First-Time Home Seller Tips: How to Identify a Strong Offer

Looking to sell a home for the first time? Ultimately, a first-time home seller must be able to identify a strong offer for his or her residence. With extensive real estate insights, a first-time home seller may be better equipped than others to accept a strong offer and accelerate the home selling cycle.

Identifying a strong offer for a home can be quick and easy – even for a first-time home seller.

Now, let’s take a look at three tips to help a first-time home seller differentiate between a strong offer and a poor one.

1. Analyze the Housing Market

The housing market can be complex, particularly for a first-time home seller. Fortunately, many free, easy-to-access resources are available to help a home seller learn about the ins and outs of the housing sector so he or she can plan accordingly.

For example, a home seller can check the prices of homes available in his or her area via a simple online search. This home seller can even find out how long a particular house has been available, whether the price of a home has been reduced over time and much more.

With in-depth knowledge of the real estate market, a home seller can study how his or her residence stacks up against the competition. Then, this home seller can establish a competitive price for his or her home, increasing the likelihood that he or she will receive a number of strong offers.

2. Understand Your Home Both Inside and Out

A home appraisal is a must for a first-time or experienced home seller, and perhaps it is easy to understand why.

During a home appraisal, a property inspector will take a close look at a house’s interior and exterior. This inspector will provide a report at the appraisal’s completion that highlights a house’s strengths and weaknesses too.

For a home seller, an appraisal offers a valuable learning opportunity. It enables a home seller to gain deep insights into a home’s condition that he or she may struggle to obtain elsewhere. That way, a home seller can complete assorted home repairs before listing a residence and boost his or her chances of receiving multiple offers that exceed a house’s initial asking price.

3. Consult with a Real Estate Agent

A first-time home seller should meet with a real estate agent and discuss the differences between a strong offer and a poor one.

Thanks to a real estate agent, a home seller can seamlessly navigate the entire property selling journey as well.

Typically, a real estate agent will help a home seller establish a fair price for a residence from the get-go. This housing market professional also can offer helpful tips throughout the home selling journey to ensure a home seller can get the best possible results.

Don’t leave anything to chance as you prepare to list a residence for the first time. Instead, take advantage of the aforementioned tips, and a first-time home seller should have no trouble distinguishing between a strong offer and a subpar proposal.

3 Pricing Tips for First-Time Home Sellers

If you plan to sell a house for the first time, it pays to think about how you’ll price your house. By doing so, you can establish a competitive price for your residence and boost your chances of a fast, profitable home sale.

Now, let’s take a look at three pricing tips that every first-time home seller needs to know.

1. Perform Housing Market Research

Although you may have bought your home in the peak of a buyer’s market, it is important to note that the real estate sector constantly fluctuates. This means the value of your home today is unlikely to match its value from a few years ago.

Before you price your house, you should take a look at a variety of housing market data. This information is readily available and will enable you to take an informed approach to the real estate market.

For example, a first-time home seller should examine the prices of available houses that are similar to his or her own. With this housing market data, a home seller can find out how his or her residence stacks up against the competition.

It also helps to review the prices of recently sold houses in your city or town. That way, you can determine whether you’re about to enter a buyer’s or seller’s market and set realistic pricing expectations for your residence.

2. Conduct a Home Appraisal

A home appraisal is exceedingly valuable, particularly for a first-time home seller who is uncertain about the value of his or her house.

During a home appraisal, a property appraiser will examine a residence’s condition, as well as various housing market data. Then, this appraiser will provide a comprehensive report that includes a property valuation.

By completing a home appraisal, a first-time home seller can receive expert property insights. Plus, the appraisal enables a home seller to identify a property’s strengths and weaknesses.

3. Collaborate with a Real Estate Agent

A real estate agent is a housing market professional who is committed to client results. As such, a real estate agent will go above and beyond the call of duty to help a first-time home seller set the right price for his or her house.

Typically, a real estate agent will meet with a home seller and learn about his or her property selling goals. This housing market professional then will provide extensive housing market insights to ensure a home seller can establish a competitive home price from day one.

Let’s not forget about the support that a real estate agent provides throughout the home selling journey, either. A real estate agent will set up home showings and open houses and do everything possible to help a home seller optimize the value of a residence. Also, if a home seller has questions, a real estate agent is ready to respond to them at any time.

Take the guesswork out of pricing your residence – use the aforementioned tips, and a first-time home seller can establish a competitive price for his or her home.

