Monday, April 22, 2019 / by Pamela Glende
1. Choose a listing agent. Make sure to interview at least 3 agents. Have a list of questions ready to ask them. Find out about how they will market your home. What services do they offer? Do they use professional photography? What do they do differently that makes them stand out? Ask for references. Check their reviews online and the reviews of their brokerage. Pay attention to them, are they listening to you? Are they asking why you would like to sell? Do they seem genuine and caring? Do they have your best interest at heart or are you just another sale? Would they advise you not to sell if it’s not in your best interest? Follow your gut.
2. Find out how much your home is worth. Have the listing agent do a market analysis for your home. What other homes in your neighborhood have sold? How do they compare to yours? It is so important to list at the right price. The last thing you want to do is to overprice your home. Overpriced homes tend to sit on the market for a long time. Buyers start to think something is wrong with the home. Normally the end result is that those homes sell for under market value. The seller will have to keep dropping the price and then someone will eventually put in a low ball offer.
3. Get your home ready to sale. Spruce it up. Clean and declutter. Fix things that need to be fixed. Ask your agent what should be done as far as staging and getting it ready to sell. Don’t forget to spruce up the front yard and front door or porch area. Curb appeal is very important, after all we want to get the potential home buyer in the front door. Consider doing a pre-home inspection so there will not be any surprises once your home is in contract. Repair items the inspector calls out.
4. Marketing your home. Make sure the agent takes professional photographs and puts your home on all major websites where shoppers are looking. Talk to your agent about the best selling points of your home and make sure they use the best advertising words to sell it. Ask for all the links of the websites your home is marketed on and review the listing right away to make sure everything looks good. Notify your agent promptly if you see any mistakes or if you want something changed.
5. Leave a letter to prospective home buyers on your kitchen table about what you love about your home. Perhaps include improvements you have made. Also set out some photographs of your home in different seasons. You can also include a list of fun things to do near your home. Often buyers want to know why you are selling so include your reason in your letter.
6. Showing your home. Make sure to leave your home during showings. Let the buyer’s agent do the job of showing your home. Buyers don’t feel comfortable in a home when you are there. Give them the freedom to view your home without any pressure. A buyer needs to feel an emotional connection to a home before making an offer. Remove your personal photographs so the buyer can envision themselves in the home. Leave the lights on and drapes or blinds open. Light and bright homes are more inviting.
7. Receiving an offer and negotiations. Be prepared to receive multiple offers if your home is priced correctly. If you receive a low offer, consider countering the offer instead of rejecting it. Have your agent negotiate the best deal they can for you. Consider countering with a contingency that you find your next home if you haven’t already. If the buyer’s offer is contingent on their home selling, make sure that your agent counters with a bump clause so that the offer may be bumped if another offer comes in and they haven’t sold their home.