The decision to sell a home isn't one to face lightly. Going through with it means undertaking one of the most complex processes you'll ever undertake. Luckily, the help of a real estate expert simplifies things and makes it a lot less stressful. Still, researching the topic is always a good idea.
The more you know, the easier it'll be to make informed choices throughout the "game." Your real estate pro can offer you expert advice, but the final decision is always up to you.
Let's look at some of the most common "rookie mistakes" that can send your sale to the dugout:
- Rushing Your Agent Pick
Selecting an agent is one of the most important things you'll do in the course of a sale. Your choice will likely affect every stage of the home sale. How your home is staged, listed, and marketed all come back to your agent — so take time to find an agent you can work well with.
- Hiring a Family Member or Friend
You may have loved ones in the business, and they're sure to offer you a good deal. Still, it's best to find an impartial professional to help you with something this sensitive. It's all too easy to fall into conflict with someone you know about issues like the agent's commission.
- Setting the Wrong Price
Poor pricing can add eighteen months to your sale timeline. Homeowners bring a long, emotional history to price question. On the other hand, a good agent will use knowledge of the local market and trends to find the ideal price: One that helps you reach your profit and timeline goals.
- "For Sale By Owner" (FSBO)
This may be the single biggest mistake sellers can make. It invites all kinds of problems — from buyers seeing you as a target for rough negotiations to paperwork issues, few people are prepared for. It puts legal liability for a whole host of issues directly in your lap, too.
- Waiting to Spruce Up the Home
There are many things you can do, even on a tight budget, to make your property much more appealing to would-be buyers. A quick coat of exterior paint, a new doorknob, and a touch of landscaping supercharge curb appeal. For a bit more, think about adding new kitchen appliances.
- Forgetting to Clean and Organize
Before a home hits the market, it should be thoroughly cleaned. Pressure cleaning the outside is a must. Interior carpets and upholstery should be steam cleaned, especially if you have pets. Start moving items out of the closet and into storage early on to make them seem bigger.
- Neglecting to Stage the Home
When you really want to sell a home fast, staging is your secret weapon. Staging breathes new life into a home even if it has some factors working against it, potentially adding thousands to your selling price. It's more than fresh-baked cookies, though, and is best handled by a pro.
- Not Looping In Your Mortgage Lender
Your current mortgage situation goes a long way toward telling you what your sales goals should be. Only your lender can give you all the details you need about loan payoff and how paying early might affect you. Be wary of early payoff penalties that some lenders require.
It may sound complicated to sell a home, but it doesn't have to be a hassle. A real estate agent who specializes in homes like yours will be a team player throughout the process. Experience is essential! Now, play ball!