Sellers: When should you call a realtor to sell your home?

Real Estate Agent with Grand Lux Realty, Monroe NY, 914-419-0270, 10301213186

You are considering selling your home. The kids are now adults and are out of the house and there's just too much room. Or your family is growing and you simply need more space. Maybe your neighborhood is getting too busy or noisy. Whatever the reason, you have made the decision to move on to the next phase of your life.


The question: When should you call a real estate professional regarding selling your home?


The answer: As early as possible.


The reason: There may be a lot to do!


When considering selling your home, the main decision factors may be how much can you get for your home, what do you have to do in order to prepare, and are all your documents in order?


How much can you get for your home?


Sellers: When should you call a realtor to sell your home?

Some sellers believe the amount they originally paid, plus any improvements they made, plus a little extra for profit equals the amount the house will sell for. Others believe their house should sell for the amount they need for their next home. Or that it should sell for the amount a neighbor's house just sold for.


But you know better! You know that the market value for your home is based on what is going on in the market at the time you sell. What homes in your neighborhood have sold in the last three to six months? What kind of features did those homes have? Were they move-in ready or in need of repair? How recent were any updates in the kitchens or baths? Were the homes that sold foreclosures or short sales, arm length transactions or not? Did they have central air conditioning? Hardwood floors? A two-car garage? And do you?


So the first reason you should speak to a real estate professional as soon as possible is to find out whether the market value will be sufficient for your goals. Or to decide how to work around the amount if it's not what you were hoping for. While the market could go up or down after your initial discussion, it's a good idea to get a sense of the market as soon as you are ready.

What do you have to do in order to sell?


There is always something to do before you put your home on the market. Your real estate professional will come to the home with an objective set of eyes. And after a tour of your home, and some discussions about your home features and goals, your agent will let you know what you should do in order to get the most money for your home (if that's your goal!). The suggestions could include:


Painting: Repainting your rooms is a relatively inexpensive way to make the home look move-in ready. Scuffs will be removed. Paint colors that are not buyer-friendly can be updated. Brightening up the home will definitely make it more attractive to buyers.


Sellers: When should you call a realtor to sell your home?Kitchens/Bathrooms: Buyers love updated kitchens and baths. If you have thirty year old kitchen or bathroom cabinets and appliances, you may decide to update those rooms. If you can't do so, then perhaps you will need to make smaller changes prior to selling. For example, in addition to new paint, rooms can look better by adding new fixtures, drawer pulls, curtains and lights. But the point is that today's buyers, at least in my area, often make decisions on what the house looks like NOW, not what it could look like. And they do tend to want a home that has been updated.


Flooring: Another area that buyers hone in on are the floors. Do you have any damaged tiles or hardwood flooring? Are the carpets worn and stained? If yes, you will need time to repair and clean. Buyers will peek under area rugs, so throwing a rug over a damaged area won't help. If you decide to actually replace flooring or carpeting, you will need some time to do so.


Decluttering: One of the suggestions you will receive from your real estate agent surrounds the need to declutter in preparation for showing your home. Unfortunately, selling a home is different (and harder) than living there. Buyers need to be able to envision their own life in the home, which is much easier when there are limited seller possessions on display. The process of going through all your possessions and deciding which to keep, pack away early, give away or discard can take a very long time. You may also wish to rent a storage unit for a temporary period to place items you wish to take with you but don't need now.

What documents do you need?


In this case, documents don't refer to listing agreements or real estate disclosures. When preparing to sell your home, you may need some time to get other documents in order. For example:


Certificate of Occupancy/Permits. Sometimes home owners will add a deck or shed without obtaining necessary town permits. Or perhaps they will add a wood stove or central air conditioning. Maybe they will add entire rooms, or replace the garage with a den. If there is any work that should have been done with a permit, resulting in an updated Certificate of Occupancy, the documentation must be taken care of before you sell the home. The lack of correct paperwork will be discovered during the title and municipal search period. You could lose a buyer and the entire deal if there are issues that should have been resolved prior to the purchase process.


