. These moments are an important piece of your identity and leave you feeling connected to where they happened.

It connects you to family history

In some cases, a property has been handed down through generations or has played a major role in family connections. Therefore, some people struggle to let go and can feel like they are losing a family member.

It is where you celebrated milestones

Celebrations at home are a big part of life including birthdays, barbecues, engagement parties and even the occasional backyard wedding. We regularly reminisce about these special occasions with the house or apartment playing a prominent role in the memory.

You made it your own

Very few people move into a house and do not make changes. Whether it is a new patio, buying special furniture for the space or a complete renovation, you may have poured a lot of time and effort into your property. This creates a sense of pride and a strong bond that can be hard to let go of when it is time to move on.

Should you use your emotions or keep them to the side?

It may seem counterintuitive, but in some cases, sellers can harness their love for their home to help find a new owner by thinking like a buyer.

Pride in your property means you are more likely to give it the attention it deserves and make it perfect before putting it on the market.

People who are very attached are also more likely to pick an agent that cares and who will take the time to point out all the major features and special highlights when showing potential buyers through the house.

Get the low down

While these are positive ways to harness your feelings to achieve a better result, for many people, emotions will cloud judgment. This could result in hasty decisions that may end up costing thousands of dollars. Having an impartial third party such as an agent to give you advice and a clear perspective could save you from some costly mistakes.

Emotional reasons to sell your home

Certain life events like a death, divorce or serious injury in the family are common reasons a sale is triggered, often making the process more overwhelming for the sellers.

In other cases, family members have become too old to care for themselves and the home. This can mean it is being sold against their wishes.

By far, divorce is one of the most difficult situations that cause intense emotions to arise. Selling can be especially tricky when one or both parties do not want to leave and refuse to see eye-to-eye on the price.

Owner-occupiers are not the only sellers impacted. Investors can also experience a rollercoaster of emotions when offloading an investment property. Especially, if they face short deadlines, a tight budget or need to sell in a falling market.

How to prepare emotionally

Undoubtedly, most sellers have a strong bond with their home. So according to specialists, detachment is the best way to move forward. Sometimes this is easier said than done.

Their advice is to say goodbye to the house and begin to look at it as a ‘product’ early in the journey. Doing market research and keeping an open mind is also crucial.

Keep it factual, look at comparable sales. Try and focus on the presentation of the house or apartment, and of course, where you are going to look for another home.

Here are 8 tips on how to keep emotions in check when selling:

  1. Do your research to ensure you price the property correctly and understand the market trends and say goodbye as you prepare your house for sale.
  2. Bringing in the agent early in the process to have the right guidance.
  3. Stage and Style your home for sale, this will feel less like home.
  4. Put yourself in the buyer’s shoes, imagine how happy the next family will be in a home you helped create.
  5. Know what the market is doing and be realistic about your selling time frame and price.
  6. When possible get all interested parties on board before the selling process begins.
  7. Avoid being in the house when prospective buyers visit and ask your agent to keep details to a minimum.
  8. Focus on your next home and engage in some well-deserved self-care.