SELLING YOUR HOME- First impressions are probably more important in selling your house than almost any other factor, except the price. So when you put the house on the market, it will pay to get it in tiptop shape.
SETTING THE PRICE- At best you can only guess what your house is worth. If you and your broker guess too high, you'll discourage many prospective buyers who will consider the property out of their reach. When you begin reducing the price, buyers may wonder what's wrong. On the other hand, if you guess too low, you'll sacrifice money you should have had. And a "bargain" price may even seem suspicious to cautious prospects. Real Estate Appraisers have up-to-the-minute information about the market. They know what properties like yours are selling for. They also understand features that add value to your property, such as favorable location, convenient transportation or popular architectural design. They can help you to quickly arrive at your best asking price.
A FEW APPRAISAL FIRMS offer a specific appraisal for just this purpose. Using the an official Fannie Mae form they help you determine the optimal selling price. A good appraisal should analyze the most recent sales, listings, pending sales, expired listings, withdrawn listings, assessments, and much more.
LOCATING BUYERS- There's more to finding buyers than putting a "For Sale" sign on your lawn. And a "For Sale by Owner" sign isn't for everyone. Prospects and curiosity seekers alike can ring your doorbell at all hours without regard to your convenience. And they may expect you to answer difficult questions about financing, etc. Real estate brokers screen prospects in advance and show your home only to those who have the interest and ability to buy. They won't waste your time with someone who's not a serious prospect. Many brokers already have a list of buyers who are looking for properties like yours. And real estate brokers can continue with the selling job even if you're out of town for awhile. If you decide to advertise, brokers know where to place ads for best results, how often to run ads and how to word them for maximum effectiveness.
BARGAINING-The buyer often offers less than you're asking. At this stage of the sale, your broker should be one who knows how to bargain and is experienced at making counter offers and discussing price, amount of cash, date of delivery of the deed, amount of mortgage and other important business matters. Simply stated, a good real estate broker will make sure the sale proceeds smoothly and quickly.
HOW YOU CAN HELP YOUR BROKER- While a real estate broker can provide valuable services to you in selling your home, it's up to you to cooperate with your broker's sales efforts by making sure your house looks its best. First impressions are important in selling your house. So when you put your house on the market, it will pay to get it in tiptop shape. Look at your property as if you were a prospective buyer. Pretend you're seeing it for the first time and try to notice its highlights and drawbacks. Then start sprucing up in order to emphasize and add to the good points. That's often easier said than done, however. It's easy to overlook something unless you spruce up systematically.
Proceed critically down this list. Circle the items that apply to your house.
OUTSIDE- Trim shrubs, Mow lawn, Weed flower beds, Edge lawn, Repair walk & driveway, Repair porch, Steps, Clean porch light, Lamp post Shovel walk, driveway in winter, Clean siding, Paint trim, front of house, Paint sides, back of house, Repair roof, gutters, downspouts, Paint front door, mailbox Repair/replace storm door, Clean/repair screens, storm windows, Clean/paint/repair garage - dispose of what you don't intend to keep
INSIDE--GENERAL- Paint where necessary Clean/fix windows Clean/polish floors Replace burned out light bulbs and brighten lighting with more powerful bulbs Make sure doors, windows are operating freely - lubricate with wax if necessary Fix squeaking floors Fix light switches Repair/repaint cracked walls, ceilings Fix faucet drips Clear clogged drains Clean fireplace, lay logs for fire Straighten all closets Use room deodorants to remove mustiness Vacuum/shampoo rugs, Clean/polish heating elements - furnace, boiler, etc. Neaten up, throw away what you're not going to move
KITCHEN- Clean/paint cabinets Use bright curtains Clean ventilating hood, fan Repair/clean/wax floor Clear off counter tops to make kitchen look spacious and neat Make sure drawers slide smoothly Put appliances out of sight, stack items neatly in cabinets Clean/polish appliances - inside and ou.
BATHROOM/POWDER ROOM- Put out fresh towels Clean fixtures, tub, toilet Replace toilet seat Clean shower curtain Bedrooms Make beds Use most attractive bedspread, curtains Living room/den Plump cushions Stack newspapers, magazines Clean television screen Dining room Polish table, buffet, etc. Clean glass in china cabinet Make sure chair seats are in good shape.
LAUNDRY AREA- Remove hanging clothes Put away powders, sprays, etc. Clean/polish washer, dryer, tub Let the Broker Sell If you and your family are at home when the broker brings in a prospect, relax and let the expert show and tell. Don't tag along. Answer questions carefully when they're asked, but don't offer answers to unasked questions. If you've looked at your house like a buyer and attended to the items on our list that apply to it, your house will sell itself.
Your Next Home- Consider using a checklist to compare homes you may consider buying. You should also consider a pre-offer appraisal to confirm you are not offering too much. Questions ? 585-244-5660 or http://www.aaronappraisal.net/