10 Frequently Asked Questions Before a Seller Will Sell Their Home
1. When is the best time to sell my home?
This is a question that is asked a lot. The best time to sell will be different in different real estate communities. In most cases, the spring is the best time to sell a home. There are more buyers looking during this time of year. If they have children, buyers usually would like to move and settle in before the new school year starts. The second best time to sell is in the fall. This is actually a great time to list your home for sale. The buyers that are buying in the fall are serious buyers and you as the seller have less competition. It is always good to discuss the best time to sell with your Realtor since every home seller’s situation is different.
2. What factors should I consider when selling my home?
The two most important factors to consider when selling a home are price and condition. It is really important to price it correctly. You should speak with your Realtor about the market value. They should provide you with a professional Comparative Market Analysis (CMA). There are many things to consider when preparing a CMA. Then you will want to look at the condition of the home. You will want to go through the house and see if there are any cosmetic defects that can be repaired. The third factor is exposure. It is very important for your home to be marketed so it will get the most exposure. Speak with your Realtor about how they will market your home. Choose the Realtor that you believe will market your house in a way to get the most money in the least amount of time, not someone who quotes you the highest price, sometimes just to get your listing.
3. How is the real estate market right now?
This is a frequently asked question when sellers are thinking of selling their home. They want to know how the local real estate market is doing. There are many indicators that the Realtor should beable to share with you the condition of the real estate market in your area. One of the most important factors is the average days on the market. This could indicate how quickly your home could sell when it is listed. Other market condition indicators the real estate agent should be able to provide you before listing your home include the market absorption rate, year-over-year sales data, average sale price, average list price to sale price ratio.
4. What should I do to prepare my home to sale?
There are several things to consider when preparing your home for sale. The first and one of the most important things is to “declutter” countertops, walls, rooms. Do not remove everything as this will make it look bare. Too many “things” make it difficult for buyers to see themselves in the home. If you have a lot of furniture in the rooms consider storing some of it. You want the rooms to appear as big as they can. Removing some of the furniture will open up some of the space. Organize the closets. Don’t have them overstuffed. It is especially important the kitchen and bathrooms are sparkling clean. Remove cat litter box or dog cages. What doesn’t bother you could be a complete turn off to the potential buyer. Make sure your home smell good. You might consider having a scenty plug-in for a nice smell. The second most important thing to consider is “curb appeal”. You only have one chance to make a good “First Impression”. Go out in the middle of the street and look at your house. Does the grass need to be mowed? Is there debris in the yard? Does the leaves need to be raked? What do you see that needs to be done. Make sure the paint is not flaking or chipping. Sweep the sidewalk, prune the bushes and weed the flowerbeds. You want your house to look the best it can. People driving by will judge it from the outside appearance and then decide if they want to look inside.
5. How do you determine how much my home is worth?
The way Realtors determine how much the list price should be is by preparing a comparative market analysis. This is an in-depth evaluation of the properties sold in the last 6 months. When preparing a CMA, your Realtor will take homes that compare to your home by looking at the location, square footage, age of home, number of bedrooms, number of bathrooms, upgrades, and the size of the lot your home is on.
6. Can I determine how much my home is worth by looking on the internet?
The answer to this frequently asked question is NO. Can third party websites, such as Zillow and Trulia provide an accurate home value? No, these third party websites use computer generated home values based on calculations and formula. They do not take considerations to any upgrades you have done. These website providing inaccurate estimates can lead to frustration, leading the home seller to believe their home is worth $20,000 less than the actual market value. It is very important for the homeowner to speak with a Realtor to determine what the value of their home is, not an internet website!
7. Should I price my home higher to leave room for negotiations?
This frequently asked question is asked a lot by sellers. Many sellers believe if they price the house higher than what their Realtor suggests to leave room for negotiations and low ball offers. A home that is priced right will sell faster and will sell close to the list price. Today’s homebuyers are very well educated so there is no need to leave room for negotiations. A seller who prices their home above the market value could be costing themselves money.
8. How do you plan on marketing my home?
This is a question you should definitely ask your Realtor. They should go over how they plan to market your home. The days of placing a sign in the yard and a lockbox on the door are over. It is very important that the real estate agent you list your house with to have a BIG internet presence. Have the agent go over the places your home will be found online. A top Realtor should have a quality website, quality real estate blog and a strong social media presence. More than 92% of today’s homebuyers are doing their research online before they ever contact a Realtor. This should not be overlooked. It is important to know when you list your home for sale it will have the most exposure it can get by the kind of marketing your real estate agent will do.
9. Why isn’t anyone looking at my home?
The first two weeks is the most important time after your home goes on the market. This is the time your home should get the most activity. This is the reason to be sure to price it right when you list it. In most cases, if you are not having potential buyers look at your home it is usually because the price is too high. Buyers who feel your home is priced too high will choose to look at other homes before you, likely finding one before they reach yours. Other reasons your home might not being looked at could be location, curb appeal, or lack of marketing efforts from your Realtor.
10. Should I be present during showings at my home?
This is easy to answer – no! There are several reason why sellers should not be at home for the showings. The primary reason is because it can make the potential buyers feel rushed and really uncomfortable to talk freely with their Realtor about your home. The best thing to do is leave a few minutes before the appointment times and come back once you are certain the buyer and their Realtor have left your home. You don’t want to do anything to make the potential buyers feel uncomfortable when it comes to your house. You want them to feel like it could be home and if they are rushed they might not have the time to feel “home”.
I hope the “10 Frequently Asked Questions Before a Seller Will Sell Their Home” have answered some of your questions and helps you prepare to sell your house. If you have more questions I am happy to help answer those questions for you.
If you are considering selling your home I would love the opportunity to go over my cutting edge marketing plan that brings buyers and gets my listings SOLD. I can get yours SOLD too. You can call, text or email me to ask any questions you might have regarding getting your home ready to go on the market. I would love to help!
Anita Allen, Realtor
Coldwell Banker Residential Real Estate
Thank you for reading “10 Frequently Asked Questions Before a Seller Will Sell Their Home”!