1. When you decide to sell your house, try to time the sale so that it closes simultaneously with the
purchase of your next home. Unless you're wealthy enough to afford the luxury of owning two
properties at the same time, don't close on the purchase of your next home before your current one
2. Weigh the pros and cons of selling your house yourself. Be realistic about the amount of money
you can actually save by selling without an agent, and the amount of additional time and effort that
you must invest. If you want to sell without a real estate agent, be sure to hire a good real estate
lawyer and read a good house selling book cover to cover so you know what you're getting into.
3. Field a great team. Selling your house usually requires that you hire and work with various real
estate professionals (such as real estate agents, property inspectors, escrow officers, and,
possibly, tax, legal, or financial advisors). If you put the right players on your team, you maximize
your chances of a successful sale..
4. Get rid of the clutter in and around your home. First appearances mean everything. Your best
way to get top dollar and a fast sale is removing anything that would turn someone off. Get the big and
obvious stuff - dirty carpet, huge boxes in the living areas, pet stuff and the clutter. A little time can
make a big difference.
5. Disclose, disclose, disclose. If you have any doubts as to whether to disclose a defect or problem
with your house, err on the side of disclosure. Otherwise, you greatly increase your (and your real
estate broker's) chances of being party to a lawsuit initiated by disgruntled buyers. NOTE: When selling
a home in Virginia, you must sign a disclaimer form or a disclosure form. In this case, most sellers
avoid liability by disclaiming that they are aware of defects in the home. In this case, it is usually
wise to sign the disclaimer and decrease the chances of a buyer saying you were required to disclose.
6. Preparing your house for sale involves much more than just sticking a For Sale sign in your front
yard. To increase your chances of an efficient, top- dollar sale, obtain a good house inspection to
discover problems before they become deal killers, do the right corrective and cosmetic work
before putting your property on the market, and time the marketing of your house to coincide with a
strong selling season in your area.
7."What's it worth?" is the most critical question you'll ask when selling your house. To get the
answer, examine sales of houses comparable to yours in size, age, condition, and location (a good
agent can assist you). Price your house right, and it will sell, because informed buyers recognize
the value after seeing other houses with unrealistically high asking prices. This is where your real
estate broker can use the computer and his or her experience in the field to give a good price range.
8. Get the word out. To create the most interest in and competition for your house, you must develop
a comprehensive, well-coordinated marketing and advertising campaign plan.
9. Be ready to negotiate. Once you get an offer, your response should always be courteous. A low-ball
does not hurt you because you can reject it or counter-offer. Remember you can counter-offer full price
and no points. But when the deal hinges on a few dollars, be reasonable and negotiate to get as good
as possible price and terms.
10. Re-invest principal residence proceeds within 2 years. OK, assuming there's a profit. But remember that
you pay no taxes now (and maybe never) if you step up to a higher priced home. Check with a tax
professional for more tips and ideas. on it if you re-invest and buy another
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