Home ownership. Are the town records correct regarding ownership of the home? If not, now is the time to take care of any discrepancies. Did a divorce happen and one person is no longer a legal owner but the deed was never updated? Was a home transferred from elderly parents to a son or daughter? Has the spelling of an owner's name always been incorrect? Those changes should not be difficult to make, but they may take a little time.


Mortgage/Home Equity Line of Credit/Liens. Do you know what you owe on your mortgage? Did you ever take out a Home Equity Line of Credit and if yes, do you still have a balance? Do you have any liens on your home? Are you current on your property taxes? Knowing exactly what you owe will help you decide whether now is a good time to move.




These are just a few of the reasons to contact a real estate professional as soon as possible when you are considering planning to sell your home. You could need to do quite a bit of preparing, so getting an early start would be helpful! If you are in Orange or Rockland County, NY and are thinking of selling your home, feel free to call me at 914-419-0270. I'd be happy to assist you!



Originally published at

Posted by


Kat Palmiotti, The House Kat

Licensed Associate Broker, CBR®

Grand Lux Realty, Inc.

428 Main Street

Armonk, NY 10504 *

* still supporting Monroe NY, Orange & Rockland counties.


914-419-0270 (cell)


facebook    Kat's Homes


Re-Blogged 2 times:

Re-Blogged By Re-Blogged At
  1. M.C. Dwyer 02/26/2019 10:35 AM
  2. Gabe Sanders 03/02/2019 10:00 PM
Home Selling
New York Orange County

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Kat Palmiotti
Grand Lux Realty, Monroe NY, 914-419-0270, - Monroe, NY
The House Kat

Thank you L. Scott Ferguson !

Mike Cooper, GRI - Yes, the less hiccups the better!

Thank you Jerry Newman - the earlier the better!

Susan Rupert - Thank you for your comments!

Feb 25, 2019 03:43 AM #18
Nina Hollander
Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage - Charlotte, NC
Your Charlotte/Ballantyne/Waxhaw/Fort Mill Realtor

Excellent post, Kat, and congratulations on the feature. I always tell my clients that the minute they have the smallest thought about buying or selling they should call me so we can properly strategize.

Feb 25, 2019 04:37 AM #19
Gordon Crawford
Gordon Crawford Home Selling Team - Morristown, NJ
Your Morris County Specialist!

Great post Kat!  Never too early to call in a realtor and get the process started.

Feb 25, 2019 05:05 AM #20
Scott Godzyk
Godzyk Real Estate Services - Manchester, NH
One of Manchester NH's Leading Agents

I love your blog Kat Palmiotti. I have many sellers asking the same question. Preparing the home and  prepraing the seller to sell, are both an important step in selling. 

Feb 25, 2019 05:34 AM #21
Marney Kirk
Cummings & Co. Realtors - Towson, MD
Towson, Maryland Real Estate

Kat, this is a great post! I think sometimes sellers are shocked at what buyers may expect of their homes!

Feb 25, 2019 11:51 AM #22
Chris Lima
Atlantic Shores Realty Expertise - Port St Lucie, FL
Local or Global-Allow me to open doors for you.

Great post, Kat Palmiotti. Your checklist is spot on.

Feb 25, 2019 04:15 PM #23
Jennifer Fivelsdal
JFIVE Home Realty LLC | 845-758-6842|162 Deer Run Rd Red Hook NY 12571 - Rhinebeck, NY
Mid Hudson Valley real estate connection

Kat having a Realtor's assistant early in the process will lead to a much smoother transaction.

Feb 25, 2019 11:15 PM #24
Kat Palmiotti
Grand Lux Realty, Monroe NY, 914-419-0270, - Monroe, NY
The House Kat

Thank you Nina Hollander - That's a great message to tell sellers - call as soon as you even think about selling!

Exactly, Gordon Crawford - It's never too early to call a realtor!

I appreciate your comment Scott Godzyk - Preparing the seller is just as important as preparing the house!

Feb 26, 2019 03:13 AM #25
Kat Palmiotti
Grand Lux Realty, Monroe NY, 914-419-0270, - Monroe, NY
The House Kat

Thank you Marney Kirk - There are a lot of things that surprise sellers!

