Tips to Help First-Time Sellers

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If this is your first time selling a home, the task may seem overwhelming. Not only do you have the pressure and stress of setting the best price and hoping it will sell promptly - potentially for more than list price - but you need to get it ready to show and sell. There's no getting around the fact that it is very hard work decluttering, cleaning, fixing any outstanding issues, and sometimes extensively cleaning and painting to help garner the highest price possible. Here are some tips for smoothing the transition and maximizing your profit when you sell. 

The first step is finding a realtor that you can feel comfortable working with. Hiring someone local who is familiar with, and established within, your community will give you a good head start toward selling for the highest-possible price. The realtor should be well versed in pricing homes, and also experienced in offering helpful advice on decorating and photography (ideally he or she will include a staging consultation, cleaning services and professional photography as part of their commission). The key thing when selling a home is to not distract any potential buyers who enter your home for a showing. 

Here are eight key ways to prepare your home to sell:

- Make as many minor repairs as possible
- Decide if any major repairs need to be made
- Improve curb appeal outdoors: landscaping and grooming
- Deep clean your home: walls, flooring, ceilings and fixtures
- Clean your windows inside and out
- Declutter and depersonalize your space
- Neutralize your decor
- Do a walk through and improve anything else you may have missed

When it comes time to have your realtor negotiate with buyers, here are the items you can negotiate:

- percentage of closing costs
- home warranty premiums
- repairs related to the inspection
- possession or closing date
- cosmetic updates
- furnishings
- household items
- house price
- mortgage loan points

But how should you and your agent negotiate with buyers?

- take charge and be direct
- understand contingency clauses
- work with your realtor
- encourage a bidding war
- don't be emotional
- be realistic
- be creative

When it comes time to close, here is some advice:

- bring your government-issued IDs
- bring keys to the property
- provide proof of repairs as needed

Getting ready to move on:

- notify subscription services, creditors, etc.
- set up mail forwarding
- collect manuals and warranties and leave them in a conspicuous place
- leave spare keys and garage door openers
- shut off water valves
- transition water and utilities as needed

If you have any other questions about the selling process, please feel free to reach out any time via phone or text: 651.402.6356 or email:

Until next time,

Tom Bullington
InMotion Realty