How to Sell a House: From Preparing the Home for the Market to Closing the Deal

How to Sell a Home

Take the stress out of selling your home by following this simple guide! Each step is crucial, from determining the right price to preparing your home for potential buyers. Understanding the market, finding the right agent, and showcasing your home effectively are also key elements that make it easier to sell your first house. Worried about negotiating prices or handling multiple offers? We'll teach you how to find the perfect listing agent for that and more. Stay tuned to learn how to sell your house the easy way.

For informational purposes only. Always consult with a licensed real estate professional before proceeding with any real estate transaction.

Quick Selling Tips

  • Determine accurate market value using online tools and a Comparative Market Analysis (CMA).
  • Understand and prepare for selling costs like agent commissions, closing expenses, and potential repairs.
  • Select a reputable listing agent with expert knowledge of the real estate market at the local level.
  • Work with your agent to set a competitive home price based on a thorough market analysis.
  • Enhance your property's curb appeal and depersonalize/declutter interior spaces for successful viewings.

Know Your Home's Worth

Learn what your home's worth before putting it on the market. This not only helps you set the right price but also prepares you for the costs associated with selling your home.

Keep in mind that these estimates are just a starting point. For a more accurate assessment, working with a real estate agent who can provide you with a Comparative Market Analysis (CMA) is crucial. A CMA provides a detailed comparison of your home to similar properties that have recently sold or are currently on the market. It examines properties with comparable lot sizes, similar square footage, and the same number of bedrooms and bathrooms. Use it to make an informed decision when determining the best listing price for your property.

Additionally, calculating your equity can help you better understand your net proceeds after deducting selling expenses such as agent commissions and closing costs. This step entails subtracting your mortgage payoff from the estimated home value to determine your equity in the property.

Prepare For the Costs of Selling a Home

What Costs Are Associated With Selling a Home?

When selling a home, it's important to consider various expenses such as agent commissions, closing costs, repairs or updates, staging, and marketing expenses. Understanding the costs of selling a home can help you make informed decisions and prepare for the financial aspects of the process.

On average, sellers can expect to pay closing costs ranging from 5% to 6% of the home's sale price. These costs cover fees like title insurance and transfer taxes. Additionally, you will need to pay your agent's commission fee from the home sale proceeds, with the usual 50/50 split between the listing agent and the buyer's agent.

Hire an Expert Real Estate Agent

The National Association of Realtors reports that 89% of sellers choose to work with real estate agents when selling their homes. This is because real estate agents have the expertise, experience, and network to market and sell properties effectively and navigate the complexities of the real estate transaction process.

When looking for the right listing agent, prioritize their relevant experience and reputation for facilitating successful home sales. A top-rated local real estate agent can assist you in setting the right price for your home, marketing your property effectively, and negotiating the best deal with potential buyers.

Additionally, market research indicates that homes sold through real estate agents generally fetch higher prices than FSBO listings (those sold directly by owners). An expert agent will handle negotiations and paperwork on your behalf, saving you time, stress, and potentially money.

Set the Right Price

After you've partnered with a reputable agent, it's important to determine the best price for your home. Keep in mind that setting the price too high can deter potential buyers, while setting it too low can decrease your profit. To establish the right price, analyze recent sales of similar properties in your area, taking into account factors such as location, size, condition, and unique features.

Consulting with a real estate agent and reviewing a Comparative Market Analysis will give you a more accurate market assessment, enabling you to set a realistic or strategic price from the get-go. Be open to adjusting the price based on market feedback or if the property does not attract interest within two weeks of the listing date.

Prepare Your Home for Viewings

How to Get Your Home Ready For Viewings

When adding value to your home before selling, it's crucial to focus on at least three areas: curb appeal, key repairs and renovations, and interior decor for home viewings.

Enhance Curb Appeal

Ninety-two percent of real estate agents agree that enhancing your home's curb appeal can attract more buyers and lead to a quicker sale, according to the National Association of Realtors. Moreover, studies show that well-maintained landscaping can increase a home's perceived value by up to 12%, indicating the significance of outdoor aesthetics.

So, make sure your curb appeal is inviting by keeping the lawn well-maintained, adding colorful plants, and addressing any necessary exterior repairs. Also, ensure that your garage or carport, waste disposal areas, and alleyways are clean and organized. Additionally, consider simple upgrades like painting the front door, which can offer a 100% return on investment and make your home more appealing.

