Home Sellers Guide
There comes a time in life when you need to move on.
Whether you are making a job change, retiring, or just need a change of scenery, one thing is certain: Your main objective is to determine the best and most realistic price and achieve it in the least expensive and quickest amount of time.
You may think selling a house is easy; but ask yourself how many houses did you look at before you bought the one you own at present? How many other people do you suppose went through those homes before a buyer was found?
You may think that the first person who walks through you door will fall in love with the place, but perhaps you need to distance yourself from the other party by engaging a good Real Estate Agent.
You home will probably be the most valuable possession you will ever sell and Fisrt National Real Estate is here to help.
The "Home Seller's Guide" is available from First National Real Estate Bethlehem, Tauranga to assist you.
To contact a Property Consultant at Bethlehem First National click here we will send you a Home Seller's Guide
The "Home Seller's Guide" will guide you through the process, from selecting the right Real Estate agent, arriving at a market value for realistically valuing your home, preparing you home, for a quicker sale at the right price, and finally the move.
The Role of the Real Estate Agent
The Real Estate agent's role is to help you achieve your aims in the most efficient manner possible.
The agent act as a market reporter prividing experience and advice on what the market may pay for your home and the most effictive way of reaching potential purchaser.
Selling your home can be an arduous task but the right real estate agent will help make the pricess an easy one. Listen to their advice as the agent is acting in your best interests.
Some people attempt to sell their own home but it is difficult to do when emotion is involved and you are "too close" to the home you are trying to sell.
Real Estate agents have access to potential purchasers and they have the experience of knowing what the market has paid for similar homes to yours.
The additional money that you gain through obtaining a realistic price, implementing an effective marketing pland and selling your home sooner, generally well outweighs the cost of employing an experienced agent.
In summary, the major role of your real estate agent is to:
- Provide a realistic market appraisal.
- Advise on the best method of sale.
- Assist you in developing the most effective marketing plan.
- Implement the marketing plan.
- Advise on presentation of your home to the public.
- Bring the property before as many potential purchasers as possible.
- Present any offer.
- Negotiate the best price with the purchaser.
- Ensure that all requirements in the official sale of your home are fulfilled.
- Co-ordinate the settlement.
Types of Agreements
When you do decide on an agent, you will be asked to sign an Agency Agreement which will contain the fees you can expect to pay the agent when your home is sold. This is important because it will help you determine a proper budget for selling your property.
Accurate budgeting is vital, particularly if you are selling in order to "trade up".
You need to be sure before you put your property on the market that, after all the expenses such as the solicitor's and agent's fees, any repairs and your removal costs are accounted for, what you will safely get for your property will enable you to comfortably purchase the property you wanted.
Before you sign any Agreement with an agent you should read it carefully and make sure you understand it and your obligations. There are several kinds of agreements. The main agreements are:
- Exclusive Agency Agreement
An Exclusive Agency Agreement covers a set period with one real estate company and allows the agent to concentrate all their efforts inot the sale of your property. This type of agreemnt includes Auction, Tender or Private Treaty methods of sales.
- General Agency Agreement
You can sign this kind of agreemnt with a number of agents. The agent who introduces the purchaser and holds the deposit is entitled to the commission. However, it must be pointed out that quite often you may not get the same amount of service from agents on a General Agency Agreement and therefore it may take a longer period to sell you home.
Remember that real estae agents do not get paid unless they successfully complete a sale. If a house has not sold during the agreed period it is likely that the price placed on it is too high.
What is your property worth?
One of the major decisions to be made is what price to put your home on the market.
It is vital that a sound, realistic strategy is privided in setting a price that can ensure you of two things:
- Obtaining your asking price or very close to it; and
- Getting the sale sooner.
Through expert local knowledge your agent can establish a realistic price for your home based on its location, age, size, features and market variables such as interest rates and the availability of financing.
Avoid the temptation to be influenced by the experiences other people have had in the sale of their homes.
The sale price of your home should be based on prices achieved recently on similar properties within your neighbourhood.
Question the motives of anyone who may suggest that you could obtain a higher price. Remember the true value of your property will ultimately be determined by the purchaser.
When is the best time to sell?
Any time you're ready!
Spring is often considered the best time to sell. It's a time of optimism and with the weather clearing, more potential buyers will be out and about.
But, it's also a time when more sellers will put their homes on the market so there will be more competition.
