Tips and Resources to Help You Sell Your Home, Fast
Selling your home is a major life-changing decision, and there's more to consider than we can put on just one page here. That's way you'll find lots of references to additional material on this page. Take your time, and ready through it all. If needed, bookmark this page so you can come page to it. Something so important takes time to master, and you'll need time to read all the material associated with such a big topic.
FSBO or Hire an Agent?
There are two paths to selling your home. The first is to sell it yourself. Selling your house by owner (FSBO), has advantages and disadvantages. The advantage is you won't pay a percentage of the sale to a seller's agent. The drawback is, you're responsible for pricing, marketing, and negotiating the sale of your house, and that's a lot of work! There are resources for going this route, so if you choose to pursue FSBO, you're not alone.
The second way to sell your house is by hiring a real estate agent. An agent will provides his or her experience and knowledge to help you prepare, price and market your home. When it comes time to show the house to prospective buyers, the agent takes care of that. And when offers are submitted, your real estate agent will advise you there as well. However, this does come with a price, usually around 6% of the selling cost, but that may be worth it. Like all professionals, there are good agents and not-so-good agents. Here are some things to ask before choosing a real estate agent, but one of the best things you can do is get a referral from someone you know.
Pricing Your Home
There are many pricing strategies when it comes to selling your home. It's important to price your home to meet your objectives.
For instance, if you want to sell a home quickly, price your home more attractively, so buyers will be enticed to buy your home rather than another comparable home that's also for sale.
If you're not in a hurry to sell, you might want to price your home a bit higher, but still close to its market value. If you're wondering about how to determine market value, read this great article.
Buyers can research home prices just as easily as sellers and agents can, so homes that are significantly over-priced generally do not sell quickly—if at all.
If you don't receive any offers for your home within a timeframe that's reasonable for you, you might decide to take your home off the market or lower your asking price to attract more buyers.
Getting it ready to sell
Getting your home ready to sell is an important part of the process. Consider what buyers want from a house. Make some choices about what to repair or leave as is. There are lots of articles on house hacks to get you ready for selling your house on the market. Read up on them, and if you hired an agent, listen to what he or she has to say about it too.
Your listing agent can help you figure out how to maximize value when you sell your home. Giving your home a thorough clean-up, clear-out and spruce-up before you put it on the market is a smart approach. De-cluttering and de-personalizing can make your home more appealing to buyers.
A fresh coat of paint for the interior and exterior is also highly recommended, especially if you have eccentric paint colors. The more neutral your home's palette is, the more people will like, or at least accept, those colors.
Offer and Acceptance
If you receive multiple offers for your home, you'll need to sit down with your real estate agent and discuss which offers you feel are the strongest.
The highest price might be the best offer. But other offers might also be attractive. Consider the buyer's financing, down payment, contingencies, timeframe to close and other terms as well as price when you consider offers to purchase your home.
Before you accept an offer, you may negotiate the sale of your home by making counter-offers and line up a backup offer from another buyer in case the first buyer you select isn't able to complete the transaction.
After you accept an offer, the buyer typically will have an opportunity, as agreed to in the purchase contract, to hire one or more inspectors to prepare reports about the condition of your home. Most offers are contingent on an acceptable appraisal and inspection; if repairs are needed, they'll be performed (at the buyer's or seller's expense, as agreed, up to a specified dollar amount. If the repair estimates are higher than that limit, the whole contract goes back to the parties for renegotiation.
If the buyer whose offer you accept needs a mortgage to purchase your home, that buyer's lender typically will require a home appraisal to determine its value before the loan will be approved and the sale will close.
With a little extra preparation, you can help ensure that the appraisal won't come in lower than the agreed-upon sale price for your home. Again, keeping your home in good condition is important.
Ask your agent to prepare "comps" for the buyer's appraiser. In realty-speak, "comps" refers to recent sales of comparable homes, perhaps some that you considered when you priced your home for sale. Giving the appraiser information about the size, condition and sale prices of comps can help justify your home's value.
Selling a home can be stressful. But when the transaction closes, you'll be finished with the process and ready to celebrate your successful home sale. Here are some additional resources to prepare you:
- Tips for Successfully Selling Your Home
- Sell your home fast
- How long does it take to sell a home?
- Buying and selling a home at the same time
- Refinancing a mortgage when your home is for sale
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