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Working with a real estate agent or broker can help ease the pain points of selling your home. A great broker can make the entire selling process quicker and smoother than if you tried to sell your home independently.
While you may be thankful to have your broker, there are a few things they wish you knew and did while selling your home. This season, follow these ten steps to be your broker’s number one customer.
Declutter It Declutter It
You may not even realize it, but your apartment is cluttered. Little trinkets on your bookshelf, clothes spilling out of your closet, or gym weights on the ground in the corner are all clutter.
Potential buyers should see clean, bare surfaces when they walk into your home. This will help create the illusion that your place is larger and improve the buyer’s envision of themselves in the space. You can ask your real estate broker what they’d suggest tossing so you have a starting point.
If you’re selling during the Spring and summer, consider storing your winter clothes outside your home to free up closet space. Another good rule of thumb is to throw it out if you haven’t worn an item in two seasons.
It is also time to throw out the wedding favors you collected at all eight of your college roommates’ weddings last summer.
If you’re still unsure where to start when decluttering, turn on Netflix and binge-watch “Tidying Up With Marie Kondo.”
Clean ItClean It
While decluttering is necessary, that doesn’t mean your apartment is clean. Is your apartment dusty? Is your apartment dusty? Are there any smells?
A dirty home will make it hard for potential buyers to focus on how great your space is.
Hire a cleaning service to deep clean your apartment before any professional listing photos are taken. Then, either have the cleaning service come back before open houses or schedule time for yourself to tidy up and dust before any showings.
It’s also essential to keep your home clean all week if someone wants to have a showing mid-week. When you’re selling your home, it always needs to be cleaned.
Stage itStage it
Many buyers struggle to grasp that their taste in decorating is not the ideal look to sell an apartment.
People are highly visual. Buyers often cannot see past the chipped furniture or even the Persian rug; that is not their style.
Ask your broker for help finding a home stager — and do not be offended by their suggestions. No one is saying your style is ugly, but it might not be the style for the masses.
Takedown your picture framesTakedown your picture frames
When buyers walk through your front door, they want to imagine their life and family there. They don’t want to see all of your memories plastered across the walls. This makes the house feel like yours, not theirs.
If your agent suggests depersonalization of your home, it’s nothing personal again. Your children are adorable, but this will help buyers visualize themselves living in your space.
So, get a box and take down those picture frames until your home sells. Then, be sure to put a fresh coat of paint and spackle over any nail holes in the wall.
Price your home rightPrice your home right
If your home is priced similarly to other properties on the market, your apartment is more likely to sell faster and perhaps even for more money.
If you insist on overpricing your home, it could sit on the market longer and sell for less than if you priced it reasonably.
In the end, the fair price of your home will come out. If the asking price drastically differs from the appraisal, the deal can fall apart if the buyer or seller does not budge.
Realize this is Not HGTVRealize this is Not HGTV
While watching “Property Brothers” is fun, selling your own home will be nothing like that. Things will not sell as quickly, and your budget likely does not match the couples on HGTV to spruce up your home.
A lot goes into selling a home that can not be represented in 60 minutes of television.
It may take some time to sellIt may take some time to sell
Selling your home takes time.
First, you need to prep your apartment for showings. This can take about two weeks. Then, you’ll have weekly open houses. The average American home sits on the market for about 68 days. Accepting an offer can take around 24-72 hours.
After an offer has been accepted, the buyer typically has five to 10 days to complete a home inspection. Finally, closing takes about 30 days.
If you total up those estimates, that’s 125 days or about four months. It’s hard, but patience is critical throughout this process.
Don’t take low offers personally.Don’t take low offers personally.
Both buyers and sellers are trying to get a price for the home that works for them. If a buyer makes a low offer, you can’t take it as a personal snub against you or your home.
If someone makes a low offer, it’s your turn to make a counteroffer. You can turn them away if the buyer does not meet your price.
If you get mad at the buyer and turn them away prematurely, you can lose out on a serious buyer.
You can’t turn away showings and expect your place to sellYou can’t turn away showings and expect your place to sell
This is the frustrating part of selling your home, but you must be ready to show it, even at a moment’s notice. This means: always having your apartment clean and tidy.
If you turn away showings, you’re turning away a chance to sell your home.
Know that not every buyer can buyKnow that not every buyer can buy
It’s easy to get your hopes up when a buyer makes an attractive offer — but find out if they’re genuinely a serious buyer.
Serious buyers have a pre-approval letter from their mortgage company stating they will secure the home’s financing. If your buyer makes an offer and does not have this letter, there’s a chance they could be rejected for their mortgage, and the deal falls through.
Considering these tips when dealing with your real estate agent, you will have a more pleasant working relationship, and your home is more likely to sell faster.