If you’ve been following the news recently, you’ve likely heard of how home prices across the US are at all time highs due to a lack of inventory, historically low mortgage rates, and a surge of individuals/families relocating because their employers are more receptive to remote work.
In their Top Agent Insights for Spring 2021 report HomeLight explains that these dynamics are likely to stay for the foreseeable future as 94% of agents are reporting that bidding wars are on the rise or at their peak, and 97% believe that mortgage rates are a significant driver of the increased demand.
Although now’s a great time to put your home on the market, selling a home remains a complicated process and it’s easy to become overwhelmed if you haven’t been through it before. Fortunately, the information in this article can help make things more manageable.
Preparing your home for a sale
One of the most important steps you can take when selling your home is to put yourself in the mind of a buyer and think of ways you can make your property more attractive. It’s important to only tackle essential projects since the cost of home repairs and upgrades adds up quickly. As a rule of thumb, if something is structural or mechanical in nature that you know is defective, that’s something you must repair.
In addition to focusing on general property enhancements, you’ll also want to declutter your space by getting a few bins or trash bags and sorting items in the following main categories: “store,” “sell,” “donate” and “toss/recycle.” By using this simple organization method, you can quickly cut through your clutter without being overwhelmed from over analyzing whether to keep or dispose of items.
Finding a realtor you can trust
The complexity of the home selling process means that working with a real estate agent is essential to a smooth transaction. The first step to finding a realtor is considering key metrics for each agent such as the number of homes sold in the past six months, the amount of time it takes to list a home on average (and how it compares to local trends), and the amount above or below list price that the agent usually sells for.
After taking care of your preliminary research, you’ll need to reach out to agents directly to better understand how they work and see if they’re able to assist with selling your home. During your consultations with agents, you should touch on information such as the agent’s knowledge of your area (quality of local schools, transportation options, etc.), their priorities for buyer’s and sellers (e.g. are they very hands off, or do they provide granular updates), and what their sale to list price ratio is.
You should be able to get most of these questions answered in just a fifteen minute call with the realtor. Remember, it’s important to speak with at least three different real estate agents because building a great rapport is a must when working with an agent.