In the same way that I learned a number of things when I was buying my own properties over the years - I've learned just as much by being a seller. Here are just a few of those things.
5) Little things matter. Think that one burnt out light bulb in a light fixture with five isn't a big deal? Well, to you it probably isn't - but when you're trying to show your home in its best possible light (no pun intended!), the little things matter. Before listing your home, and during the listing itself, stay on top of things like that. Keep the front steps clear of snow and leaves, make sure light bulbs get replaced, touch up those paint spots. Little things matter.
4) Don't be offended. Your listing agent is probably going to have some suggestions to make sure your home looks great. That's likely going to include decluttering and maybe moving some furniture around, or changing out the wall hangings. Don't be offended. I'm sure there is absolutely nothing wrong with how you've been living in and enjoying your home. But what worked for you and your family isn't necessarily what will work for a buyer. We need to show off your property in a way that will work for others. It is no longer about what works for you in the home.
3) It only takes one buyer. There may come a time in your listing period where you're discouraged. Maybe there have been a lot of showings but no offers. Maybe the number of showings is lower than expected. Remember, though, ultimately, you only need one buyer who loves your home. A house down the street might have dozens of showings and/or low-ball offers and it doesn't sell. Try not to be discouraged. That one buyer can come at anytime and can decide that your house is perfect for them.
2) Market dictates value, you dictate price. Your agent is going to use a number of tools, (stats, trends, comparable property data) and their experience as a real estate professional, to give you an estimate of the market value of your home. The market value is the expected amount a buyer would pay for your property in the open market. Again, don't be offended if your agent says the market value of your property is $400,000 but you think it's "worth more." The market decides the value of your home - but your role as the seller, in consultation with your agent, is to set the listing price. That's the price that you want to sell your property for. You're likely to have the most success when your listing price aligns with the market value. Ultimately, the price is your decision, but the market value is not.
1) It's not where you start, but where you end up. Okay, picture this - you've had showings, multiple showings with one buyer. Their agent calls your agent and says an offer is coming. You get the offer and, whoa, it's way under the listing price and way under what you plan to sell for. While your gut reaction may be to tear it up and walk away - don't! Don't be offended. That buyer wants to pay as little for your property as they can. Their agent is going to try and help them. Take a deep breath and talk to your agent. This is only round 1. If you simply ignore the offer and walk away, or reject without countering, there's a good chance you're done. In most cases, you should - and buyers do - expect a little negotiation. That first offer really doesn't matter as long as you and the buyer continue negotiating. It doesn't matter where you start, but where you end up.
If you think you're ready to sell - give me a call. I can guide you through the process from start to finish. I'll answer your questions, remind you not to get discouraged, to stay at that negotiating table, and I'll help you focus on the things that matter.