The time has finally come. That nagging feeling you’ve been having that it’s time to make a move is now cemented in your mind. It’s time to move the idea to your to-do list, and you’re ready to take action.
Maybe you’ve outgrown your home, or on the contrary, need to downsize. Perhaps, you’re tired of the neighbors, and you are relishing a change of scenery. Whatsoever the case may be, one thing is certain…you’ve got to sell the house.
So what is your next step? Well, you might be wondering how do I sell my home?
In this article, we will discuss the steps you need to take to sell your home by yourself and help you to understand how a Realtor can add value throughout the process.
What goes into the home selling process:
Get your home ready for sale
You may have maintained your home well over the years, so this may be less of an issue for you. However, if you haven’t had time to give your home the TLC that it had needed and it is falling apart in some areas, you will have to face the reality that it’s time to do some renovations.
It’s possible that you can sell your home as is; however, you will likely not get as much for it as if you invested in fixing up the major problem areas. Areas where renovations could help improve your listing price, include the kitchen, bathrooms, master bedroom, and anything resulting from water damage.
A Realtor is experienced at home valuation. They understand which areas of a home add the greatest value. They can assess your entire property and give you expert recommendations on what to fix what to leave as is.
Get an Appraisal
First things first, you have to determine the value of your home. In order for it to sell and for you to get the greatest value from your investment, your home needs to be evaluated against other similar homes in the marketplace. This means that you will need to do an appraisal of the value of your home.
You will have to contact an appraisal company (usually through your financial institution if you own a mortgage). They will come out and conduct the appraisal and inform you how much your home is currently worth.
Choose your listing price
Armed with this information, you are now in a position to do your research and decide on your final listing price. There are many factors that go into choosing your price. Consider, for example, your neighborhood, what other homes sold for, how much equity you have in your home, and the profit you are interested in receiving from the sale.
Many people find this process challenging because they are often surprised that the value they placed on their home isn’t what it’s worth on the market; oftentimes, it ends up being much less.
A real estate professional is skilled at assessing market value and would be in a position to give you the best advice in terms of how to price your home for a quick and profitable sale. They can also help to remove the emotional decision making that can often slow down the process.
Stage your home: people love to view pretty homes. This is where you have to put on your decorator hat. Your home needs to be presented to your prospects in the best light. You don’t have to break the bank to stage your home, but you should make it stand out.
Compare existing listings on the marketplace to see how they are presented. How do you stack up against the competition?
Upgrade your decor using affordable yet impactful elements such as bold throw cushions, mirrors, new sheets, and fresh flowers. Your home should feel inviting to the visitors who come to assess your home.
Once you are done, take professional photographs of each of the rooms. You will need these photographs when you list the home for sale.
Don’t have an eye for decor? That’s where a Realtor adds a great value. Often equipped with their own home staging teams, they take the work out of the process. They can quickly assess what works and what doesn’t and fill in the gaps using their marketing team’s efforts.
List your house (Put it on the market)
This is the key to getting the word out about your home, but if you wish to do it on your own, your best option would be posting it on Zillow & familiar sites. Just be aware that many realtors will call you acting like they have a buyer so they can try & list your house. I would always suggest listing with an honest realtor for a better & transparent experience.
So, now you’re on your own with no realtor help & no Multiple Listing Service (MLS). You’ll probably have a few calls here & there from some interested buyers. Make sure to question them properly because most of the buyers looking on Zillow buyers are either not working with a realtor & aren’t pre-qualified. You wouldn’t want to waste your time, so make sure to have a lender you know & trust ready to qualify them if necessary. Other buyers are on the investing side & will probably throw you low ball offers. You must be cautious of those because sometimes they might fool you into signing a document without reading the fine print in between the lines & that is very dangerous.
In this step, you will have to do the paperwork to get your home into the popular home selling databases.
You will need a For Sale By Owner sign, and you’ll need to determine where are the best (and legal places) to place signs informing prospects of the sale. First, start with your own lawn.
Realtors have access to sites such as Multiple Listing Services (MLS) or other similar sites in their jurisdiction. They also have their own database of pre-qualified buyers who may be interested in a home-like yours so consider reaching out to realtors.
If you are struggling to sell your house, need help with legal documents or can’t get the price you’re looking for, it’s crucial to speak to a local agent for advice. Feel free to ask how much commission he will charge to sell your house & maybe you both can come to terms & get your home sold.
Promote your listing
Your listing is only as good as the number of eyeballs that see it. If you are listing on services like Kiji, Craigslist, or local neighborhood forums, etc., you will need to actively promote your listing to keep it fresh and top of mind.
Show the property
Congratulations, someone likes your house, thinks the price may be worth it, and now they want to come and see it for themselves. You will need to make yourself available to show the property to prospects. If you have a hectic schedule and you don’t have much help, this is where a Realtor can really be a game-changer for you. Depending on the popularity, you may have multiple showings per day, and you will have to keep track of each prospect.
A dedicated Realtor will always be available to deal with buyers. Realtors and arrange the best times to view the property and are able to remember the particulars of all prospects. Feel free to speak to a local realtor for guidance.
Negotiate the deal
This is the part that many people find the least pleasant and where deals fall apart. Unless someone gives you exactly what you asked for, chances are you will have to negotiate. You’ll need to understand the negotiation process entirely and how to decide when it’s time to agree or when it’s time to walk away.
An experienced Realtor is a tough negotiator; they won’t let you leave any money on the table.
Complete the legal process
When you successfully arrive at a place where both you and the buyer agree upon a final price, it’s time to bring in the lawyers to close the deal. Congratulations on selling your house, now you need to get everything lined up so that you can set closing dates, have conditions made, and ultimately, close your deal. You will need to work closely with your legal professional to ensure that the deal doesn’t fall through.
A Realtor would manage this process for you.
Collect your money
The best part is Its payday. All conditions have been met, the deal has closed, and everyone ends up getting what they want. It’s time to collect your check.