You’ve heard the phrase “If these walls could talk.” After you’ve worked with Houzz Pro long enough, you’ve seen a lot of walls. You also hear a lot of talking, not from the walls but from the homeowners in the middle of a remodeling project.
Even though I know useless details about the best applications for eggshell or satin white, it is honest to say I’m still learning a lot about real estate. And while I interact with my fair share of homeowners, I’m still a greenhorn at selling a house.
Now that I’ve wrapped up most of my remodeling projects, I’m getting ready to sell my home. Even though I’m well versed in home improvements, I’ve learned there are a few parts of the selling process that rely heavily on the experience of a real estate agent.
Knowing I’d have to work with an agent to get the highest selling price meant it was time to do some research on how they could help me the most.
When I compared the way things are being done at The Madrona Group to the competition, a few things stood out about their approach. This is a primer for sellers learning about how an agent can maximize your home’s sale price from a third-party perspective.
4 Ways Your Agent Can Increase Your Home’s Sale Price Infograph
Market Trend Analysis
Knowing market conditions is crucial to getting the right price when you’re selling your home. Market conditions can fluctuate month after month, so having the most recent data available can give you the best picture of the market.
If you can find an agent that frequently provides a market analysis for the area, you’ll know you’re headed in the right direction. One of the easiest ways to know is to look at the agent’s YouTube page and see if they publish monthly market reports.
We’ve all heard the phrase seller’s market. But do you really know what it means?
The definition of a seller’s market is based on the law of supply and demand, and simply means there are more buyers than current supply.
In real estate, a “Seller’s Market” is when there is less than 3 months of housing inventory. A neutral market is 3-4 months of inventory.
Your agent’s market analysis should include a breakdown of the monthly housing inventory changes. Knowing the most recent details on market conditions and trends can help you be strategic with picking the best price and time to sell.
Even though buyers are typically responsible for covering the appraisal, it is important to understand your home’s value before you actually list. An obvious but important step in the process is to complete a home valuation.
A home valuation doesn’t just identify the value of the home when it sells, it also includes finding the home equity. Home equity is the market value of the home minus what you still owe.
Home valuations give you answers to questions like:
- How much can you afford if you bought another home?
- When can you cancel mortgage insurance?
- How much have you paid so far?
- How much cash can you take out?
- What could you earn by doing a nightly rental?
- How much interest can you save over the life of the loan with an extra payment each month?
Home valuations are also important for refinancing and mortgage reduction. Depending on market conditions and improvement plans for the property, mortgage reduction and refinancing may be worthwhile considerations.
Negotiating the Home Inspection
Even though the buyers cover the home inspection, it is always the best idea to have someone present during the inspection. If you’re the seller and can’t meet with the inspector to answer questions and provide additional information, you’ll want to have your agent there in your place.
There are usually 3 main reasons for a home inspection.
- Buyers are buying the home as-is and just want a complete list of repairs. Even though there won’t be a contingency contract associated with the inspection with an as-is sale, it is still normal for these types of buyers to complete a home inspection in advance.
- Buyers will buy a house that requires repairs and postpone some of the maintenance. These types of buyers will live in a house that needs some repairs and fix things over a longer period. These buyers may be sensitive to repair lists with big-ticket items.
- Buyers that want very little or no work to do on their part. These buyers will want to turn the key and move right in without having to worry about any issues or repairs.
Whatever the reason for inspection may be, the inspection is likely to require some negotiation. If the inspection goes worse than you could have imagined, your agent will help you process all of your options.
The agents for the buyer and seller will have to work together to negotiate a deal.
Buyers can ask for inspection items to be repaired, or a sum of money in their response
This is the part of the deal where things could become serious, be on the lookout for deal killers. Deal killers are big-ticket items that need to be fixed in order to make the sale.
Examples of Deal Killers:
Be prepared for the buyer to focus on things that logically need to be corrected before the sale. Sellers usually have a couple of weeks to complete the repairs. If you don’t have the budget to complete the repairs in time, it could literally kill the deal.
You’ve worked hard to get to this point, so it is important to remember not to get too emotional over the response.
The inspection is a pivotal stage in the selling process. Once buyers are past this step, it is hard for them to back out of the contract. Luckily, agents are well connected and can help you find the Washington contractors you’ll need to complete any repairs and seal the deal.
Assemble Your Home Selling Dream Team
Speaking of connections, your agent is a great resource for assembling a home selling dream team. Real estate agents have an extensive network of important players in the home selling process.
Ask your agent for the following recommendations:
- Home Inspector
- Home Insurance
- Escrow Closer
Local real estate agents know the best (and worst) professionals to deal with because they’re immersed in the industry. Before you sell your home, make sure you’ve found this list of people you can trust. Dream team, assemble!
Increase Your Home’s Sale Price Summary
I hope these suggestions help you get the most out of your home selling experience.
Remember to keep an eye out for agents that provide regular market trend analysis reports, understand home valuations, negotiate with home inspectors, and can recommend a team of all-stars to make your selling process smooth and successful and can show you how to increase home value.
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