For some this decision will be difficult and emotional. For others the decision will come quite readily. There are a plethora of reasons that spark the idea of selling in a homeowner’s mind. What I’ve found in my practice, however, is that by the time a homeowner contacts me to sell their home, they have already made the decision to sell; provided they can achieve their goals through the selling process.
I firmly believe that in order for you to avoid disappointment during the selling process we must set the right expectations. Just like an athlete preparing for a marathon, you must be mentally prepared for the challenges that lie ahead. Selling your home is a life event. Trust me; by preparing yourself mentally, you will arrive on the other side a much better person.
In my real estate practice my number one job is to educate my clients. Over the years I have come to realize that most people are sane and rational. Thus, if I can provide them with the right information, they can make the right decisions for themselves and their family. Therefore I don’t spend time trying to convince my clients to sell. Armed with the right information my clients know whether it is in their best interest to sell now, wait, or in some cases, to abandon the idea of selling completely.
My real estate practice is big on using the right systems and partnering with the right people. Therefore my job is to make my client’s journey through the selling process as painless and stress-free as possible.
After selling numerous homes, I have observed that the three most important steps to selling your home are:
Setting the right sale price is the most important step of listing your home. After spending many hours studying the local area market, comparing it with the national market and reviewing recent sales data, I have come to understand that pricing a home is more of an art form than a science.
When it comes to pricing your home, there are lots of opinions but only one set of facts. Together, we will examine the facts of record to determine the most effective pricing strategy to obtain the maximum price possible for you. Price can sometimes be a moving target. That’s why it is so important for me to understand what the market is doing and how the market is currently trending (shifting up, down, or staying flat).
How Price is Determined
Price is determined by what a buyer is willing to pay for a home. Ultimately, at the end of the day, market price is set by the buyer. Therefore it is imperative for me to dig and discover exactly what buyers are currently paying for a home as similar to yours as possible.
Pricing your property at the market value right from the start will net you the most amount of money in the shortest amount of time.
KEY POINT: Don’t be tempted to move forward with an agent that gives you the price you “think” your home is worth. Again, price is dictated by buyers and the market.
It’s 2021 and the days of sticking a “For Sale” in your yard are long gone. Digital technology has dominated every single industry including Real Estate. Today, you must market to the way buyers buy. If 81% of buyers find their homes through a real estate agent or the internet/MLS, then guess where I double down on my marketing activities. You guessed it:
I call this approach 21st Century marketing, where your home becomes the center of a connected digital marketing system.
What makes my 21st Century Marketing plan unique and effective is the technology behind it. All of your marketing is connected and orchestrated to target the right potential agents and buyers, generate qualified leads and pull them through the process to deliver showings and offers.
BONUS: I’m also one of a select few agents featured on The American Dream TV as a Power Player. When you work with me, your property can be featured on this powerful platform which is broadcast locally, nationally, and on streaming channels. Greater exposure for me means greater exposure for your property.
KEY POINT: In 2021 you need a 21st Century Marketing plan that dominates digital marketing and connects with the way buyers buy.
Now we come to the third step in selling your home; getting it in “show condition”. Getting your property ready for the market begins with a truthful and honest assessment of your property’s current condition.
The way your home looked while you lived in and enjoyed it may be very different from how your home will look during the selling process. If my clients will be occupying the home during the selling process, I endeavor to strike that delicate balance between homeowner comfort and stellar showcasing.
Proper preparation allows us to sell your home in the least amount of time and for the most money. Don’t worry! I never advocate spending a lot of money during this process. Unless your home is in grave disrepair, the time and money spent to get your home ready for market will be nominal. In my opinion the single most important thing you can do in the preparation process is to de-clutter your home. Once your home is de-cluttered, the next items are cleaning and painting. These three items will not cost very much or take much time, but you will be surprised by the difference doing them will make.
De-clutter. When you think about the idea of de-cluttering, think of floor space and counter space. Generally, you will want to display the maximum amount of floor space and the maximum amount of countertop space. As you look around at the floors and counter spaces (including tabletops, desks, etc) of your home, identify things that don’t belong and make these areas as clear as possible. If you have large pieces of furniture that are taking up a big chunk of floor space and can be eliminated, consider putting those items in storage or storing them in your garage. The more uncluttered and unencumbered floor space the buyer can see, the larger and more inviting your home will feel.
Clean. A good deep clean is an absolute necessity after you have removed the clutter. This involves cleaning your home both inside and out. The floors, walls, baseboards, doors and all surfaces in your home should be thoroughly cleaned. If possible, the outside of your home and the driveways and walkways should be power washed. When it comes to cleaning, I recommend that you either form a cleaning crew (you and 3 or more friends) or better yet, simply hire a cleaning service. A good deep clean should cost around $150-$200 or so, depending on the size and condition of your home. For the power washing, I recommend you hire a reputable contractor.
Paint. Once your home is de-cluttered and clean, it’s time to slap on some paint! Take a good look at all of the walls, baseboards, doors, window sills and ceilings around your home. In some cases they will just need to be touched up here and there; other areas will need to be entirely repainted. Be objective and make a list. Then decide whether or not you will do the work yourself or hire someone. At $20 or less per gallon, paint is probably the least expensive way to make a dramatic improvement to your home.
In some situations, I may recommend some minor repairs, a pre-inspection or even staging. All of these happen after the first big three items and are discussed during our first meeting.
KEY POINT: Don’t over improve. Preparing your home for sale doesn’t need to be expensive or time-consuming as long as you keep up with normal maintenance. In the event you do not have the time to do the cleaning or repair work, consider hiring a professional: it could save you time and money later. Remember, you need to think like a buyer now and have a critical eye.
In the real estate game, the overwhelming majority of agents specialize in working with buyers. I am a Listing Specialist, and I specialize in working with Sellers. This unique specialization has enabled me to focus on and employ the best techniques for getting your home SOLD.
In 2021, you have more choices than ever in deciding to sell your home including discount brokerages and FSBO (For Sale by Owner). And for anyone who is tempted to FSBO, I wrote a blog about that here.
Don’t underestimate the emotional challenges that can result from the selling and moving process. It’s a BIG change in your life. Properly preparing for this will really help you come out whole. I will work with you to ensure that we have all of these key elements going for us in order to get your home SOLD in the least amount of time for the highest price.
Let us provide you with an objective set of facts so you can determine whether you are ready to sell.