Are you considering listing your home for sale? One of the first steps is to enlist the help of a real estate agent.
Navigating the waters of real estate alone can be not only stressful, but risky. From under-qualified buyers wasting precious time to contractual loopholes to overpricing your home -- there are lots of selling pitfalls an agent can help you avoid.
"I don’t want to pay a commission!" you say. Research shows that homeowners who sell their homes solo end up selling for less money than homeowners who enlist the expertise of an agent.
Besides, crossing all the t’s in a wordy contract can be a pretty big responsibility, one that is best left to a professional.
Choosing an agent is a matter of personal preference. Some sellers want an agent that is a shark at negotiating, while others want someone who has a good "house side" manner and will be patient and compassionate. Take your time in interviewing potential agents. Ask about marketing plans and for referrals.
Now that you have armed yourself with a great ally, it’s time to prepare your home for sale.
First, have a pre-sale home inspection. Every home will have a list of minor repairs (or major) that need to be addressed. Many buyers want a home that is move-in ready. They don’t want to deal with even a minor headache. Head them off at the pass by addressing trouble areas before they become a problem.
If you end up having large repairs that need to be made, you can then make the decision to address them before listing your home or to at least get estimates for costs. Buyers will appreciate your due diligence.
Next, prepare your home for showings. You may be surprised how quickly you get showings on a new listing, so do your cleaning and staging now.
Clean your home from top to bottom. Remove odors by getting carpets cleaned. Then roll up your sleeves and get to scrubbing! You want every surface to be squeaky clean. You’d be surprised how many potential buyers will walk away from a dirty home.
Stage your home inside and out. Curb appeal is a home’s first impression. Trimming shrubs, pruning trees, and planting seasonal blooms can be a wonderful way to make your entryway feel more welcoming.
Stage rooms so they are clutter free, but still inspire a lifestyle. You want buyers to be able imagine themselves living -- a good life -- in your home.
These are just a few simple pre-sale prepping suggestions. Be sure to ask your agent for other tips that can help you prepare for listing.