Homes on The Triangle are going under contract in record time; often selling in less than 48 hours, sometimes before they're available for physical showings. When you list your home in this climate, you need to be ready. The list below was put together to support your move, and help you prepare in advance rather than scrambling when your home goes under contract and you under pressure to MOVE! Take a deep breath, and let us help you manage your selling experience.
Find Your Realtor
Selling a home can be one of the biggest life stressors there is. It can also be one of the biggest financial decisions you will make in a lifetime. To hire a friends "friend" or go by unvetted referrals is a mistake. This is a big deal. There is a lot of money at stake and it all starts with choosing the right Realtor who has the experience, knowledge, integrity and temperament to not only get you the best possible price and terms but to make the entire process as easy and stress free as possible.
All Realtors are not equally equipped to sell homes. Besides key differences between listing agents and buying agents there's experience and quite frankly the financial ability to pay for professional photographers, marketing, etc. Sadly many Realtors barely get by and are in no position to spend anything more than the bare minimum. Just because you have a friend of a friend who just got their license, does not mean they are the one to trust to sell your home. You need a listing agent, who can show you that they consistently sell multiple homes per year; who have a fully developed marketing plan and the necessary resources to help you get your home ready for the market and if necessary to deal with any repairs you may need to make once your home is under contract. In addition they need to be excellent communicators who understand the importance of minimizing drama throughout the transaction. When you look for a Realtor, do your research, ask questions, and check the numbers. Start with a list of questions. Don't be afraid to ask to see how many transactions they've made in the past year. How many years have they been in the business? Ask to see examples of their marketing, photos, videos, listings etc. Ask about how they'll help you get your home properly prepared? Are there company transaction fees? (These are nonsense fees that all Sellers should refuse to pay) What else will they do for you and what is their listing strategy and how many homes have they listed that have sold above the list price and how quickly? Of course, you can always call My NC Homes if you are in the Triangle area.
Interior Curb Appeal
We do not generally recommend undergoing substantial renovations prior to selling. There are some preparations however that will get your home sold more quickly and at a higher price. These are related to curb appeal and not so much market value. MY NC Homes starts our Sellers off with a complimentary consultation with a professional stager that will visit your home and create a very specific list of what you can do to get your home in "show shape".
A fresh coat of paint in neutral tones is always a good idea. This will generate the best return on investment any seller can make. You may not need to repaint the entire home but rather main rooms should have new paint or touch-ups if you have molding or corners that are worn.
Get a deep clean of your home prior to listing. If you need to remediate pet odors or other odors, this would fall under that category. Have a Realtor come to the home and give you an opinion on what you may need done in terms of remediation.
This is in line with cleaning. You want to remove personal effects, put additional items in storage if you need them, or start your moving process with boxes. We are coming into the holiday season, and it is also a wonderful time to donate items. Remember that the new buyer of your home is imagining THEIR things in the home, not admiring yours. With too many personal items, they have a more difficult time imagining themselves there, ultimately that might not affect the sale of the home but the time it takes to generate a sale.
Exterior Curb Appeal
You never get a second chance to make a good first impression. The exterior is that first impression. Curb appeal on the exterior of a home can be more costly than an interior, but there are some less expensive ways to make your home more appealing.
Clean landscaping professionally. This is not the time to undergo major landscaping projects, it will not increase the value of the home, but neaten hedges and define your beds and wooded areas. In addition potted plants you can take with you are a good investment.
Pressure washing is one of the best things any seller can do. It is like the deep clean that we recommend on the interior of the home. Any surface can be pressure washed from the outside of the house, if it is stucco, to driveways and pool decks.
Repainting a home can be costly but consider repainting the trim and the front door. This gives an updated look and frames the home. Do not forget the mailbox and fencing as well. Many people forget the fence in painting and it is one of the easiest to do, it frames your property and fresh paint makes a difference in that first impression.
Remove bikes, garden orbs, hoses, and other effects from your lawn. They make the property look smaller and are not appealing to buyers. If you have lawn furniture, be sure it is in good condition. Decaying furniture and equipment are eyesores for homes.
Get Organized- Be Prepared
Can you actually sell your home? Perhaps you and your partner are separated. In North Carolina if you are married your spouse owns half of the home and must sign all sales related paperwork. This is true even if you owned the home before you got married, or whether they are on the mortgage or not. If this applies to you you need to have them onboard. If you have a mortgage(s) or a HELOC (Home Equity Line of Credit) you need to give your Realtor the name of the lender(s) the approximate amount you owe and the lenders contact number so that they can give this information promptly to the closing attorney wo will be responsible for getting the loans paid offed and making certain that the lender releases you and the property from the loan. HELOC's whether there is an outstanding balance or not will be closed as the property that they were issued on will not be yours any longer. Title Insurance is another item that your Realtor should know about. Who it's with and your policy number are items the closing attorney will request. Did you have a survey done when you purchased your property? If so, be sure to give your listing agent a copy of it so that they may use it in their marketing. Have you made improvements to your home? Go over these with your agent so that they can promote them. Buyers appreciate and will factor into the offer things like new or newer roofs, water heaters, insulation, windows, siding, heating and air conditioning systems, foundation repairs etc.
Make a list of when you are billed next for utilities and when you will need to switch them over. Also, contact movers or ask your Realtor for a referral for movers and cleaners. At My NC Homes, we offer deep cleaning for free and can refer you to a number of quality local movers.
Preparing your Next Moves
Be prepared to perform all of the supporting tasks your agent recommends. You will need to advance plan for children and pets for showings and have your next move planned. Homes are selling in hours and closing in months. You need to have a plan in place. Whether you want to get the most value from your home and rent for a bit or you have another housing solution in mind. Your agent can help with all of these logistics elements.
We hope that this is a thorough list for you and will help you in your move to The Triangle. If you are finding this and have not found a realtor yet, we have helped sellers for decades on The Triangle and have an excellent reputation, let's take this next step together.
Posted by Larry Tollen on