Winter usually presents fewer buyer, but the buyers are usually more focused on purchase and traditionally there will be fewer homes on the market to choose from.
Of course, the further north, the less difference in the seasons, and accordingly, the less variance in selling conditions.
Would I get more if?
Your agent can advise you if improvements could realise a better price for your home. But, generally, while improvements may make you home more saleable, perhaps even shortening the sale time, they will not nexessarily achieve a better price.
Of course there are exceptions, and a small investment could be worth the outlay, especially if you don't intend to sell in the immediate future.
First National Rea Estate agents will be happy to advise whether you may be overcapitalising, even if you are just considering an extension or renovation.
To contact a Property Consultant at Bethlehem First National click here and we will send you a "Home Seller's Guide"
Reaching potential buyers
Selecting the best marketing plan to ensure your home is exposed to the maximun number of buyers is important in achieving the best price.
However quantity is not always the answer, a smaller, well planned campaign aimed at the right market can often bring the right result in a shorter time, especially if your home has featues which will make it attractive to an identifiable group.
For example, a home beside a popular golf course could be advertised to golf culb members.
In all cases it is important to select the newspapers, magazines and target areas which contain the most potential buyers for your type of property.
A good real estate agent will adivse you of the right advertising mix.
Almost always, the first item on the list will be a signboard.
Reasearch indicates that a large proportion of homes are sold to buyers in immediate areas which is why the signboard is so important. Not only identifying your property to those who have seen the home in the agent's window display, but also to someone who may have admired your home and drives or walks past every day.
And that may be the perosn who will buy your home.
Signboards come in a number of shapes and sizes, and of course, prices. Asimple board may be all that is required, or if the exterior of your property does not indicate the quality within, a picture board can be used to give a glimpse of the interior features.
Negotiating and accepting an offer
Always have the agent handle negotiations and should you be approached directly then it is wise to politely redirect the prospectvie purchaser to your agent.
The agent will present any offer in writing at which time you have the right to accept the offer or your can counter the offer at a price acceptable to you.
You must understand that if the purchaser does not wish to accept your "counter offer" then they can withdraw their original offer.
When considering an offer, take the following into account:
- Suitability of the deposit
- Terms of finance (either cash or subject to finance being arranged)
- Settlement date
Take advice from your agent when considering the offer.
To contact a Property Consultant at Bethlehem First National click here we will send a "Home Seller's Guide" to you
So you've found a buyer - what now?
Once you have found a buyer and agreed on the price, the contract which had been initially drawn up, can now be signed and normally a 10% deposit will be paid by the purchaser with the balance due on the settlement date agreed.
In the case of purchase at auction, the deposit must be paid and the contract signed on the day of the auction.
The deposit will be held in trust by your agent.
The purchaser may wish to organise an inspection of the home whether it by by a valuer or a building consultant. This will normally be included in the contract.
Once the contract is exchaned, it is a legally binding document. Normally a solicitor will handle the sale. They are experienced and knowledgeable of what can be a very complex process.
Should you not have an appropriate person to handle the sale, your agent will assist as they will have local contacts that they can recommend.
As part of the sale process, arrangements will be made for the balance to be transferred to your bank account or paid direct to you. It will be a normal process for the Agent to deduct the commission and any advertising costs (if applicable) from the deposit. The balance will then be forwarded to your solicitor prior to settlement.
Settlement day is the point at which the keys are handed to the purchaser and the property becomes their responsibility. It is important to note that up until that date the property is still legally yours and therefore such aspects as insurance remain your responsibility.
To contact a Property Consultant at Bethlehem First National click here and we will send you a "Home Seller's Guide"
What about your next home?
While you are selling your current property, your agent can also be working on finding your new home.
Your agent will help you by identifying your needs in relation to your new home and can assist you in finding a home to suit your family and your budget.
By dealing with a network like First National Real Estate, your new home can be found no matter where in the World you may be moving.
If the reason you're selling your home is because your are moving elsewhere, then First National Real Estate can assist in finding your new home, or even a place to rent while you look around.
First National Real Estate is Australasia's largest real estate network with approximately 600 offices throughout New Zealand and Australia. First National Real Estate also has other affiliations overseas.
Whether it is across town or across the nation, First National Real Estate can take the hassle out of moving.
First National can source information about your new area to help you relocate with a minimum fuss.
