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Typical Sales Process
Selling your home is, at once, an exciting and challenging time. Being as informed as possible about the selling process, combined with working with an experienced local real estate professional will bring you the best results, with the least stress possible. Here, we outline what you can expect from selling your home as we detail the real estate selling process. Empowered with this information, you can manage your expectations, your workload, and your timelines to ensure a smooth selling process and successful results.
Using the Right Listing Agent is Important
Not all real estate agents bring the same level of experience, knowledge, and skills to the table. You want your home listed with a local agent who specializes in both your area and your property type. This will enable them to have the knowledge necessary to understand the current real estate market and trends that will affect the sale of your home. You need representation that you can depend on during all phases of the selling process, from listing and showing to negotiating and closing. Having the right seller’s agent in your corner is an imperative first step towards selling your property with the outcome that you are looking for.
Preparing to Sell
Before listing your home, there are many factors to consider. Your realtor can help you to analyze market trends so that you can understand what to expect and to prepare your property for sale. Start considering your bottom line asking price and the market elements that will impact that, such as the amount of inventory currently on the market and average days on market. These, combined with your sales timeline requirements, will play a large role in your preparation to sell.
When getting ready to list, ensure that your property is ready to be shown and to be competitive within today’s market. Are there any renovations or upgrades that you are willing to complete to potentially raise your maximum asking price? Are there repairs that need to be done that will affect the value of your home? Now is the time to address these areas.
Listing Your Property
Once your preparations are completed, your realtor will take the necessary steps to add your property to the MLS and begin the sales process officially. Before that can happen, however, you need to agree on an asking price for your property. This may seem easy, but there is much careful consideration that is required when deciding on a listing price. Every seller wants the maximum price possible, but list too high and your property may sit for months on the market or not sell at all. List too low and you could be leaving money on the table. An experienced realtor will analyze the market and comparable properties to help you arrive at the right asking price.
Effective and Modern Marketing is Key
The South Florida real estate market is inundated with properties and buyers. In order to get your property seen and bring as many buyers as possible, your realtor needs an effective marketing plan. A combination of traditional and contemporary marketing strategies should be employed for maximum exposure of your property to the right buyers. The more qualified buyers that see your property, the faster you will sell and for the highest price.
Showings and Open Houses
A good marketing plan will create opportunities for as many showings and open houses as possible. As your realtor schedules showings and open houses, it is vital that you remain available and flexible. Yes, it may be inconvenient to be ready at a moment’s notice for a last minute showing, but most buyers will not buy what they have not seen. You do not want to lose a potential qualified buyer for your home due to an inflexible schedule.
During this period, try to keep your home show-ready as much as possible. This will make it easier to accommodate showings, especially last minute showings, and will make it easier for you to balance your time during the selling process.
The better your property shows, the more attractive it is to potential buyers and the easier it is to sell. It is important to keep the home as clean and de-cluttered as possible. This helps the buyer to see the home as a place they can and want to live.
Receiving and Accepting Offers
When you receive an offer for purchase on your property, you have several options on how to proceed. If the terms are what you are looking for, you can accept the offer as written and move forward. This will put the property under contract. If there are changes to be made, you can make a counteroffer. You can make a counteroffer on any of the terms in the contract, including purchase price, deposit amounts, and contingency lengths. These negotiations can continue until both buyer and seller are satisfied with the terms. If the terms are unable to be agreed upon, the seller has the option of rejecting the offer outright.
Even after an offer has been accepted, backup offers can be received and accepted in the event that the buyer cancels the contract or the deal falls through.
Inspection Period and Escrow Phase
When an offer has been accepted and an executed contract has been received, buyer and seller move into the next phase of the process. During the escrow phase, the buyer places the deposit amount in an escrow account to show good-faith. All documents and disclosures are completed and evaluated. The buyer will complete an inspection and appraisal of the property, and are expected to proceed with the purchase of the home as long as no material issues are found and all contingencies, including financing, are met.
Moving Out and Maintaining the Property
At this time, you will be expected to be fully moved out of the home. The property needs to be maintained by the seller in the same condition as when the buyer agreed to purchase - right up until closing. This means that the property must be cleaned, and any damage done during the moving process must be repaired. Landscaping and utilities need to be maintained as well.
Additionally, if any repairs or renovations were agreed upon when the offer was accepted or when the inspection was completed, these need to be finalized before the final walk-through is done.
Making sure that you take these steps prior to the final walk-through will ensure that there are no delays in closing on your property.
Final Walk-Through by the Buyer
Just prior to closing, the buyer will complete a final walk-through of the property. This is their last chance to inspect the home before ownership is transferred. They will be looking for the home to be in the same maintained condition and that all repairs have been completed. This is also the time for them to ensure that the seller has not done any damage during their move, and that all agreed upon elements are in place.
Final walk-throughs are typically scheduled for 24-48 hours before the closing takes place.
Closing on the Property
The final step in the selling process is the closing. At this time, the seller signs the deed of ownership over to the buyer and the buyer officially receives the keys to their new home. All balances owed are transferred and closing costs are paid. You have officially sold your property!
Selling your home can be an emotional, but exciting, chapter in your life. I will do everything I can to make sure that the selling process is as easy and successful as possible for you. I truly value my clients, and hope that all feel confident in referring my services to their family and friends. Referrals make up a large part of my business, and I work hard to earn and sincerely appreciate every referral. I look forward to helping all of my clients, as well as their family and friends, in all of their future real estate ventures!