On my way to becoming one of the top real estate agents in America (ranked 124 out of 1.6M agents in 2021), I have learned a great deal about what is needed to sell houses. Because I want you to be successful too, if you apply what I share in this post, you can dramatically increase your odds for success.
When you sell a house, there are 4 major components to selling fast, getting the best price, the best terms, and mitigating risk.
- Risk Mitigation
Most For Sale by Owners (FSBOs) list their homes on Zillow, which is a good idea as lots of buyers look for houses there. But there is a flaw with Zillow that most people do not know about.
There are actually two categories of listings on Zillow. The main listing category is called “Agent Listings,” where most people look when they’re searching for a house, and a second category is called “Other Listings” where For Sale by Owner and For Sale by Builder listings show up.
Being listed in the “Other Listing” category dramatically reduces your exposure.
Moving your listing from the “Other Listing” category into the main “Agent Listing” category will get you more exposure, more showings, and a higher price.
- It will stop agents from calling you to try to get you to list your house for 5-6% of the sale price.
- You will start getting calls from people who are interested in buying your house.
- More importantly, you will be able to 10X your exposure
Because of Zillow’s agreement with the National Association of Realtors, the only way to get your house moved into the main “Agent Listing” category is to list your house in the Multiple Listing Service (MLS). Aside from the additional exposure in Zillow, once it is on the MLS it is syndicated to the thousands of additional websites where people are looking for houses to buy.
So instead of just being on Zillow, your house will also be listed on every major search site like Realtor.com and Homes.com. Your house will also show up on every real estate brokerage property website like Redfin, Compass, Keller Williams, Century 21, REMAX, EXP, plus thousands of agents that work for those companies.
So, by getting into the MLS, you not only move your listing from the “Other Listing” category on Zillow, but you will also get at least 10 times the exposure from being on thousands of other websites, where anyone, anywhere in the world looking for a house like yours will be to find it.
That brings us to the next thing that is important is presentation.
All great marketing begins with great imagery.
- To make sure your house is properly presented, you must have professional photography.
- Ideally, a professional photographer will:
- light your house up like a magazine shoot
- take high-quality, high-definition photos to create a beautiful digital marketing package that includes:
- A custom website
- Virtual Tour
- Home Flyer
The idea is to create a presentation that increases virtual traffic and converts it into more showings and more offers that lead to faster sales and a higher price.
It makes a dramatic difference and if you have not done this already, you should consider getting professional photos done.
In today’s market, properly priced houses sell fast, often with multiple offers, and overpriced houses sit on the market until the price is adjusted to the proper price.
A low price can overcome limited exposure and poor presentation, but more exposure and good photos cannot overcome pricing a house too high.
Price cannot fix everything, but nothing can fix too high a price. So how you price your home is the single most crucial decision you make when selling your home.
You really want to do your research to make sure the house is priced right. If you get to the point where you want some help, we would be happy to do a full-price review and recommend a pricing and marketing strategy for you.
Getting taken advantage of during the negotiations or creating liability by making a mistake on the paperwork or the legal disclosures can be extremely expensive and often overlooked.
According to The National Association of Realtors, data shows that on average houses sold For Sale by Owner closed 11% lower than houses sold by an agent.
Negotiations are a particularly important part of getting the house sold fast and for the best price and terms.
Getting an extra 11% on a $600,000 sale is $66,000. That is a lot of money and the reason it is good to pay a professional real estate representative. An experienced agent will fully, professionally, and if needed, aggressively represent you in the negotiations and other details of the transaction. At Everhome we offer an exclusive $4950 representation package where we negotiate the best price and terms, especially if your buyer is represented by an agent.
Professional representation goes beyond price. The purchase agreement and required addenda are over 20 pages long with more than 100 paragraphs of legalese.
- Every paragraph requires somebody to do something or pay for something and what happens if they do not.
- Your representative’s job is to make sure that you are fully represented and to mitigate potential liability by making sure all those paragraphs are properly negotiated in your favor.
- They should also handle:
- any contract disputes,
- non-performance issues,
- request for repair negotiations and
- all the details of escrow and title.
However, the real risk in a transaction is related to Legal Disclosures and Compliance Management.
- It is critical to make sure you do not create liability by making a mistake on any of the required legal forms or disclosures.
- There is no insurance to protect you from a paperwork mistake, which means the liability could be as much as the price of the house, but if you hire someone to represent you, they should have Errors and Omissions Insurance which protects you (and them) if they make a mistake on any of the paperwork.
Obviously, there are other factors to selling a home, but they are mostly transactions. It is estimated that about 150 tasks need to be completed to sell a home and get the transaction closed. But these are the main 4 components that will determine how fast you sell and sell for the top end of market value.