10 Steps to Selling Your Home
– 1. Prepare Property for Sale –
First we’ll talk with you to understand your reasons for selling, your time frame, your motivation, and your goals and expectations of the selling process. Next we’ll tour your home and talk about potential enhancements, repairs, staging options, and other factors that could improve your sales price and shorten your time on market. We maintain a list of respected contractors, cleaners, home stagers, inspectors, appraisers, and anything else you might need if you’d like recommendations. Finally, we’ll go into detail on how we’ll prepare, price and market your home to get you the highest price the market will bear in the shortest time
– 2. Price Property to Sell –
Many factors affect the price buyers will be willing to pay for your home, including location, layout, condition, the level of recent updates, features & amenities, and of course current market conditions. We’ll provide an in-depth analysis of market trends in your neighborhood, what similar homes are selling for and how they compare to yours, supply and demand metrics, and other relevant factors so you can make an informed decision about pricing your home competitively. Initial list price is critical to maximize buyer activity in the all-important first few weeks on market, and we’ll guide you with the best market data available.
– 3. Launch to Market & Monitor Results –
The majority of buyers will use the Internet in their home search, so it’s important we present a polished product in all the places they’re looking. We start with high-quality professional photography that makes your property shine, and couple it with effective, descriptive listing language and targeted keywords that buyers looking for a home such as yours are likely to search for. Then we use an arsenal of tools including video and virtual tours, single property websites, text-for-info, listing syndication, newsletters, and social media marketing to distribute your listing to over 600 consumer search sites and social media networks. We can also include yard signs, open houses, Realtor tours, and additional marketing & print advertising if desired.
Once on market, we continually monitor MLS, social media, syndication site and showing activity, get feedback from showing agents, and track the status of nearby listings. We’ll report this back to you every Tuesday so you know exactly how your listing is performing, and we’ll talk about what (if any) adjustments we recommend to keep activity high.
– 4. Identify & Negotiate Best Purchase Offer –
The key to a successful and stress-free closing is choosing the best offer with the highest chance of success. When we receive an offer we’ll look at the type of financing, any buyer contingencies such as selling their house first, seller contributions toward fees and closing costs, length of time to closing, and any other terms and conditions. We’ll talk with the buyer’s agent to understand their situation and motivation, and will discuss the details of the purchase offer. We’ll interview the buyer’s lender to evaluate the strength of their financing and the quality of the lender. Then we’ll put all the parameters into a Seller Net Sheet that shows your estimated proceeds after paying off your existing mortgage, fees and closing costs. If there are multiple offers, we’ll do a Net Sheet for each so you can compare offers, because the best offer is not always the highest one. Finally we’ll give you our recommendations, and you can choose to accept an offer, send a counter offer with different terms, or simply reject it.
– 5. Offer Accepted, Open Escrow –
Once we have accepted an offer, all contractual timelines begin and we’ll guide you through each step. Arizona doesn’t use attorneys for real estate transactions, instead we have an independent 3rd party Title & Escrow Company that sits between buyer and seller and holds all contracts and monies until the transaction closes, and ensures the contract is executed as written. To open escrow, the buyer deposits their Earnest Money (typically 1% of purchase price) with the Title Company and we deliver all executed contracts. The flow of paperwork begins.
– 6. Inspection Period –
The buyer has 10 days from contract acceptance to do their home inspection and any other due diligence they see fit. At the end of the 10 day inspection period, they will deliver a Buyer’s Inspection Notice and Seller’s Response (BINSR) to us that either (1) accepts the property in its current condition, (2) cancels the contract and returns the buyer’s Earnest Money, or (3) lists repairs they want us to address. If they ask for repairs, we have 5 days to agree to everything (which closes the inspection period) or respond with what we are willing to do instead, in which case the buyer has 5 days to accept our response or cancel the contract and get their Earnest Money back. We’ll work with the buyer’s agent throughout this process to find equitable solutions to anything that comes up.
– 7. Appraisal –
If this is a financed purchase, the buyer’s lender will order an appraisal to make sure the property is worth at least as much as they’ve offered to pay for it. This will usually be ordered after the inspection period is complete. If the appraisal comes back lower than what they’ve offered to pay, the buyer has the right to cancel the contract and get their Earnest Money back, but more commonly we will try to negotiate an equitable compromise with them first.
– 8. Loan Approval and Documents to Title –
At least 3 days prior to Close of Escrow we expect to hear from the buyer’s lender that their loan is approved and all paperwork is at the Title Company ready to be signed. This is the final milestone to selling your home. We strive to make sure the buyer’s financing is bullet-proof from the start, but on rare occasions something will be discovered during underwriting that causes a loan to be declined. In the unlikely event this happens, the contract is canceled and the buyer gets their Earnest Money back, and we go back on market.
– 9. Document Signing and Final Steps –
Once the Title Company receives the lender’s documents, they will generate a Settlement Statement that lists all the debits and credits for buyer & seller. Next we’ll set up an appointment to sign all documents at the title company a few days prior to the closing date, and we’ll join you for that. If you’re out of town or signing at title is not convenient, we can arrange for a mobile notary to meet you. Once everyone has signed, documents go back to the buyer’s lender and they schedule the wiring of loan funds to arrive on your closing date.
– 10. Closing & Recording –
Even though you’ve signed everything, the house isn’t sold just yet. On closing day, once the Title Company has received the wired loan funds from the lender as well as the buyer’s check or wire for down payment and closing costs, they will release the file to the County Recorder’s office. When we receive confirmation that the transaction has been recorded, the home is officially sold and we can turn over the keys. Congratulations, your home is SOLD!