Steps To Selling A Home
Selling a home involves the process of coordinating efforts of various individuals and having patience. It is not an overnight process and requires consistent work and attention to detail.
When considering putting a house on the market sometimes it may be necessary to factor alternative options. If the housing market is not performing well and home values decrease it may be worth renting temporarily. This gives the house opportunity to appreciate while the owner benefits from offsetting income taxes with tax breaks. Unfortunately renting is not the perfect solution as rentals have inherent risks of tenants causing property damage. In addition if the house is sold after an expired rental the owner may be subject to taxes from rental profits earned.
What Are the Perks?
Deciding to sell the house provides significant advantages. Sellers are rewarded with tax-free capital gains (if any exist) and equity that can be used as down payment for another house. The first choice to make when selling a home is whether or not to hire a real estate agent. Hiring an agent relinquishes the owner of marketing, researching comps and listing the property. Disadvantages of hiring an agent are the sellers requirement to sign an Exclusive Seller Representative Agreement and pay the agent a commission. If the owner elects to sell the house without an agent they will inherent the sales and marketing responsibilities.
Regardless of whom lists the home basic selling protocols should be followed. Since 90% of home buyers search the internet for listings it’s necessary to have a strong web presence with plenty of pictures. The house should be clean and clutter-free. That includes a well maintained front lawn because 77% of online viewers perform a drive by.
Hosting an open house is a great way to generate a lot of traffic at once. During an open house ensure the home is well lit and appealing. Some sellers hire staging companies to organize furniture or replace furniture to give it a “model home” look.
Once a buyer has demonstrated serious interest the negotiating phase begins. The buyer will make an offer, which may result in a counter-offer and sometimes offer rejections on either-side. Once an offer has been accepted the next step is to hire an escrow agent. The escrow agent will hold the buyers down payment and hold the deed until closing. They will also manage recording of the deed by the appropriate company. In the interim the buyer will initiate a home inspection and title search while a closing attorney oversees the terms and conditions of the sale (final price, financial contingencies, possession date and closing date). The house inspection should be complete at this point with a final walk through clearing additional buyer funds for escrow.
Closing the Deal
Closing day is the big event when a cache of forms is signed by the buyer and seller. The forms the buyer sign include; the RESPA form, Affidavit Purchase Price and Transfer Deceleration. The seller signs the Transfer Deed Title, Bill of Sale, Affidavit of Title and 1099-S. This process can take up to the three hours preceding the transfer of keys and completed sale of the home.