10 Steps to selling your home
“For Sale by Owner”
So, you think you can sell your home, For Sale by Owner. May I remind you that according to the National Association of Realtors® (NAR), sellers who use a real estate professional make 16% more on the sale of their home than do sellers who go it alone. FSBO sellers often do not understand the complexity, range and timing of tasks they will have to perform if they don’t use a professional. No matter if you live in a Bayshore Boulevard home in South Tampa, a Waterfront home on Lake Carroll or a condo in Channelside, the process is the same. Now what?
Where to begin when selling your home, For Sale by Owner.
Here are the 10 Steps in selling your home, For Sale by Owner.
#1 Find the value of your home
This is the first of many important parts in the process. Do your due diligence. You’ll need to know what homes like yours are listed for (this is your competition) and what others like it have sold for (real money). Drive your area and look for “For Sale” signs. It doesn’t matter if they are For Sale by Owner or being sold by a Realtor®. Compare the homes, for sale to yours. Compare the location, number of bedrooms and baths, garage, pool, condition, etc. The best determination of price is to find out what other homes like yours have sold for. These are real homes that have changed hands with real money, because they were priced to sell.
To find out what others around your home have sold for, go here Sold homesEnter the address of the home you are considering listing and drill down to the area of like homes. Try to use only homes that have sold in the last 90 days. Do not use any homes sold over a year ago. The market has increased exponentially over the last 12 month’s! I also do not recommend using Zillow’s® Zestimate®. This tool is easy to use, but is too broad. In Florida, you can have a mansion next to a cracker box and their tools blend all the information. If you use it, you will lose a lot of money or time or both.
This information can also be found in the courthouse records. The value of homes fluctuate with the economy, the seasons and the sellers level of motivation, etc. The most recent, will be the most accurate. Use this information to determine your price. Note: If you have to sell, like a job loss or transfer, you’ll need to price below your current competition and what others like it have sold for. Valuing your home right is the #1 priority to begin the sale of your home process. Do your homework, otherwise you are just giving away your money! (Sell it in 4 weeks for $10k less, or sell it in 4 weeks for $10k more) The difference comes from your pocket and this very costly mistake can be minimized by your homework.
#2 Know what you’ll need to legally sell your home
A title company or real estate attorney can help you determine what items and contracts are needed. Such as any disclosures, satisfaction of mortgages, any liens, name on the deed, name on the title, any encroachments, any encumbrances, HOA documents, surveys, inspections, etc?
#3 First impressions are first impressions
All home buyers look at the outside of your home first. It will determine whether they will stop or keep driving. Take time to polish your homes appearance before you show it, inside and out and at every showing. Outside your home: Groom your vegetation, mow, hedges, discard debris, paint, mail box, gutters, roof, driveway, colors, pool clean, etc. Inside: Clean everything or hire someone to do it. $100 or $200 for a complete top to bottom detailing of your home will return you at least $1000. Open curtains, turn on lights, make the beds, wash the dishes, put away your clothes, throw out the trash. This will create a positive environment. Home smells are powerful to our mood senses too. Make your home smell clean and fresh. A contemporary urban home is best to smell like a spa. A country style home should smell like fresh baked bread or cookies. The cleaner, the brighter, the fresher your home, the senses will be moved to positive feelings.
#4 Photograph your home
To best market and sell your home, you’ll need lots of pictures to attract buyers. Use tact. A picture of a room is best displayed at certain angles and lighting and times of day. Use the pictures to make flyers to hand to the neighbors, your friends, relatives, office associates, etc.
#5 Upload your home to the internet
Use your photo’s to make on line brochures of your home on Craigslist®, Zillow®, Trulia®, Realtor.com®, etc.
#6 Put up a sign
A low budget sign out front may attract home buyers, but are they the best buyers? Does you sign express your home is open to show anytime someone knocks on your door? Are you really ready for that? Go to a sign maker and have a For Sale by Owner sign made specific to your home. Be sure it tells potential buyers what you want. A personalized sign is well worth the expense. We recommend you clearly put on the sign, by appointment only so you’ll always be ready to make the best first impression.
#7 Hold an open house
Second to the internet in finding the buyer of a For Sale by Owner is a friend of a friend. Host an open house and invite your friends, family, neighbors and office associates. Statistically, they are not the buyer, but there is a 1/3 chance they will know someone who is. Remember, home for sale open house has a point and it’s not just a party. Give each of your guests several brochures and give each a tour to point out your homes features and beauty. Pointing out a room where you mother once lived is neither a feature or beauty. But, showing how a room could be used as a guest room, is. Be human, but tactful.
#8 Pre-negotiate a price and know when to say yes and when to say no
Think of a yard sale. Random people walking around your stuff. You’ve already priced things at 5 cents on the dollar and they still want it for less! We recommend you have a script ready and pre-negotiate with a neutral friend to work the kinks out. Please note: Though selling your home may be an emotional thing for you, it usually isn’t for the buyer. Take note of their words and offerings, but don’t let them emotionally bring you down.
#9 Schedule and coordinate all the home inspections
So you’ve found a potential buyer for your home. Awesome! Most buyers and lenders will write into the offering contingencies based on various inspections, like a termite or home or roof or electric or A/C or? See #10 for help and guidance of these home inspections to reduce duplication and unnecessary inspections. All home inspections have a cost and time limits to get done. An untimely home inspection is a waste of time and money. We recommend you try to schedule all of the home inspections on the same day and same time. But, be aware that this can rarely be done and don’t let the home buyer walk, because you couldn’t get enough time off work to get them done.
#10 Time to close
Your 90% done! If you haven’t done it already, select a title company to coordinate and handle the closing and the filing of all the home sale documents. A title company will help provide you with all the last minute details that will be needed to close on your home.
Congratulations! You did it!!!!
Need a Realtor® to help you find your next home?
Nearly everything you just read and more is handled by a Realtor® like me or real estate professional. Not only will you get your home sold, it will be virtually hassle free for you.
Reconsidering FSBO and want to know what it will cost to hire a professional?
Our professional service fees are only 6%. 3% goes to the listing agent, me and 3% goes to the agent that represents the buyer.
There are other expenses associated with the sale of real estate, but they are the same whether you are FSBO or if you use a Realtor® or real estate professional or Lawyer.
Hiring a Realtor®, like me or real estate professional will usually improve the selling price, because a Realtor® knows the areas, knows the prices, knows the seasons for buyers and sellers, we know the finances, we have the marketing skills and resources, we are experienced negotiators and we are accessible nearly 24 hours a day because when it comes to selling your home, it’s all a matter of timing.
So, if hiring me will improve the selling price of your home, maybe enough to cover the 6% professional services fee and if it will reduce the hassle for you in selling your home, isn’t it worth it?
Call 813.240.6054 today for a no obligation evaluation and leave the selling to us!
Still have a question or you are unsure what to do? Fill out your concern on the Contact Us form and I or one my staff will get back with you ASAP.