Chris Lima - Thank you for taking the time to read and comment!

That's for sure, Jennifer Fivelsdal - the entire process can be a lot smoother if there is time to prepare.

Feb 26, 2019 03:18 AM #26
Amanda S. Davidson
Amanda Davidson Real Estate Group Brokered By eXp Realty - Ashburn, VA
Alexandria Virginia Homes For Sale

Kat, this is excellent advice. Waiting until the last minute to reach out rarely works out well when it comes to listing a home. As your post mentions there are a lot of details to consider and properly completing them takes guidance and time.

Feb 26, 2019 04:57 AM #27
Ben DeHaven
Haven Realty & Investments - Winter Haven, FL
Proudly serving Winter Haven & Lakeland, Florida

There are plenty of things a seller needs to do before getting ready to list. Calling a great listing agent is the best first step!

Feb 26, 2019 07:12 AM #28
M.C. Dwyer
Century 21 Showcase REALTORs - Felton, CA
Santa Cruz Mountains Property Specialist

I'd love to reblog your post Kat Palmiotti because you've nailed it!     It's not wise to cover up any flaws, whether with rugs, pictures or furniture.     The flaw will become obvious to the buyer when they move in - which is when you want them happy - not mad!

Feb 26, 2019 10:30 AM #29
Michael Jacobs
Pasadena, CA
Los Angeles Pasadena 818.516.4393

Hello Kat- - -upfront preparation and knowledge can never "arrive" too soon so contact the local expert soon to make life easier. Less stress is good.

Feb 26, 2019 10:49 AM #30
John Juarez
The Medford Real Estate Team - Fremont, CA

Thanks for sharing your great information for potential home sellers, Kat Palmiotti 

We all know that there is much more to selling a house than putting it in the multiple listing service, putting a sign in the yard and praying for buyers.

Feb 26, 2019 04:40 PM #31
Kat Palmiotti
Grand Lux Realty, Monroe NY, 914-419-0270, - Monroe, NY
The House Kat

Amanda S. Davidson - Thank you for commenting! It always takes longer than a seller might think!

Ben DeHaven - Yes, calling a listing agent will definitely help get the process focused.


Feb 27, 2019 03:47 AM #32
Kat Palmiotti
Grand Lux Realty, Monroe NY, 914-419-0270, - Monroe, NY
The House Kat

Thank you M.C. Dwyer ! Buyers and I went into a house once and there was a throw-rug in a weird spot. We peeked underneath and yep, missing part of the floor! Hiding things doesn't work. And thank you for reblogging!

Michael Jacobs - Less stress is great!

Feb 27, 2019 03:49 AM #33
Kat Palmiotti
Grand Lux Realty, Monroe NY, 914-419-0270, - Monroe, NY
The House Kat

John Juarez - Most sellers have no idea until we tell them! :-)

Feb 27, 2019 03:50 AM #34
Mary Hutchison, SRES, ABR
Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate-Kansas City Homes - Kansas City, MO
Experienced Agent in Kansas City Metro area

Your opening lines made me chuckle.  Agents need time to work with sellers to get the house ready, just l ike you described...there is usually some work, decluttering, updating, etc to do before listing.  It is worth getting it on the market prepared correctly rather than just slapping it on fast.

Mar 01, 2019 02:59 PM #35
Keller Williams Select Realtors-Buy a home in Washington DC. Sell a home in Washington DC - Bowie, MD
I don't make promises.I deliver results.SOLD HOMES

You provided some very pertinent information for anyone who is thinking about selling their house. 

Mar 25, 2019 03:38 PM #36
Kat Palmiotti
Grand Lux Realty, Monroe NY, 914-419-0270, - Monroe, NY
The House Kat

It is definitely worth getting the house ready before putting on the market, Mary Hutchison, SRES, ABR ! Thank you for your comment!

Thank you Lanre-"THE REAL ESTATE FARMER" Folayan !

Mar 26, 2019 03:11 AM #37
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