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Selling a House – Time to work on a checklist

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Real-estate is a complex field. There is so much to understand while investing, buying or even selling a property. It takes much to establish a trust.

When you decide to sell a property, there are so many doubts and fears. Utilizing the services of a real-estate agent is always advisable since they are experienced professionals and know the market. They know every legal practice, processes, real-estate trends, current market status, etc.  But there is no harm in compiling a checklist for selling what tis typically the biggest investment someone makes in their life.

The checklist will lead to the closure of the deal without much stress, for you, the real-estate agent and for the buyer, as well.

1. Think over your decision to sell

Be sure that you absolutely want to sell the house and you are going to stick to it.

You must give yourself a valid reason for selling the house. Understand the pros and cons of selling your house and figure out if presently, you can afford to move or buy a new home. Double check your decision by thinking about alternatively renting, leasing, or renting to own your home.

When you are 100% sure of your decision, calculate your home equity and research the local housing market.

2. Calculate expense cost incurred while selling

There are some seen and unforeseen expenses that you should plan while the home selling process is ongoing.

Identify the repairs and remodelling that are necessary to be done in order to get your home in selling condition. Estimate the costs of supplies and contractors. Adding features, like green upgrades or solar systems can be a good way of getting a higher price for your home but only if you are sure that the prospective buyers are ready to pay for them.

Usually, 7% to 10% of the home’s sale price goes into the closing costs, which may include the following:

  • Professional home inspection
  • Capital gains tax
  • Mortgage payoff penalties
  • Staging and marketing expenses
  • Moving expenses
  • Cost of living in new city or neighbourhood
  • Mortgage cost for acquiring new home

3. Build up your selling strategy.

Your home selling need may or may not be urgent. This factor is important to plan the number and quality of strategies for selling the home.

List your home on the multiple listing services (MLS) and interview more than 1 real-estate agent to identify who can get you to prospective buyers as per your expectations.

You can choose to handle all the selling process by yourself. In that case, read articles and real-time studies of how to sell your home yourself. Explore the different online, and offline platforms where you can do the listing. Remember to check the terms, such as commissions, listing cost, termination date, etc. for all these listing mediums.

Your listings must portray the strengths and unique features of your home.

4. Critical task – determining a fair market value (FMV)

You can’t quote a fair price of your property unless you know the market value and trends for your type of property. Research the online and offline sources to compare homes in your locality that have similarities in terms of age, condition, size, construction, etc. You can refer to the data pertaining to sales in past six months or current listings in the marketplace.

An agent could assist you in preparing a Comparative Market Analysis (CMA) report. The calculated FMV along with aforementioned expenses can let you determine the price you should quote.

  1. Ready to Advertise

With all the research information, you are can now be convincingly ready to put your “For Sale” signs up.

Start with MLS listings, classified sections of local newspapers, Real estate publications, ads on free Web sites like craigslist.com. You can also create your own attractive website to promote your home for selling. Email notices and flyers distributed among real agents, friends, family, co-workers, etc. can become a quicker method for selling. Your ads can upsell your home if they include professional pictures or a virtual tour video of all the facilities at your home.

A yard sign must be placed at the main entrance of the property so that the passers-by should not miss seeing them. You may find the appropriately sized and themed yard signs and other related stuff at https://www.yardsigns.org/. Check out their different customized product ideas for advertising and branding.

  1. Get the home sell-ready

Make all necessary repairs and paint the interior of the rooms with neutral colors. Replace outdated lighting fixtures and window treatments, if any.You can even opt for a professional cleaning for more glared cleaning.

7. Open House

Now you are all ready to open your house for estate agents and interested prospects.

Set up a convenient appointment or you can provide lockbox for agents, so that they can show your house around in your absence.

Holding an exclusive open house with snacks, for local real estate agents can be a great idea.

8. Review & negotiate purchase offers.

Now is the time review the purchase offers. Compare each of them for:

  • Proposed offer price,
  • Preapproval letter,
  • Contingencies,
  • Earnest money amount,
  • Proposed closing date and offer expiry date

You can counteroffer and put some convenient conditions for yourself and buyer. If you are not happy with the price being negotiated, you can think of ways to lower the deal closing expenses like putting part expenses of repair on the buyer.

You can also justify the cost by offering to include furniture, appliances, window treatments or lighting fixtures if it is economical to you.

Make a full-price counteroffer, if the buyer is looking for some discounts and if your comps can back it up.

Remember to add closing and move-in dates.


Appoint an escrow officer who will order a title search, request payoff information for your mortgage and other liens on the home. Plan a final walk-through inspection.

Keep ample time to prepare, disburse funds, sign the closing documents and move out of your home.

Submit the copies of the sale documents with federal and state tax authorities.

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