Seven Steps to help you sell your home in Atlanta
One – Choosing the Right Real Estate Agent
With so many Residential Real Estate Agents to choose from it has always been a daunting task determining the right one for your big move.
A professional and established residential Real Estate agent is practiced in locating the perfect office space for anyone wishing to launch or expand their business in the capital. The correct choice will ensure that such a move can take place seamlessly, your business remaining unaffected and continuing its day to day work.
A successful residential agent will possess a wealth of industry-based knowledge and boast the ability to connect their client to the right investment quickly and easily, allowing your work to continue undisturbed.
Here are some helpful tips to help you choose the right team for you:
Find out the number of years the real estate agent have been in business. Determine the reputation they have in the industry. It is advisable to consider working with an agent who has been in business for at least 5 years. An agent who has been in business for many years understands the industry and therefore, is able to serve you better. They understand the market trends making it possible for them to advice the most attractive investments
Your central focus should be that a intuitive agent will possess the foresight and knowledge to determine which areas offer the best value for money, insight, eventual return on investment and which location features the amenities that will best serve their client’s firm. These are the features which will be necessary to achieve a profitable move and a successful relationship with your agent.
Industry foresight is key to ensuring you have been introduced to both the right area and building. With one eye set firmly on the future, the commercial agent should know the background and future plans for the immediate and surrounding area. London is an evolving city and there are likely to be developments planned in your prospective site at some point. A thorough commercial property estate agent will be able to ascertain whether these changes will benefit or damage their client and advice as to whether this is the right investment for the future.
Traditionally, a more personal service will come from an independent commercial estate agent. This is because they will have no allegiances to any landlords and can therefore negotiate a price on behalf of the buyer or tenant rather than those of the landlord or seller.
Once the ideal site has been found, an intrepid agent will guarantee the move takes place efficiently, and with as little disruption to the client’s business as possible. Remember, you are paying the agency to work as your man on the ground, ensuring your attention remains in the office rather than on the move.
Two – Costs involved in Selling Your Home
I know what you are thinking. If I am selling my home why would it cost me money? The purpose of this article is to explain the cost of selling your home. If you want to make money selling your home you need to know the associated cost, so let’s take a look.
For our example we will look at selling our $300,000 home. Make sure you know the value of your home before you list it. There are many free online home appraisal services that you can use to get an idea of your home value. After consulting with our real estate agent and using several free home appraisal services we come up with our listing price of $300,000. Great all we have to do now is sell it for our asking price and we are on easy street. Not really. The largest cost of selling your home is the commission you will pay to a real estate seller agent and buyer agent. The real estate commission ranges between 5% and 7%. Assuming you settle for 6%, so this number comes up to $18,000 dollars. Take a hard look at this number and decide if what the agent does is worth this kind of money. The truth is that a good agent is worth good money. Notice I said a good agent. Make sure you hire an agent that actually sells homes and not just lists them. The next big cost is upgrades and repairs. Normally to get your home in selling condition you will need to paint the home and replace some if not all of the flooring. You might need a new roof or kitchen appliances. If you don’t replace and repair then you will probably have to discount the asking price to compensate. I would do the repairs up front because it will be easier to sell your home with the repairs finished. So for our example let’s say you spend at least $5,000 dollars for repairs and upgrades. The next largest cost will be closing cost. Most sellers will be asked to pay some if not all of the closing cost. Our example will use $3,000 dollars. The next cost is really not a cost but a discount. The average house sells for 97% of its list price. So in our example we will lose $9,000 dollars. There are even more cost but I think we have listed enough so let’s get the grand total.
We started with a listing price of $300,000 and we need to subtract $35,000 dollars. The take home payoff is $265,000 dollars. So the bottom line is not even close to our original listing price. Don’t be tempted to raise the price of the home to compensate because you will price your home out of the market. You need to examine the cost of selling your home the traditional way before you list your home with an agent. If you decide to sell your home yourself or FSBO then make sure you can handle the entire sales process from start to finish. Selling a home is not easy so take some time to weigh your choices before jumping in the home seller arena.
Three – What factors can influence the price of my home
There are lots of important decisions to make when it comes to putting your home on the market for sale. The decisions range from which agent to select, how to market your home for sale, what price to ask, how to best present your home to attract and impress potential buyers, and the list goes on. The decisions you make will influence how quickly your home sells and for what price.
Unfortunately too many home sellers are under the impression that the market alone will decide the final outcome. However, there is more to it than that.
