What Home Sellers REALLY Want To Know…
With all the information available at our finger tips today, it’s no wonder potential home sellers throw up their hands in confusion after their first Google search. A simple search such as “How to sell your home” will produce page after page of tips to get their home ready, pitfalls to avoid and checklists to download.
Complicated and convoluted, these articles don’t even come close to the guidance you really need…or answer the the questions bouncing around in your head…
What home sellers REALLY want to know!
Not that all that information won’t be useful, but to get started, it’s easier all the way around if you just apply the K.I.S.S. principle…
Keep. It. Simple. Sxxxxx
At the end of the day, it boils down to these three key questions…
How Much Is My House Worth?
I’m afraid I have a bit of bad news…
There is no secret “Blue Book” for Real Estate.
Zillow doesn’t have one
The Banks don’t have one..
Realtors don’t have one, either!
And ultimately, there is only one person who will determine what it’s worth...the one who buys it.
Pricing a home to attract an offer is part science, part hard work and part gut feeling…and a true CMA (Current Market Analysis) takes a good bit of work to put together.
In a nutshell, to determine what a buyer would be willing to pay we look to the CMA to show us. Looking at three different types of homes, we find where yours may fit…
- Dreamers – those homes currently on the market and hoping to sell (the competition)
- Winners – those home that SOLD within the last 90-180 days (the market accepted)
- Losers – homes that were exposed to the market but failed to attract a buyer and expired (the market rejected)
If you’d like to understand the process better, you can try your hand at it by following the step by step directions in this post
While you won’t have any trouble finding homes currently on the market and even identifying those which have accepted an offer (pending), you may have a bit of trouble finding out what was the SALES price..
In fact, up until now it’s been nearly impossible to find out what homes in your area actually SOLD for!
But no more…
I’ve made it easy to get the information you need. Let me know what neighborhood, zip code or city you are researching by requesting it here and I will get this detailed Market Info sent to you.
How Much Needs To Be Done To My Home Before I Put It On The Market?
This might come as a surprise, but probably not as much as you think!
Beyond the basics of decluttering, deep-cleaning and repairs, this isn’t the time to start on major remodeling projects.
You want it to be as fresh and clean as possible, but the one area that is too often overlooked (and can cause biggest trouble during a sale) is needed repairs.
Truthfully, you should consider a pre-listing inspection with a licensed home inspector. After all, when was the last time you were up on your roof…or in your crawlspace?
Has anyone checked for termites or other wood destroying organisms lately? They can work on your home for years and you’ll never know it until
- a) you’re selling and the Buyer’s Inspector finds it, or
- b) your floor collapses.
Either of these times would be awkward, extremely stressful…and expensive.
If you don’t have a regular maintenance routine, having a pre-listing inspection should be considered a necessity! But at the very least, have someone who is knowledgeable check out these common problem areas…
- Faulty wiring
- Roof problems
- Heating/cooling system defects
- Plumbing issues
- Inadequate insulation and ventilation in attic
- Whole house is poorly maintained
- Poor drainage around the structure
- Air and water penetrating cracks and window perimeters at exterior
- Minor structural damage
- Potential environmental problems
A well-maintained, freshly painted, sparkling clean and de-cluttered home will add the most value for the money and time invested.
How Much Will It Cost To Sell My Home?
And now we get right down to the real question…how much will I have left in my pocket after the sale?
- Realtor’s commission (if listing with an agent)
- Title Insurance
- Title Fees
- Pro-ration of taxes (in Indiana, we pay our taxes a year in arrears)
- Mortgage balance pay-off
- **Seller Assistance with Buyer Closing Cost
- **Home Owner’s Warranty
- (**these are not mandatory, but commonly negotiated into a sale in our area)
When you list your home, your agent should provide you with a “Seller’s Estimated Net Sheet” showing an estimation of costs and what you could expect to put in your pocket if you sold at your listing price.
Here’s a recent post where you can download a study copy to look over for yourself…
But there is also a variety of smaller expenses to factor in. Here’s where your money might go, how much you should expect to pay, and some real ways to curb these costs.
Cover The Basics Before Downloading Checklists
There will probably be many more questions as you work through the selling process. And since every sale is unique, there may be situations arise that no one else has ever experienced.
With a firm handle on the answers to what home sellers REALLY want to know, you’ll find those selling tips, checklists and pitfalls to avoid served up by a Google search will be more useful…
With a firm grasp on the basics, you’ll navigate the home selling process with a course set confidently on your goal.