Answers to Common Home Seller Questions
Answers to commonly asked questions for first-time home buyers.
While it may feel like an intimidating process, buying your first home is not only a reachable goal, but also an exciting one. Here are answers to commonly asked questions about becoming a home owner.
- What can I do to get my home ready to list For Sale?
- Should I be present when perspective buyers come through my property for showings?
- What can I do to ensure that my home has the best chance to sell?
- Is it smarter for me to Sell First or Buy First if I currently own a home?
- Should I expect the buyers to renegotiate the price following a home inspection?
What can I do to get my home ready to list For Sale?
If there are major repairs that need to be made, consider fixing them before you put your home on the market, or offer a credit to a buyer for the repair up front. If you try to hide it, or don’t address the issue at all, then in the buyer’s mind it will drastically reduce their perception of the quality and value of the property . . . “If this is wrong, then what else is wrong”. In terms of a simple cleaning, the key is to de-clutter rooms (clear out knick-knacks, personal items & excess furniture), and make sure the house looks clean and well maintained.
Should I be present when perspective buyers come through my property for showings?
No one likes to be forced out of their home, but it is extremely uncomfortable for a buyer if you are present during a showing. If possible, make arrangements with a friend, neighbor or relative to escape during showings. The more flexible you can be, the better, however, if there are specific times that will not work, or if you want a break, simply tell us. We are all human and buyers will understand that the home will not be accessible 24/7.
What can I do to ensure that my home has the best chance to sell?
Most people believe there are lots of reasons why a home doesn’t sell. However, there are actually only five. We have built an information and marketing plan to help you address these five common mistakes. By avoiding these simple pitfalls, we should never have a problem getting your home sold.
1. Over Pricing and Speculating
We all wish we could ask whatever we wanted for our homes, but unfortunately price is set by comparable properties and market conditions. If you are priced above either of these, then your home will sit for a long time. Looking at the price of homes currently listed for sale in your neighborhood only tells part of the story. You must research how much homes are actually selling for, and price your home accordingly. Your home will only sell for what buyers are willing to pay for it.
Even a well priced property can’t sell, if no one knows about it. If you are not marketing your home where the buyers are looking, then you will not sell it. The greater the percentage of your target market that sees your home, the better chance you have of selling. Our marketing strategy includes leading technology tools and exposure to global real estate networks through our partnership with Leading Real Estate Companies of The World. We will ensure your home is easy to find in the most common places that people look.
3. Poor Marketing
You have to make buyers WANT to look at your home. If your marketing makes your property look like every other listing, then you are simply “rolling the dice” and hoping for the best. Is your marketing truly compelling? A great question to ask is… Why should someone buy my home, versus any other home in the neighborhood or city? If you don’t believe that you have a compelling reason, then the buyer won’t either. Our mission is to create compelling marketing that will draw buyers to your home through our network of photographers, graphic designers, and digital marketing specialists.
So now you’ve got someone to look at your home, but it’s a mess, smells bad, or simply shows poorly. If a buyer doesn’t feel comfortable in your home, you can forget about the sale. If you can, don’t be around during showings, keep the house clean, and allow us to help you do some research on staging your home for selling. A small investment can make, or save you thousands.
5. Lack of Buyer Confidence
Purchases fall through every day, because sellers cannot confidently answer the buyer’s questions, provide accurate paperwork, or verify important details. If you are not organized before you sell, then you may watch all of your hard work go to waste, as a potential buyer walks away due to a lack of confidence.
Is it smarter for me to Sell First or Buy First if I currently own a home?
There is a standard rule, common throughout the real estate industry that says you should sell first and for good reason. Here’s a scenario: You find a home that you would like to purchase, and you write the contract subject to selling your home in the next 60 days. The seller doesn’t like accepting this special clause in the offer, but agrees to it if you pay $5,000 more. For the peace of mind of not being stuck with two homes, you agree. Now you are selling, however you are five weeks into the listing and starting to get nervous. Finally, a low-ball offer comes in and you negotiate the price, but settle for less than you wanted because you really want the other house, and have to sell your current home to pay for it (you are very motivated).
On both sides of the transaction, you may have lost a total of $15,000 because of your motivation ($5,000 on the buying end & $10,000 on the selling end). When you sell your home first, you will always be in a power position, as you don’t “have to” sell (less motivated). This way you can wait as long as you need for an offer to come in that is acceptable to you. In addition, when you decide to buy, you can write an offer with fewer conditions, and have the ability to match possession dates for your convenience.
Money Making Tip – In normal market places, selling first will give you the negotiating edge to save thousands.
If you are looking for an uncommon home or if the market is very low on listings, you may want to consider buying first. Give yourself enough time on the possession date to sell your home without too much pressure. In addition, speak with your bank about bridge-financing, in case you need to temporarily carry two mortgages.
Should I expect the buyers to renegotiate the price following a home inspection?
Almost every purchase contact is subject to the buyer’s satisfaction with a home inspection completed by a licensed home inspector. The purpose of the home inspection is to allow the buyer to do their due diligence with respect to the purchase to the property. This is intended to allow the buyer the opportunity to satisfy their obligation of “caveat emptor”, or, more commonly known as “buyer beware”. Following a home inspection, the buyer may wish to re-negotiate the purchase price, or, ask the seller to fix a list of deficiencies noted by the home inspector.
The seller does not have any obligation to do either of these things from a legal standpoint. However, it will come down to the motivation and options and alternative options for both the buyer and seller. If the buyer feels that the deficiencies would prevent them from purchasing the home, they can choose not to waive their inspection condition which will end the contract. The buyer’s desire to re-open negotiations is market dependant. In a strong seller’s market with lower inventory and higher demand it is often the case that buyers will overlook some deficiencies for fear of losing the property. On the flip side of the coin, they are likely to be more particular about address the concerns of the home inspector in a buyer’s market characterized by high inventory levels and low demand. Likewise, the desire of the seller to re-negotiate the price or to entertain the remedies proposed by the buyer will be dictated by motivation and alternative options.
Technology is great. Having the right people is better.
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Your home is probably your single most valuable asset. That is why we always go the extra mile in providing you with the highest level of real estate service that will make us your preferred real estate professional.
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