Guide to Selling Your House
Congratulations! You've decided to sell your home. What now? It can be overwhelming to know where to start and what to expect out of the process. Although every seller's experience is different, the basic process is the same. Keep reading this guide to learn how to sell your home.
Preparing Your Home
Once you know for sure you're going to sell your home, it's time to get it ready for the market. The time it takes to prepare your home will depend on how many repairs and touch ups need to be done to the home and property. The tips below will help you get your home ready to sell.
Thorough Deep Clean
The easiest thing you can do that will make the biggest difference is to deep clean the home. This includes cleaning:
The cleaner your home is, the more appealing it will be to potential buyers. A dirty home is an instant turn-off.
Fixing as many of your home's issues now will make the selling process easier. This includes major and minor repairs. Minor repairs include projects such as a fresh coat of paint, repairing trim, patching holes, etc. Major repairs could be anything from a leaky roof or an inefficient HVAC system to replacing worn out flooring.
If you do not fix known issues before your home goes on the market, they will pop up on the home inspection report. The buyer will most likely want to negotiate with you to either fix the issues or come off of the purchase price to compensate for the estimated cost of repairs.
Keep in mind that you can pay for a pre-inspection if you aren't sure what the issues are and do not want to be surprised.
Manicure Your Yard
You don't get a second chance to make a great first impression. The first thing potential buyers are going to see is the exterior of the home and the yard. Make your yard look the best it can. For example, clean up any limbs, leaves, or debris. It is also advisable to trim back overgrown shrubs, weed flower beds, and keep grass cut.
Find a Reputable Realtor
Once you have all your ducks in a row and are ready to put your home on the market, it's time to find a reputable Realtor. The Realtor you choose should have experience and knowledge of the area. It's important that the agent you choose has strong negotiation skills and will fight on your behalf to ensure you receive top dollar for your home.
Put Your Home on the Market for Sale
Once you've signed a listing agreement, your Realtor will take it from here to get your home on the market. This includes creating an enticing listing description, taking attractive photographs of the home, and putting it on the MLS and other property listing services.
Showings and Offers
Once your home is on the market, your Realtor will conduct showings and present you with offers from buyers. Once you've accepted an offer, you are under contract. Keep in mind that your Realtor will draw up all paperwork needed from your side.
Once you've officially accepted an offer and the paperwork is signed, the buyer will put down earnest money. Your Realtor will deposit this money into escrow. As long as the deal closes, this money will be put towards the buyer's down payment. If the deal falls through, the buyer will either receive their earnest money back or you, the seller, gets to keep it depending on the circumstances.
The buyer's lender will have a title company run a title report to ensure there aren't any existing liens on the property. Typically, you will already whether there are any liens.
Due Diligence Period
The due diligence period is the time frame that the buyer can pull out for any reason without penalty. This means they will receive their earnest money back. Home inspections are ordered during this time. Be prepared to make your home available for one or more inspections. Results from a general home inspection may result in further specialized inspections.
Negotiate any issues found during inspection. This may mean reducing the purchase price, making the repairs, or paying a portion of the closing costs.
Once the due diligence period has expired, the buyer's lender will order a home appraisal. Ideally, you want the appraisal to come in at or above the purchase price. If it comes in below, the buyer will either have to make up the difference between the appraisal price and the loan amount or you, the seller, will need to reduce the purchase price to meet the appraisal.
Transfer of Utilities
When it comes time to transfer utilities, you will need to help the buyer get the utilities in their name. Some companies do not require anything from the seller at all, while others will require your presence either in person or on the phone.
Most buyers opt to do a final walkthrough of the home right before closing to ensure the home is as they expect it to be before they take ownership. For example, a buyer wants to make sure the seller hasn't knocked out a wall in the meantime. That would cause a delay in closing or even cause the deal to fall apart.
Closing day has finally arrived. This is the day when you and the buyer along with your respective agents will meet with the closing attorney and finalize the deal. At this time, property ownership transfers to the buyer, and you receive the proceeds from the sale after the liens have been taken care of and the agents have been paid. In most cases, you will receive a check the day of closing.
Are You Ready to Sale?
Now that you know what to expect, are you ready to sell your home? Legacy Real Estate is here to help. Contact us today and let us show you how smooth the home selling process can be.