Seller's Checklist | CENTURY 21

Seller's Checklist < >

                                                                      Local Selling Tips  

Price your house properly.  Your home is only worth what someone else is willing to pay for it.  Overpricing can cause your home to languish on the market, causing buyers to wonder what is wrong with your property.

Selling your home is a partnership between you and your listing agent.   Your agent needs to give you guidance on what the market is paying for similar homes in your area, staging, needed improvements to pass inspections, paperwork, advertising, communicate with all of the involved parties and guide you through settlement. Your job is to cooperate with your listing agent to meet all deadlines, keep the lines of communication open and maintain your property in tip-top shape.

 Going On The Market

  • Our first meeting / interview is key. Be sure to set aside uninterrupted time to sit down and discuss the possibility of selling your home. We will discuss how your home compares to the current market, what price it will take to actually get it sold and provide you with what it with an idea of what expenses you can expect. You may wish to take notes. This is your largest investment!!
  • Be forthcoming with what is owed on the home including any 2nd mortgages and/or equity lines.  This information is important so I can crunch numbers to let you know exactly what you can expect to realize from the sale of your home. If you are behind on your payments while it may not be an easy topic, this information may help me to keep your home from going into foreclosure.
  • Let me know your motivation and reasons for selling. Realizing this feels like private but information if I know your motivations and goals, I will be better able to help you achieve them. If you are looking to buy I can ensure you have access to all homes that are for sale based on your criteria. If you are relocating, I can put you in touch with the right agent in your area to ensure you get excellent care there. If you are divorcing, I will be intune to dealing with this already challenging time and I can help to make it easy for both of you as possible. My goal is to to help make this process as stress free as possible.
  • Before your home goes on the market make sure it's in the very best possible condition it can be, especially on the outside. More now than ever before buyers drive by to see the outside prior to scheduling a showing. make sure yours shines above the competition so that they will choose yours to see. We will give you tips and ideas of things we think will help it show the best. As your home is on the market, as hard as it can be, you will want to maintain it in this condition all the way to closing.
  • Let me know up front how you prefer to communicate. There are so many ways to communicate today and I want to use the method that you prefer. Telephone, email, text or mail? If you have any questions or concerns please let me know so that I can ease your mind and take excellent care of you.
  • Understand that in today's market there are so many fewer actual showings than there were in the past. Because buyers are able to shop online and see everything including interior photos, address, directions and details, it's almost a two step elimination process before they have ever entered through your front door. First, they see your home online, then in most cases they drive by to see the outside and location before scheduling a showing. Be patient, while it seems that you are not having any activity, you actually are. This also means that when you have a showing you have a more interested buyer.
  • Be patient with the time it will take to sell your home. We are in one of the most challenging housing markets many of us have ever experienced. It's taking much longer to sell a home than ever before and it does take a lot of patience as a seller.
  • When you do get feedback from the showings of your home, be open to hearing it. The agents are only trying to help and give honest opinions and information that will help get the home sold.
  • Understand that I as your agent may never show your home. Obviously my goal is to sell your home as quickly as possible and I want to ensure maximum exposure to buyers in the marketplace not the buyer's that I am working with. Now if I have a buyer that is pre-approved and looking for a home like yours, I will certainly show your home.

Getting An Offer

  • Be prepared for the possibility of a low ball offer. Being a buyers market, buyers are looking for where they can get the best deal. You are in competition with thousands of homes many distressed sales, all of which impact what a buyer is willing to offer. This doesn't mean you have accept it. Try not to be offended. Try putting yourself in the buyer's shoes. Try to appreciate the fact that you got an offer and allow us to help you determine what would be an ideal figure to counter back to  them with. Whenever possible we suggest making a counter offer because most buyers are just feeling out the situation. Now if they're initial offer is just way out of the ballpark we suggest that you counter with a more reasonable number. This will help weed out the more serious buyers and those just looking for a steal.
  • Be prepared for the back and forth negotiation game and try to be patient, it's just part of selling a house right now. Be prepared for many buyers to ask for "Seller's Assist" which is assistance with closing costs. Understand that whether you pay sellers assist or accept a lower price the end result is almost the same.
  • Decide ahead of time on your absolute bottom line. This way when you get an offer you are prepared for where you can, and are willing to go.
  • Understand that the first offer is generally the best offer. I recommend that you do whatever possible to get the first offer worked out. I have seen it happen time and again where a seller turns down the first offer for many reasons and the months down the road are kicking themselves wishing they had taken that first offer. The longer a home sits on the market the hard it is to sell.

Once The Offer Is Accepted

  • The first step after the contract has been signed by all parties if applicable is the home and all other inspections. The buyer generally pays for this and the inspector will come through and inspect everything including plumbing, heating, cooling, electrical, the roof, the structure, etc. This is not to make the home a brand new home for the buyer but to ensure everything is in safe, operating, structurally sound condition. Once the inspection is performed the inspector will write up a formal report, get it to the buyer's agent. Then the buyer and the agent will determine what if any repairs they will ask you to make. This is another negotiating process between you and the buyer. Once the repairs are agreed upon they must be done by a licensed contractor prior to closing with receipts provided prior to the final wlak through. As small as the repair may seem unless the buyer agrees in writing they must be done by a licensed contrctor. The inspection and repair process can be very frustrating as a seller as you feel you've already given in many cases, you live in the home and feel you know what shape it's in and then here comes the laundry list of things you have to fix at your expense. try to be with this process because it's just how it is no matter who the buyer is. Keep in mind if it falls through as a result of the home or radon inspection you are legally obligated to either fix or disclose any issues to any future prospective buyers. Whenever possible. it's best to work this situation out.
  • Next will the buyer's loan process. I can tell you from experience; it's not approved until it's formally reviewed by the underwriter. Even though buyers come with a pre-approval letter, this does not guarantee their loan has been formally approved that's why it is called  Pre approval letter. The lender has to gather the entire buyer's financials and have a formal appraisal of your home before the loan can be submitted for approval. The home in most cases will have to appraise for the sales price. If it doesn't there are three options, the contract is declared null and void, you come down to the appraised value, or the buyer pays the difference. This will be another negotiating process if this occurs. The appraiser may also require repairs to be made that even the inspector didn't recommend. If the appraiser requires repairs they must be done or the loan will not close. They will actually have to personally come back to the property to reinspect and make sure it was done to their satisfaction. Appraisers and lenders are stricter now days than they've ever been before and it's a much more complicated process. Be prepared for these possibilities.
  • Once all the inspections and appraisal is done it's still your property until the final closing. This means you have to continue to maintain it in its present condition. Although the buyer has already done inspectionsthey will do a final walk through prior to closing. This is to ensure that any repairs were done and that the home is still in the same condition as when they bought it. If anything is different it will be your responsibility as the seller to repair it prior to closing. The home must be delivered to the buyer in good, safe, operating, structurally sound condition. It also must be in broom clean condition. I always say to leave the home in the condition in which you would want to find it in yourself it you were the buyer.
  • You must maintain all utilities and insurance on and in your name until the final closing.

This obviously doen't cover every scenario that could arise but it gives you a good idea of what to expect in today's market.

crackerjack agent


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CENTURY 21 Park Road

Wyomissing, PA   -  610.378.0471