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Home    Home improvement    Home life    Home maintenance and repair    House - Buying    House - Selling   
RESIDENCE - Selling
Also see: MOVING

Well before putting your home up for sale:


____ Consider selling without an agent but most should use an agent - approx. 90% of home owners who try to sell the house without an agent end up using an agent, after losing valuable time
If you would like to sell your home yourself:
Private For Sale.com

____ Hire your own lawyer - don't share the lawyer with the buyer - a lawyer can't adequately represent the buyer and seller
____ Call your local government to find out how to check tax records for your house and other houses in your area (- it's free)
____ Don't let buyers move in until after closing (- they may find problems with the house and refuse to close)
____ Best time to sell is spring or early summer - most buyers want to move during the summer so they won't have to switch their child's school during school year
____ Select an agent:
          - Get referrals
          - Ask them if they would use that agent again
____ Get from your agent:
          - List of comparables (what comparable residences in your area have sold for recently)
          - Ask what your residence would list for and what you can do to your residence to increase selling price fast
____ Keep contract duration short - this is an incentive for agent to sell your house soon - most houses are sold within the first two months
____ Don't negotiate a lower commission up front - your agent will have less incentive to sell your house instead of others
____ Consider offering an incentive bonus to any agent who finds a qualified buyer within 3 weeks of being listed
____ Set an appropriate price - too low and you'll lose money, too high and your house won't compare favorably with other houses in that price range
____ Lock box - be careful, some agents may give the key to the lock box to strangers
____ Keep your house in good condition, with things put away

Showing residence to prospective buyers:
____ Ensure good first impressions, e.g.
          - Put away clothing and personal items
Front yard:
          - Neat, clear of debris and toys, etc.
Front door:
          - Clean and neat
Walls:
          - If dingy, repaint or rewallpaper
Faucets:
          - Ensure not dripping - a drip discolors the sink and suggests that plumbing repairs may be required
Door knobs:
          - Ensure not loose
Doors:
          - Ensure not sticking or squeaking
Windows:
          - Ensure not sticking
Drawers:
          - Ensure not sticking
Bathrooms - they're a selling point, especially for women:
          - Everything shining
          - Clean and repair bathtub and basin caulking
Kitchen:
          - Spotless
          - Appliances: spotless
Rooms:
          - Remove clutter and excess furniture - to make rooms look larger
Closets and storage areas:
          - Dispose of items you don't need - to make them look larger - this will also help you when you move
          - Neatly store remaining items
Exterior:
          - Repaint if needed

Before prospective buyer arrives:
____ Open drapes and curtains
____ Ensure temperature is comfortable throughout house
____ Avoid having too many people present - so prospective buyers can more easily imagine it as their house, without too many strangers - too many people may make prospective buyers feel like intruders and rush their visit
____ Get pets out of the way (unless they're quiet and well-behaved)
____ Consider soft music or radio, but avoid anything (e.g., TV) which might inhibit discussions
If you have a realtor:
____ Consider not being at your residence when prospective buyers are there

During visit by prospective buyer(s):
____ Try to stay in the background (let your realtor do most of the talking)
____ Don't talk too much - it will distract from their inspection of your house
____ Don't apologize for the appearance of your house - it's reasonable that a house being lived in will not look perfect

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