There are a few items that we would like you to address in order to get your home ready to place on the market. First, we would like you to clear the home of clutter. When you are living in your home, it may be ok to have stacks of paper laying around and family pictures all over the home. But when you are selling, you want potential buyers to picture themselves living in the home and their pictures on the wall. Remove personal pictures and remove clutter from countertops to clear them off. You want the buyer to have it appear there is more counter space and room for furniture. If you reduce all of the extra clutter throughout the house to make it feel bigger, it make the home more spacious and buyer friendly.
We also recommend that you fix big problems that may drive buyers away. Is there a big hole in the wall that you have been covering up? Are your carpets in serious need of replacement? We would recommend you fixing these items. Large items like this can drive a buyer right out the door. Buyers have a hard time picturing “what it could be like”.
You have painted, updated, de-cluttered and are ready to put your home on the market. Now you have the age old question – How long will it take to sell my house? Our marketing strategy, if you follow our suggestion, is to price the home at the value where it will generate buzz quickly and get buyers in the door. The more desirable your home seems, the more buyers you will come through your door and want to make an offer. We try and get you an offer within 14-21 days, but this all depends on what the market is doing at the time. The winter months tend to be a little slower with buyers and spring time homes are flying off the market.
Once you get an offer on your house, it typically takes 30-45 days to get the home from contract to closing. We have the most effective marketing and spend over $40,000 a month on radio ads, TV ads and print media to get your home seen and heard!
The house I am selling just went under contract! The buyer did their home inspection and now they have sent me a long list of repairs! What do I do now? This is a common scenario that we find ourselves in with our sellers. Once a contract has been accepted, if a home inspection was requested, it must be done within a certain amount of time. If repairs were requested, this list must be given to the seller within the time frame as well. Once the seller receives the request from the buyer, they have 5 days to review the request and respond back.
We suggest to our sellers that they get quotes on the repairs that were requested and decide which ones they would like to entertain. If they decide they do not want to complete all of the requested repairs, they counter back with what they are willing to do within the 5 day negotiation period. The buyer then has 24 hours to accept or counter back. Once the 24 hour period has expired, either party can release from the contract without being in default and no damages can be awarded.
Once repairs have been agreed upon, they have to be completed, prior to closing in a workman like manner. Our sellers select the contractors that complete the repairs and once repairs have been completed, receipts are sent to the buyer’s agent if requested. Prior to closing, the buyer and buyer’s agent will inspect the repairs to make sure they were done in a workman like manner. If all parties are in agreement with the repairs, the contract will move to closing.
The most dreaded words a seller can hear: “The buyers want to walk away from the contract.” What now? Can they do that? What will they lose? Sometimes buyers get cold feet. They begin to get nervous about how much their mortgage payment is going to be and should they be buying right now? What if the market starts to decline – will they lose their money? Sometimes they were rejected in their financing or they found another home they liked better.
There are contingencies that are built in the contract that buyers can get out of the contract with. These can include home inspections, financing and HOA documents. These contingencies usually expire pretty soon in the process, so buyers have to decide quickly if they are going to move forward or not. Once the contingencies have expired, the buyer’s earnest money is at risk and will most likely be awarded to the seller if the buyer decides to walk. Depending on the contract, sometimes they can also go after liquidated damages – given certain circumstances. A buyer must not enter in a contract with uncertainty. Once the contingencies expire – their earnest money deposit is at risk.
You’ve found the house of your dreams and your contract has been accepted! Once the excitement starts to wear off, questions start running through your mind. What happens next? Are we missing anything? Chantel Ray Real Estate will help walk you through the steps from contract to closing!
Once you have a ratified contract, your agent will sit down with you and go over all of the deadlines that will be coming up. If you elected to have inspections done on the house, these will need to be done in accordance to the timelines on the contract. Make sure all of your inspections are schedule early enough so you will have time to review them and request any repairs you may need.
After your inspections have been completed, the appraisal will be order by the lender. This will insure that the home is worth what you are agreeing to pay for it and that is also conforms to that loans guidelines. Sometimes, depending on the type of loan, there will be lender required repairs. These will need to be scheduled to be completed and re-inspected before the property is cleared to close.
Throughout the closing process, your lender will ask you for documents needed to satisfy loan requirements. Make sure that you get them to them as soon as possible so you don’t hold up the closing process. Once you get close to the closing date, you will set your appointment with your settlement agent and get ready for closing. Right before the closing, you will do a Final Walk Thru with your agent to ensure the property is in the same condition as when you wrote the contract, any requested repairs were completed and all systems are working properly. Then the day has come…Closing Day!!! Make sure you take your certified funds and driver’s license to the closing. Get the movers ready – you now own a house!