Tips for Selling Your Home
Learn The Top Selling Buying Strategies Today!
What's Your Exit Plan?
Are you planning to sell your home soon? One important question to answer is “What’s your exit plan?” Where do you move to next? Do you have a specific community in mind and are you familiar with prices in that community, the school district and other neighborhood concerns? Do you have the funds to purchase a new home or are you expecting to use the net proceeds from the sale of your current home? These are all the types of concerns you need to settle on before putting your home on the market.
Preparing Your Home to Sell
Preparing your home to sell starts with viewing your eyes with the critical eyes of a buyer. This may take the “truthful” eye and opinion of a family member or friend. Often, we get so used to our environment that we are unable to give an objective assessment. Create a list of repairs needed, items to be purged and possible projects that can add to the market appeal and value of your home. Your goal as seller is to present a home that feels attractive and as spacious as possible.
If you’ve lived in your home for a while, it can be a good idea to get a pre-listing inspection. Your potential buyer will likely be getting their own inspection before purchasing. Getting an inspection done before listing allows you to make repairs upfront to make your home more attractive to buyers and possibly add value. Making repairs can also avoid these problems being flagged in the buyers’ home inspection or appraisal. When you meet with your realtor, they may have other suggestions or you can discuss your plan with your realtor before starting and agree which things make sense.
Pricing Your Home
Pricing your home at a price that is reasonable compared to other similar properties is key to successfully selling your property. In today’s market, buyers know from Zillow, Redfin and other real estate websites, what other homes in your neighborhood have sold for and what’s on the market. If you bought your home even 10 years, this knowledge makes the process a lot different from what you may have experienced then.
Overpricing your home will result in your home sitting on the market longer. Buyer interest in homes is strongest when homes first come on the market. Often, sellers are surprised that their overpriced home is not receiving offers. Remember buyers have full access to the prices of similar homes in your neighborhood. Furthermore, banks will not approve buyer financing for a home that is priced more than market value.
Exposure to the Market
Maximum exposure to the market is key to successfully selling your home. The more eyes that see your home greatly increases your chances of the right person seeing your it. Most buyers find their home initially on the internet which means that your online presence is as important as in person. As the seller, review your home's listing. Check the pictures and have the listing agent re-take the pictures if they don't present your home well. Also, read the remarks. You are paying to get your home sold so why settle for horrible pictures and remarks that limit buyer interest.
To increase your chances of finding the right buyer, it’s important to use an agent that has developed the methodology to reach the largest number of potential buyers. Selecting a broker that puts your home on the Multiple Listing Service and also promotes it through a vast online presence is key. With today’s information sharing technology, your home can be on hundreds of websites within hours of listing your property.
Negotiating the Offer
Once you receive an offer, you will often negotiate with the buyer on price and other terms of the sale. This is a key part of the process of selling your home. Make sure that you are considering all terms of the offer - price, financing terms, closing date, etc. You’re looking to make sure that you sell at a fair market price with terms that don’t undermine your own interests. You may also want to add your own terms of sale including an extended occupancy after closing if needed. Note that you may encounter multiple offers in today’s market. Again, weigh the offers and select the one that maximizes your return.
Closing day is an exciting time but be prepared for your writing hand to get a lot of exercise because you’ll be signing a lot of paperwork. Usually, the closing is held at the title company’s office. The buyer is entitled to a walk-through inspection of the property 24-48 hours before closing. This is to ensure that the seller has vacated the property and left it in the condition specified in the sale contract. The home should be in “broom clean” condition and clear of any personal property not being conveyed to the buyer.
Buyers often also use this walk-through to make sure any negotiated repairs have been completed. If there are any major problems, the closing may be delayed or request that the seller may be asked to deposit money into an escrow account to cover the necessary repairs. The title company will have a closing statement that details the amount of funds due from both seller and buyer to complete the sale. If there are funds remaining from the sales price after paying these closing costs, you will receive a check. Congratulations! Your home is sold.
Marketing your home is a complex task from start to finish, and that’s why it is important to hire an agent that understands all the important aspects of having a successful experience. Preparing your home for sale is critical. You only get one chance at that first impression and a good agent knows this. Regarding pricing, a good agent will help you price it right the first time and negotiate to get the highest price possible. Selling your home is a big deal to you and you want a professional with extensive experience to help you have a successful outcome.