Selling your House with Success

Selling your house can be a regular occurrence or a once-in-a-lifetime ordeal; in either case, there is a process to sell your house. The process is standard to cover all bases to have an effective and profitable sale.

The first step is to get an evaluation of your property’s value. Three different ways you can get your home evaluated. You can go online to see the selling price of the houses in your neighborhood similar to yours. You can call your local realtor to come to evaluate your house; some realtors will do that for free. Realtors can use the MLS to give a more accurate estimate of what your house’s market value is. Another way that costs a few hundred dollars is to get an appraiser to give a full report on the market value of your home. Let’s not get ahead of ourselves before hiring an appraiser.

Step two is choosing to sell your property yourself or hiring a realtor to represent you. The pros of selling your house yourself are saving on the commission costs of the realtor… and the pros end there. The cons are the negotiation power is reduced, it costs money to put your property on the MLS, advertising comes out of your own pocket up front, less exposure to buyers, fewer offers will come in, and typically a house will be on the market for a longer time. The pros of going with a real estate agent are covered in the last cons list: they have more negotiating power, free to post on the MLS, the realtor covers the advertising, the real estate agent will know buyers or other agents with buyers, so more offers will come in resulting in a shorter time on the market.

Step three is to consider all the costs associated with listing your property. Real estate agents cost, legal fees, advertising fees, surveys, inspections, and staging costs. All costs should be calculated before moving into step four.

Step four is preparing your house to be sold. It’s springtime, the perfect time to start cleaning. Cleaning your home top to bottom and organizing your cupboards and closets will be the beginning of preparing your home. Now is a good time to look for a stager. A stager will be an advisor on how to set up your house, paint your house, decorate your house, and neutrally dress your property to attract buyers. Consider curbside appeal with a landscaper to tidy up the bushes, hedges, and lawn. Do any necessary renovations, but avoid any excessive projects that won’t increase the value of your home.

Step five is showtime. The house is clean, organized, painted, and the lawn is trimmed; now it’s time to book appointments to show off your house. A few tips for appointments: keep all the lights on during the showing have a clean smell but no fragrances, keep the pets tucked away, take out all the garage, and always have the house tidy.

Step six is to review the offers. People have come far and wide to see your beautiful house; now they want to buy it. Your realtor will tell you every offer that comes in; however, if you tell him your timeframe of moving out and what price you're expecting, he can naturally filter out the weak bids. Sometimes the highest bid isn’t the best scenario, like if a high bid is six months till closing, but you have a lower bid for one to two months closing, the low one might suit you better.

Step seven is preparing for closing. This is where the rubber hits the road for all the costs you calculated earlier. The realtor, the lawyer, the stager, the landscaper, the movers, your mortgage, and maybe a cleaner will be paid out.

Step eight is leaving on a good note. It is good to leave with a sweet goodbye. Have the house tidy and clean, have the yard mowed one last time, and maybe say goodbye to neighbors if you were close to them.

The steps to selling your home naturally have you asking, “now that my house is sold, how do I buy a new one?” next week, I’ll be talking about what are the steps of purchasing your next dream home. As always, if you have any questions, you can call or email. Make it a great weekend.

Rudy Lochan


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