Your Home on Show
Whether by individual inspections arranged by your agent or through "Open Homes" set at predetermined times, here are some tips on how to maximise their effectiveness.
A Tidy Home says "Welcome"
Your home should be kept neat and tidy during the period of inspections. It should not necessarily be a "show place" but appear a comfortable home in which to live. Fresh flowers or indoor plants always brighten up a home.
Less is More!
While you're cleaning, think about each room and what furniture really needs to be in it. Rooms look smaller when they're crowded with sports equipment, excess furniture and general clutter. Clear out anything not needed to create a feeling of spaciousness. And don't forget your cupboards - keep them neat and not too full, to show that your home has plenty of storage space.
Repairs can make a Big Difference
Make sure that all minor repairs are completed. Stiching doors and windows, loose door knobs, faulty plumbing, peeling paint or faulty flywire may effect your sale.
Letting the Sun Shine in
Let plenty of light into your home. Nothing improves atmosphere more than brightness. On a dull day it is advisable to switch lights on prior to arrival of prospective purchasers.
Make them Comfortable
A warm, comfortable home on cold days, particularly if you have an open fire place, adds a feeling of cosiness; on a hot day don't forget to turn on the air conditioner or fan (or simply let the breeze flow through). You may like to set the dining table and have the coffee on to give your property a homely atmosphere.
Inspections: Three's a Crowd
Avoid having too many people present during inspections. First Nationa Real Estate Property Consultants know the buyer's requirements and can better emphasise the features of your home most important to the purchaser.
Silence is Golden
Be courteous but don't force conversation with a potential buyer. The prospective purchaser wants to inspect your home - not pay a social call.
However should you be asked questions about the home, the neighbours or the district, answer them truthfully and directly.
8 weeks before the move
- If you are using a professional mover, get estimates from different moving companies and choose the one that is best suited to your needs. If you are moving yourself, get estimates from truck rental companies. Be sure to reserve in advance.
- Draw a floor plan of your new hme. This will help you decide what furniture stays and what furniture will go.
- Use up things that can't be moved - such as food in your freezer and flammable household cleaning supplies and aerosols.
- Contact the First National Property Consultant, information office or local council in your future location and start gathering information about your new home town.
6 weeks before the move
- Discuss costs, insurance, packing, loading, delivery and the claims procedure with your mover.
- Inventory all of your possessions now. Determine what can be sold and what can be donated to charity.
- Get copies of your records from doctors, dentists, lawyers, accountants, etc. Make arrangements to transfer your children's school records.
- Go to the post office to obtain change of address cards and start filling them out. Don't forget about chaing the address on magazine subscriptions, catalogues, etc.
4 weeks before the move
- If you have contracted to have the mover do all the packing for you, arrange to have this task completed a day or two before loading the truck.
- If you need it, arrange for storage.
- Clean or repair any furniture, curtains, or carpets that need it.
- Hold a garage sale. The extra cash may be useful for any unexpected additional costs that may arise after the move.
- If you are moving yourself, figure out how many boxes you'll need. (Many truck rental companies will provide this service).
- Do-it-yourselvers will need to calculate the cubic metres of the boxes plus allow for the bulk of the non-boxable items such as bed and tables, to estimate the size of the truck needed.
3 weeks before the move
- Assemble packing materials
- Furniture pads
- Hand truck / dolly
- Packing tape
- Bubble wrap
- Styrofoam "peanuts"
- Nylon pakcing string and rope
- Crumpled newspapers
- Utility knife
- Large self-stick labels
- Felt-tip markers
- Boxes, boxes,boxes
- Begin pakcing items that you won't need. Don't pack too much weight in an unreinforced box.
- Label all boxes with contents and intended destination in your new home.
- Arrange to cancel utilities and services at your old home and have them installed at your new home.
- Arrange appropriate transit insurance for yur possessions, if you are hiring a moving vehicle.
- Make travel and hotel reservations (if required)
2 weeks before the move
- Arrange to transfer all of your bank accounts to your new branch location.
- Make any special arrangements to move pets, such as purchasing airline reservations and travelling containers. Consult your veterinarian about how to make moving easier for your pet.
- Inform current phone company the date of your move.
- Make arrangements for a telephone service at your new home.
- Have your car checked and serviced for the trip, ensuring tyres are in good shape and fluids are at adequate levels.
- Cancel any direct deposit or automatic payment arrangements on bank accounts you are closing.
- Cancel delivery services.