Selling a house for the right price requires insight in current market. Knowing what people are looking for can help you focus your sights on the key ingredients of selling your house. Take a moment to read about the important aspects of putting your house on the market.
As a seller, your relationship with a REALTOR® is vital – so meet with several before making your final decision. A good place to start is in your neighbourhood. Check the FOR SALE signs to see which REALTORS® are doing business in your area. Ask them about their track record, their knowledge of neighbourhood selling prices, and why you should list with them. Choose a REALTOR® you feel comfortable with; one who will handle the sale of your home as if it were their own.
What you need: One of the first things your REALTOR® will ask is why you are selling your home. He or she will also explore any time constraints you might have, your financial situation, and any future plans.
What you want: Arriving at an accurate estimate of value for your home is one of your REALTOR®’s prime tasks. It involves analysing your home and comparing it to other, similar houses for sale or recently sold in the neighbourhood. It may also include a broader market survey, using sales statistics available only to qualified REALTORS®. In the end, you will be sure the price you set reflects the true value of your home under current market conditions.
Marketing your home: Depending on your circumstances, and on the prevailing market, your REALTOR® will develop a marketing plan that may include:
An Open House: There are two kinds of Open House: one is solely for REALTORS®, so they can assess your home against the needs of their clients; the second is an advertised Open House for all potential buyers. In either case, your REALTOR® takes care of all the details and acts on your behalf at your home while you spend the Open House hours elsewhere.
Advertising: Effective newspaper advertising, tailored to your home and local market, can be placed for you by your REALTOR®. Lawn signs and direct mail flyers featuring your home are other forms of advertising frequently used by REALTORS®.
Listing Choices: Your REALTOR® may recommend an exclusive listing – which gives him or her sole authority to offer your property for sale for a specified time – or a multiple listing via the local real estate board’s Multiple Listing Service (MLS®) system. The MLS® system is unique to the real estate industry in that it encourages a high degree of co-operation among salespeople. If you are selling a property, listing with a REALTOR® who uses the MLS® system means your property gets maximum marketing exposure to all other members of the local Board. The MLS® system provides other members of the real estate Board with detailed information about your property. REALTORS® everywhere will be trying to find the right buyer for your property. This kind of marketing can be very helpful, especially if you are trying to sell a property quickly.
Selling tips: Whether or not your home shows well to prospective buyers can determine how long it stays on the market and the price it sells for. Your REALTOR® can give you tips – fresh paint, flowers, keeping the house clutter-free and rearranging furniture – to improve the marketability of your home and create a good first impression.
Get serious: Professional REALTORS® know how to separate “lookers” from “buyers.” Your REALTOR® will “pre-qualify” potential buyers to save wear and tear on your home and lifestyle, and to ensure that only serious offers are tendered.
How to close the deal: REALTORS® are experienced in arranging financing and closing deals. On your behalf, he or she will assist in negotiating a better offer, acting as a mediator to head off potential conflicts between you and the buyer, and drawing up a legally binding contract.
Professional service: When you choose a REALTOR®, you will sign a listing agreement. This is a legal contract that gives your REALTOR® the right to act as your exclusive agent in the sale of your house for a specified period. The listing agreement spells out exactly what your REALTOR® will do on your behalf, and he or she will take all the time necessary to explain it to you. The agreement will also specify the amount of professional fees to be paid to your REALTOR® from the sale of your home. Usually fees are set as a percentage of the selling price of your home.
Most of the actual work done to accomplish the sale is carried out by real estate professionals operating in a broker’s name and for whose actions the broker is legally responsible. A REALTOR®’s professional fees are normally shared with the broker who supplies such essentials as office support, training and consultation services.
Selling your home is a major undertaking. A REALTOR® can ease this sometimes risky, difficult, and frustrating process. A real estate professional has the skills, experience and knowledge to effectively market your home at the best advantage to you.