Home buyers will usually fall into one of two categories which are traditional buyers and investors. Since you are selling your house you need to determine who you are trying to sell to because it will have a big impact on how you market your home. Depending on the situation that you find yourself in it might be better to cater to one type of buyer over the other.
A Traditional Buyer
A traditional buyer is your average home buyer. This can be a single person wanting to move out of an apartment, a couple who is looking for a home to raise kids, a relocating family, etc. There are many variations to traditional buyers but the fundamental difference is that they are purchasing the home for the express purpose of moving in and living inside.
These buyers are great to cater to if your home is in general good working order and you are moving out because of nonfinancial reasons such as job relocation or wanting a bigger place. If you are selling to traditional buyers, then your sale will generally be around the market value for the home.
If you are catering to traditional buyers, you will need your house to be showcase worthy as you market, which means fixing minor repairs, updating rooms, and keeping the house clean and clutter free. Effective staging will allow a house to sell more quickly because traditional buyers can easily imagine their life within your home.
Selling To An Investor
Real estate investors do not generally move into the houses they purchase. They look at houses in terms of potential investments. For real estate investors, they will make an offer based upon the margin between the costs (transaction fees, repair costs, etc.) and potential profit to be gained whether it comes in the form of reselling or renting it out to tenants. There is no need to stage a home in that case since investors are not interested in moving in.
Real estate investors can be a godsend to home sellers in financial trouble. If you are facing a financial crisis, some investors are willing to work with you to prevent foreclosure on your home.
There are companies that buy houses and then make an agreement with former home owners to become tenants paying rent, or they can buy your house from you for cash. You will no longer have the title to your home in either case, but it is a great relief to not face eviction or be on the road to financial recovery.
Traditional buyers that are the do-it-yourself types are willing to purchase a home and put in the work to fix minor holes, repaint rooms, and re-carpet the floors. Very rarely will traditional buyers want to do more than that, especially first time home owners who more than likely just want a move in ready house. If your home is in dire need of repair with major work that involves contractors, then choosing to sell to investors could be a good choice.
Real estate investors fix homes, and often they have their own network of contractors and repairmen that will repair a home until it is move-in ready. People who have very little knowledge about repairs facing ever decrepit homes may benefit from having the house bought by an investor.
One other great thing is that if you need to sell your house fast many investors will be able to pay upfront and all cash. For many reasons a home seller may need to sell for all cash which most traditional buyers are not able to do but many investors can do just that.
The downside to working with investors is the house will not usually sell for as much as it would if you sold to a traditional investor either because of the amount of work that needs to be done or because of the financial situation that surrounds the house.
If you are a home seller that is in financial trouble and need to sell your house fast, or if your house needs a lot of work, a real estate investor can be the best option that you have.
On the other hand if your home is in good shape and you have the time to keep your house on the market then a traditional buyer is the type of buyer that you should be trying to cater too.