List Items Online Before You Sell a Home

If you plan to add your residence to the housing market soon, now may be a good time to list any unwanted items online. In fact, there are many reasons to sell furniture, decorations or other unwanted items online prior to listing your residence, and these reasons include:

1. You can eliminate clutter from your home.

Excess items may take up lots of space in your residence. As a result, these items may make your home appear small and cluttered.

By listing excess items online, you can give these items a new home. Then, you should have no trouble showing off the true size and beauty of your residence to prospective buyers once you list your house.

2. You can improve your home’s overall appearance.

In addition to taking up space in your home, unwanted items may collect dust over time. These items therefore may make your residence look messy and dirty.

On the other hand, selling your unwanted items online gives you an opportunity to transform your home from drab to fab. You can clean items to improve their appearance and showcase them to dozens of prospective buyers online. At the same time, you can clean your residence from top to bottom and ensure your residence is show-ready as soon as you list it.

3. You can earn extra cash.

Selling a home may prove to be costly, particularly for those who need to invest in property repairs or upgrades. Thankfully, listing excess items online allows you to earn extra cash that you can allocate toward the home selling process.

Clearly, there are many reasons to sell items online before you list your house. If you start listing items online today, you may be able to move one step closer to kicking off the property selling journey.

As you get ready to sell your house, you may want to consult with a real estate agent too. If you have a real estate agent at your side, you can receive extensive support from the moment you list your home to the moment you finalize your house sale.

A real estate agent is a home selling expert who will craft a personalized property selling strategy for you. Then, you and your real estate agent can work together to put your plan into action.

Typically, a real estate agent will showcase your residence to potential buyers and keep you up to date with any buyer feedback. If you receive an offer to purchase your home, a real estate agent can provide a recommendation about whether to accept, reject or counter this proposal. And if you approve an offer to purchase, a real estate agent will help you navigate the final stages of the home selling cycle.

When it comes to selling a home and achieving the best possible results, it is crucial to employ a real estate agent. Because if you have a top-notch real estate agent at your disposal, you can boost the likelihood of enjoying a seamless property selling experience.

What Comes Next After Accepting an Offer on Your Home

Selling a home takes patience. Especially when you’re balancing your time between settling into your new home, and keeping up with your work and family life. So, when you’ve finally gotten to the point of accepting an offer on your home, you’ll probably breathe a sigh of relief–and you should!  However, there are still a few more things that will need to happen and a couple of things to consider before closing the deal on your home sale.

Contingencies on the purchase contract

A purchase contract typically includes contingency clauses that are designed to protect the interests of both the buyer and the seller. These clauses mean that the contract is contingent upon the actions being completed before it can be legally valid.

There are three main contingencies that will likely be included in the purchase contract before closing–inspection, financing, and appraisal.

Inspection contingency

The inspection contingency allows the buyer to have the home inspected by a professional before closing (the time should be specified within the contract, but the inspection should usually occur no more than two weeks after you accept the offer). A home inspection lets the buyer know what to expect in terms of repairs that the home needs now or will need in the near future.

Financing contingency

Since the vast majority of buyers will be purchasing their home through a loan, a financing contingency is included to allow the buyer time to secure their mortgage. Getting pre-qualified and pre-approved makes this process easier, but the buyer will still have to finalize and close on their mortgage before their financing is official.

This clause exists to protect the buyer in the event that their mortgage application is denied, ensuring that they aren’t penalized.

Appraisal contingency

The third contingency most often found in purchase contracts is a home appraisal. The buyer will order an appraisal and then the appraiser will reach out to you to find a day to come and value your home.

If the home is then appraised at the amount agreed upon in your contract, this contingency is met. However, if the appraisal comes up lower than the purchase amount, the buyer can renegotiate the price.

Walkthrough and closing

Once the appraisal and inspection have been met and financing secured, the buyer will have a chance to do a final walkthrough of your home. The walkthrough usually occurs no more than two days prior to closing on the sale. A walkthrough allows the buyer view the home one last time to ensure that the condition of the home hasn’t drastically changed since the home was inspected or appraised. So, make sure the buyer is aware of any changes you planned to make to the home before closing.

Now you’re ready to close on your home sale. You’ll receive a disclosure form to review (read it carefully!) and sign. Once closing is complete, ownership of the home is officially transferred to the buyer.

While the closing process does include several steps, it’s important to be available and cooperative along the way to ensure a smooth sale and transition into your new home.