If you’re thinking about selling your house, there are a few things you should know about the home selling process before you get started. Selling your home isn’t as quick and easy as listing it on the market and showing your house off to potential buyers.
There are several potential pitfalls to avoid, not to mention, plenty of work to do to prepare your home. We want to help you sell your home quickly and for a fair price. Keep reading for a complete guide on how to sell a house.
Preparing Your House for the Market
The first step in the home selling process is learning how to prepare your house for the market. If you plan to sell your house traditionally, it means showing it off to potential buyers. As such, you need to make it as attractive and appealing as possible.
Repairs and Renovations
Start by inspecting your house room by room. You’re looking for cosmetic damages and imperfections. Make a list of things you need to touch up in each room.
- Drywall repair
- Cracked windows
- Damaged trim
- Stained Carpeting
- Damaged Fixtures
This might also be a good time to make certain updates and renovations. Let your timeline and budget dictate how much work you put into your home before listing it.
Next on our home selling checklist is the deep clean. While you probably won’t make a sale just because your home is exceptionally clean, it will make a good impression on buyers.
Conversely, it is quite common to lose buyers if a home is dirty, dingy, or smelly. Spend a fair amount of time cleaning your house from top to bottom. You can also hire the job out to a residential cleaning company.
Determining the Value of Your Home
The next part of the home selling process is getting an accurate valuation of your home. There are three primary components of this step.
First, you need to get a home inspection. The inspector will evaluate your home to verify its condition. After all, you can’t list your home for top dollar if you need a new roof and your floors need to be replaced.
The inspection report will alert you to any major or minor issues and help you get a more accurate estimate of the price.
Then, you can do a comparative market analysis of your home. Essentially, you’re comparing your home to the other homes in your neighborhood that have sold in the last two or three months.
Finally, reach out to the bank to schedule a home appraisal. An appraiser will come out and officially inspect your home (for value, not condition). Potential buyers are unlikely to pay more than the appraised amount unless there’s a bidding war.
Listing Your Home
Now that you know the relative value of your home and it’s prepared for the market, it’s time to list your home. This step of the home selling process can be accomplished in a variety of ways.
Working with a Realtor
The most common method of selling a home is working with a realtor. A realtor is knowledgeable about the housing market, has valuable connections, and can help you sell your house faster. They can list your home on multiple listing services.
Furthermore, realtors are well-versed in the art of negotiation. Although they usually charge a 3% commission on the sale of your house, you’re likely to make more money overall when selling with a realtor.
For Sale by Owner
If you don’t like the idea of forking over a percentage of your earnings, you can choose to sell the house by yourself. The for sale by owner option is good for people who have plenty of experience buying and selling homes.
If you know how to price your home competitively, are good at marketing, and are a skilled negotiator, this might be a way to save money.
Professional Home Buyers
Finally, if you need to sell your house as fast as possible and want to avoid the traditional home selling process, you can look for professional home buyers. However, it’s vital to find the top rated professional home buyers. Uncredited home buyers often provide low-ball offers.
If your biggest question is “How long does it take to sell a house?” a professional buyer is the way to go. They can help you sell a house in a matter of weeks if you’re stuck between a rock and a hard place. For example, a professional home buyer can help if you:
- Are going through a divorce and need to liquidate assets
- Have been offered a position out of town that starts in a few weeks
- Need to sell the house immediately to avoid foreclosure
If you find yourself in this type of situation, reach out to a professional house buyer. And remember, just because you request an offer for your house, it doesn’t mean you have to accept it.
Offers and Negotiations
Selling a house for a fair price is a top concern for most homeowners. They don’t want to let go of their home for anything less than what it’s worth.
On the flip side, buyers want to find a great deal on a home and don’t want to spend a dollar more than what the home is worth. To key to accepting an offer is negotiating to a happy middle ground. Both parties need to find favorable terms.
Fortunately, you can negotiate with a variety of things in the home selling process other than just the price of the home. For example, you can offer to:
- Leave behind furniture, decor, or appliances
- Pay the buyer’s realtor fee
- Pay all of the closing costs
- Complete specified repairs before the buyer moves in
Selling a home quickly might mean compromising on your price point and/or what you’re willing to do for the buyer. Ultimately, it depends on how badly you want to make the sale and what you’re willing to accept.
Finally, when people ask “How long does it take to sell a house?” they’re typically talking about the steps listed above. However, a fundamental, time-consuming part of the home selling process is underwriting and closing.
If a buyer is financing the sale through a mortgage lender, it can take six weeks or longer for the loan to close. After a deal is struck between the buyer and seller, the mortgage lender needs to verify the buyer’s credentials and financial eligibility.
Want More Help with the Home Selling Process?
Do you understand the home selling process now? We understand that selling a home is much easier said than done. If you need more help, stick around and read through some of our other articles before you go.
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