Important Things To Know:

  1. There are first-time Sellers and there are skilled Sellers. To be a skilled Seller, generally, takes having the experience of going through the sales of as many as 5+ properties before feeling like you fully understand the experience.
  2. If you are an investor, you may require an agent, with additional and familiar resources available for you in order to do a 1031 tax-deferred exchange. There are both regular and reverse exchanges, each with different rules of compliance to meet Federal guidelines.
  3. If your property is tenant-occupied, let your agent know if you need specialty attorneys for advice, and be sure to have leases, notices to tenants, etc. available for review.
  4. If your property is a conservatorship, a trust or a probate, these each have different rules for everything to marketing, disclosures, how documents are signed and by whom, etc. Oftentimes, your documentation proving the way the property is held in title or being sold will go through review by your agent, their broker, the title company, one or more attorneys, and sometimes a judge, as well.
  5. If you have a court-assigned Trustee or Conservator, this too requires special skill by your agent in order to navigate through working with a third-party with full signing and decision-making power for the property.
  6. In preparing to sell, oftentimes, and without expert advice, Sellers decide to make changes and updates to the property. Something as seemingly harmless as choosing to put in carpeting over hardwood or veneer floors can make a big difference in how your home is perceived for desirability by actively-shopping buyers. The same goes for taking out walls without permits, the color of paint and even changes to the gardens and lighting. Your agent has access to multiple sources for advice in this regard. Plus, the agent understands what brings more or less desirability for marketing purposes.
  7. It is always recommended to do work with a permit, and, if required, be sure to get proof that it gets signed off by an inspector. Many counties allow over-the-counter permits to be pulled by an owner, and with very simplistic drawings required (much like stick figures a child might draw).
  8. Some counties require sewer lateral inspections, including the work being done by the Seller, prior to end of sale. Some counties require a resale inspection, which entails an area inspector coming through the property to be sure everything has been done up to code and with a permit. If it has not, you may need to do work prior to marketing, and that could have you miss a timely marketing period. Even a new roof layer or a tear-off requires a signed-off permit in most counties, so be sure you get a copy of the proof. (And be sure to read and fully understand what is required in order to transfer a roof warranty (and not just roof materials) to a new owner.)
  9. Your agent may recommend several different inspections by service people at your property prior to marketing, and will know which inspectors are the best choice for your specific property. These are, generally, paid at the time of the inspection.
  10. Your agent may recommend a stager as the best choice for your specific property. Should you hire the stager, just like every other aspect of your sale, your agent will be overseeing the stager and their work crew to be sure what you are agreeing to pay for actually gets done and completed in a timely and professional manner. Most all of these costs are paid in stages throughout the process of getting ready to market and during the sale period.
  11. The majority of Buyers are looking for nice curb appeal, a safe location that will appreciate over time, cleanliness, good maintenance done over time by the present owner, and transportation choices that fit their lifestyle, with few, if any, surprises after the sale closes. Views and a good layout are a plus, as is parking and a washer and dryer in a practical location within the home. Sometimes a pretty garden or the angle of the sun at dawn, or being on the top floor of a condominium building, or peacefulness, or privacy are of high value to them. If your prior agent did their job well, you own a property that they helped you choose because it might eventually have good resale value. So, the more amenities you can offer, the better you will do upon sale.
  12. It is highly recommended that all your listing marketing go through the MLS (Multiple Listing Service) from the start, as this exposes your property to every potential buyer quickly.