Here are 12 factors that could potentially affect the price you get for your home:
1. The state of the local real estate market.
2. The situation with the national or state economy with regards consumer confidence.
3. Current mortgage interest rates and lender borrowing criteria.
4. Recent comparable sales in the vicinity of the home for sale.
5. The ability of the real estate agent you employ.
6. The effectiveness of the marketing used.
7. The buyers level of motivation to buy your property.
8. The asking price and your level of motivation to sell.
9. The condition of the property and how well it meets the buyers needs and wants.
10. The location, views etc.
11. Whether or not there are multiple buyers lining up to buy the home for sale.
12. Your personal negotiating skills.
By studying the list above you’ll see that some factors (like the state of the economy) will be out of your control. However, there are ways to react to situations to ensure you achieve the best result in the circumstances. Looking above you will also see there are several factors that are totally within your control and could clearly influence the final outcome.
At the end of the day every home will sell at a price. You just need to decide if you want to maximize the price you achieve or minimize it. What you do, or don’t do, will have a big influence so there is no point in putting all the blame on the agent when things go pear-shaped.
There are lots of decisions to make even before you list with an agent or sell for sale by owner. Think carefully about whether you should improve the condition of the home, or whether it may be more cost-effective and easier to simply sell for a lower price. It really comes down to maximizing your profit rather than just focusing on the highest price.
With that said, you might end up achieving a high price in a short time on the market, or your home could sit there for months (or years) waiting for a buyer who is prepared to pay an unrealistically high price. So, correct pricing in relation to all of the above factors will determine how quickly your house sells and how much you walk away with. The decision is yours!
Four – How do I negotiate offers in my home?
Fundamental to any successful negotiation is thorough preparation – this is the work that needs to be done before a counter-offer is made. Entire books have been written about the art of negotiating, and you have not shared any of the details of your situation, so I can share only a few of the strategies that can help.
First, any real estate negotiation has to be kept in the context of the market. Hopefully, your agent has given you a thorough background on the market in your geographical area and size range. As an example, the sale of a 50,000 square foot industrial building in your area has little relevance to your building, since it is only 16,000 square feet. Market data might tell you that buildings in your area, size range and condition are currently selling between $110 to $125 a square foot, which gives you a starting point in evaluating the offer that you have received.
Having occupied the building, you should be well aware of any costs that the buyer might have to incur to repair or renovate. From the buyer’s point of view, renovation or repair costs are simply adding to his acquisition cost, whether it is roof repair, HVAC replacement, office modernization. So be realistic in anticipating the true market value of your building.
Next, I always look to the needs of the other side. It often seems like price is the only or major component of a real estate transaction, but I often find that the opposite is true. Perhaps timing, terms, or some other issue is more important to the buyer. Representing the seller, I recently sold a building at what was perceived as a discounted price to the buyer. In reality, we were able to negotiate a short term lease-back for the seller that was substantially below market, and more than made up for the “discount” in the sale price.
I always like to look at the marketplace to see what other buildings might be available to the buyer as a BATNA (“Best Alternative to a Negotiated Settlement” in negotiation parlance.) If I have a lot of competition, then I will have to be aggressive to make the deal. If I am the only game in town, I have a more likely chance of negotiating a deal close to my asking price.
In the end, the seller always has to weigh the offer in hand against the probability of a higher offer, and when that offer will come in.
Probably nothing is more predictive of a successful negotiation than preparation, knowledge and analysis. The time required in this phase of negotiations will be well spent, and is always the place to start.
Five – Consequences of an over priced Home
When you decide to sell your home or property, the most important decision you’re going to make is the listing price. Of course you want to get the most money for your home and in the least amount of time… after all you can always price it higher and then lower the price if it doesn’t sell right??
Don’t make the critical mistake of overpricing your home. Naturally you can list your home for whatever price you want, after all it is yours… however price should be something that’s agreed upon between the seller and sales representative.
Pricing your home within reason right from the beginning is the single most important thing. I always say to my clients that there are two things that really sell a home… time, and price. With the right price and enough time, your home must eventually sell.
There are many drawbacks to overpricing a home or property, actually I can’t think of anything good that could come of it other than the slight chance that the buyers representative may not catch on to the fact that a property is overpriced and it actually sells.
Homes that are overpriced take much longer to sell… and the longer it takes to sell, the less valuable it becomes to prospective buyers. There’s just something about a home that’s been sitting on the market for a long time, it losses its appeal and buyers start to think that the reason it’s not selling is because there is something wrong with it.
When a new listing comes onto the real estate market, the first few weeks are usually the most productive…. you’re really going to get some serious buyers through. However, if you’re priced too high, these serious buyers are just going to go elsewhere, and chances are their not going to come back.
Chances are, the longer your home sits on the market the less money you’re going to get out when it sells. When a buyer sees that your home has been on the market for 4 or 5 months, they are most likely going to low ball an offer. And when you have gone 4 or 5 months on the market and your first offer comes in, your most likely to accept it because you can’t wait any longer for another offer to come along.
Let’s not forget about the agent that’s trying to sell the property. Your real estate professional is representing you, and should be doing everything they can to get your property sold… but how enthused would an agent be to pour all kinds of money into advertising month after month with little to no results. We’ve talked about potential buyers losing interest, but chances are so will your agent.
