If you’re selling your home, chances are you have a lot of questions. Selling a home can be one of the most significant financial transactions you make, which means you don’t want to hit any roadblocks if you can avoid them.
Here are some of the most common questions you can ask your agent to help you have a smooth selling process.
1- What’s the market like right now?
This is one of the most popular questions to ask your agent because most homeowners are always somewhat curious about the state of the market. An agent will be able to tell you about the trends of the local market and help you understand what that might mean for you and your sale.
This information may include the average number of days that homes spend on the market, market absorption rates, average sale price, and more.
2- When is the best time to sell?
If you know you want to move sometime in the near future, you may be wondering about the best time to put your home on the market. But, really, the question is: when am I likely to get the best possible results?
There are advantages to selling in every single season, but you may hear that spring is the most ideal time to sell (if you aren’t on a set timeline).
3- How do I get my home ready to sell?
There can be a lot of behind-the-scenes things to do before you list your home. That way, when you open your doors to potential buyers, you’re prepared to make a sale. Some of these things include:
- Declutter. Messy homes can be far from ideal to potential buyers. First impressions can make or break a sale, so it’s wise to declutter your home as much as possible. You may need to rent a temporary storage unit to store some stuff until you find a new home.
- Make needed repairs. Broken door handles, leaky faucets, missing tiles, and stained carpets are easy fixes that can be unpleasant sights to buyers. The more of these small fixes you make, the more desirable your home will be. But, there may also be big repairs to be completed. Before you take on big repairs, talk to your agent to make sure that doing so will benefit your sale (and inspection) as you expect.
- Stage for great listing photos. Listing photos are likely the first thing that buyers will see. Buyers want to be able to see themselves living in the home. This means you may want to take down any personal items like pictures, name signs, and anything else that makes the home personal to you. This also helps with decluttering and prepping your home for showing.
4- How do you figure out the value of my home?
If you have never sold a home before, this may be one of your first questions. Real estate agents do a much different analysis than home appraisers do to find out the value of your property.
Both agents and appraisers will use comparable sales (also known as “comps”) to determine the fair market value. Agents will also perform what’s called a comparative market analysis. This is a report that will include:
- The size of the home (known as the square footage)
- The style of the home
- The number of bedrooms & bathrooms
- The condition of the property
- Amenities such as central air, central vac, alarm systems, etc.
- The age of the home
- The age of the home’s critical components (like the roof, heating & air systems, plumbing, etc.)
- The appeal of the neighborhood or the school district
5- What’s the difference between list price and sale price?
The list price is the price you list the home for sale. It’s the goal you set for your sale and the number you hope to get close to when you make the transaction. The sale price is the price that your home actually sells for after negotiations with buyers.
6- What does the assessed value have to do with the market value?
The assessed value and market value have nothing to do with each other. The assessed value is just the figure the local municipality uses to collect the appropriate amount of taxes. The market value is how much your home is worth when compared to similar, recent sales.
7- How long is your contract?
Real estate contracts can vary from agent-to-agent and company-to-company. Most contracts fall somewhere between three to six months.
8- Do you have contractors you recommend for any work needed on the house?
An experienced agent may have a list of contractors that they recommend to help prepare your home to be sold. Your agent may be able to recommend painters, general carpenters, electricians or plumbers, roofing companies, and even home stagers.
9- How should I prepare for showings?
Preparing for listing photos and preparing for showings are two different processes, especially if you are still living in the home while it is being shown. Before showings, there are some things you can do to ensure the buyer has a good first impression of your home.
- Make sure your home is clean and tidy. You want it to feel as spacious as possible.
- Make sure all of the curtains are drawn and the blinds are open to let in as much natural light as possible.
- Turn on lights in any areas of the home that don’t get a lot of natural sunlight.
10- How much do I have to disclose to buyers?
Honesty is the best policy when it comes to selling your home. Your state likely has real estate disclosure laws that require you to report any significant issues that you know of with your home.
In states where disclosure is mandatory, you avoid the risk of a potential lawsuit by disclosing issues. But, keep in mind that you’ll have to ask questions about significant issues – not to give a laundry list of minor problems.
11- How do I get started?
Homeowners who are educated about the selling process usually have a smooth transaction. By having an experienced agent and asking the right questions, you’ll improve your odds at this.
Team Melton has over 50 combined years of real estate experience to assist you through every step of the process. Contact us today to get started on selling your home!