Questions You Need to Ask Before Selling Your Home
1. What is my home really worth?
You can find almost anything on the internet, and that includes an estimated value of your home. How convenient!
It’s possible that an automated estimate is going to be spot-on, but those algorithms depend on numbers that might or might not be accurate, like the condition of your property, the square footage, any features or amenities you’ve added (or removed), and recent sales of properties nearby that could be comparable to your own home.
You can also talk to a JSM Realtor about your home’s value; a real estate professional is going to be able to give you a better idea of how much your particular, specific home might capture on the current market.
And a real estate professional can also explain what you can do to your home to help inch that number upward a little bit. Then you can make the call as to whether or not you want to make any upgrades or take the estimated price as-is. Which leads to the next question …
2. How can I sell at the highest price possible?
When you’re selling anything, you want to get fair market value for the item you’re releasing, and that’s exponentially truer for your house, which is probably the biggest purchase you’ve ever made.
If you know your neighbor’s house sold for ten figures more than the highest estimate you’ve been able to find for your own home, that can be a tough reality to swallow. But this is where real estate professionals really earn their keep — they can explain why that house was so desirable (maybe if you’re honest with yourself, you can admit that your neighbor’s view is much nicer than yours, for example), and they can also show you where you do have some room for (price) improvement.
There may be quite a few projects you could tackle to increase your home’s value, such as adding a deck, remodeling the kitchen, or even adding entire rooms in some cases. Those are good opportunities to discuss with a JSM real estate professional, who can share feedback about whether the project is going to be worth the eventual return on investment when you sell the home — and what projects will net you more money for your property.
3. How long will my home be on the market?
No one can predict the future, but experts who work in the industry can usually come close. If you haven’t called an agent yet, you might need to in order to get the information you’ll need to answer this question.
Ultimately, it depends on what the housing market is like in your area, but there are a lot of anomalies within a housing market — even in markets that seem red-hot, sometimes sellers make a mistake and overprice a home that then languishes for weeks or even months longer than more realistically priced homes.
The number of days that homes stay on the market gets shorter and shorter as housing heats up, but that number is absolutely contingent on the initial list price. Homes that need to reduce their prices to attract qualified buyers will remain on the market significantly longer than homes priced competitively from the start. It’s really important to get the initial list price right if you’d like the home to sell quickly. (And remember: The longer that house takes to sell, the longer you as the seller will be responsible for keeping it in showing condition for buyers — seven days a week.)
4. How can a Real Estate Professional help?
Experience matters.....JSM Realtors will help you find the best price for your home, list it for you on the MLS, and handle all the marketing — from professional photos to open houses to online marketing. A well seasoned agent can manage your showing schedule for buyers who want personal tours and can help you decide which offer to accept if you happen to receive more than one … and a licensed, experienced JSM professional is absolutely essential during the negotiation process, especially if the buyer is making demands that the seller isn’t prepared to address.
JSM Realtors can manage the transaction timeline, alerting you when an inspection or appraisal is about to happen and keeping you in the loop regarding financing and every other aspect of the transaction.
A JSM real estate professional can also help you do all of this while you’re simultaneously looking for a new place to live and can help you manage that, too — including what to do if you find a home before your current house sells.