10 Steps to Selling your Home For Sale by Owner in Queens NY. Courtesy of the Queens Home Team at Keller Williams Realty Landmark II. Have a questions, Contact Us anytime. 718-968-5538
1. Define your goals, wants, needs and expectations.
A good place to begin is by exploring your short and long term goals in life and how selling your home fits in. You should consider things like your net profit, capital gains taxes, tax deffered options like 1031 exchanges, etc. You should also think about where you will go once you sell, whether you’re going to rent or buy your next place, do you need help finding the new place, etc? If planning to buy your next place, is there a plan b just in case you aren’t able to find what you’re looking for? It’s also important to think about any specific terms that you want to negotiate on your behalf. This can include things like post-close possession, a specific timeline to close, certain contingency waivers, etc. Once you cover all these items, you are ready to get started!
2. Determine the best price for what’s going on in the market right now.
Assess the current state of the market and what comparable homes are actually selling for by reviewing a Comparative Market Analysis (CMA) on your home. That way, you can objectively determine its fair market value and price it right.The best way to go about this is to meet with at least 3 separate real estate brokers who sell in the area. Ask them for a free home valuation and they will be happy to give it to you. Once you have these three broker price opinions, you should have a realistic idea of what to expect in terms of a selling price.
3. Prepare your property so that it is in top-selling condition.
Most of us don’t keep our homes in top-selling condition. Think about your home from a buyer’s point of view. Repair, replace or remove items in your home so that it makes a GREAT first impression. First impressions are everything in this business. Make sure you do the small touch-ups and repairs so that it looks as turn-key as possible. We never suggest major renovations, but the small repairs and fresh coats of paint always give a good return on investment.
4. Implement time-proven, research-based marketing strategies.
Market your home to as many people as possible using for sale signs, flyer boxes, open houses, feedback tracking and web listings.This one is touch to achieve as a for sale by owner because so many buyers are looking online, and working with agents. Most listings online are syndicated from different MLS’s and the only way to get on those sites is by listing with an agent. Since you won’t have the MLS and syndication exposure, your best bet is to put a sign in your yard, post ads on Craigslist, post on any sites you can, and reach out to top selling agents in the area. Unfortunately as you market your own property, you will end up getting a lot of agents soliciting you as well but that is the name of the game. Don’t get upset as agents try to reach out because you’re looking to sell, and they probably come across buyers all the time.
5. Show your property.
Ensure that your home is always in top-selling condition. When you leave for work, make sure that your home remains in top-selling condition. A good cleaning before you hit the market is a great touch. And opening all the windows always helps because it shows how much natural sunlight comes into the home.
6. Receive an offer.
When a buyer decides to buy your home, an offer will be presented. Consult with legal counsel.At this point, since you don’t have an agent, you may want to have your attorney help you negotiate. You can do this yourself, but many times we see FSBOs undersell because they were negotiating direct with the buyer(s). Negotiating direct can be uncomfortable and awkward, especially if you can’t come to an agreement, so try to have someone be a buffer to negotiate on your behalf and this will help you get what you’re looking for.
7. Negotiate to sell.
Most offers require some level of negotiation. Decide your parameters and be prepared to negotiate towards a win-win situation.Remember, win-win deals are the best deals, so be realistic and reasonable as you negotiate. This is when you want to be clear of what price is acceptable for you, and what terms you are looking for. The more clear you are on what you want, the easier it will be to negotiate a good deal. And remember, the best negotiators are willing to walk away so if the deal doesn’t make sense, just keep it moving and work on finding your buyer.
8. Have your home inspected and appraised.
Once you have accepted an offer, work with the buyer or buyer’s agent to coordinate inspections, appraisal, and a survey (if required). If the buyer requires that certain repairs be made on your home, negotiate or make them to move successfully from contract to closing.If any issues come up during the inspection, then the buyer(s) may try to renegotiate. If their requests are reasonable, then it might make sense to find a new win-win. On the other hand, if their requests are unreasonable, then you may want to consider walking away. As for the appraisal, make sure you have the house ready to comply with Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac guidelines so that you don’t have any appraisal issues. Also, make sure that the sale price is justifiable to an appraiser because if the appraisal comes in low, the buyer will be able to walk away from the deal with no penalties or obligations.
9. Prepare for closing.
A few days before closing, contact your attorney and the buyer or buyer’s agent to ensure that all the necessary forms and documents have been prepared. Consult with your attorney to make sure you’re all set, and make sure the house is ready for final walk-through. This is when you may also be moving to your next place so make sure you have a really good moving company to help you with that transition.
At the closing meeting, ownership of your property is legally transferred to the buyer. Congratulations, you are officially moving on to the next chapter in your life 🙂
Sound like too much work? Feel free to Contact Us for a Free Listing Consultation.