1. Price Your Home to Sell
Before you list the property for sale, make sure you’ve priced the home competitively. Use the Internet to get an idea of selling prices for comparable homes in your neighborhood, and then price your house accordingly.
It’s easy to get hung up on this step and, especially if you’ve lived in your home for some time, you may feel compelled to overprice the home. Don’t fall into that trap. Remember, the goal of this process is to sell your home, so make sure the asking price is realistic.
3. Market Your Property
Advertise by putting up “for sale” signs, creating brochures, putting ads on Craigslist, and building a web site to market the property. There will be some costs involved in advertising the sale of your home. The real cost is the amount of time and energy you will need to put into selling your home.
4. Hold An Open House
You can also hold an open house to advertise the sale of your home. Advertise for the open house by posting signs in your neighborhood. Have some light refreshments available and set out brochures about the home that visitors can take with them as they leave.
5. Know Your Property’s Selling Points
When writing your ad copy for websites or brochures, make sure to include basic information about the house, including the price, number of bedrooms, number of bathrooms, lot size, location, and of course the specific details that make the house special to potential buyers.
Take a look at other listings on Craigslist, Realtors’ websites, and Yahoo! Real Estate to get a sense of what sort of details sellers and agents are including in their listings. You’ll quickly find out that features like granite countertops, stainless steel appliances, and oversized windows entice buyers. Determine what’s special about your home and highlight those features in your marketing efforts.
6. Prepare to Show Your House
You will have to prepare your house for showings and open house events. Deep-clean the house, including scrubbing the kitchen counters and the appliances, shampooing the carpets, cleaning the linoleum, and stashing your keepsakes in a closet. The final result should be a home that’s squeaky clean and stripped bare of most personal items.
7. Show Your House
You will have to place a key in a lock box and answer calls from other agents or buyers. If you are at home during the day, you can show the house yourself. Otherwise, you will have to verify the identity of the agent before giving out your lock box combination.
After an agent shows your house, be sure to call to follow up on the showing. Some agents will share the buyer’s feedback with the homeowner, if they feel it won’t compromise their clients’ confidentiality.
8. Perform Your Own Negotiations
Real estate negotiations take the form of a contract that is submitted to the seller. The seller can accept the offer, or revise the contract and submit it to the buyer. The process continues until both parties sign a contract.
9. Comply with All Laws in Your Area
It’s critical that you comply with the laws in your area related to selling homes. Some laws are universal and will apply to the sale of your home no matter where you live. The Fair Housing Act stipulates that sellers cannot discriminate against buyers for reasons including race, religion, and sex. Contracts and agreements found online can help get you started on the selling process, but remember, those forms aren’t specific to your unique situation. It’s best to have a real estate attorney review all documents and contracts related to the sale of your home.
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