Five Things to do Before You Sell Your Home
1. Get estimates from a reliable repairperson on items that need to be replaced soon, a roof or worn carpeting, for example. In this way, buyers will have a better sense of how much these needed repairs will affect their costs.
2. Have a termite inspection to prove to buyers that the property is not infested.
3. Get a pre-sale home inspection so you'll be able to make repairs before buyers become concerned and cancel a contract.
4. Gather together warranties and guarantees on the furnace, appliances, and other items that will remain with the house.
5. Fill out a residential property disclosure form provided by your sales associate. Take the time to be sure that you don't forget problems, however minor, that might create liability for you after the sale.
Ten Ways to Make Your House More Sellable
You have one chance to make a good first impression. First impressions can be lasting. Appearances matter. Let those two sayings become your mantra as you prepare to sell your home. Follow the 10 suggestions listed below to ensure that your home sparkles. Every minute you spend sprucing up your home will be worth it, either in terms of increased sales price, a quicker sale, or both.
1. Get rid of clutter
Throw out or file stacks of newspapers and magazines. Pack away most of your small decorative items and family photos. Clear countertops as much as possible. Store small appliances out of sight in the kitchen. Store out-of-season clothing to make closets seem roomier. Clean out the garage. Create the impression that your home is move-in ready.
2. Let in the light
Wash your windows, skylights and screens and open your drapes and blinds to let more light into the interior.
3. Keep everything extra clean
Keep everything extra clean. Wash fingerprints from light switch plates. Mop and wax floors. Clean the stove and refrigerator. Wash the woodwork around windows and doors and do touch up painting as needed. A clean house makes a better first impression and convinces buyers that the home has been well maintained.
4. Make minor repairs
Make minor repairs that can create a bad impression. Small problems, such as sticky doors, torn screens, cracked caulking, or a dripping faucet, may seem trivial, but they'll give buyers the impression that the house isn't well maintained.
5. Change light bulbs
Put higher wattage bulbs in light sockets to make rooms seem brighter, especially in dark rooms. Replace any burned out bulbs.
6. Clean the yard
Tidy your garden. Cut the grass, rake the leaves, trim the bushes, and edge the walks. Put a pot or two of bright flowers near the entryway. Set the stage for the new buyer.
7. Get rid of smells
Clean carpeting and drapes to eliminate cooking odors, smoke, and pet smells. Open the windows to let fresh air in the home.
8. Check out your driveway
Patch holes in your driveway and reapply sealant, if applicable.
9. Do your yardwork
Clean leaves and debris from gutters.
10. Make the first impression
Paint your front door or buy a new one if needed. Polish your front doorknob and door numbers. Remember, you only have one chance to make that first impression!
Information from REALTORŪ Magazine Online
It's important to understand what legal responsibilities your real estate salesperson has to you and to other parties in the transactions. Below is an explanation of what type of agency relationship you may establish with him or her and with the brokerage company.
1. Seller's representative (also known as a listing agent or seller's agent). A seller's agent is hired by and represents the seller. All fiduciary duties are owed to the seller. The agency relationship usually is created by a listing contract.
2. Subagent. The subagent works with the buyer as a customer but owes the same fiduciary duties to the listing broker and the seller. Sub-agency usually arises when a cooperating sales associate from another brokerage, who is not representing the buyer-customer as a buyer's representative (an exclusive buyer's representation agreement has not been signed) or operating in a non-agency relationship, shows property to a buyer. Although a subagent cannot assist the buyer-customer in any way that would be detrimental to the seller, a buyer-customer can expect to be treated honestly by the subagent. It is important that subagents fully explain their duties to buyer-customers.
3. Buyer's representative (also known as a buyer's agent). A real estate licensee who is hired by prospective buyers (an exclusive buyer's representation agreement has been signed) to represent them in a real estate transaction. The buyer's rep works in the client's best interest throughout the transaction and owes fiduciary duties to the buyer-client. The buyer-client can pay the licensee directly through a negotiated fee, or the buyer's rep may be paid by the seller or by a commission split with the listing broker.
4. Disclosed dual agent. Dual agency is a relationship in which the brokerage firm represents both the buyer and the seller in the same real estate transaction. Dual agency relationships do not carry with them all of the traditional fiduciary duties to the clients - the duty of confidentiality to one client is in conflict with the duty of full disclosure to the other client. Dual agents will therefore owe limited fiduciary duties. Because of the potential for conflicts of interest in a dual-agency relationship, it's vital that all parties give their informed consent. In many states, this consent must be in writing. Disclosed dual agency, in which both the buyer and the seller are told that the agent is representing both of them is legal in most states.
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