3 Oct 2016

5 things you should know before selling your first home

Much like buying your first home, selling your first home can be tricky if you don’t know what to expect. So rather than navigate the unknown on your own, let me be your guide! Here’s 5 tips to help lead you through this new endeavour.

Find the right listing agent

Your first step is to choose the right listing agent. You’ll need someone who can leverage their expertise to get your house sold, and this is certainly no small feat.

During the listing appointment, the right listing agent should present you with a full marketing plan as to how they plan on successfully selling your home in a timely manner and for the right price. You’ll also want someone who can accurately price your home, provide home staging tips, and effectively negotiate with buyers when the time comes. And just as importantly, your agent will advise you once a buyer is under contract to buy your home to make sure you get to the closing table. Make sure you feel comfortable with your agent; sometimes you may need to interview more than one agent to find the right fit for you.

Consider a pre-inspection

Your home needs to be in pristine condition if you want it to sell quickly, but more than just ridding every nook and cranny of dirt and dust, consider going the extra mile and having a pre-inspection done.

Your Realtor® can provide you with a recommendation for a good home inspector who will be able to zero in on potential pitfalls that could scare off buyers. Get ahead of the game by fixing any serious issues and feel confident that come closing time there won’t be any red flags. A pre-inspection can possibly prevent any surprise repair expenses once you have a buyer.

Enhance your curb appeal

I’ve heard too many stories of would-be buyers driving up to a home for sale, only to speed away before ever stepping foot on the ground all because of a horrible first impression.

Make sure buyers make it past the front door by dedicating enough attention and detail to your home’s exterior. Strategically placed and well-maintained landscaping goes a long way towards amping up your home’s outward appearance. Give your weathered trim and front door new life by applying a fresh coat of paint, and consider using a pressure washer to excavate dirt that’s taken up residence on your sidewalk, driveway and porches.

Stage to sell

Remember when your mother used to harp “a place for everything and everything in it’s place” when you were younger? Who knew she was actually giving sage advice you’d need to recall as prep to sell?!

Cut down the clutter by boxing up items not essential to what you might need to continue living in your home comfortably. You’ll need to make sure buyers can envision themselves living in your home when they tour it, so make sure to remove personal items while you show your home. Make a cleaning schedule and stick to it–you never know when you might receive a frantic phone call from a Realtor whose client desperately wants to see your home.

Oh, and don’t forget about your furry friends. Get a game plan together now for how you’ll keep them occupied while someone is viewing your home.

Be patient

We’ve all heard stories about houses that go on the market in the morning and are sold by the time dinner’s ready, and while this is certainly every seller’s dream timetable, experts say it isn’t exactly the norm.

According to Realtor.com, the median amount of time a home spends on their site is 65 days–this is measured from the time the for sale sign is planted in the yard to the moment the new buyers walk in the front door. This number will of course fluctuate depending on a number of variables, and everything from inventory, location, condition, price and time of year can make time on market ebb or flow.

phyllis_brookshire2
Phyllis Brookshire
President, Allen Tate Realtors®
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