Selling a Home is A Process
Selling a home in the Frederick Real Estate Market is never an event…it’s a process. It has been taking an average of 3 or 4 months in Frederick. Of course, that time-frame varies depending on the condition of the home and the demand. The process can be complicated, as in a short sale, or in keeping with traditional expectations with a property in an area and price range that is in high demand. Add into that mix the unpredictability of human behavior, and that’s where we realize averages don’t always matter. Whatever the case, the steps in selling a home are fairly similar. Here is a road map for home sellers to help them understand a “typical” home selling process:
💨 Starting Point: Meet With A Real Estate Professional
The first step in the process of selling your home is to meet with a Realtor®. The real estate agent is you point of contact throughout the process. A reputable, experienced agent will gather a team of professionals to help with the sale of your home every step of the way. Choose an experienced local agent to guide you through their road map for home sellers.
💵 Strategic Pricing for Your Home
Your agent will provide a market analysis, which will help you set an asking price. As difficult as it may be, it’s important to review the market analysis and consider your home price objectively. Pricing a home correctly is a very important first step, and getting that wrong can potentially cost a home seller, both financially and in wasted time on the market.
Overpricing for the sake of “negotiating room” is one of those mistakes that we see far too often. Many sellers don’t realize that the dangers of overpricing and the chilling effect it has on showing your home. If you can’t get people to come and tour your home in the first place because it is overpriced for the market, you won’t be able to sell. Getting traffic is the prerequisite to getting offers.
🔨 Prepare Your Home for the Market
Getting your real estate agent’s advice on home preparation is an important step before you get started in the process. An experienced local agent is knowledgeable about your market and the competition. They will know what people expect to find in a house in your price range and in your neighborhood. Their advice can not only help you prepare your home to maximize its appeal, but they can save you wasted time and money on improvements that don’t really matter.
Preparing your home takes objectivity. View your home through the eyes of the buyer and ask yourself what you would expect. Remember that buyers are viewing on average one dozen homes that are in their price range. Yours must stack up to the competition.
🏠 List Your Home for Sale
When everything is in place and your house is ready to show off her best features, and within your time frame, your agent will list your home on the open market. Choosing an agent who is a savvy internet marketer can make all the difference in your success. Some agents just do the bare minimum and list a home on the MLS. Savvy agents know that HOW that home is listed matters. Professional photos and high definition video will go a long way to gather interest in your home. Great internet marketing will throw a broader wider net and capture more buyers’ interest, and get more foot traffic through your home.
🚪 Showing Your Home
It is critical you make it as easy as possible for potential buyers to view your home. Potential buyers may ask to see your home on short notice. It’s best if you can accommodate these requests if at all possible. You never know which one will be the buyer that will fall in love. Yes, showing your home can be a life interruption, but the more accommodating you are, the sooner your house will sell.
✍ Offers and Negotiations
If everything goes well, a buyer (and most often the agent who represents them) will present your agent with an offer. Traditional real estate marketing statistics tell us that if your home is priced well and in good condition, and if the marketing is effective, you should get an offer for every 11 showings. True story!
If you aren’t getting offers, you should revisit your price and the condition of your home. Your agent will have solicited showing feedback which will be constructive and helpful in determining what adjustments you’ll need to make.
📜 Congratulations! Your Home is Under Contract
Your agent will present all offers and the benefits and risks of each one. You will have the opportunity to either accept or counter any offer based on is merits. Sometimes negotiations can take several rounds until you have a “meeting of the minds” with the buyer. The best advice during negotiations: Don’t let emotions rule.
At this point, you and the buyer have agreed to all of the terms of the offer and both parties have signed the agreements. Now you have a “ratified” contract.
🔎 Final Details
During the time period from contract to closing, which these days can take from 45 to 60 days, your agent will stress that “time is of the essence”. Any contingencies that you have agreed to have time frames that must be kept.
The buyer will usually perform a physical home inspection. They may ask for certain repairs. Your agent will help you understand your options and negotiate regarding the home inspection.
While under contract, the buyer (90% of the time will be financing the home purchase) will work with their mortgage provider to finalize the loan and perform other due diligence. There will be an appraisal and a pest inspection, among other items.
🏁Finish Line: Moving
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Chris Highland, Broker eXp Realty Maryland
Cell: 301-401-5119 Broker: 888-860-7369