An Easy Guide to Selling Your Home
Before you decide to sell your home, you must examine the local housing market, select an agent, conduct an open house and so on. Here are some useful tips that will make selling your house an easy process:
1. Do your homework
The first thing you need to do is review the local housing market. Check all the similar houses in your locality and how they are priced. Visit real estate websites or browse through the newspapers to review the listings of recent house sales and how long they were available in the market. Monitor the asking and selling prices of houses in your neighborhood during the previous few months. Compare it with last year’s sales to get a better idea of whether the market is cooling down, or heating up.
2. Picking an agent
Do not choose an agent just based on your friend’s or family’s referral or website reviews. Schedule an appointment with the agent and interview the person before you choose him or her. Evaluate the person from a buyer’s point of view: Does he say all the right things about the house? Is he professional or friendly enough? Does he make you want to see the house and buy it? Do not be fooled by flattery of an inflated price, check the price based on your research of the current housing market. Inquire whether he will be the agent showing your house or he is just winning listings for a broker? Some brokers hire agents just to get listings and then another agent take over the sale of the house.
3. Establish the commission
The next step after choosing an agent is to formally sign an agreement. The listing agreement comprises of the fine point of your arrangement, like the compensation amount and the period for which the agent will represent your home. When negotiating this agreement discuss all important issues for example, if there are certain timings when the house is off limits for walk-ins. Notify your lawyer as soon as you sign the listing agreement as you will need help while reviewing bids and contracts. If you do not have a lawyer your agent can guide you through this process.
4. Preparing for an open house
You might want to groom your house up before it goes on the market. Tidy it up a bit, move excess furniture into basement, mow the lawn, tend the flowers or get a paint job if necessary. Make sure it doesn’t look to cluttered or worn out. These matters may seem insignificant however they add up hundreds of dollars to your final sales price. If you have no idea about these things you can always hire a home stager who prepares homes for their showcasing. They might cost a little a more but they ensure quicker sales and higher selling prices.
5. Settle on an asking price
When you do so, don’t consider the original price you paid for the house, the renovations or remodeling costs or even the cost of shifting to your new home. When it comes to pricing property the only yardstick that matters, is the rates at which similar houses are selling for in your locality. This could be higher or lower than the amount you initially paid. Your previous home work should provide with with a good idea of how the market is faring. You can also consult your agent about setting a higher or lower price for your house.
6. Timing is crucial
Examine the market, if you are in a seller’s market where listing move quickly say in a week or two, consider adding a premium to the asking price. On the other hand, if you are in a buyer’s market, pricing is essential and the critical selling time is within the first month that your house is on the market. If your price is too high, you’ll scare off potential agents and buyers and then it might be difficult to get them back.