“…find out how to protect and make more money from your biggest investment.”
For most of us, our home is our biggest investment, so selling our home is also a big decision we will make in our lifetime. Insider reports have compiled these 27 tips to guide you through the home-selling process in order for you to learn how to capitalize from and protect your biggest investment, gain control over the process, reduce stress, and make the most money from selling your home.
1. Know the Reason Why You Are Selling Your Home
Dig deep and find out your motivation in selling your home. It will affect everything from the selling price to how much time, effort, and money you will invest to sell your home. If your goal is to sell quickly, then this would lead to a specific approach. However, if your goal is to get top dollar for your home, then this may take a longer time and a different approach.
2. Keep Your Reasons for Selling Your Home to Yourself
Your motivations for selling the home will also have an effect on how you negotiate for its sale, so don’t give your buyers the advantage by divulging to them the reason why you are selling it. if they find out that you need to move right away, then they could put you in the losing end of a negotiation. If they need to know why, you could simply tell them that your needs for a home have changed. Keep your real reasons to yourself.
3. Do Your Research Before Setting a Price
Any seller would want to get a selling price that is as close to their original asking price as possible. If you price your home too high at the onset, you risk being ignored by buyers and agents. On the flipside, if you price your home too low, you could end up getting way less than what you were hoping for.
Setting Your Selling Price
For those who live in a subdivision: If other homes in your area have similar floor plans and were built in the same time period, do a survey on recent homes sold in your neighborhood to give you an idea of your home’s value. For those who live in an older neighborhood: Homes in older neighborhoods may be totally different from each other in many ways, so there may not be many homes comparable to your own home. If this is the case, you may want to seek the help of a Realtor ® to help you price your home just right.
For those who want to sell on their own: Look at homes sold in your area for the previous 6 month period, including those currently listed on the market. This is how potential buyers will perceive the value of your home. Look for home sale information in your local City Hall’s public records, it may be a big help.
4. Act like a Buyer and do your own “Home Shopping”
The best way to check on your competition and find out what buyers like and don’t like is to check out other houses. Attend open houses and take note of the condition of the homes, appearance, floor plans, size of the lot, location, and other important features of the home. Take note of the actual prices and asking prices. Make sure not to price your home higher than your competition’s to sell your home faster.
5. Get an Appraisal
An appraisal is a good way to let your potential buyers know that they can get financing for your home. Take note, however, that an appraisal will cost you money, is only good for a limited time, and there is no guarantee of satisfaction with the amount you will hear from the appraiser.
6. What Tax Assessments Mean
Most people think that tax assessments are a way to evaluate a house. But assessments are actually based on criteria that may not be related to the values of the property, meaning they may not reflect the true value of your home.
7. Choosing a Realtor®
Nearly ? of people who sell their homes say they won’t go through the process by themselves again, according to a survey done by the National Association of Reators. The reasons for this include time constraints, lack of marketing skills and strategies, difficulty in setting a price, and liability concerns. Consider at least 2 or 3 when choosing a Realtor®. Be careful of those who give you too low or too high quotes.
Remember that no two Realtors® are alike. A professional will know the market well and have information on previous sales, current listings, has a marketing plan, and will give you their background and character references. Assess each candidate thoroughly based on their experience, personality, qualifications, and enthusiasm to sell your home. he or she must be someone you will be comfortable working with and you can trust.
However, if you wish to sell on your own, you may still seek the advice of a Realtor®, especially with paperworks and contracts. You’ll never know when you will need the help of a professional so at least you have one handy in times of need.
8. Make Sure You Have Room for Negotiations
Give yourself enough wiggle room for negotiations before setting your asking price. Set your maximum and minimum price, then know your priorities if it is to maximize profit set a price closer to market value if you want to sell faster.
9. Make Your Home Look Appealing
Your home’s appearance has a huge impact on potential buyers so make sure you don’t ignore this step. Buyers usually are persuaded through their emotions, so the look and feel of your home should get a good emotional response from them. Buyers will react based on what they see, feel, smell, and hear even though you have already set your asking price.
