How to sell your Home Fast for a Top Dollar!

Tips on how to sell your home quickly after being listed in the market and get an offer in no time.

Are you thinking of selling your home and buying a new one but just don’t know where or how to start?

Back in the year of 2017 when we seriously wanted to sell our home and look for a new one, Brent and I become more motivated, we worked diligently together to prepare our home for sale. Our GOAL isto sell our home fast after listing in the market!

After all the preparation we have done, here’s how our home selling week schedule looked like
• Wednesday – we listed our home in the market 4 days before the open house so we have enough potential buyers that will look online.
• Sat and Sun (1-4PM) – OPEN HOUSE
• Monday morning– we woke up with an e-mail from our agent that we got an offer for the maximum price!
• Tuesday and Wednesday – We’ve waited for more offers but they are lower than the first one so we accepted the first offer.

We accepted an offer 4 days after the Open House – it was so unbelievable! We felt big relief knowing our hard work and efforts are all worthwhile! After signing the acceptance on the first offer, everything just went so fast – that it feels so surreal!

Here are 11 successful proven tips that will help you sell your home quickly for a top dollar and will get your way moving! These is exactly what we did that really worked for us effectively and helped us educate about Real Estates. I had a fear about Real Estates before, I didn’t know it was just this simple…

[RELATED POST: Our Selling and Buying a New Home Timeline]

How to sell your home fast for a top dollar-WORDPRESS

1. Take a Quick Look at the Real Estate Market Trend: 
It’s good to know how does the market look like before you decide selling your home. Search your address on any Real Estate websites for example at zillow.com or redfin.com. In that way it can give you a quick glance if your market value is in uptrend or downtrend. See sample redfin search below.

How to sell your home fast _ Trend

Sample Redfin Estimate: Home value increased by +9% for the last 12 months

2. Look at the Comparable Sales (CompS) on your neighborhood: 
You can find the CompS at the “Recently Sold homes” or Nearby Similar Homes marked “SOLD” when you search your home on any Real Estate online websites. CompS refers to homes with similar square footage and features, etc. For example a condo unit within the same condo building or a home within the same PUD neighborhood (Planned Unit Development).

Why CompS is so important?
a.) Because the buyer gets their idea on how much price to offer a home, and for you (the seller) to figure out how to price your home right.
b.) Keep in mind that down the road of selling, your home will undergo appraisal in which your home buyer lender will evaluate your property and check the CompS in your neighborhood. It is important that your home is not overpriced otherwise the seller and the buyer will have to agree whether to lower the price or the buyer to pay more than the Listed Price, which is a hassle.

Comps

Sample Comps from Zillow, yellow dots are the recently sold homes

3. Start looking for homes within the price range on the area/zip code that you like to relocate through on line while preparing your home for sale: 
My favorite websites are redfin.com and zillow.com. In that way you can also get an idea how other people selling their homes at the same time study the current real estate market, because sometimes there are homes that’s been in and out of the market for some reason, sometimes there are homes that just been sold 2 or 3 months and is in the market again and you can tell that it was the investor sold it, they just improved/repair the home and reselling it for profit. There’s nothing wrong with that, but at least you are aware of what’s going on and you know you have to check if they priced it right after improvement/repair.

4. Find a Good Real Estate Agent: 
In our case, we already knew a good and reputable agent that’s been working with our other family member ever since, she guided us from selling to buying a new home.

But to find a good real estate agent can be gauged how well they communicate with you at the first time, don’t hesitate to ask questions:
a.) How many sales they already made?
b.) How many %sales vs listing they made?
c.) How long is he/she have been on the business?
d.) how well he/she knows the area?

If they are not sure how to answer these simple questions, you are more likely to hunt another agent until you find the right one that best suit your needs.

 5. Pack unnecessary stuff and move it to the Storage facility near you:
Pack all the things that you don’t need to use in everyday living for example excess furniture, personal photo frames, appliances, Craft Supplies, Books, extra dinnerwares, etc. You may rent a truck that you can fill up for about 1 to 2 weeks depend on how many stuff you have and have them ship to your storage unit.

Why this is so important? So your home will look more wider and is easy to clean and repaint walls that needs repainting.  I’ve seen a lot of homes for sale (with a lot of stuff inside) that’s been in the market for too long sometimes even over a year, they’ve been delisted and relisted multiple times and haven’t got any single offer just because the house look messy and doesn’t look inviting to the buyers. In that case you can say the home is already stale in the market.

