When you sell your home, you’ll likely get an earful of advice about finding the right agent. You’re less likely to hear what you should do before your first meeting with that agent. If you don’t prepare, it could affect your bottom line.
Anything you can do to make the Realtor’s job easier is going to benefit you during the process and when sale time comes what you want is the highest net return on your investment.
The most important thing to remember is that you’re most likely going to be working closely with your Realtor on a big transaction, so it’s a good idea to be prepared and ready to provide him or her with as much information as possible right from the start.
Here are things the seller needs to do before contacting and hiring a real estate agent.
Give yourself a quick refresher on your local market, as conditions have likely changed since you bought. The goal is for you and your Realtor to be on the same page in terms of the value.
Sometimes you’ll find conditions will be in your favor, and sometimes you may be disappointed with the current market, but regardless of what you discover, your research will help you and your Realtor create a realistic plan for selling your home.
Sellers should be realistic, using homes with comparable square footage, the same number of bedrooms and bathrooms and a similar level of amenities. It’s also important for sellers to consider their home’s condition relative to the comparable sales.
Before meeting with a listing agent, pull your loan documents and turn that estimate into a precise figure.
Knowing your loan amount upfront will help a Realtor know what strategy to take with your home. The easiest property to sell is unencumbered property, But that’s not always possible.
Realtors want to know about any issues like liens or property disputes so they can deal with them before the house hits the market.
Think about any tax issues, disputes you have had with contractors or other problems that could have allowed a creditor to put a lien on the house. Be honest about disputes with neighbors, especially if they concern property lines, because it’s easier to settle those matters before listing the property. And if you’re selling a property that belonged to a deceased relative, make sure the house has a clean title before contacting a Realtor.
It should go without saying that you want an agent to walk into a clean home. Think of it as making a great first impression. If the Realtor believes your home is fantastic, he or she will be persuaded to market it at a higher value.
Curb appeal is major concern. You want a Realtor to have a mental picture of your home being a prize, so if you need to mow the lawn or prune the bushes, do it.
While it’s tempting to add value to your home ahead of listing, it’s better to hold off on improvements, at least until you’ve hired your agent.