Home Selling Tips

1. Preparing Your House For Sale

When selling, you want the best price and most favorable terms. There are a myriad of marketing options and details that go into a sale, from the time you set the price to closing. When marketing your property, if it is properly prepared for showing an interested buyer, it will bring the best price, terms…and ultimately sell in the shortest time frame. Helpful tips for preparing or staging include:

  • Remove clutter from the yard
  • Cut and edge grass
  • Trim hedges and weed gardens
  • Paint, fix or wash railings, steps, storm windows, screens and doors
  • Clean gutters
  • Wash windows
  • Straighten up garage
  • Paint, wash and fix garage doors and windows
  • Repair dripping faucets and leaky toilets
  • Replace all burned out light bulbs
  • Repair faulty light switch
  • Remove clutter
  • Oil door hinges, tighten door knobs
  • Carpet professionally cleaned or replaced if in poor condition
  • Give home a through cleaning

2. Showing Your Home

Once your home is ready to show, we will begin marketing it to potential buyers and other sales associates. If possible, leave the home when buyers are present so they feel comfortable asking their agent candid questions. Other helpful tips include:

  • Remove pets. Take them with you or keep them penned in the yard or garage.
  • Open shades and curtains to let in light.
  • Turn on enough lights so the home is well lit.
  • Remove clutter from tables and bookshelves. Neatness makes rooms seem larger.
  • Put away items in the yard like garden tools, bicycles and toys.
  • Light a fire in the fireplace to create a cozy atmosphere.
  • Grind up part of a lemon in the disposal to add a fresh smell to the kitchen.
  • Keep radios and TVs off, or on a low volume.
  • Keep money and other valuables, as well as prescription drugs, out of sight.

3. Getting the Highest Price in the Shortest Time

In order to get the highest price in the shortest time, you need to know how to market your home. The better you market your home, the more offers you will get. And the more offers you get, the more choices you have to get the price and terms you want.

The most important factor of marketing your home is pricing it right. Your price should be adjusted to reflect the market, and the property’s worth. The key is to get many people checking out your property at a fair price instead of having no buyers because your price is set too high.

Another important factor is the condition of your home. Make sure that your home looks ready to be sold. Fix any defects (peeling or faded paint, cracks, stains, etc.) Condition alone can
sometimes prompt fast buying decisions. Not only should you fix any defects, but consider upgrading your home by making major repairs and cosmetic improvements before selling. A nice looking home triggers the emotional response that can lead to a financial response.

Learn how to negotiate the best terms for all parties involved. Terms are another factor which may be adjusted to attract buyers. If you insist on getting your asking price, think of what you can offer to the buyers, for example, improvements you’ve made, or even offering seller financing at a lower than market interest rate on a portion of the sale price. Convince them why they should be paying the price you have set.

Lastly, get the buzz out about your home. List your house with a hot agent that ensures your house is listed on the MLS and on the Internet. On your own, get the word out. It should be visible to passerby’s that your house if for sale, whether it be signs, local advertisements or you telling friends, family, and acquaintances.

4. Know Why You are Selling

If you know exactly why you are selling, then it is easier for you to set the right plan of action to get what it is that you want.

If you are a seller who needs to close a sale as quickly as possible, then you should know that getting the highest price possible is not one of your priorities. It does not mean that you won’t or cannot get the highest price, but it means that the price is not the deciding factor. A buyer who can give you a quick closing time will appeal much more to you than a buyer who can offer you more money but the negotiation and closing time drag on.

It’s always good to know how low you will go, in terms of selling price. This will help to eliminate some of the offers that you find simply offensive or ridiculous. Even though you should consider all offers seriously and take into consideration the terms of each offer, sometimes, if you know the bottom line and are strict about it, you can save yourself time.

Once you know what your limits and reasons are, discuss them with your agent so that they can help you set your goals realistically. If you decide to list your home on your own, make sure you do research on the current market, and you get the proper advice you need in terms of legal issues, etc. The key is to be realistic and to know what your goals are so that they can be met.

5. Setting the Price

The price is the first thing buyers notice about your property. If you set your price too high, then the chance of alienating buyers is higher. You want your house to be taken seriously,
and the asking price reflects how serious you are about selling your home.

Several factors will contribute to your final decision. First, you should compare your house to others that are in the market. If you use an agent, he/she will provide you with a CMA. The
CMA will reflect the following:
- houses in your price range and area sold within the last year
- asking and selling prices of houses
- current inventory of houses on the market
- features of each house on the market

From the CMA, you will find out the difference between the asking price and selling price for all homes sold, the condition of the market, and other houses comparable to yours.

Also, try to find out what types of houses are selling and see if it applies to your area. Buyers follow trends, and these trends can help you set your price.

Always be realistic. And understand and set your price to reflect the current market situation.

6 . Finding the Right Agent

Not all agents work the same way. The most important attribute of an agent is that he/she is well connected to the real estate industry. He/she should know the market and provide information on past sales, current listings, his or her marketing plan, and at least 4 solid references. In addition, you also want to look for an agent that is honest, assertive, and one that best understands your needs.

Try to go with a local agent. They can better serve your needs; they are familiar with what the local market condition is, the local prices are, and what’s hot or not in your community.