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The Six Most Common Questions Asked by Home Sellers

 

Home sellers are often emotional when selling their beloved home. Even when selling in order to move up to a bigger/better home, there can be a tinge of remorse. Perhaps it’s the door jamb where they recorded their kids’ height every year. Sometimes heirs are selling homes for loved ones who have passed, and that’s another jumble of emotions.  There are numerous reasons people sell their home, and Realtor.com has compiled the list of questions Realtors most often hear from sellers (and I have answered them).

  1. How much needs to be done to my house before putting it on the market?
    Over the course of three decades of selling homes, the answer is simple “nothing”. You don’t need to do anything in order to sell your home other than to call me. However, if you want to sell your home for the highest price, you might consider some sprucing up. At a minimum you want to get your gardener on board and get the exterior spiffed out. Typically pressure washing and professional window cleaning are well worth the expense. You are moving anyway, so now is the time to pack, toss and donate – get rid of the clutter. As far as the inside, please contact a real estate agent to learn which fix-its will get you the highest return on your investment. Learn how to get curb appeal here:how much is your home worth
    How much is my house worth?
  2. Your home is worth what a buyer is willing to pay. This is where an experienced real estate professional is critical. Once you list your home for sale, it’s a product. Your Realtor’s job is to market your home so that you can sell at the highest possible price. This includes helping you decide which improvements or repairs are worth your investment, furniture placement and/or staging discussion. Your agent’s marketing plan will impact your value. Learn why some homes list at the wrong price.
  3. How long will it take to sell my home?
    Currently, most Los Angeles homes priced under $1,000,000 should sell within two weeks. This allows ample time for online and print advertising, broker’s open house and open house(s) to the public.
  4. Is staging really important?
    Staging is critical for confusing floor plans and homes with incurable defects. In these instances a buyer needs to be emotionally drawn to the home. Staging small bedrooms (especially a master) will make the room appear larger. If your furniture is old and outdated, slip covers may work, but beat up furniture will make your home appear worn.
  5. Should I be present when buyers view my house?
    When the owner is present most buyers will be uncomfortable making comments, opening closets, cabinets, etc. In addition, the owner may oversell the home, or make statements that the buyer might misconstrue… which can result in problems later.
  6. What is the agent’s commission?
    Real estate commissions in Los Angeles vary but typically run from 5 – 6 % of the selling price. Keep in mind that the commission is typically split with the agent who represents the buyer. Make certain your listing contract spells out how much the buyer’s agent will receive – anything less than 2 ½ % may mean that your home won’t be shown – buyer’s agents typically earn  2 ½ – 3 %. The more important question is what your agent is going to do to market your home and earn their commission. A discounted commission is not a bargain when the marketing plan is poor.  A top notch marketing plan is what will sell your home for the highest possible price. Your home should be photographed by a professional and be advertised both online and in print. Be more concerned with your bottom line than the commission charged.

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