Home sellers would like, no doubt, to just list their, find a buyer, collect the cash, and hand over the keys – all done quickly, easily, and hassle-free. That would indeed be nice, but selling a home seldom works out that way. In reality, the process is usually long and complex and not without hiccups along the way. There are many moving parts and several steps that have to happen at the right time and in the right way before sellers reach the closing table. So to help you out, we offer this step-by-step guide for home sellers in Silver Spring.
Hire a Good Agent
Many home sellers wait till much later in the process to take care of this step, but the fact remains that one of the very first things you should do is hire a good Silver Spring agent. A good agent can guide you through all the other steps in the process to a successful outcome.
You may be tempted to forego an agent to save the 5% to 6% of the sale price that you’d have to pay for the agent’s commission. But that is usually a mistake because FSBO sellers typically sell for less, and it takes longer, which means that at the end of the day they make less money on their home sale.
Besides, when you consider all that an agent can do for you, that commission is a bargain. “[A]n experienced agent does a lot to earn their fee. For example, they can expose your house to the broadest audience and negotiate on your behalf to garner the best offers possible. If you go it alone, you’ll have to personally manage prepping your home, marketing it, reviewing buyers’ offers, and handling all the negotiations and closing details.”
To find an experienced Silver Spring agent, just call (301) 442-2368.
Get a Pre-sale Inspection
Although home sellers in Silver Spring aren’t required to do so, most experts agree that you should do a pre-sale inspection of your home.
“A detailed inspection report can identify any structural or mechanical problems before you list your home for sale. It may cost a few hundred dollars, but it will alert you in advance of issues that buyers will likely flag when they do their own inspection later in the process.
By being a few steps ahead of the buyer, sellers might be able to speed up the selling process by doing repairs in tandem with other home prep work. This means by the time the house hits the market, it should be ready to sell, drama-free and quickly.”
Renovate, Repair, and Stage It
Because you’ve had a pre-sale inspection done, you’ll know exactly what repairs and improvements you need to make. And doing so will increase the value of your home, as well as helping sell more quickly. Just be sure to avoid unnecessary major renovations that won’t yield a return on the investment at sale time.
After making repairs and renovations, home sellers should then stage the home. If you don’t have the time or skill to stage your home yourself, you can try “shopping around for home staging companies. These businesses help sellers furnish, decorate and redesign a space – both physically and digitally. Adding this cost will bite into your bottom line, but the expense may be worth it for sellers who need a speedy sale or want to stand out against other houses in the neighborhood.”
Determine Your Price
The next step – and a critical one – for home sellers in Silver Spring involves determining the list price. You must price in line with market value in order to sell quickly. Otherwise, your home will languish on the market unsold, and you’ll ultimately make less on the sale than you would have by pricing correctly from the beginning.
“The list price, or asking price, represents the amount you as the seller want a buyer to pay for your home. An effective asking price considers several factors in the final sum, such as the state of the market in your area, the condition of the property, and seasonality. For the most part, the comparative analysis your agent conducts will help you understand how much similar homes in the area are going for, and what you can reasonably expect to sell.”
That comparative market analysis (CMA) is the primary tool by which your list price is determined. An experienced agent can perform the CMA and also factor in the many other variables that affect price. You can discover more about this by calling (301) 442-2368.
Now that you have your home in tip-top shape and have settled on a price, it’s time to list your home. Your agent will list your home on the multiple listing service. This is a huge database of for-sale homes where buyer’s agents can view your property and details about it.
After listing comes the important step of marketing. Home sellers need a carefully crafted and effective market strategy, which is what your agent can provide to help you reach the right buyer audience.
Marketing today requires both traditional tactics and effective online marketing. So the first thing you’ll need is a carefully crafted listing with plenty of professional-quality listing photos and a compelling description. Then you’ll likely need to produce virtual tours of your home for those many buyers who prefer to do most of their home search online.
Select an Offer
The next step for home sellers is often a tough one – and that is selecting the best offer. Keep in mind that the best offer isn’t always the highest one, for there are many other factors to consider, such as . . .
- Is there a cash offer?
- Is the buyer making the offer pre-approved for a loan?
- How many and what are the contingencies included in the offer?
- Is the buyer willing to work with your timeline?
Although the final decision rests with you, selecting the right offer is an area where your agent can provide extremely valuable guidance.
Assemble Documents and Close
At this point, home sellers are approaching the final step – closing. But before you get to the closing table, you need to assemble all the pertinent documents you’ll need. These include . . .
- Property survey and certificates of compliance with local codes
- Mortgage documents
- Tax records
- Proof of homeowners insurance
- Inspection report
After getting the documents together, it’s then time for home sellers to move on to closing. At the closing table on the set date, you will sign documents, get your money, and hand over the keys.
Where to Find the Agent You Need
As you can see, the home-selling process is complex with several steps – at any one of which things can easily go wrong. And that’s why it’s so important to work closely with an experienced Silver Spring agent throughout. So if you’re among the home sellers in Silver Spring who want the sale to go off without a hitch, contact us today at (301) 442-2368.