CREATE BUYER DEMAND – Step 4 in successfully selling your home for top dollar is to get the word out. Your agent should design a marketing plan focused on creating showings and bringing as many qualified buyers through the home as possible. The first 2-5 weeks should be the busiest with the most showings and open houses. Other ways to get maximum exposure will be to have a strong online presence including being in the local MLS, yard signs, direct mail campaigns, phone campaigns, agent to agent referrals and more.
NEGOTIATE OFFER(S) – Most offers to purchase your property will require negotiations so that an agreement can be reached. The first step will be to determine if the potential buyer is qualified to purchase the home. If so, from there it is important to review the contract with your agent to understand what is necessary for both parties to successfully perform on the transaction. Some of the negotiable items are price, deposit, closing costs, repairs, painting, fixtures, appliances, inspection rights, contingencies, settlement date and more. Your realtor is well versed in the contracts and will protect your interests and negotiate the best possible price and terms on your behalf.
NAVIGATE ESCROW – After you accept an offer to sell the home, your agent will give you a list of all the things you and the buyer must do prior to the sale being finalized. During the buyers contingency period, the home is usually formally appraised and inspected, and often a buyer is going to ask for additional repairs to be done on the property. Depending on the written contract, you may pay for all, some, or none of these items. If there are problems with the home, the terms set forth in the contract will determine what to do next. You or the buyer may decide to walk away, which would give you the opportunity to go to a back up offer, or instead revise the terms of the contract, or proceed to the closing. Once all buyer contingencies have been removed, you will want to continue to make arrangements for your upcoming move.
CLOSE THE DEAL – A few days prior to the close of escrow date, you and your agent will want to make sure that the Escrow company that is facilitating the closing will have all the appropriate documents ready to sign. This will enable the property to be legally transferred to the buyer. After signing the paperwork, you should make a list for turning the property over to the new owner including cancelling or changing the name on the account for power, water, cable, maintenance and other services. At that point, you’re ready to do some basic cleaning, move out, and celebrate what’s next for you!