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Taking the right steps in the right order is how you get the best results when selling your house, but it doesn't always happen that way. Instead, here's how it often goes: You decide to sell and call a real estate agent who looks at the house and makes a few basic recommendations on getting it ready. Then the agent compares similar houses in the area and proposes a marketing plan and listing price. Once you sign the listing agreement, North Carolina law requires that your house go on the Multiple Listing Service (MLS) within three days, allowing very little time to be certain it looks its best. Pictures are taken anyway and the listing is published on MLS, the internet and in the newspaper. What's wrong with doing things in this order? Isn't it the way everybody sells their house?
The traditional sequence of steps works against smart selling in several ways. Real estate agents can only price and market your house as it exists, not as it could be, and their impressions can negatively affect the recommended listing price. They're experts in real estate marketing and negotiations, but many agents are not necessarily specialists in applying design principles to the preparation of a house for sale. As a result they don't always know what to suggest. There are diplomatic issues, too. Your agent may feel reluctant to be candid about potentially sensitive topics like cleanliness, odors, or work they feel is needed, so they spare your feelings, protect the relationship with you and say little or nothing about these problems. It's understandable, but as a result, your house often isn't presented in its best light, so you risk a longer selling time and a smaller profit. In today's market that's a major misstep.
We recommend a different sequence of events. Begin by educating yourself about the local market and the competition you can expect. Then evaluate your house in terms of repairs and cosmetic issues and enlist the help of objective professionals such as a home inspector and a stager, before calling your agent. These specialists are trained to give you the candid, objective assessment and guidance you need. Their goal is to help you, so listen to their recommendations with an open mind.
Smart Selling Tip: By taking the right steps in the right order, properly preparing your house and pricing it correctly, you can increase profit potential and decrease time on the market.
Smart Selling is a collaboration by two local businesswomen whose work is directly connected with the real estate industry Sandy LeRoy of Sterling Property Services (sterlingpropertyservice.com) and Mary Stephens of Prudential Lifestyle Realty (ronstephensproperties.com). Special thanks to Lue Kirchner of Key Associates. Questions and comments invited.
Disclaimer: ActiveRain Corp. does not necessarily endorse the real estate agents, loan officers and brokers listed on this site. These real estate profiles, blogs and blog entries are provided here as a courtesy to our visitors to help them make an informed decision when buying or selling a house. ActiveRain Corp. takes no responsibility for the content in these profiles, that are written by the members of this community.