by Sally Boone
(Los Angeles, California, USA)
If you have an agent to help you, then you’ll be periodically called to exit the home while he or she gives a tour of your house to an interested party. You’ll need to get the pets out of the house, or lock them up, and keep everything in tip top shape for unexpected calls that give you mere minutes to vacate the property.
If you are following the For Sale By Owner method, then you’ll need to schedule Open Houses on the weekends or evenings so that you can usher in a flurry of interested buyers without having to constantly be giving tours of your home on a daily basis.
If you have a FSBO sign in your yard, expect some people who aren’t familiar with the etiquette of buying a house to just walk up to your door and ask for a tour out of the blue. You can either give them a notice of an upcoming open house, or cave in and show them around – but make sure the house is ready for a showing!
During your open house, you may have more buyers than you can give a tour to all showing up at once. Make sure you remove anything valuable so that it doesn’t go missing while one buyer is in your bedroom and you’re busy showing other buyers the garage.
Make sure you know the answers to questions people may have, but if you get hit with one you don’t know, don’t lie. Tell them you’ll take their number and get back to them with the answer. They’ll appreciate your honesty.
You’ve Found a Buyer!
You may get more than one interested party wanting to buy your house. This is an ideal situation because it gives you negotiating power. But even if there’s only one prospective buyer, you still want to negotiate the deal in your favor.
If you’re a do it yourself seller, don’t get intimidated by the buyer’s agent who appears to know more than you do. Take your time and don’t get flustered if you don’t know the answer to something or can’t make a decision right away.
The closing process takes some time and you have time to make sure you don’t give up money that’s rightfully yours in the selling process. You want to make sure the offer is in line with your appraisal and CMA that you’ve had prepared.
Your buyer should come prepared with a pre-approved loan in the best-case scenario. If you allow them to wait to get financed, and they’re only pre-qualified, you might be waiting a long time for them to find the financing they need to cover the cost of your home.
It’s good to use the a la carte option with a law firm and have someone help you with the legal paperwork surrounding the sale of your home, but there are also many sites on the Internet that have papers you can use as your guideline during the closing.
During the negotiations, you’ll discover when you’re expected to move out of the property and allow the new owners to move in. You should have been preparing to buy your new home during this process, so hopefully you’ll be on your way.
But if you’re just now entering the buyer’s market, you have to flip to the other side and try to make the most with the investment you make with the money you gained on the sale of your old home!