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Helen Painter Property Management – Selling your home is likely to fill you with mixed emotions: excitement, nervousness, uncertainty, or a combination of all three.
Selling a home takes a lot of time and experience, and if this is your first time, you may not know how to begin the long process.
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For all first-time home sellers, we’ve put together a home selling checklist so you can be sure you’re taking all the necessary steps to sell your home quickly and for the best price.
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By following this simple guide, you can be sure you’ll have all your bases covered from listing to closing.
A little extra preparation on your part could mean the difference between selling your home quickly for top dollar and your home languishing on the market for months with minimal buyer interest.
To ensure you get the best price when selling your home, we’ve put together a list of things you should do before listing your home.
Selling a home is difficult and time-consuming due to the countless moving parts that need to work in unison to make things go smoothly.
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For the easiest selling experience, plan to work with a real estate agent to help sell your home.
The agent’s experience in advertising, negotiation, and the local real estate market are very valuable advantages that you simply won’t get if you try to sell your home on your own.
To find a quality real estate agent, interview a few agents to see who best fits your personality and selling needs.
The most reliable way to determine the value of your home is to perform a comparative market analysis [CMA].
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He or she will look for homes that have sold nearby that are comparable in size, age, and condition to yours.
By averaging some of these comparable homes (or comps), you’ll get a good idea of what price you can expect your home to sell for.
A good real estate agent will give you the lowdown on the types of homes that sell quickly and for top dollar in your neighborhood.
He or she will know the current supply of homes like yours on the market, as well as the demand for them.
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Your realtor can also take a look at your home and see how its age, features, location, and condition compare to other homes for sale.
If the house is next to train tracks or the city dump, you shouldn’t expect to get top dollar for it.
Similarly, if your home is older but in an up-and-coming neighborhood, this can increase the price.
As a general rule, newer, nicer homes that need little repair will command the highest prices and the most interest from buyers.
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If your home needs major work, that doesn’t mean it won’t sell—just factor the repairs into the price.
Unless you own your home, you will not receive the full amount from the buyer when you sell your home.
If you have a mortgage, you don’t own your entire house; your lender owns a portion of it.
You can calculate this by subtracting what you owe on your mortgage (as well as any other home equity loan or HELOC) from the value of your home.
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In this scenario, you would have $150,000 in equity in your home ($300,000 – $100,000 – $50,000 = $150,000).
Divide this number by the value of the home to get the percentage of equity you have in your home.
It’s worth your time and effort to get your home in tip-top condition before buyers come calling.
Here are some of our favorite tips to prepare your home for sale and clean your home to sell faster.
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The elbow grease involved may not be as much as you think and will be well worth the investment when it comes time to negotiate a price for your home.
If you’re also looking to improve your home’s exterior, we’ve compiled a list of the top 10 seller appeal tips.
Most people think of an inspection as something they do when buying a home, but it’s often a good idea to ask for an inspection as a seller before putting the home on the market.
Most buyers will get an inspection before closing anyway, so it’s a good idea to know in advance what faults your home has, rather than waiting for your buyers to use them as bargaining chips once it has an offer on the table.
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With a complete picture of your home’s problems, you won’t spend thousands on a kitchen remodel only to find you have to spend more to mitigate termite damage.
You can expect to do some DIY home improvements or repairs before putting your home up for sale, unless you plan to list your property as a fixer-upper home.
Many buyers are looking for a move-in ready home, so by addressing any issues early on, you’ll maximize the pool of buyers you’ll attract.
Be aware that necessary repairs (even small ones) can work against you, as buyers will use these items to negotiate the sale price of your home.
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You only have one chance to make a good first impression on your buyers, and staging will help make that first impression a “Wow!” one.
To go one step further, you can rent beautiful furniture or decorations or hire a professional decorator to make your home’s interior shine.
If you can get a higher price for your home, the staging costs can pay for themselves.
The best thing you can do to sell your home is to keep it clean and ready to show at a moment’s notice.
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Potential buyers can drop in unannounced, so it’s very important that your home is tidy and clean.
If you’ve prepared and prepared your home well, it’s only a matter of time before the offers start rolling in.
When a buyer decides they like your home enough to buy it, they will submit an offer to you through your real estate agent.
You can decide if you like that offer or if you want to wait and see if someone comes up with a better one.
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If you think the offer is close but not exactly what you want, you can adjust the terms of the offer and propose them as a counteroffer to the buyer (who can accept, decline, or counter again).
If you receive multiple offers, your real estate agent can message all parties to make their “best and final” offer.
This gives buyers a chance to give you the best deal and helps you see all the offers on the table at once so you can choose between them.
Cash offers don’t require underwriting, appraisals or many of the other hoops banks force buyers to jump through.
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Funded offers must also be appraised (valued by the bank) at or above the buyer’s offer.
If a financed buyer offers too much and the bank’s appraisal is low, the buyer may not be able to get a large enough mortgage to cover their original offer.
One way a financed deal can compete with a cash offer is if the buyer gets a mortgage pre-approval.
This proves to the seller that a bank has reviewed the buyer’s finances and approved them for a home loan up to a certain amount.
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This does not guarantee that the buyer will be approved for a mortgage (especially if they are in the low rate situation described above), but it is a good sign that the buyer is truly willing and able to purchase the home.
Typically, the buyer pays most of the closing costs, which are the fees and expenses involved in closing a real estate deal.
However, it’s worth noting that paying some or all of the closing costs can be used as a bargaining chip between buyers and sellers.
These cover a certain portion of closing costs, such as an appraisal, attorney fees, or title insurance.
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Keep in mind that certain mortgage types place limits on what a buyer can use in seller concessions.
Buyers often submit their offers with contingencies – provisions so they can rescind their offer without penalty if the inspection or appraisal comes back with problems.
With no contingencies, the seller knows the buyer is on the hook no matter what and is unlikely to back out of the deal.
If you need to sell your home quickly and have multiple offers, give more weight to offers that come with no contingencies for a quick sale.
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Once you and the buyer have gone back and forth and negotiated an offer that you are both happy with, you can sign and accept your offer.
After that, a few more things have to happen before the deal is done.
Most items are on the buyer’s to-do list, but as a seller, there are a few things you need to plan for.
If you have agreed to make arrangements at home, make sure they are completed before the final step.
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Keep track of documentation and/or confirmation numbers to prove your move date in case you get stuck with an extra bill.
Your agent can
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