If you're thinking about selling your home in during the spring market, you should probably start interviewing agents around the beginning of the year. Besides finding someone who "feels" right, you'll want to find someone who knows HOW to sell your home - and that starts with pricing.
Here are the 5 questions you need to ask ANY real estate agent who wants to sell your home.
2. What is the maximum and median price for the neighborhood?
If a quick sell is important to you, then you don't want to be the most expensive home in the neighborhood. Your home might honestly be worth it, but it will stand out when people are looking for a bargain. The median price is important to know because it eliminates any distressed homes selling from below market rates and super-high priced homes that might be lingering for the perfect buyer.
3. What is the Percent of Sales Price to List Price?
The closer to 100%, the healthier your neighborhood is and the more confident you an be with that price. How can it vary?
• Throughout the entire Triangle, the average "sales to list price ratio" for last month was 99.4%
• In Chapel Hill, that same number was 98.7% in November.
• Different neighborhoods can bring dramartically different results. In The Oaks for last month if was 85.1%, but in Briar Chapel, resales sold for 100.1% of their last list price.
Knowing this number in the beginning can prepare you for any negoiations that might be heading you way when that offer comes in.
4. How many distressed properties will affect me?
This doesn't matter as much as it did 10 years ago, but it can still affect your bottom line. If a home is in foreclosure then it will probablly sell for WAY below fair market value. The bank wants to get something out of it so they'll accpet a fraction of what the home would otherwise be worth (and many times, these homes can be trashed).
Even if a distressed sale isn't used as a direct comp for pricing or appraising your home, one or more homes like this in your neighborhood can turn people off, and this job is as much psychology as it is square footage.
5. Finally, any neighborhood specific question (HOA dues, pool access, new construction nearby):
Anyone you choose to sell your home should be an expert in your neighborhood. They're going to be getting questions from other potential buyers as well as agents and if they don't know if your HOA dues will be going up next year to pay for the pool expansion because of the big new neighborhood going in next door, then that will turn people off and you could loose someone who would otherwise love your home.
Can you think of any more? Maybe last time you sold your home there was a question that if you had asked it would've gone smoother or you might have picked another agent to represent you. Let me know!
Likewise, if you're thinking about selling your home this spring, give me a call and you can ask me all these questions. If you like the answers then we can get the ball rolling.