Lastly, consider power washing the exterior to give it a fresh look and adding outdoor lighting for enhanced charm.

Make Necessary Repairs and Renovations

Making necessary home repairs can prevent buyer concerns and negotiation obstacles during the selling process. Be sure to address any structural issues, such as a leaky roof or foundation cracks, and focus on key areas that buyers prioritize, including updated flooring, new appliances, and a well-maintained HVAC system. Fresh paint, modern fixtures, and energy-efficient upgrades may also attract more buyers and lead to a quicker sale.

Depending on your budget and time constraints, consider investing in repairs or renovations that may enhance your home's appeal while increasing its overall value. Keep in mind that some improvements and repairs may be more financially beneficial than others, so invest in areas that will maximize your return on investment.

For example, high-ROI projects like replacing garage doors, adding a deck, and installing new windows may increase your home's value more than renovating a bathroom or kitchen. Generally speaking, the more you've kept up with annual home maintenance, the fewer repairs you'll need to do at selling time.

Declutter & Depersonalize

Creating a neutral environment through decluttering and depersonalizing can lead to a better viewing experience and a quicker sale.

Start by organizing and depersonalizing your living space to make it more inviting for potential buyers. Remove personal items such as photographs and other memorabilia so buyers can better envision themselves in your home.

By decluttering, you can highlight your home's best features and make it easier to stage for potential buyers. Clear out closets, countertops, and storage areas to show off the space and keep things tidy. Depersonalizing with neutral decor and color schemes also provides a blank canvas for buyers to imagine their own style.

Handle Negotiations Successfully

Understanding what motivates a buyer's offer, whether it's price, quality, or something else, is crucial for creating an effective negotiation strategy. Your real estate agent can be a valuable resource in pinpointing the buyer's motivation from a list of potential obstacles. By collaborating with the seller's representative, your agent can facilitate productive negotiations, especially in complex or challenging situations, and work toward a mutually beneficial solution.

When making a counteroffer, use your market research to justify your pricing and terms. Transparency and open communication are key in addressing concerns and ensuring both parties' interests are considered. Remember to maintain a flexible approach and be willing to compromise on certain aspects. Building a positive rapport with the buyer and showing a willingness to work toward a win-win situation may increase your chances of success!

Close and Settle With All Parties

How to Close the Deal When Selling

Similar to closing day for buyers, sellers must be prepared to finalize all aspects of the transaction. This involves the seller, buyer, buyer's lender, sales agents, and seller's lender coming together to resolve any outstanding payments among themselves and with other parties who have contributed to the transaction.

Before closing on the home, you should receive a closing statement from the escrow company that typically lists fees in two columns, one detailing the buyer's expenses and one detailing yours. Review the statement carefully to ensure that all charges are accurate and that you understand each fee. If you have any questions, don't hesitate to ask your real estate agent or the escrow officer for clarification.

The closing process is finished when the escrow agent pays off your lender and any other parties with a claim on the property, pays you the proceeds from the sale, files the deed and buyer's mortgage (if applicable) with the county recorder of deeds, and hands over all transfer documents to the buyer.

For informational purposes only. Always consult with a licensed real estate professional before proceeding with any real estate transaction.

Selling Your Home

Selling your home can be a rewarding experience when you hire an expert real estate agent, enhance your property's curb appeal, and set the right price. Making necessary repairs and handling negotiations effectively can also contribute to a successful home sale. Follow these steps to increase your chances of selling your home quickly and for an optimal price, even if it's your first time selling.

Frequently Asked Questions

What Is the First Step in Selling My House?

Start by determining your house's current market value. Once you have an idea of what your home is worth, focus on hiring a top-rated local real estate agent to list it on the market.

How Do I Prepare My House for a Sale?

To properly prepare your home for a sale, consider enhancing its curb appeal, making necessary repairs, and cleaning/decluttering it so buyers can better envision themselves living there.

Do I Need to Make Extensive Repairs and Renovations?

It's important to address necessary repairs and renovations to maintain your property's value and functionality. However, it's worth noting that some repairs may be more financially beneficial than others. Before proceeding with extensive renovations, carefully assess the scope of work needed and consider your budget and time constraints.

Ready to start looking for your new home in Ohio? Call The Young Team at (216) 402-4774 today to get in touch with a local real estate expert who can help you start your homebuying journey.

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