Everything to Expect During the Home Selling Process
The pandemic has had a huge effect on how we shop and make purchases, dampening the profits of many industries around the world.
However, there’s one surprising place where buying has shot up: the real estate market. Home prices are climbing, open houses are going virtual, and home sales jumped a whopping 43% year over year.
Whether you’re hoping to sell your home during a period of market growth or you just need some fast cash, knowing the home selling process is the key to your success. The details may vary from state to state, but in general, you’ll need to follow through with some or all of the steps below if you want to sell your home. Read on to learn more.
Find a Real Estate Agent
The process of selling a home can be long and complicated, which is why many homeowners start by finding the right real estate agent to partner with. As mentioned above, this step is optional and not always ideal for those selling a house fast. However, a listing agent can help you navigate the market and get a good price for your home if you’re willing to spend more time on the process.
Choose a Competitive Price
You or your listing agent should do some market analysis in your area to decide a good price for your home. This can include researching the market itself, as selling during a hot, cold, or neutral market can affect the price. Opting for a competitive price can be the fastest way to sell a house, but you’ll need to find a balance between a fast closing and a fair price.
Do a Home Makeover
You may love your home, but buyers will be looking for a property they can see themselves living in.
Invest time or money in a deep cleaning of your home, and remove as much of the clutter and personal effects as you can. You may also want to consider doing basic repairs or home improvement projects that offer a great ROI.
Market Your Home
If you’re working with a real estate agent, you’ll be able to work with them on the details of your marketing campaign. If you’re working alone, you’ll have to figure out how to advertise your home’s sale on your own. This can take time, but marketing is the best way to sell a house: no one will buy it if they don’t know it’s available!
Open Your House
You or your agent will need to show your home to prospective buyers. Make sure to be flexible and accommodating with your schedule, especially if you’re hoping to sell your home quickly.
Negotiate With Buyers
If you’ve put your home up for sale at a competitive price point, you can expect to get competing offers. However, don’t forget that you have the opportunity to negotiate with buyers! To do this, you’ll want to make a reasonable counteroffer.
Once you reach an agreement with your buyer, you’ll enter into what’s known as “escrow.” During escrow, both the buyer and seller must wait for the closing and the move-out date. During this time, you’ll also have to order a title report and schedule your appraisal.
Meet With Your Appraiser
The buyer’s lender will require a property appraisal to make sure that their loan value matches the property value. While you won’t be required to pay for this appraisal, you should still be present when it happens, especially because the buyer may be able to back out of the deal based on the results. Clean and organize your property in advance, if needed, and be prepared to answer any questions the appraiser and buyer have.
Attend the Home Inspection
After the appraisal, you’ll need a home inspection. Grab a basic home inspection checklist to know what to expect.
To prepare, move things away from your walls, make sure the inspector can access any appliances, and create a clear path in any storage areas for the inspector to get through.
Deal With Repair Requests
If anything comes up during the appraisal or inspection, the buyer might ask you to make a repair prior to their move-in date. You don’t have to accept these requests, but you may want to be flexible where you can: buyers may be able to back out of the deal if you don’t follow through.
If you prefer not to tackle the repair yourself, you can offer a closing cost credit instead. This effectively lowers the total sale price of the home, allowing them to take care of the repair themselves when they move in.
Prepare for Closing
As the closing date approaches, you should take time to look through the fine print of the paperwork you’ll need to sign during the official closing meeting.
At closing, you’ll sit around a table and sign the documents, along with the buyer. Once everything is verified, your home is officially considered sold!
Reconsider Your Needs
If you’re in need of a faster transaction, it’s worth noting that the steps above aren’t always the quickest house selling method on the table.
Though the traditional home selling process entails working with a listing agent, certain situations may make selling a house for cash your best bet instead. This can be an ideal solution to deal with a divorce, bankruptcy, or relocation, as it offers a quick liquidation. There are plenty of businesses providing cash offers for anyone wondering, “How can I get someone to buy my house fast?”
Even better, this option can negate the need to carry out some or all of the steps above, so consider your method with care!
Get Started on Your Home Selling Process
Depending on the route you take, the home selling process can feel long and convoluted—but reaching the end means breathing a sigh of relief. Don’t be afraid to reach out for expert help as needed, whether that means talking to a lender or a listing agent. Use this list to take care of the moving pieces and get your property off your hands!
For more of the tips you need in real estate and beyond, check out our other helpful guides.