With the reality that the home market is not as fixed as some so-called experts might indicate, many people consider selling their own homes as an alternative to hiring an expensive realtor. And although many people think that this is a smart decision, the truth is that although it might save you a few dollars, the process is very difficult and time consuming. However, for those who have always wondered how to sell your house yourself, here are some important steps you need to follow.
Step #1 – Complete a Competitive Analysis to Price Your House Correctly
Before you list your house for sale, you need to begin with a few important details. And pricing your home at a rate that will provide you a solid return on your investment and sell quickly is the first step. However, this important step is harder than you’d think. Most realtors have access to the MLS listings which provide details about each house listed for sale on the open market. Most of this information is public information, including how much homes are listed for sale.
However, the trick is that the actual selling price is not public information. In fact, you have to pay upgrade fees to the MLS just to have access to closing home sale numbers, which often are much less than the asking price of the property. The next step in completing a competitive analysis is comparing like sized homes in the same neighborhood and community as well as considering the marketplace, consumer buying habits and other important marketing demographics.
Step #2 – Prepare for Filling out Legal Paper Work
The next step in attempting to sell your own home is the tremendous amount of legal documentation that comes with the sale of any property. This paperwork must be obtained by appropriate locations from city offices, closing companies, banks and lenders as well as county officials and State offices in some cases. Some of the files you’ll need to obtain include:
• Sellers Disclosure (which needs to be created by an attorney)
• Mortgage Payoff Documents (which often cost money to obtain by the bank)
• Buyer’s Cost Sheet
• Property Survey (which often includes a fee to the county or city offices)
• Property Profile Fact Sheets
• Closing & Settlement Documentation (which includes paying a title company to conduct the closing procedures)
• Seller’s statement of Representation
These few items represent about 25% of the documents you need to have filled out prior to closing the sale of any home.
Step #3 – Negotiation of Sale
Finally once you’ve got all your paperwork set up, and you have a buyer, closing the deal is the final step. However, the problem with most home sales is that buyers know they have quite an advantage in today’s marketplace. As such, they can ask for more benefits or discounts, warranties, upgrades and repairs than in a seller’s market. This requires good negotiation skills and the ability to be flexible with your selling price. If you are too strict, they buyers will most likely walk away from the deal and you’ll have to begin this process again.
As you can see, it is quite possible to sell your own home, but it’s also very difficult, time consuming and stressful. A great option is to seek the guidance of a professional home investment buyer who has the capital to buy your house quick and easy; giving you the cash you need to complete a simple house sale. There are no real estate agent fees to pay, very few legal documents to sign and most closings can be completed in a matter of days.
Update: Check out part 2, which gives more detail about some of the suggestions in this post. Have more questions? Let us know what they are by leaving us a comment!