Real Estate Reality Check
Three Steps to Choosing Realtors and Simplifying the Sale of Your Home
You’ve decided to sell your house, what’s next?
You’ve heard all the horror stories involving unstable markets, plummeting prices, new mortgage rules, unethical agents and that the current market holds nothing but disappointment and despair. Selling a house, even in this market, is not about surrendering to the forces of real estate and taking what you can get. As a responsible seller you can walk away fulfilled and content by following these three steps:
Find a Realtor You Can Trust
Working with a professional who buys and sells real estate on a regular basis is of the utmost importance. We all know fun Bobby who promises low/no commission on your deal, but fun Bobby hasn’t sold a house in years! He is well-meaning but ill-equipped to effectively position you in a fast-changing and less understood market. There are plenty of capable realtors;, find your realtor-soul-mate, someone you can relate to and have an honest working relationship with. Ask friends for referrals or visit open houses and take time to ‘speed date’ with agents. Interview your top choices, ask hard questions, get a history and take a leap of faith.
There are plenty of capable realtors;, find your realtor-soul-mate, someone you can relate to and have an honest working relationship with.
Organize Your Finances
Review your finances and find out what your needs are. There might be penalties to closing a mortgage early. Can you take your good rates from two years ago with you on a new purchase? Mortgage rules have changed since your last transaction; if you’re moving up, find out how you are affected.
Again, find a professional with a good understanding of the industry – someone to advise you while shopping around to find the best possible product to fit your needs and your finances. Your mortgage is going to be your biggest long-term expense. Don’t sign the first one you’re offered. Find someone to put you on the right financial path.
Contrary to the slightly dramatic stories you might hear, real estate is not a player’s or a gambler’s game. You don’t go to auction hoping to win, you strategize based on facts and information. Know your market. Get out there and see what’s available. What are you up against? Know the price differences between a semi-detached and a detached home, a 2-bdrm or 3-bdrm house, powder room, parking garage, etc. Learn the numbers and find out where you fit on the sliding scale.
A good realtor will sit with you to discuss past sales, present prices and projections. How you place your product in the marketplace can make all the difference in a positive sale price and experience. Don’t be fooled by agents who speak of over-inflated numbers to secure your listing. If it looks like a duck and quacks like a duck, it is a duck.
By completing these steps, you will position yourself to truly and confidently understand the market you will be selling in.
You know the value of your home and are aware of the timing, pricing and preparation going into the sale.You also know why you entered this process: Your motivation for initiating the sale of your current home; selling and buying in the same market is always sensible.
You are in the right place with the right knowledge, making decisions that make sense for you and your family.