Selling your home — and potentially buying a new one — can be an exciting process and a chance for a fresh start. But, it can also be incredibly overwhelming.
First, you’ll need to part with all that dirt and grime that has developed in the little nooks and crannies. Then, you need to start thinking about what fixes to make and how to get them done in time to get your home on the market and sell it quickly. Will you paint? Fix that leaking faucet? Add some curb appeal with landscaping out front? And once you’re ready to list, how will you make sure people actually want to make an offer? And then comes negotiating with the buyer and closing the deal.
The good news is — you don’t have to go it alone. There are plenty of professionals out there who do all these things on a regular basis and are experts at making your home look its best. Here are 9 people you should get to know well when selling your home.
1. Real estate agent
A good real estate agent can be worth their weight in gold. While it may be tempting to sell your home as a for-sale-by-owner (FSBO), statistics show you’ll sell your home faster and for more money when using an agent.
Your agent can also give you a good idea of how much it will cost to sell your home and go line-by-line through your seller’s net sheet. Find a local, experienced agent who can lead you through every step of the process — from listing price and marketing to negotiating and closing.
2. Real estate attorney
Real estate attorneys are specifically trained to know the ins and outs of everything related to real estate and the law.
Twenty-one U.S. states require you hire an attorney when selling your home. In the other states, your real estate agent may have enough working knowledge to help you through a normal transaction, but you may still opt to hire an attorney. If you’re dealing with a more complex sale, using private financing, or have any questions involving real estate law or taxes — you’ll want to hire a real estate attorney.
3. Repair person or contractor
Even if you’re selling your home “as is” and especially if you’ve deferred maintenance on your home, you’ll rely heavily on a repair person or contractor both when prepping your home for sale and also with any repairs needed after the buyer’s inspection. You may be able to cross off a couple of projects on your own, but if you want to list your home any time soon, consider hiring a professional. They can usually do the work quicker and better than a DIY job.
A professional painter can make quick work of a fresh coat of paint in several rooms in your home. If you have unique or vibrant colors, your home will be much more likely to sell if you paint over with a nice, classy neutral.
You may have time to paint a small room yourself, but if your home needs a refresh, hire an experienced painter to get the job done quickly to sell your home fast.
A home stager may feel like a luxury, but it can help potential buyers visualize themselves in your home — resulting in it selling more quickly and for more money. While cleaning and decluttering also have a huge impact, a stager strategically places furniture and other items to create an inviting atmosphere that will appeal to home buyers and give you an edge over other sellers.
It’s true what they say: You only get one chance at a first impression. And the exterior of your home can make or break a sale. If a potential buyer isn’t impressed by your home’s exterior or landscaping, you may never get the chance to show them the inside and close the deal. You don’t need to go all out, but adding some interesting foliage and bushes can create a feeling that makes buyers want to check out the rest of your home.
Good photography is key to selling your home. Almost all potential buyers will first view your home online — through your local multiple listing service (MLS) or websites such as Zillow or Trulia. Professional photographers know what buyers are looking for and can show your home in its best light.
Despite your best efforts, it can be hard to get your home eat-off-the-floors clean. A professional cleaner can be relatively inexpensive but make your home sparkling. They’ll know how to get that grime off the tub or remove the hard water stains on your faucet and notice things you likely won’t.
Although your buyer may hire their own inspector, it is becoming more common for a seller to conduct an inspection and make the results available to potential buyers. This is especially helpful if you’re looking to sell your home fast, as your buyer may deem your own inspection as adequate and not make you wait for their own.
Bottom line: Use your experts
We all want a pat on the back for a DIY job well done — but that’s best left to palette furniture and decorative door hangers, not selling your home.
Find local experts who can make your life easier, provide an excellent service and know what it takes to sell a home. In the end, you’ll have a much more pleasant and stress-free experience, and you may even benefit with a higher selling price and a faster closing date!