The Role of Your Agent
What’s the difference between a person who sells homes and a real estate agent? A real estate agent is not just a seller of homes. Real estate agents are licensed sellers, required to abide by a code of ethics, and employed by a broker. This allows for a higher level of trust in your real estate agent, because they are accountable not only to you, but to their broker and the board.
The perk of having a real estate agent handle the sale of your home is the knowledge that comes with them. The in depth understanding of the market, the trends of the industry, and considerations that might not have even crossed your mind. Real estate agents know the questions to ask and the details to look for to make sure you wind up with the best possible deal for your home.
It can be a bumpy road from putting up the first “For Sale” sign to closing the deal on your home. But real estate agents know the ropes well enough to anticipate difficulties and help you move past it. It’s not just the trust and assistance you are paying for. It’s the experience and wealth of knowledge that comes with them.
When to Contact an Agent
The time to contact an agent is the moment that you decide to sell your home. It’s likely that the moment you list your house, there will be an interested party, but without an understanding of real estate, you may not know the best way to proceed from there.
Your greatest weapon is having a real estate agent who has been with you from the beginning of the sales process. A real estate agent is only as strong as their understanding of your situation. Having a real estate agent there from the very beginning gives you a better chance of a smooth sales process and an easy close.
How Long Does it Take to Sell
There is really no accurate way to estimate how long it will take for a sale to go through on your home. The average listing times vary from 14 to 90 days, and all of that depends on a variety of factors that are outside of your control.
Your real estate agent can help minimize the time your home spends on a market through different showing strategies. You have a better shot at a quicker sale if you have the expertise of a real estate agent driving your showing process.
Pricing Your Home
Fair market value is the name of the game when it comes to pricing your home. Your home is only worth what a buyer in the current market is willing to pay. A fair market price boils down to this: the fair market value of a house is the highest price an informed buyer will pay, excluding any external pressures. Usually, the fair market value is lower than the asking price.
A real estate agent can help you decide on a good asking price and simultaneously advise you of the fair market value of your home. You’ll get a full picture of where your home falls in the market and how you can achieve the best possible price for your home.
Putting Your Home's Best Foot Forward
Before you put your house on the market, it’s a good idea to spruce it up a bit for those who will be viewing it as potential buyers. Additionally, there are several different inspections that come with selling your home, so any issues you might have (broken appliances, old plumbing, mold, or insect infestations) are all issues that should be taken care of before you invite potential buyers into your home.
Your real estate agent can advise you on the best changes to make to give your home the most sell-able look possible. Some homes might need nothing more than a fresh coat of paint and a good spring cleaning. Others might need more renovations or repairs. Either way, your real estate agent will make sure you know what absolutely needs to be fixed and what you can leave as is for the showing.
Investing in Repairs or Renovations
If your home is older or your real estate agent is having difficulty finding interested buyers, a renovation can be just the hook you need to snag a buyer. Particularly if your home lacks a staple room or feature that most buyers are looking for, it will make selling your home much easier, and it will increase the market value price of your home. Of course, pouring money into a house you are planning to leave is only worth it if you get your money back on the sale. Your real estate agent can tell you more about your unique situation and whether or not it is worth the investment of a renovation and the likelihood that you’ll get your money back on the sale price.
One of the great perks of having a real estate agent is their access to buyers. They can put your house on a larger database that will reach millions more people than just the local listing service. You also get access to a network of brokers and other real estate agents who are all going to have a vested interest in selling your home.
Once you are listed online, your real estate agent will help you prep for the buyers and viewings of your home.
Closing a Sale
The final sale means signing the final papers and turning in one final collection of paperwork. It’s a pretty simple ending to a long and drawn out process. You, the buyer, the buyer’s agent, and the broker who represents your real estate agent will all be present, and you’ll turn over the keys. Keep in mind that you will owe your agent’s broker a commission at this point.