This page and the attached links will give you a detailed plan to getting your home prepared, priced and promoted for a successful sale.
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This will be updated as we find material to place here.
In the current market, selling a home can be a challenging task. Gone are the days when a simple listing on the Multiple Listing Service would bring many showings and multiple offers. Gone are the days when a home would sell regardless of updates or condition. Gone are the days when a home would sell almost regardless of its pricing. Today a seller needs to be aware and proactive regarding the three P's of real estate: preparation, pricing and promotion.
This is your first step in selling a home. If your home shows well inside and out, your chances of going to contract at an acceptable price is greatly increased. Factors such as available time, ability, budget and motivation will influence your decisions regarding what you will do prior to going on the market. We have compiled a list to serve as thought starters. Consult with us before committing to any of the following chores. We will advise you as to what should be done at your home, with the goal of maximizing your return on investment and time.
Pricing a home properly can be tricky. From your perspective, you need to take as much of an objective look as possible. You have probably put a lot of energy and money toward making your home what it is. You may have raised a family there, or been through some major life events in your home. Your mortgage balance may be high relative to the market price. You may need certain amount of proceeds in order to complete the move that you are contemplating. Putting on the objective hat... none of this matters. What does matter is recent closings of comparable properties in your market area. A buyer will not pay too much because you desire a home on the beach in the Carolinas. A buyer will not base their decision on how many children you raised there. Here are some of the major factors in determining market value. Depending upon the home, some will be more important than others.
- Location - Town, neighborhood, school district, amenities, commute time, service
- Style - Is it desirable by most? Does it conform to the neighborhood?
- Layout - Is it functional for most? Does it flow easily? Are there obscure rooms?
- Square Footage - Enclosed, heated rooms. Does not include lower levels, although they do add some value.
- Amenities - Hardwood floors, central air, central vacuum, detailed trim work, deck or patio.
- Mechanicals - Are they modern? In need of repair or replacement?
- Structural - Water tight? Roof have life? Wood rot? Major issues?
- Kitchen - Updated cabinets, counters and appliances?
- Bathrooms - Updated?
- Eye Appeal - What is your first impression upon entering the driveway?
- Competition - Are there many similar homes on the market? Is comparable new construction available?
- Assessment - While not a true market evaluation, this Town valuation can help to compare your home to others that have closed.
We suggest that you get more than one price opinion. One should be from us. The other can come from another Realtor or a licensed appraiser. In either case, require an honest opinion based upon valid comparable sales within the last six months. Do not view this as a bidding war. You are seeking a realistic number for which you can expect to sell your home. Do not over price in relation to this number. The majority of homes will sell only when the asking price is within 5% of the actual market value. Pricing above this threshold will only result in delays, price reductions and ultimately, lower selling prices than would have been achieved with proper pricing from the start.
In this competitive market, it is important to display your home in the best light possible right from the moment it is listed. We must cast a wide net of promotional activity in order to create what is missing from many listings today - a fear of loss - which creates an urgency to act on the part of potential buyers. Much of the marketing should be readied prior to entering it into the MLS. Photos should be taken, formatted and converted to a video tour ahead of time. Accurate property information should be compiled into a coherent narrative.
Marketing venues should include the MLS, Realtor.com, proprietary web sites, regional and national web sites, U-Tube, Facebook, and any other online media. Virtual Tours should be posted to as many sites as practicable. QR Codes should be utilized to increase online activity. This online activity should include keeping the seller in the loop with reports on web hits and inquiries, showing feedback and advanced notification of showings.
Rather than continue on with a long dialogue about our marketing practices, you should instead review our "Listing Checklist." It will provide you with more of an understanding of what we do to promote our listings. We hope you will be impressed enough to invite us for a market evaluation and consultation.
Do you owe more on your home than it is worth? This is called "under water" or "upside down." You have a few options. First, you can just remain where you are and wait for the market to improve or your mortgage balance to decrease. If you don't have to move, time should get you into an equity position. Second, you can walk away and sign over your home to your lender - a foreclosure. This will harm your credit greatly and may not release you from liability. Finally, you can pursue a "short sale" with a qualified Realtor who will work with your lender to get you out of your situation.