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Buying and selling real estate is often the largest financial transaction most people encounter, and it’s a wise idea to familiarize yourself with any potential strategies that can help you get the most bang for your buck. Here are some things to consider if you’re planning to sell your Des Moines home:
Make Sure it’s Ready for Buyers
Before you list your home, you’ll want to make sure that it’s ready to be viewed by potential buyers. Get started by removing any personal belongings (that can be removed) and any unnecessary clutter. You want the house to be a blank canvas for prospective buyers—one they can picture as their own. Think about giving the home a coat of fresh, neutral paint, give it a thorough cleaning, and take care of any small repairs. If you can, remove any bulky, oversized furniture as it tends to make rooms look smaller. If a buyer is unsure about the type of home they want, you want your house to convince them that this is the one.
Work With an Experienced Realtor
A familiar misconception is that all real estate agents are the same and that their job is pretty easy. In reality, hiring a seasoned real estate agent is one of the smartest things you can do as a seller. Sure, you can sell your house on your own, but it really isn’t recommended for a few reasons: If you’re not a licensed real estate agent, you won’t have access to the multiple listing service (MLS) which is a database used by real estate brokers to list properties and share information about them. Having your property featured on the MLS allows multiple agents to show your property to their clients, opening up a much larger audience of potential buyers. In addition to MLS access, Realtors generally have a sizable audience on multiple marketing platforms, they have the experience and knowledge to price your home correctly and to negotiate on your behalf, and they have the wherewithal to overcome all the hurdles that you can potentially face during the selling process. Before choosing a Realtor, shop around, ask questions, and share your expectations. You want to ensure that you have the right person to trust with the sale of your home.
Price it Correctly
When deciding how to price your home, be realistic. Do some homework and check out the comparable sales in the area. Quite often, sellers price their homes based on two things—emotional attachment and wishful thinking. However, this can create a few problems: If you price your house higher than the comparable homes in the area, your home may be skipped over altogether by prospective buyers. If you have less traffic, there’s less opportunity for offers, which could result in your property sitting on the market longer. The longer the property has been on the market, the bigger the red flag to buyers. It’s also important to price the home so that it falls into the optimal price-range categories for online searches. For example, if you price your home at $400,000, anyone that’s looking in the range under $400,000 will never see it. If you price it at $399,900, however, they will. This is another reason why it’s important to have an experienced agent representing you, as they can help determine an accurate value of your home as well as price it with a marketing strategy in mind.
Keep in mind that there are no guarantees until the transaction is completed. A real estate transaction can be tumultuous. Things are bound to come up—inspections may uncover things that require additional negotiation or buyers may lose their financing. It’s important to know what to expect during the process and to be prepared to deal with the ups and downs as they come so you don’t jeopardize the deal. Make your expectations clear but also be open and flexible. Be prepared to negotiate throughout the process if something unforeseen occurs. Keeping your cool throughout the process will do you a world of good.
Selling your home can seem overwhelming, but the better prepared and the more you know, the easier the process will go.
If you need a recommendation for an experienced, local Realtor, or you’d like to get preapproved for a mortgage, please reach out. I’m always happy to help.