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14 Steps to Sell Your Home – Home Selling Process for Success

By May 20, 2024June 3rd, 2024Home Sellers, Judi's Blog

The local market in the Plano and Frisco areas is as sizzling hot as the Texas temperatures. With home values at their peak, now is the best opportunity to sell your house and make the most of this lucrative market!

Selling your home is a big decision, but you’re not alone in this journey. Let’s explore the steps in the home-selling process together to ensure you make the most of today’s housing market when you put your house on the market.

Your Best Tools for Home Selling Success

Putting your home up for sale is a big decision. Especially if it’s your first time, there are many considerations in preparing to sell your home, which can be very stressful for some. To start, you’ll need to prepare your home for sale, set a competitive price, market your property, negotiate offers, and close the deal—all of which we’ll cover in the guide.

The best way to minimize the stress of selling your house is to know the selling process and be armed with the correct information and tools. Then, with the right approach and preparations, you might enjoy taking these steps to the next chapter in your life.

Our step-by-step guide will help you sell your home quickly, minimize disruptions, and obtain the best sales price. Now, doesn’t that sound stress-free?

Selling Your Home: Process Time

Most home sellers hope for a quick and smooth sale process. However, the timeline is not always predictable, and it varies by neighborhood. This uncertainty can be unsettling. But remember, your real estate professional is your guide in this journey. They know your market best and can provide informed insights, giving you the reassurance you need during this process.

Keep in mind that market conditions and time on the market can significantly influence the speed of your home sale. Understanding these variables, such as the home’s condition, the number of homes for sale in your area, and the demand for your neighborhood, is crucial.

For instance, in the popular Frisco, Plano, Allen, and Prosper areas, the median sales price is around $700,000, and homes typically sell within 24 days. Homes priced well above this range will take longer as the number of qualified buyers is limited.

These figures will change with current market conditions, but this knowledge will help you set realistic expectations and be better prepared for selling a home.

Step-by-Step Home Selling Process

The home-selling process is generally the same across the country but can vary slightly depending on state regulations and real estate agents’ preferences. This step-by-step guide provides an overview of the process of selling a house, giving you the insights needed to prepare your home for sale. Some of these steps may overlap or happen simultaneously, depending on your situation.

Step 1: Partner with a trusted real estate professional

When you decide to sell your house, finding the best realtor to work with can be one of the most critical decisions in a successful home-selling process. An experienced real estate agent will walk you through the entire process start to finish:

  • Improving the condition of your property to maximize curb appeal and ensure essential repairs like HVAC or plumbing don’t hold up your sale
  • Staging and marketing so your property stands out and reaches many potential buyers
  • Setting the right purchase price. When a home shows well and is priced according to market value, it will sell more quickly
  • Negotiating complex financial transactions

An experienced real estate agent provides the knowledge and expertise to help make your home-selling experience enjoyable and maximize your return.

Ask your friends and coworkers for referrals to find the right agent for you. A referral is often the best process because you learn from their experience and have peace of mind. You’ll also get a more realistic idea of the process and the agent’s skills from a first-hand perspective.

Try local directories with ratings and reviews or comparative publications like D Magazine’s Best Realtors in Dallas for more sources. Also, check out this article for more information on how a real estate agent adds value when you sell a house.

Interview two or three realtors so you understand their process to determine which one will do your home justice and provide the level of service you need.

Step 2: On-site visit & walk-through

Now that you have the perfect real estate agent, it’s time for action. Your agent will kick off the home selling process by visiting your home and conducting a thorough top-to-bottom, side-to-side walk-through of your property.

During this process, they gain valuable insight into the features and amenities that make your home unique and appealing. They are also looking for any items needing attention or repair before listing.

Be prepared to spend at least 1-2 hours with the agent, depending on the size of your home. Be completely open and honest about the home’s condition, recently repaired items, or other issues that might impact the sale of your home. It’s much better to have everything on the table now to prepare a solid game plan than to have unpleasant surprises pop up later.

Step 3: Determine the sale price

After the on-site visit, your real estate agent will conduct a market analysis to develop a listing price strategy for your home. This comparative market analysis will include looking at similar homes in your area and your neighborhood’s sales trends. Your agent will also identify and develop a list of key features and amenities for your home. This list will help strategically position your homes asking price to appeal to prospective buyers.

Determining the right sale price for your home is one of the most critical factors in selling success. For more detailed information on pricing strategy, see this How Much is My House Worth article.

Step 4: Get home ready for sale

Now it’s time to get your home ready for all those prospective buyers who will soon be at your door. Naturally, you want to make a good first impression, and your realtor will help you prioritize necessary repairs, maintenance issues, refresh ideas, and any upgrades that will pay off at a higher sale price. In addition, because they have connections with third-party repair companies, you may enjoy competitive pricing and get repairs completed faster.

Get ready to make a list, starting with deep cleaning and decluttering. Consider hiring a home staging professional to stage your home is always a great idea. Then, be sure to ask your agent before you hire any vendors. Your realtor will have helpful information and contacts for key vendors to help make this step worry-free. For more details on getting ready to sell a home, check out this article on Top Things to Do Before you List your Home.

