How To Sell A Home
Selling a house in the current market takes much more than simple luck - proper staging, marketing , and competitive pricing are all important factors. Here is a step-by-step route to getting your property sold:
Rent out or sell?
- For sale: 1) Advantages: Tax-free capital gain (if any); May free up equity that can be invested or put in a new home; If moving, you'll only have one house to maintain; 2) Disadvantage: Lose potential property appreciation; May have
to sell at a bad time for real-estate market and swallow a loss.
- For rent: 1) Advantages: Keep property as it appreciates; Tax breaks could offset income tax on rent; 2) Disadvantage: Possible property damage; Could be taxed on whole profit if sold; Potential tenant problems.
Selling a house
- Homeowner: Once you've decided that it's time to put your home on the market, you must choose whether to use a realtor or sell your home on your own.
- Realtor: 1) If you decide to go with a realtor, be prepared to sign an Exclusive Seller Representation Agreement and discuss the agent's commission; 2) Selling on your own will save you the broker's commission, but you'll have
to do your own marketing and research, including pricing your home and listing it on places like CraigsList and forsalebyowner.com; 3) Before you price your home, you and your realtor need to assess the market. It is important to
investigate how much similar house in your neighborhood (comps) have sold for in recent months.
- Marketing: Marketing your house is particularly important in a slow economy. You or your realtor should find compelling ways to make your home stand out from others in the market.
- Online marketing: 90% of home buyers look online. make sure you have a strong web presence.
- Cleaning house: Buyers are attracted to clean and spacious home. De-clutter.
- Photography: photographing your house properly is key to driving interest.
- Curb appeal: 77% of buyers drive by a properly after seeing it online. Maintain your front lawn or yard meticulously.
- Open house: When holding an open house, i is important to present your home in the best light possible. Some realtors even hire "staging" companies who rearrange your furniture (or even replace it).
- An offer. Receiving an offer can take months. Once you've got one, it's time to negotiate with the potential buyer. You have three options when an offer is made on your house. you can either counter, reject or accept the offer:
1) Counter-offer: If the initial offer is too low, counter-offer. Sometimes including appliances or furniture will increase the offer on the house; 2) Reject: Reject and accept a different buyer; 3) Accept: Accept the buyer's offer.
- Escrow: Money held by a third-party on behalf of transacting parties. Buyer's appraisal takes place.
- Escrow agent: It is now time to find an escrow agent that will hold the buyer's down payment until closing. This agent will obtain and hold the deed for your property, and also arrange for it to be recorded by the appropriate
office or agency at closing.
- Closing attorney: You now take the offer to an attorney where final price, financial contingencies, possession date and closing date are negotiated with the buyer.
- Closing date: At the closing, all remaining funds are transferred into escrow and multiple forms are signed and exchanged.
- Home inspection: The buyer will typically ask for a home inspection and title search. Repairs or contingencies may be negotiated at this point.
- Escrow: 1) After the final walk through inspection the remainder of the funds are put into escrow; 2) After all the necessary forms are filled out and notarized, a transfer of keys indicates the completion of the sale.
- Forms the seller signs: 1) Transfer deed title; 2) Bill of sale; 3) Affidavit of title; 4) 1099-S.
- Forms the buyer & seller sign: 1) Respa form; 2) Affidavit purchase price; 3) Transfer declarations.
Mint.com | Sources: Realtor.org; Lawyers.com; Remax.com; Public.findlaw.com; SmartMoney.com.