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Tanya Ess-Young's Blog

By Tanya L. Ess-Young | Agent in Marietta, GA

First Time Seller? Beat the Competition for buyers in Today's Market

13 concerned Secrets To Sell Your First Home Faster For The Best Price

          Remember how much you had to learn to buy your first home? If you’re getting ready to sell for the first time, you’ll need to learn even more. Of course, you picked up quite a bit of information about selling when you purchased you home – how the negotiating process worked, what the sellers’ responsibilities were versus your and so on. Still, a lot was going on “behind the scenes” on the sellers side that you didn’t need to be concerned about as a buyer now it matters.
    In addition, the real estate market has changed since you were buying your home. In many areas, strong seller’s markets have shifted more to the buyer’s advantage.
    Now, more than ever, first-time sellers need the services of real estate professionals who can guide them through the complex selling process in today’s market. We can help you through the following steps to get your home sold at the best possible price and within your moving timetable. 



Let’s Get You Ready!

In today’s competitive market, you’ll want to get your home in model-home condition before you even list it for sale. Buyers prefer homes that can move right into.

      ✔Repair or Replace anything that isn’t in proper working order or good condition-fixtures, outlets, plumbing, flooring, carpet, roof, old shrubs, etc. Some sellers even hire a home inspector to do a “pre-inspection” to identify defects so they can be handled before a buyer’s inspector comes along.

      ✔Improve those things that will add to the value of your home. We recommend against major improvements – room additions, a new kitchen, etc. – just before you sell, as you are not likely to recoup the full cost of these big-ticket items. It does pay, however, to spend some money to ensure your home is up-to-date and comparable to neighbors’ homes. Stick with lower-cost, big-impact projects such as painting or upgrading appliances or carpet. (We’ll be happy to recommend other improvements that are worth doing.)

      ✔De-clutter your home, removing knick-knacks, family photos, excess furniture, counter-top items and appliances, throw rugs, tools, etc. You want rooms to look spacious and storage to look plentiful, and you want buyers visualizing how they could live in your home.

      ✔Clean from top to bottom, inside and out, windows too. Remember, being clean isn’t enough – your home must also look and smell clean too. Don’t forget to weed gardens, trim bushes, edge the lawn and tidy up outside. Curb appeal – making sure your home looks good from the street – is critical to convincing buyers they should take a look inside. 

Get Set!


 
As you’re getting your home ready for the market, you’ll want to select a real estate professional to help you sell it.

            ✔List your home by signing a contract with a real estate broker age to represent you and your home sale in the market place and to have your home placed on the multiple listing service. The listing agent (who works for the licensed broker, or may be the broker) is the person who will work with you personally to get your home sold during the contract period. You’ll need to supply some important information about your home to ensure the listing is complete and accurate: number of rooms, special features, year built, mortgage pay-off, taxes, homeowner or condo fees, utilities, items to be conveyed (sold as part of the property), easements and assessments, and any other items pertinent to the property. (Call us for a complete “pre-list” packet.)

✔Set the price of your home in line with current market conditions. We’ll develop a competitive market analysis to determine the listing price most likely to get your home sold within your desired time frame and, of course, net you the most money from the sale. We look at many factors, especially comparable homes on the market, those that have sold recently, and those that didn’t sell-usually because the price was set too high.

Although you may be tempted to set your price high, just to see if someone will pay it, we caution our clients that doing so is likely to work against them in the long run. Overpriced homes simply sell the competition. Typically, overpricing sellers eventually have to drop their price, often below market value, to renew interest in their “stale” property listing.

            ✔Decide on terms you will accept from or offer to a buyer. We’ll discuss a variety of important issues with you including how much deposit you want with a purchase offer, your desired move-out date, which contingencies you will accept (inspections, home, financing), whether you are willing to help the buyer with closing cost or financing, and so on. Some of these items may become part of you listing, while others won’t come up until you begin negotiating with a buyer. We estimate how much cash you would receive from the sale based on a variety of scenarios.

            ✔Devise a marketing place with your agent. Of course, we know what has been working best in current market. We may suggest an open house for buyers, magazine or newspaper advertising, fliers, mailers, etc. Ideally, you’ll also tap into your network of family, friends, neighbors and co-workers to tell them about your home sale. 

Sell (Take off)!!!



At this point, you can sit back and see how all your preparations and planning pay off.

            ✔Stay Ready for spur-of-the-moment showings by keeping your home clean and straightened up. Allow a lock box on your door so agents can show your home easily when you’re not there. Ideally, it’s best to leave the home during showing, making potential buyers more comfortable about looking around and asking questions and providing feedback to their agent. (Also, being gone minimizes the chance you’ll impart information --- such as why you are moving --- that could give buyers a further advantage at the negotiating table.)

            ✔Be patient while your home is on the market. Higher priced homes are likely to move more slowly than those in the middle and low ranges. Fewer active buyers mean less-frequent showing and more days on market than sellers have been accustomed to.

            ✔Stay Flexible about price and contract terms. For some buyers, getting a desired move-in date or being able to keep the home’s window treatments will mean more than getting a lower price. Remember, too, the first offer you receive may be the best one you get. Listen to your agent’s advice about accepting, rejecting and countering offers.

            ✔Follow Through on your responsibilities ---such as providing a pest letter, meeting inspectors or the appraiser and making repairs --- in a timely way.

            ✔Go to settlement (or closing) with everything you need, including required paperwork and keys --- don’t forget garage-door openers, if any. Many sellers leave manuals for the home’s appliances on the kitchen counter, along with phone numbers to any service providers they’ve used – pest treatments, heating/cooling system checks, plumbing and electrical work, etc. 

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A note from our marketing team

Moving Up

     Having built up equity in your first home, you’re in great position to take advantage of today’s market buying your next home. You’ll find lots of selection to choose from and great deals from sellers who are on the move, just like you.

            Remember, too, mortgage rates are still very attractive by historical standards, and many different types of loan programs are available to match your particular needs and goals.
            We’ll be happy to help you find out how much more home you can afford today. Then we’ll search for that perfect home you’ve been longing for.
            Give us a call so we can help coordinate a seamless transition from your first home to your next one. We look forward to working for you. 

- Written by Tanya Ess-Youngs marketing team, we look forward to your leads. Happy selling and make it a great day!

 

Comments

By Kirsten Conover,  Wed Aug 14 2013, 18:26
Great post!

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