Packing seems to be overwhelming but it’s a task you have to do eventually so packing ahead of time can give you a lot of relief and can make a lot of difference selling your home.

Storage Facility

Our Stuff at ExtraSpace Storage Facility

6. Repaint wall that is too bright and flashy – go on a Neutral Color!
Potential home buyers always like a color that is “refreshing” to the eye and is in “trend” . For example a white, light beige or any light color with a hint of gray are mostly in trend.

Based on my experience – cleaning a dirty wall is much harder and take more longer to clean than repainting a wall! I have been struggling to clean a dirty wall for weeks, when I repainted my kids’ bedroom (including preparation and decluttering ) – it took me only two days!

BEDROOM Repaint-1 PSD

Kids’ Bedroom Paint: Bright green looks so flashy and irritating to the eye

Kids Bedroom

KID’S BEDROOM Paint: Looks more calming and refreshing, we used Valspar Wedding Mint color

7. Fix stuff that supposed to be working properly such as Doors, light switches, fire alarms, carbon monoxide detector, etc. Because down the road in the process of selling your home, any obvious defects will be highlighted by the Buyer’s Inspector through Inspection Report and will be listed as “Repair Request” that needs to be done, otherwise you need to pay for the repair cost.

8. Clean! Clean! Clean!
At this point wherein you are done with your storage and small fixes, you are almost there! Maintain your home clean and photo ready.

These were one of the sample photos we took before staging our home.

tips on cleaning your home for sale - 1

I used “sticky roller” to easily remove the dust.

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The Master Bedroom before Staging

9. STAGING:
SIMPLICITY is the game. It doesn’t need to be too fancy, a small plant indoor and outdoor will make an appeal, put a small mirror on the wall, one art or two is enough and fold the towel on the bathroom like you see in the hotel. Your agent can help in staging your home as well.

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Here I was playing around with my personal camera when Audrey (2 y/o) run in the scene carrying a flower screaming “Afflaaa!.. It was so hilarious!

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The night after a long day of cleaning and staging: We ate dinner at the restaurant to avoid dirtying our kitchen in preparation for Photography appointment the next day.

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Relaxing kind of night after dinner

10. Photography
Just a tip – Do not compromise by just taking photos through your phone. As much as possible hire a professional photographer that can do the job, most of the time they use wide angle lens not only for the purpose of making the room look more wider but also to capture how the rooms does connects to the other room. Some of the agents’ photographers I see now a days are using more advanced technique such as 3D virtual tour which are more interactive way of visiting homes for sale.

Also potential buyers look on line and they would like to see as if they are looking at the actual house and how does the floor plan laid out; how does the living room connects to the kitchen, how does the stairs connected to the bedroom, etc. etc.  

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11. Price your home right:
Now you are close to listing your home at the market. Discuss with your listing agent how much price you want for your home… This is a bit of a guessing game because your price should be comparable to the recent sale of your neighborhood while at the same time being fair to all of your improvement efforts.

→ Based on our experience, we sat down with our agent after staging our home for photoshoot, we mentioned to her the price that we want and from there we discussed the following factors:

Points we discussed with our Agent in Pricing our Home:
a.) CompS: she looked at the recent comparable sales and how we differ (advantage and disadvantages) from other home on the same PUD neighborhood.
b.) Advantages: The improvement that we made on the house – hardwood floor upgrade, fixtures upgrade, water heater replacement, garage door openner and repainting, etc.
c.) Disadvantage: We also considered one disadvantage of our home having a sloping backyard with easement compare to the other neighbor which eventually turned out as an additional privacy feature of our home.

Weighing all these factors- we came up with the right price for our home! We didn’t overpriced nor under priced.

See our Actual Selling and Buying a home Full Timeline. I would say realistically speaking without counting the time we spent on hardwood floor project – selling our home took only about 31 days from overall preparation (packing, repainting, small fixes and repairs, cleaning, staging and photography) to accepting the offer. Wow! I could say average timeline for  selling a home effectively with a good result will take only about a month or maybe even less depend on how things going through with your situation.

sold home.png
Additional Tip and Advice: Do not cut corners, do your due diligence, do not put your home on the market without making an effort to make it look good. I have seen lots of home for sale on the time we are looking on line that is been in the market for a while just because they fail to declutter and clean their home from the beginning. Always think that all the hard work and effort you will do will going to be all worthwhile with a promising result.

 

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