If you’ve never sold a home before, the process can seem a bit daunting. However, understanding the basic process is easy if you know where to start. Let’s look at the basic selling process step by step.
The listing agent is the person that will get your home sold and represent your best interests while doing so. They should have experience selling homes in your price range and neighborhood, as well as a general understanding of home marketing and negotiations. Once you hire a listing agent, you will sign a listing agreement that will explain:
Once you have a listing agent, they will help you find the best asking price for your home. To do this, they will look at similar homes in your area known as comps or comparables, as well as take a walk through your home. Because they know the business of selling homes, it would be wise to listen to their counsel for setting your home’s price.
This stage begins with a thorough cleaning and decluttering. Then you will want to consider painting the walls in a neutral color, replacing worn flooring, and any general updates to the kitchen or bath. You will also want to look at the outside of your home to determine what you can do to improve the curb appeal.
You might want to consider hiring a homestager to help with this process. They can suggest ways to make your home sell faster. No matter what, however, be sure that all cleaning, repairs, and renovations are completed before putting the sign in the yard.
Once the house goes on the market, it will be time for your listing agent, as well as other agents, to begin showing the home to potential buyers. Most people find it easiest to put a lockbox on the door so that agents can show the house even when you are not available.
Be sure your home is always ready to show at a moment’s notice. This means keeping on top of dishes and laundry, as well as having toys and other items put away. Finally, be sure to leave the house during a showing so that the potential buyers feel at ease to look at and discuss anything that is on their minds.
When a buyer falls in love with your house, they will provide an offer. The other will include:
Once you receive the offer, you can then negotiate, suggesting a different price or different terms. Once everyone agrees, it is time for you and the buyer to sign the contract.
Once the contract is signed, the house enters a period called due diligence. During this time, the buyer’s team will need to have access to the house in order to have it appraised and inspected. They will need access to all areas of the home including the basement, attic, and crawl space. Make sure your home looks its best on the day of the appraiser so that your home makes a good first impression.
If something came back from the inspection that is not right with the house, you may have to negotiate again with the buyers. You do not have to repair anything, but this can cause the buyer to cancel the contract. It is often in your best interest to fix minor issues.
Prior to closing day, you will be required to move out of the house. Once your personal belongings are out, then you will need to clean it one final time so the buyer can make their final walk-through. The buyer will have to certify that the condition of the house is the same as when they signed the contract and that all items to be left are at the home.
At closing, you will need to sign the paperwork needed by closing agent. At closing, you will also get the payment for your home. However, the closing agent will pay off your mortgage, closing fees, and any liens on the house first. Once signed, the papers are filed.
As you can see, there are many steps to the selling process, but having a good listing agent will help you navigate the process with ease. Feel free to contact us about selling your home or questions you may have about the home selling process.