Your home is one of the most important parts of your life. As such, you’ll want to really examine the motivation behind your desire to sell your home. Perhaps you’re ready to move on to somewhere new, perhaps you want to downsize, perhaps you need more space. If you’re ready to sell your home, you’ll need to prepare yourself for the process in order to give yourself the best chance at success and to get the highest possible price for it.
When Is It Time To Sell?
Timing is everything when it comes to selling your home. Depending on the current housing market, it may be better to stay in your current home a while longer, if you can. Your real estate agent will be able to advise you in order to ensure that you make the right move. Regardless of the current market, if you’re committed to selling a home, your real estate agent will help you put your best foot forward through walking you through appraisals, give you tips on how to stage your home, and arm you with crucial information that you’ll need in order to attract buyers and get the best possible price.
Know The Current Housing Market
There are two kinds of housing markets, and it’s important to know which one you are in, as this affects how easy it is for your home to sell. They are: a seller’s market and a buyer’s market.
A seller’s market is when there are more buyers than there are homes for sale, which makes selling your home more profitable, as there is increased demand. You’ll be able to be pickier with the offers you choose from, as you’ll be getting more, rather than making concessions in order to get someone to buy. Seller’s markets usually last about 15 to 16 years.
A buyer’s market is when there are more homes for sale than there are buyers. In this kind of market, you’ll need to do more to attract buyers to your home, and may have to settle for lower price, as well as potentially wait longer before you can find a buyer. Buyers can usually demand more repairs and upgrades done to a home, so it’s worth it to have your home inspected and any repairs done before putting your house up for sale in this kind of market. Buyer’s markets usually last 2-3 years.
Have A Place To Live Next
This may seem like common sense, but some people put their houses up for sale before knowing where they’re going to live after it sells. In the event that your home sells quickly, this can make for an awkward situation, as you have a buyer, but need to scramble to find somewhere to live while looking for a new home of your own.
Before putting your house on the market, you should:
- Have a plan for temporary housing in case your home sells before you’ve closed on your new home.
- You may consider bridging or piggyback financing in the event that you do close on your new house before you can sell your current one.
- If you’re still trying to close on your new home when you sell your current one, see if the buyer will let you pay rent if they do not need to move into your old house right away.
Prepare Your Home
Even if you have the advantage of being in a seller’s market when you list your home, you’re still competing against other sellers and want to give yourself the best chance at getting the highest price possible for your home. Many sellers will stage their homes like a hotel, which makes it easier for buyers to envision what they want to do with the space. Even if you can’t clear out your home like this, there are still steps that you can take to give your home an edge, such as:
- Declutter your space. Clearing out your space to ensure that it feels as open and spacious as possible will help potential buyers think of how they’ll fill it with their own things.
- Depersonalize your home. You want your home to feel as much like a hotel or empty space as possible. If you have family pictures and personal trinkets all around, this makes buyers feel like they’re a guest in someone else’s house, rather than somewhere that could potentially be theirs.
- Do a smell test. We get accustomed to the smells in our home, but your potential buyers won’t be. Have someone who doesn’t live with you do a smell test, to see if there are any pet odors or the like that linger.
- Get a home inspection. Many buyers will have a home inspector come through your home to ensure that you aren’t hiding any expensive repairs. To give yourself the best chance at selling, you’ll want to repair not just obvious issues such as carpet stains, but have an inspector see if you have any unseen repairs that need to be taken care of too.
- Maximize curb appeal. If the exterior of your home isn’t clean and put-together, it doesn’t matter how sparkling clean the interior is. If you have weeds or peeling paint, many buyers will turn right around without even going inside.
- Light it up. Not only will turning on the lights show buyers that all of the lightbulbs are in good, working condition, it’ll make your space seem bigger and more inviting.
- Consider hiring a staging company. It’s proven that staged homes sell faster and for higher prices. You may consider hiring a staging service to both get more money and get your home off your hands sooner.
- Hire a professional photographer. In your listings, you want the pictures of your home to paint it in the best possible light, and a professional photographer will ensure it does.
- Have it appraised. Having your home appraised will tell you how much it is worth and how much you can realistically ask for it.
Just as there are things you can do to get your home ready to sell, there are mistakes people make in this process which actually lower your chances of selling and of getting the best possible price. These include: hiding problems from your real estate agent, over-improving your home, not doing enough to prepare your home for showings, not hiring a professional photographer to put your home in the best possible light in listings, not accounting for all the closing costs, overpricing your home, and getting too emotional over the process rather than acting like a professional.
Find The Best Real Estate Agent For You
While you can sell your home yourself, hiring an experienced real estate agent will ensure that you’re able to market your home properly, be able to follow up on any buyer lears, and have someone who can negotiate any offers in accordance with local home-selling regulations, so that you’re giving yourself the best possible shot at getting the highest price possible for your home.
When it comes to choosing a real estate agent, you’ll want to look at the ones in your area, and conduct interviews in order to ensure that they’re someone you can see yourself being able to work with for a few months. You want a real estate agent that is experienced, yes, but you also want one who has a personality you like and communicates well with you. The last thing you want is for dealing with your real estate agent to make the process of selling a home even more stressful. Inman Torres And Company does everything in our power to make the process as smooth and comfortable as possible, and communicate clearly every step of the way.
Price It Right
One of the most common mistakes people make when selling a home is either asking for too much or too little in the listing price. Your listing price tells buyers a lot more than you’d think. If you price it too high, many buyers won’t even look at it, while if you price it too low, this implies that there’s something wrong with it. Our real estate agents will help you set a competitive price for your home through preparing a comparative market analysis (CMA). A CMA analyzes recent sales of properties in the same general area as yours with similar features, such as being about the same age and having similar square footage.
Review Your Offers Carefully
While you may assume that the best offer is the highest offer, this isn’t always the case. You may be tempted to make a buyer who offers the asking price wait, in the hopes that you’ll get one who offers more. This can discourage the buyer and result in them either moving on or in a longer waiting period to sell your home, as you’re waiting for an offer you haven’t received yet.
Our real estate agents will be able to help you decide when it’s best to accept an offer and when to wait. We don’t want you to get caught off guard, and want to help you get the highest offer possible without an extensive wait time to close on your home.
Understand That Selling A Home Can Take A While
While sometimes you can sell a home fast, in many cases, the process can take months. Even if you find a buyer quickly, if they need a mortgage, this can cause the closing process to take longer as they wait for it to approve. A cash buyer can result in a sale that’s closed within a week or two. If you’re planning on selling a home, you’ll need to prepare yourself for the fact that while it can close within a few weeks, in many cases, it’ll take a while before you’re able to sell it.
Selling a home can be a very stressful process, but with Inman Torres and Company by your side, you’ll know when the right time to make your move is and how to maximize your ability to attract buyers and obtain the best price possible for your home. Anyone can put up a “For Sale” sign up in their front yard, but that doesn’t mean you’ll get buyers or a good price for your home. At Inman Torres and Company, we’re dedicated to guide you through every step of the selling process and work hard to ensure that you get top dollar for your home.