You have made the decision to sell a property, something you may or may not have done in the past. To make it as seamless as possible, we at 1850 Realty have put together a short list of the process for you. As a primer or refresher. For more detailed examples, click through the titles to their respective pages.
1. Title. Do you actually own or have a legal interest in the property? If you inherited a property, or have been through a divorce there might not be a clear chain of title. This needs to get handled completely before hand. If you need to go in front of a probate judge or have someone sign a quit claim deed, you could add weeks to this process. Other issues could cloud title as well, such as liens attached from financial judgements. It is best to satisfy these before selling, however in some circumstances they can be settled with selling proceeds.
2. Market Conditions. Once you have determined you can actually sell your home free of title encumbrances, figuring where you stand in the market is the next step. Condition of property and location are key factors. Once a pricing strategy is determined, it is time to move forward.
3. Home inspections. Wait, isn’t this a buyer thing? It is, and it is beneficial to the seller to know what might come up. Having a termite report put together and a list of things to repair before going to market can net you top dollar. Example: disclosing a roof leak was fixed is much better than a buyer discovering a roof leak that needs fixing.
4. Home staging. Once all of the odds and ends are handled, time to make your home shine. De-cluttering, rearranging key pieces of furniture and maybe painting a wall of two can be dramatic in a buyer’s eyes. Once you decide to go to market, it isn’t what your idea home looks like, but what will bring the most traffic and highest offers.
5. Photos and video. The last step before putting your home on the market. A key step in the marketing process, getting great photos and possibly video can set you apart from the competition to bring buyers to your home. The materials get a final polish so the marketing strategy can begin.
6. Activation. Putting your property on the MLS and online makes sure that people know you are for sale, and have a clean well kept home that they should be interested in. Marketing of your property continues, both on and off line. Once your home is for sale, it needs to be kept in show condition nearly 24/7. This can be a frustrating period, but one that pays dividends in the end. For sale sign and lockbox go on property.
7. Showings and open house. People need to see your home to see if it is a good fit for them. Making the home accessible is a surefire way to accommodate this part of the process.
8. Offers. Once someone is genuinely interested, it is time to play ball. Offers usually come in a little below seller expectation, buyers always want a deal. Having a negotiating plan can help you get what you want for the property and have a happy buyer. Asking for an independent loan pre-qualification makes sure you don’t come off market for someone who can’t perform. Escrow begins once the purchase agreement has been fully executed.
9. Contingency period. Keeping pressure on the buyer to perform inspections, and providing all required disclosures on time keeps things flowing. If you belong to an HOA, it is customary for the seller to purchase those documents. Termite work needs to be completed, and any repairs that might be negotiated. Keeping the buyer content in this period is a win/win. The listing agent should be following up with the loan conditions of the buyer during this time frame, and keep the seller aware of any further actions on their part.
10. Contingencies removed. Home stretch! The buyer has unconditional loan approval. Time to start packing up and moving out. This is where the seller becomes the buyer in some cases, with both of these processes happening in tandem.
11. Closed. Escrow has received the buyer’s funds, has dispersed them, and the county has recorded the deed. You turn over your keys for the last time. On to the next chapter in life.
We hope you can glean some information about the process here, with our short list. Transactions can vary individually, and we are here to help you with your real estate needs. To discuss in more detail, don’t hesitate to contact us: