So you’ve decided to sell your house. Before anything else it’s a good idea to sit down and clarify your motivations and draw up a basic time frame for the selling process.

Why Sell? Why do you want to sell your house? Do you intend to simply find a larger home, or do you plan on moving to another neighborhood, school district, city or state? You might think your reasons are obvious, but it would do well to consider the implications of each option for your family’s lifestyle, opportunities and finances. Being clear about your intentions for selling will make it easier to determine the most appropriate option for your specified financial, lifestyle and real estate goals.

What Is Your Home Worth? Most independent home sellers tend to overestimate the value of their home. we can avoid this pitfall by researching what similar homes your neighborhood have recently sold for.

You can do a lot to increase the appeal of your dream home and create a lasting impact on potential buyers.

Curb Appeal. Keeping your landscape pristine, and adding creative touches to your yard such as colorful annuals, will create an immediate impact on passers-by and potential buyers.

House Repairs. Simple upgrades such as window repairs, polishing the doorknobs, and a fresh coat of paint in the most frequently used rooms instantly brighten up your home.

Cleanliness and Staging. Keep your home uncluttered, sweet-smelling and well-lit from top to bottom. Pay attention to details: put away the kitty litter, place a vase of fresh flowers in the hall, pop a batch of cinnamon rolls in the oven, have your carpets cleaned. I’ll be happy to asses the house as well just to be sure we are doing everything necessary to appeal to buyers.

The Price Isn’t Always Right. “The higher the price, the better the offer.” Don’t let yourself be fooled by this popular misconception. Price isn’t always the determining factor in choosing among multiple offers, for several important reasons: the initial offer is never final, and there are a number of terms and conditions that may influence the final outcome of a price. You can trust me to help you thoroughly evaluate every proposal without compromising your marketing position.

Negotiating The Right Way. We take the ethical responsibility of fairly negotiating contractual terms very seriously. It’s our job to find a win-win agreement that’s beneficial to all parties involved. Oftentimes you will have to deal with multiple offers before ratifying the one you judge to be the most suitable for you – and as your agent I’ll guarantee a thorough and objective assessment of these offers to help you make the right choice.

The Initial Agreement and Deposit. Once we have accepted an offer, the home seller and buyer will agree upon the amount for the earnest money and set up an escrow account. This reflects the buyer’s intention to purchase your property and ensures that no funds or property will change hands until all instructions in the transaction are followed.

The Title Company. The buyer selects a title company, whose job it is to examine and insure title to real estate. After researching the complete recorded history of your property, they’ll certify that 1) your title is free and clear of encumbrances (eg. mortgages, leases, or restrictions) by the date of closing, and 2) all new encumbrances are duly included in the title. They’ll draw up a preliminary report at the end of the process, which I will go over with you in detail.

Contingencies. A contingency is a condition that must be met before a contract becomes legally binding. For instance, a home buyer will usually include a contingency stating that their contract is binding only when there is a satisfactory home inspection report from a qualified inspector, it will be stated in the contract as the “option period” and specify a number of days.

Before completing his or her purchase of your property, the home buyer goes over every aspect of the property, as provided for by purchase agreements. These include:

  • Obtaining financing and insurance
  • Reviewing all pertinent documents, such as preliminary title reports and disclosure documents
  • Inspecting the property. The buyer has the right to determine the condition of your property by subjecting it to a wide range of inspections, such as roof, termite/pest, chimney/fireplace, property boundary survey, well, septic, pool/spa, asbestos or mold.
Depending on the outcome of these inspections, one of two things may happen:

  1. Either each milestone is successfully closed and the contingencies will be removed, bringing you one step closer to the close.
  2. The buyer, after reviewing the property and the papers, requests a renegotiation of the terms of contract (usually the price) or repairs.
How do you respond objectively and fairly to the buyer when a renegotiation is demanded, while acting in your best interests? This is when having and agent like myself can make a real difference in the outcome of the transaction. Having dealt with various property sales in the past, I guarantee my expertise and total commitment to every client, no matter what their situation.

Loan Approval and Appraisal. We suggest that you accept buyers who have a lender’s pre-approval letter. Expect an appraiser from the lender’s company to review your property and verify that the sales price is appropriate.

Ready To Go? Don’t pack your bags just yet. Something unexpected might happen – a buyer’s offer fails to push through,or new buyers come by to visit right when your house is in chaos. There’s a proper time to start preparations for moving, and given my previous experience with these transactions, I’ll help you determine when that time will be.

Buying your next home. Now that the transaction on your home is well on its way to a successful close, it’s time to start preparing for your next home.

As your trusted real estate agent, I’m ready to help you articulate and prioritize your goals for this next project. I’ll get you off to a good start by finding the best interim arrangement for you while you’re in between homes or help with finding your next dream home.

If you’ve come this far, then this means only one thing: congratulations, you’ve successfully sold your home! Don’t forget to tie up these loose ends:

Final Walk-Through Inspection. More of a formality than anything else, the final inspection usually takes place the morning of or day before the transaction is closed. The buyer visits your property to verify that all is in working order. You’ll be signing the papers certifying that the property was sold in satisfactory condition.

Cancel Home Services and Utilities. Be sure to cancel or transfer all utilities or home services around the time you plan to move.

Be Prepared. I will be ready to assist you should an unforeseen glitch pop up, even at this last stage. Something at the house breaks down, the buyer’s loan doesn’t pull through on time – no need to worry. I’ve encountered these problems before so I know how to handle these problems efficiently.

Closing. The title company furnishes the principals with a closing disclosure, which summarizes all the financial transactions enacted in the process. At closing you and the buyer will sign the final documents for the Title Company. They’ll record the transaction for you and the buyer at the County Recorder’s Office. At closing you’ll then receive your proceeds, and the buyer will become the new owner.