Step 5: Provide seller’s disclosures

Documentation is required for all home sales regarding knowledge of lead-based paint or other material facts about the home’s condition. Other disclosures include recent repairs, damaged conditions, or improvements made to the home’s structural, electrical, or other functional aspects.

By law, when selling a house, you must disclose anything material during the disclosure process. Even if repairs have been made, it’s much better to disclose now than have it come up later and delay or disrupt the closing. Always be completely honest and over-disclose all things regarding your home’s condition.

Step 6: Market your home

When selling a home your real estate agent will provide tremendous value. Experienced agents know your neighborhood and have the marketing strategy to market your home to attract more qualified buyers. Your prime selling time is in the first 2-3 weeks of listing. Be sure to capitalize on this prime selling period with professional marketing to increase traffic and showings quickly.

Your agent will prepare a comprehensive marketing plan that includes professional photos, robust online and print marketing materials, digital ads, MLS listing, social media, open houses, yard signs, and directories.

Today, 90% of home buyers find their homes online. This means your real estate agent’s online marketing and networking skills are vital in the quality and quantity of offers received.

Step 7: Show your home

Once your agent lists your home in MLS, your home is available for the buyer’s agent to make appointments to view your home. Your agent will set up everything and discuss schedules for an open house and showings to potential buyers at times convenient for you.

First impressions matter, so make sure your home is clean and free of odors and clutter to make the best impression during showings and open houses. It is also best to remove pets or put them in an area out of the way.

Step 8: Review offers & begin negotiations

Let the negotiations commence! After all the hard work of getting your home ready, marketing, and showing –it’s time to start receiving offers and negotiating the sale.

Buyers will express their interest in purchasing your home through a purchase agreement delivered by the buyer’s agent to your listing agent. In a hot-selling market like Frisco and Plano, you may receive multiple offers ratehr quickly. Depending on your timeline for selling, you should consider asking your agent what they think about waiting a period of time before you accept an offer as there may be more potential buyers submitting offers.

Rely on your agent’s experience and expertise to guide you through this process. For example, don’t worry about lowball offers. Every offer expresses interest and should be viewed as a starting point.

Your agent will field and verify each buyer’s offer and guide you on counteroffers or contingency clauses.

Typically, the negotiation process will bounce back and forth a few times between the buyers and sellers. This back and forth is very typical and nothing to worry about. Be open to compromise on some things and be open to the creative negotiation strategies your agent offers. They have your best interests in mind and will work tirelessly to help make the right deal happen for you.

Once both parties have reached mutually agreeable terms, your contract is executed. This agreement will contain contingencies and special conditions the buyer and seller must fulfill before closing.

Step 9: Conduct a title search and obtain the title policy

The next step is to open escrow with the executed sales agreement completed. This process includes conducting a title search to check for any pending claims against the property and obtaining a Title Insurance policy. The Title Insurance policy helps protect parties in case there are errors in the records or mistakes in the review process.

Your buyer probably obtained pre-approval for a specific loan amount before making their offer. If financing is involved, the buyer will finalize funding in preparation for the closing.

Step 10: Complete the required home inspection

It is normal for the buyer to order an independent home inspection report of the home’s structural and functional condition. Each home inspection follows a standardized checklist based on the State.

Additional inspections may include a roof certification, pool inspection, pest/termite inspection, or sewer inspection. The Buyer pays all inspection fees, and they may elect to share the inspection report with the Seller.

Step 11: Obtain a home appraisal

The Buyer’s mortgage company will order a professional appraisal of your home. The lender requires this appraisal for every home purchase to ensure the home’s actual value justifies the loan amount. Don’t be stressed if the appraisal comes back below the selling price. Your experienced agent may have prepared you for this and will be ready to work through this situation if needed.

Step 12: Complete repairs

Once you have negotiated and agreed to repairs required by the Buyer’s home inspection, you typically have 15-30 days to complete the activities before the closing date. Repairs should be completed 3-4 days before closing to allow the Buyer time to re-inspect before closing. Repairs are negotiable, and your realtor can help you through this tricky part of the home-selling process.

Step 13: Close the deal

The day you’ve been waiting for “Closing day”! Finally, it’s time to sign the title and escrow documents to close the process. The closing process is typically held at a title company’s office, with a title company closer or, in some States, a real estate attorney handling the review and signing of the closing documents. Your real estate agent will be with you on the closing date to answer any questions and guide you through the process.

Your agent will also be able to walk you through the funding process and make sure all required bank information is obtained to facilitate the funding.

Once signed, you’ll hand over the keys, garage door openers, and other items needed for the buyer’s new home.

Step 14: The final step, Celebrate!

Selling a home can be an exciting time! The only thing left is to celebrate this wonderful success with family and friends! Congratulations on selling your home.

About the Judi Wright Team

Judi Wright, The Judi Wright Team, is a real estate group specializing in Frisco, Plano, and the surrounding areas and the suburbs of Dallas. Named the “Best Realtor in Dallas” by D Magazine 17 times and a Five Star Realtor with Texas Monthly 13 times. Judi is also a Company-Wide Top Performer with Ebby Halliday, a Berkshire Hathaway affiliate.

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