Step 1 – Find a good agent
You want to interview a few agents. Make sure it is the right fit personality wise, are the full time or part time, Do they know your area, Are they pushy or just a good sales person. You don’t want an agent that you felt sold on . People don’t like that car salesman mentality. I would look for referrals from other happy clients. That shows they answer their phone and kept them updated. You don’t get a good review if they don’t feel like you did your job. You get a good review when you have met all the clients needs and standards.
What is your motivation to sell? Why are you moving? This determines, timing, pricing, and strategy. In a declining market, these are the most important questions you can ask yourself.
Step 2 – Staging
Why do I need to stage? Staging a home brings in more buyers, more offers, and more money. An agent took a listing that had been on the market for 6 months, was vacant and had expired. The highest offer they had received was $115,000. We discussed cleaning, painting and placing a table, sofa, mirror, 2 pictures, a bowl of fruit, and a towel in the bathroom. Within 5 days we had 2 offers, one for $140,500 and another for $150,000. Staging doesn’t need to be expensive, I guarantee, it will be time and money well spent. Assume that buyers CANNOT see potential.
Step 3 – Marketing
89% of buyers report pictures are the most important part of marketing. Most buyers will fall in love with the home online before they even get there. My job is to create a listing that makes them fall in love with your home.
The formula is:
Appropriate Staging + Great Marketing + Strategic Price = OFFERS
I do the following:
- Upload to the Utah listing service
- Syndicate to over 350 of the most popular home websites
- KSL & Craigslist
- Digital Home Info-Texting service that delivers photos to your smartphone
- Facebook, You Tube, & Twitter
- Presented to over 100 agents personally on a big screen
Step 4 – Pricing correctly the first time
- Look at homes sold in the last 90 days.
- Look at the competition.
- Two independent Alpine, Draper or Provo real estate agents do a competitive market analysis so you can trust the accuracy of the results.
- Strategically place it in the right search category where people are searching.
- Discuss price reductions and pre-sign them. In a declining market if you do not have an offer in the first 3 weeks, it is time to reduce the price. The price is falling every month. Chasing the market down will result in a failed sale. Staying 3%-5% ahead of the market will result in the sale of your home.
Anyone can tell you they can sell your home for the price you want. A good agent will be honest with you upfront and tell you not what you want to hear necessarily but the truth. That gives you the power to make a correct decison to sell or not to sell. Otherwise you put your home on the market do showing after showing. You have to keep your house clean and prepared for months to then find out that it won’t sell for that price. A home has to meet appraisal for most buyers to purchase it. Meaning a good agent pulls comparable’s for you so they can justify your price to an appraiser.
Step 5 – Listing your home and going under contract
- Sign listing documents with your agent. Any good agent will let you out of a contract if they are not fulfilling your requirements. Make sure they will.
- Seller disclosures – (7 days): I send these to the other agent for the buyer to review.
- Due diligence – (14 days): The buyer will schedule an inspector to come to your home. This is typically a 3-4 hour block of time. It is common for buyers to ask for seller repairs to be made in an addendum. In my experience, it is best to help the buyer’s agent understand how asking for these will delay the deal and could muddy the loan. Once it is in the contract the underwriter will want proof it has been completed. This can take weeks and is usually not worth the headache.
- Appraisal/Financing – (25 days): Most deals are dependent on a loan and this may trigger all sorts of issues. From needing more time, to the underwriter needing more bank documents to go forward with the loan. It is common to see an addendum to the contract at this point.
- Settlement – (30 days): One day prior to closing, I will receive a copy of the HUD’s for review and to catch any errors.
- Closing – The next day you will sign documents and HUD’s at the Title company. This takes about 1 hour. The title company will explain and answer any questions you may have. I will be present at the closing.
- Funding – Once the documents are signed, the loan will be funded. This can take anywhere from a few hours to a few days.
- KEYS – Once the loan is funded the buyer receives the keys to your home!!!