Frequent Seller Questions
1. How Do I Set the Selling Price for My Home?
When selling your home, setting the right price is essential. Follow these steps to make sure you’ve set the best price for your home:
Understand the current real estate market, both recent sales and competing properties, and be prepared to price your home based on this information.
Take into consideration factors like square footage, number of rooms, location, and condition of your home.
Real estate prices are constantly changing based on the market. It’s critical that you base your home price on the most recent comparable sales in your vicinity.
Consider employing the use of a Comparative Market Analysis (CMA)—a background report that helps you determine a reasonable list price for your home. We would be happy to provide you with a New Albany HomeValues Analysis TM(CMA).
2. What Are The Two Standard Contingencies Found In A Purchase Offer?
The two standard contingencies found in a purchase offer are:
Financing contingency: The home purchase is contingent upon whether or not the buyer can secure a loan from a lender.
Inspection contingency: A buyer has the right to have the property inspected for any problems that may have not been disclosed. If significant issues arise, the purchase offer could be revoked.
In either contingency, the outcomes may vary. A deposit can be forfeited if the buyers renege on a sale for reasons other than those contained within the contract agreement. If the seller does not fulfill his or her responsibilities (e.g., clear title not given, agreed-upon repairs not made, substantial changes to the property effected before closing), the purchase again, may be forfeited or other consequences may occur.
3. What Types of Issues Must A Seller Disclose When Selling A Home?
When selling your home, you (the seller) and your broker (if you have one) are responsible for disclosing any known issues that could materially affect the value of the property. More specifically, disclosure must include items which may not be obvious to the casual observer, such as a cracked foundation, of which you, as the homeowner, have knowledge.
When dealing with the sale of homes, the seller is required to complete a Residential Real Estate Property Disclosure and make it available to all potential buyers. This identifies the current condition and history of all physical aspects of the house.
4. Is There A “Best” Time to Sell My House?
In a word, yes. The ultimate selling factors are, of course, supply and demand and general economic health. Another factor is the month in which you list your home, which can sometimes net you a higher selling price.
It’s important to understand that buyers buy homes year round. During the holidays, the number of homes that sell is less than in June but generally the number of homes available for sale is lower as well. On average, the real estate market begins to pick up in February. The strongest selling typically occurs during the spring months from May through July. Interestingly, August is often one of the slowest months of the year, mostly because home buyers and sellers, and alike depart on summer vacations.
5. How Can I Get My House to Sell Faster?
There are numerous factors that go into the speed of which a house sells. Generally, a house sells most quickly when it is well-maintained, staged, and if necessary, neutralized, and priced properly based on the current market conditions. Also, if your home has been recently updated or remodeled, you’ll find it will not only sell more quickly, but will likely sell for top dollar in your neighborhood.
6. How Much Home Improvement Is Too Much?
There is generally a cap to the amount of home improvement that should be done. In other words, there are high-return improvements that will generally recognize a higher sales price, such as remodeling of a kitchen or bathroom, and finishing a lower level. Other less-obvious upgrades may not provide a reasonable return. It’s not a good idea to start a major remodeling project just before putting your home up for sale. You probably won’t recoup the money you spent remodeling. Some minor home improvements undertaken prior to putting your home on the market can net significant returns. Contact us before undertaking a remodeling project prior to putting your home on the market. We have many years of experience in advising you on the best improvements to undertake.
7. What Is the MLS?
MLS stands for Multiple Listing Service. When a real estate agent is a member of the MLS, s/he has the ability to be part of any aspect of a home purchase or sale. In other words, even if a property is listed with Company A, it maybe be sold by an agent working at Company B. If you, as the seller, list your property with a real estate agent who is a member of MLS, you’ll give yourself the added benefit of having more agents aware of your listing and, ultimately, working for you. FYI...we are members of the local board of Realtors and we would be happy to discuss listing your New Albany home for sale.
8. Should I Use A Real Estate Professional?
Yes! A professional agent will secure the best price for your home and can reach the widest audience of potential buyers. Negotiating the complex workings of the market is incredibly involved. Having a professional’s invaluable expertise will make every aspect of the transaction easier, from qualifying potential buyers, negotiating the purchase contract, tracking their financing, managing the home inspection process, to securing payoffs, title insurance and the myriad of other items that must be managed to insure that your home actually closes. We are the New Albany neighborhood experts and we will insure that the selling process of your home is professionally managed and free of problems that could impact the final sale.
9. What Should I Do If My Neighbor Just Sold Their Home for A Lot More Than I’m Asking?
Don’t panic! It’s not uncommon for houses in the same neighborhood to sell at different prices. Location is just one of the components that factor into home pricing. Before raising your asking price, consider other factors, such as age, features, size, style, and any additions, upgrades or remodels that differentiate the homes. You usually will find that the difference in price is reasonable, given the differences in the homes. Your real estate professional will know the inventory and can advise you of any of these differences between homes and assist you with pricing your home properly.
10. What Will A Buyer Expect to “Go With the Home?”
The typical real estate contract in the Columbus area calls for all attached property to be included. This generally includes, but is not limited to, built in appliances, heating and central air conditioning equipment, bathroom and kitchen fixtures, water softening equipment (if not leased), roof antennae and/or satellite TV reception system, curtain rods and window coverings (excluding drapes and curtains), wall-to-wall carpeting and attached floor coverings, all attached light fixtures and ceiling fans, attached mirrors and fireplace equipment, garage door openers and controls, security systems and controls, smoke alarms, screen and storm doors, all exterior plants and trees, and landscape lights and controls.
However, everything is negotiable. Your contract should be clear as to what is and is not included in the sale of your home. If there is an item you particularly want to take with you, we recommend you remove it before showing your home.
Have more questions? Contact us and we will supply the answers to your real estate questions.