I’ve pulled together a list of 8 different items that sellers typically forget when they decide to sell. There are so many different things to consider when you choose to sell your home such as finances, how much you’ll sell it for, or if you’ll be moving into a new home, that it’s easy to overlook some items. Zach tends to find that people are so concerned with the big picture (as they should be) that they sometimes forget the smaller details which can also be important. With this list in hand, you’ll be a step closer to a successful sale of your home!
1. Research your address and neighborhood
According to the National Association of Realtors (NAR), 95% of homebuyers use the internet as their information source, and in addition, 51% of buyers found their home online. Check these stats out here. What this means, is that you should have a good understanding of your home’s online presence when getting ready to sell. While it is the responsibility of your agent to properly market and advertise the house, there are some things out of their control. Having an understanding of what pops up when you type in your address or the name of your neighborhood in Google will help you make informed decisions throughout the selling process.
2. Research your real estate agent
It seems that researching is a reoccurring theme here, but researching your desired real estate agent is important in making sure that you’re selecting the best agent for you. You’ll be working with your agent closely to sell your home and it’s important that you not only enjoy working with them but feel they are providing you with the best level of service. It’s important to look at reviews, their background, and the selling or buying history of your agent. This may help provide good insight into what your experience will be like.
Choosing the best real estate agent can be hard, especially if you’ve never worked with one before, but I’ve outlined the top 4 characteristics to pay attention to here. You should also keep a lookout for any of these 7 tell-tale signs that you may be hiring the wrong agent.
3. Get an estimate of your mortgage payoff amount
Getting a mortgage payoff amount estimate from your lender will help you better understand your potential to gain or lose when selling your home. Having this information will help you make educated decisions while you decide what price you would like to list your home at, and ultimately, what your under contract price will be. This may also help you determine financial decisions moving forward after the sale of your home, such as the amount of cash you will have on-hand to purchase your next house.
Please note, your mortgage payoff amount is different than your mortgage balance and will be affected by the date you close and when your mortgage payments are typically due. Typically, the title company or processor will order the official mortgage payoff when the time comes (there’s usually a small fee to order the official statement which will get included in the payoff balance), but asking for the estimate never hurts. If you’re interested in learning more about mortgage payoffs, this article was a great resource for me.
4. Realistically account for all improvements made or potential repairs needed
When you meet with your agent, make sure you make them aware of all improvements or repairs that you have made to your house. This can include any home improvements or renovations and upgrades like new appliances or paint, as well as repairs that may not be visible to potential buyers, such as new plumbing.
As important as it is to tell your real estate agent about improvements that you have made to your home, you should also be aware of any repairs your home may need and understand how they can potentially affect the sale of your house. Depending on the types of repairs needed, it may be best to fix them before listing your home, and if not, you should be prepared to get them fixed after the buyer’s inspection or offer concessions to the buyer so they can be fixed after they close on the home.
5. Clarify which items are not included in the sale of the home upfront
In order to avoid potentially causing issues after entering contract with a buyer, it’s important to disclose all items that you do not plan to include in the sale of the home. It is very common for a seller to leave all appliances (including refrigerator, washer, and dryer), window coverings and light fixtures/fans for the new buyer; however, if there are certain items that you plan on taking with you after you sell the home, that would typically get left behind, let your agent know so they can include this information in the MLS and any counter offers you may create. This will ensure that the buyers are aware of what is staying and what is going before getting too far along in the process.
6. Make sure your home is HOA compliant
In Las Vegas, HOAs are extremely common. Often homes may have both a master plan community and subdivision HOA, and both HOAs will have a set of rules and regulations for their member homeowners to follow. When selling your home you want to make sure that your house is in compliance with all HOA regulations. If it is not, this can potentially lead to disputes with the buyers if they are fined for a change or addition that you made to the home prior to their purchase.
7. Request social media marketing
As I mentioned earlier, 95% of homebuyers use the internet as their information source, and 51% of buyers find their home online! This means that you want a real estate agent who is tech-savvy and who will market your home on social media, putting you in front of millions of different users. Not all agents will always market their listed homes on social media platforms, so make sure your agent is willing and knows how to use tools like Facebook/Instagram ads.
8. Clean everywhere… yes, even your closets
When buyers go to look at homes, they look through everything. While this can seem like an invasion of privacy, remember that they are trying to determine if they can see themselves living in your home in the future, so they’ll want to look at all of the storage spaces and other nooks and crannies your home has to offer. I have found that keeping my pantry, linen closets, and cabinets clean and tidy helps. So, when you’re cleaning up before an agent is coming to show your home or getting ready to move out, try and refrain from throwing everything into the nearest closet or cabinet, and instead grab an extra laundry basket to pile all of your odds and ends into. Take the basket with you when you leave the house, and you’re all set.
Hopefully, this list will help you get organized as you begin the process of selling your home!
Did you go through the process of selling your home recently? Let us know what you think or if there are any items you think we should add!