So, the bottom line is, you’re better off pricing your home right from the very beginning. You’re going to get more interested prospective buyers through your door, you’re going to get better offers, it’s not going to take as long to sell your home, and you can get on with things and move on to where you’ve got to be.
Six – Pricing my home, what is the best Approach?
With today’s technology, answering that question has never been easier. In fact, there’s several ways to get an estimate of your home’s value. Those ways range in accuracy and level of effort to obtain but are all viable solutions to capturing value. Here are the most common methods for estimating home value used by home buyers and sellers as well as real estate professionals. These methods are ordered from the least to the most detailed:
• Online Tools – The simplest way to determine your home’s value is to use an online home evaluation tool. These tools use algorithms to compare your home with other homes in your area to calculate a very rough estimate of your home’ value. These tools can be found online at various real estate sites for free. Be aware the accuracy of the information can vary based on the underlying database of properties being used. As a result you may see a different value for your home if you use different sites. Sites used by professionals that interface with the Realtor Multiple Listing Service (MLS) are the most accurate for online tools.
• Comparative Market Analysis (CMA) – A CMA is what real estate professionals create for a more accurate estimate of your homes worth. A CMA is used to determine asking price, when listing properties, and offering price, when submitting contracts to buy properties. A good real estate professional will provide a CMA for your home free of charge.
• Appraisals – An appraisal, conducted by a licensed appraiser, is what banks use to determine a property’ value. This number may vary ever so slightly from appraiser to appraiser but what’s consistent is their detailed approach to physically viewing the property in addition to using property records. An appraisal can cost $250 to $350 or more.
• Home Inspections – A home inspection, conducted by a licensed home inspector, is an increased level of scrutiny into the condition of a property. A good home inspector will search every nook and cranny of your home to uncover both anomalies that can decrease the value of your home as well as ways to increase the value of your home. Home inspections can range tremendously in price. Some home inspectors charge a flat rate, others charge by the square foot, some charge by the price of the house and some charge by the amount of time spent.
Seven – What is My role in the selling process?
You want to sell a house privately. You have heard of the benefits. You know that it will take some hard work on your part and some good research, but you stand to save thousands, even tens of thousands of dollars, if you do it on your own. Realtors and real estate agents charge hefty commission fees for their expertise, but each year, a minority of sales are done without their help at all. Here are a few tips for selling a house by owner.
You Can Do the Job
What does a real estate agent actually do when you hire them to help sell your home? A real estate agent streamlines the complicated process of selling. They market your home by placing MLS listings and putting your home in buyers’ radar. They coordinate showings between sellers and buyers. They also know a variety of people that will help you with appraisals, home inspections, and legal paperwork. As a real estate agent, they may have a broad expertise on the selling process, but they are not appraisers, real estate lawyers, or home inspectors–people you may need anyway during the sale. They are marketing agents that help attract your home to the greatest number of potential buyers. There is plenty of material on the subject, and if you are willing to learn, you can be your own agent.
Do Not Overprice Your Homes
The biggest mistake that for sale by owner (FSBO) home owners make is they will often overprice their home at first. Overpricing your house will lead to very few, if any, people that come and actually view it. This is why it is very important to do your research and look at comparable homes in your area for the last three months of home sales in your area. Sites like Zillow.com can help you get this type of information. If you are not sure what to price your house at you might want to think about hiring an appraiser to come in and tell you what your house is worth.
Hire a Home Inspector
If you cannot vouch for the quality of your home and its systems, prospective buyers will see this as a definite red flag. Consider hiring a home inspector to thoroughly look at the structure of your house and its components so you know the home’s defects before a buyer points them out to you. After getting a home inspected and making the necessary repairs, you can then alert potential buyers to the home’s soundness by making these reports public–either by showing curious buyers or posting it online. Such actions go a long way towards assuring buyers that they are making a sound purchase.
Declutter, Clean, and Stage it yourself
An agent is able to help you stage your house but if put some thought into it you can do it yourself. Look through some magazines and visit other houses to see what kind of ideas you can come up with for the staging that buyers are looking for. Make sure your house is clean and declutter you want people to think blank canvas when they come to look at it. Update the curtains to let in extra sunlight. Put up fresh flowers or make cookies to help ensure that the house smells nice right before the showing.
You’re Not Alone
Just because you have decided to sell your home by yourself it does not mean you have to do everything by yourself. The final choice is yours if you want to include other people in the process but if this is your first time selling you would be wise to make sure you consider at least the ones that I’ve mentioned in this article like inspector, appraiser, and lawyer. They will cost a few hundred dollars but they will be well worth it as they can save you a lot of time and from making some costly mistakes along the way. There are also a ton of online resources like ForSaleByOwner.com as well as your local library.
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