Wondering “How Do I Sell My Home?”
Thinking about selling your home can sometimes feel overwhelming and like a downright daunting task. It really doesn’t have to be. We’ve broken it down into 5 simple steps needed for every home sale. No matter if you’re looking to sell it with an agent or FSBO (For Sale By Owner), by following these simple steps, you can sell your house quickly and for a good price.
Check out our step-by-step guide below.
STEP 1 – Learn The Market And Value Of Your Property
Before listing your house for sale, it’s crucial to understand the market you’re in and the value of your property. Not doing so can leave you confused, leaving the house listed longer than it should be, or even worse, taking less money. There are a few ways to find the value of your home.
- Consult a local real estate agent: Reach out to a local real estate agent who has experience in your area. They can prepare a CMA (Comparative Market Analysis) for you that assesses recent home sales in your area that compare it to your property to let you see what your home may be worth. This may also be a good time to decide if you want to list it or if you’d like an agent to list it for you. You can find one here if you don’t have one you trust. If you want to save on some fees and commissions and want to avoid using an agent, one thing I’d advise here is to make sure they know you’re doing research. They may think you’re going to use them to list the property which could create tension in a relationship.
- Hire an appraiser: Hiring a professional appraiser will give you an unbiased and accurate valuation of your house. This is similar to what an agent does and they will factor in location, condition, comparable style, and size to give value to your home. Something to remember here, they may be a little conservative in their valuations.
- Talk to any investor friends you may have: Investors keep a pulse on the market by knowing design and rehab trends and what they may sell for. This can benefit you by knowing how much more you can make by rehabbing or improving parts of your house.
- Assess the value yourself: Though this may be the most inaccurate, by researching online platforms like Zillow, Redfin, or Realtor.com you can start to see market trends as well as recently sold homes in your area. The benefit of this is that it doesn’t take long for you to look up the info yourself and have a ballpark idea of market trends and the value of your home.
STEP 2 – Prepare Your Property To Show And Sell
When getting ready to sell your property and to provide the maximum chance of success at obtaining a high sale price, it’s important to prepare your property to sell. Here are some tasks you can tackle to start prepping your house for the market.
- Clean, declutter, and minimize the appearance of deferred maintenance: This can include items like re-caulking your tub, painting baseboards, or just storing extra items to make the house appear more spacious. These simple acts can really enhance the overall appearance of your home for potential buyers.
- Low costs updates: Studies show that the best return on investment are updates to bathrooms and kitchens. These can be as little as painting or updating the backsplash in your kitchen to full bathroom renovations. When maximizing the value of your home, these lower-cost updates can really make the home shine to potential buyers.
- Stage the property: By maximizing the space and minimizing your presence in the property, you can really help potential buyers see themselves living in the space. This can aid in obtaining a higher offer with a faster close.
- Capture appealing photographs: It’s always important to show your home with its best appearance when posting to the internet. (It’s where 97% of Americans search for homes.) Professional photos are ideal. They touch up and enhance photos automatically. If you’re going to attempt to sell FSBO, you can always take the pictures yourself and use a service like boxbrownie.com to touch up and enhance your own photos.
STEP 3 – Announce The Home For Sale And Let People See It
Now that the home is really ready to sell, you need to let people know it is. It’s crucial to get buyers to look at your home. There’s no better way than to let them actually see the property. Marketing properly is the next step in selling your home and plays into the idea of supply and demand. Here are a few ways to consider marketing, or having your home marketed for you.
- List it with an agent: This is the set it and forget it method. Good agents will make sure that the right steps have been followed up to this point. Now it’s just putting it on the MLS (Multiple Listing Service is where agents list homes for sale with other cooperating agents).
- FSBO the home: This would be you marketing the home with things like front yard signs, bandit signs (these are technically illegal signs posted on public space but a good way to draw attention to your home, and obviously listing on the internet on sites like Zillow or FSBO.com.
- Flat fee listing service: This combines the best of both of those and allows you to list on the MLS through an agent for a flat fee. There may be some commission owed to the buying agent, but this allows you to market to the largest number of people. You can check out services like Houzeo.com or Flat Fee Group for additional details on this kind of service in your area.
STEP 4 – Negotiate A Contract
Now the fun begins! This is when you start to look at the offers coming in for your home and see which ones you like the best. If you have an agent, they will help guide this process and should help you see which contract provides the best solution to your situation. Here are a couple more tips or things to remember when negotiating.
- When an offer is presented, you really only have 3 responses: accept, decline, or counter. A timely response is important when you start out the negotiation process.
- Contingencies may be more important than price when it comes to negotiating. Don’t forget to address these when you’re looking at the offers presented. And make sure your agent, if you have one, explains what the contingency can mean for the sale of your house.
- Have an attorney to help with finalizing the contract. Some attorneys may even help with the negotiation of the contract, but I always feel that’s best left to you to figure out what helps you in your unique situation. You can find an attorney by searching here.
STEP 5 – Wait Out The Due Diligence And Escrow Periods
After you’ve agreed to a contract, the buyer will have time to inspect the house. This can vary from state to state. After they have inspected, they are allowed to ask for repairs or concessions. This is a form of renegotiation period. If repairs are needed, this may slow down the sale of your home as you’ll have to have them made and they are allowed to ensure they are done. It’s also during this time lots of other things are done in the background, like ensuring there are no other liens, encumbrances, or title issues. These can change the financial situation such as a mechanics lien or even a notice of encumbrance can stop the sale in its tracks and could cause you to fix something you had no clue was an issue.
STEP 6 – Close On The Sale Of Your Property And Move Out
Ok, we know this is a sixth step. But all the hard stuff is done and this is an easy one. It’s just a step you can’t forget and will require a little time. This is when you’ll sign all the paperwork at a title or escrow office and officially transfer ownership of the property to the buyer. Once the closing is complete, you can move out of your house (which you’ve probably already done) and into your new home.
By following these simple steps you can navigate the process of selling your home making it as smooth and stress-free as possible. At the end of the day, even with its difficulties, selling your property can be a rewarding experience.
If all this sounds too difficult or time-consuming, you can always save all these steps and just contact a cash buyer, like SILT Real Estate and Investments, LLC. Give us a call or fill out the form below. We’ll be glad to answer any questions you have or get started on your all-cash offer that closes quickly.