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Step by Step Guide
to Selling your Home

Step 1:
Find the Right Agent

Finding a real estate agent that you trust will make your life easier. Finding a real estate agent to help sell your home is different than finding a real estate agent to help you buy a home. You almost want to have them find you. What do I mean by this? An agent who can successfully market their own business is likely to be able to successfully market your home. If you constantly see the real estate agent on social media, or you constantly see this Realtor’s listings online, imagine what he can do with the marketing of your home. The opposite is true as well. If you have never heard of the real estate agent, there is a good chance no one will hear about your home being for sale.

For a list of questions to ask while interviewing agents, check out our Frequently Asked Questions.

Step 2:
Get the House Ready

This may seem like a small task, but this cannot be overlooked. The goal here is to make the home look like a model home in a new construction neighborhood. If you don’t know what I mean, go check out the closest model home to you. On our Frequently Asked Questions Page, we go over everything that should be done to get your home ready for the market.

Step 3:
Pictures and Video

Once the house is ready for the market, we will schedule the professional photographer to come out and take stunning photos of your home. Usually right after the photos are done, we will shoot the listing video. The turnaround time for photos are 24 hours, and for the video about 3 days, so we will need to have this done the Tuesday before going on the market at the latest.

To see our entire Marketing Strategy click here

Step 4:
Showings and Open Houses

We like to hit the market on Thursdays or Friday so that the listing is still “New” for the weekend. In most situations, the buyer’s agent will give us at least an hour’s heads up for the showing. This gives you time to make the home look like it did for the photos, and wrangle up everyone and the dogs. It is expected that you are not in the home during the showings. Plan on showings lasting about 30 minutes. The longer the better.  For Open Houses, treat them the same as a showing, but expect to be out of the home for about 2-3 hours.

The goal is to have 5 showings per week, and one offer per 10 showings. If we do not get that, a price reduction is needed.

Step 5:
Review Offers

Once we receive an offer, we will need to review it. It is customary for the buyer to give us 24 hours to review and respond to the offer. Here is what we are looking for:

  • Sales Price

  • Closing Costs

  • Home Warranty

  • How much Earnest Money

  • Financing

  • Contingent Offer

  • Closing Date

  • Length of Inspection Period

  • Additional Terms

Once we review the offer, we have three options. We can accept the offer and proceed with the sale, counter their offer, or reject their offer. If it’s the only offer we have, I wouldn’t reject it. I would at least counter with the terms you want because you never know.

Step 6:

After we have an accepted offer, the buyer will perform all their inspections during the inspection time, which is usually the first 10 days. The most common inspections are a general home inspection (3 Hours), a roof inspection (30 min), and a termite inspection (30 min). Additional inspection may take place such as an HVAC inspection (1 hour) and Sewer Inspection (30 min). The buyer may also have a general contractor look at the home to give estimates for items found during the inspection. The buyer will want you out of the house during these inspections.

Step 7:
Repair Negotiations

After the inspections are performed, the buyers will submit a BINSR. On this form the buyer has 3 options. A) Accept the property as is, B) Cancel the contract, of C) ask us to make repairs. If the buyers choose option A, we move to the next step. If they choose option B, the contract is cancelled, and they get their deposit back. The most common option is C.

If the Buyer chooses Option C, we have 5 days to respond. Our options are A) Repair everything B) Repair Nothing, Or C) Repair some of the items. If we go with options A, we move to the next step. If we go option B or C, the buyer has 5 days to either accept our response or cancel the contract. If they cancel, they get their deposit back. There is no back and forth negotiation (on paper). We can also offer a price reduction or a seller credit in lieu of repairs. 

Step 8:

If the buyer is obtaining a loan to purchase the home, the lender will require an appraisal. The appraisal usually takes place after the inspections. The appraiser will reach out to your realtor to schedule a time for them to view the home. Treat this like a showing. Get the home ready and do not be present for the appraiser. The appraiser will then submit their report to the lender a few days later. The lender will tell us if it appraised for at least the sales price, or if it was under the sales price, they will tell us how much. The only time they give us the appraised value is if it is under the sales price. 

Step 9:
Make Repairs

If we agree to make any repairs, they must be done by licensed contractors. We will need to provide receipts to the buyer for the work done. I have a list of contractors that can do any of the work that we agreed on.

Step 10:
Final Inspection

A few days before closing, the buyer will perform a final walk through of the home. During this walk through, they are making sure all the repairs were made and that the home is in the same or better condition than when they first saw the home. If it is, we proceed to closing. If it is not, we have 3 days to correct the condition, or the buyer can cancel. 

Step 11:
Title Appointment

During the week prior to closing, we will have an appointment at the title company to sign all the legal documents that transfer the ownership to the buyers. Although you are signing the paperwork early, it will not be recorded with the county until the agreed closing date. During this appointment you will want to bring government issued picture IDs and the bank account information where you want to proceeds to go.

Step 12:

All your stuff must be out of the house by midnight the day before closing. Leave all the keys and garage door remotes in a drawer in the kitchen. The money from the sale should be in your account the following day. 

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