10. Ask for Others’ Opinions on Your Home
Don’t make the mistake of relying on your own judgment. Seek the honest opinion of other people. Selling your home can be an emotional process, but don’t forget that you must be objective about your home’s strengths and flaws. Your Realtor® will be able to give you an honest and objective opinion about what you could do to improve your home and sell it faster.
11. Clean and Repair everything, even the minor details.
That tiny hole on the wall or the little crack in the bathroom mirror can look small but it can spell the difference between a closed sale or a deal that fell apart. So make sure to clean your home, declutter, repair anything that needs repair, and replace everything that needs to be replaced. It’s a tough market and you are competing both with resale and new homes alike.
12. Help Buyers Visualize That They Are Living In Your Home
Depersonalize and de-clutter your home. You wouldn’t want buyers to feel they are intruding into someone else’s life when viewing your home. Use neutral colors for your interior and exterior and just add a few items like a flower vase or potpourri in the bathroom to add warmth and character.
13. Deodorize Your Home
Buyers could be turned off by the smell of food, pets, and cigarette smoke, so remove any traces of these odors in your home.
14. Disclose everything to the buyer
Be a smart seller and disclose everything like known defects to your buyers in your contracts. This will also prevent liability on your part or future lawsuits.
15. The More Prospects, the Better
If you invest well on your home’s marketability, you will attract more buyers which is better than only one buyer. Having more prospective buyers competing against each other will start a bidding war, but a single buyer will compete with no one else but you.
16. Don’t Let Emotions Get In the Way of the Sale
Keep yourself detached from your home during the course of the sale. Act professionally and you will get an advantage to those who let their emotions get in the way of the sale.
17. Learn Your Buyer’s Motivations for Buying a Home
If you know your buyer’s reasons, then you could use the negotiation process to your advantage. Also, you could better control the pace and time spent on the selling process. If you know your buyer needs to move into a new home as soon as possible, this will put you in a better position to negotiate.
18. Learn How Much The Buyer Can Afford To Pay
Try to find out the mortgage amount that your buyer is qualified to get and how much down payment he or she can afford. If they offer too low, then ask their agent about their buyer’s ability to pay for your home’s actual value.
19. Learn When the Buyer’s Deadline for Closing Is
If you know when your buyer needs to close the deal, then you get an advantage in the negotiating table.
20. Don’t Sign A Deal On Your Next Home Unless You Have Sold Your Current Home
If you are still paying your current home’s mortgage, don’t close a deal for a new home since you might end up becoming desperate for the first offer that comes your way.
21. Don’t Move Out of Your Home Before You Sell It
It is a fact that it’s harder to sell a vacant home since it’s vacancy and emptiness gives an unappealing look and a feeling of being abandoned and forgotten. It doesn’t get any emotional response from the buyers. Buyers will also assume that you have probably bought a new home and are very eager to sell this home. This mistake could cost you lots of money in the end.
22. Don’t Try to Sell By a Certain Deadline
You could be pressured by your own deadline and this puts you in a disadvantage during negotiations.
23. Don’t Take Low Offers Personally
Don’t be upset if a buyer offers way below your asking price Think objectively and evaluate the offer if it spells out the asking price, amount of down payment, deposit, mortgage amount, any special requests, and a closing date. Use the low offer as a starting point for negotiations.
24. Counter Low Offers
Turn the offer around by offering a price just below your original selling price. This signals to the buyer that their initial offer won’t be taken seriously and you will only negotiate with serious buyers.
25. Is The Buyer Qualified?
If the buyer’s offer is too low, ensure that he or she is qualified to pay for the mortgage required by the deal. Ask them how they came up with their figure and tell them to compare your home to the prices of other homes for sale in the area.
26. Make Sure Your Contract Is Complete
Make sure all costs, terms, and responsibilities are clearly stated in your contract and include items like the date the contract was made, address of the home for sale, selling price, names of all parties involved, where the deposit money will be held, date of approval of the loan, date and place of closing, type of deed, contingencies that need to be settled, and the scope of personal property included or not in the sale.
27. Do Not Deviate from the Contract
If your buyer wants to move in before closing, simply decline and tell the buyer your attorney has advised you against it. Don’t take any chances lest the deal falls through.