As a real estate agent, landing the new client is a huge part of the battle. But once you’ve brought on the new client, helping them get the best money for their property is the hard part. Work with your clients to address any serious issues early on so you can have a smooth sale later.
What Are You Looking to Get For Your Home?
The opposite of budget planning for buying a home, selling a home can be just as stressful of a financial experience. When you ask this question, expect your client to have an idea of what they are going to get from sites like Zillow or Trulia, and they will be certain to think they are an expert in their neighborhood.
Pricing a home is all about setting expectations and working together for a great outcome. If the home sells for more, both you and the client win, so you have a shared desire to reach the highest price possible. However, you don’t want to price the house outside of the market and never get any offers.
Does the Home Have Any Structural Damage?
Serious home problems like foundation trouble, bad plumbing, and poor wiring can kill a great sale at inspection time, so be sure to go through the entire home and ask your client about past and current problems.
If the home does have any serious issues, it is best to get started on repairs as early as possible, or for your client set aside a contingency fund, because these repairs can be expensive and slow. Getting things fixed up early is much better than waiting around for the inspector to notice problems.
Does the Home Have Any Cosmetic Damage?
Chipping paint, drywall damage, cracked tiles, broken windows, and other cosmetic damage may not cause any serious trouble for the homeowner, but it can be a big cost for the seller.
When visiting prospective buyers see minor cosmetic damage, they are not just turned off by the ugly aspects of the home; they start to wonder what else is wrong with the home. This may drive them away completely, seriously lower their offer price, or lead to a much more thorough inspection process.
Save your client the longer term cost and risk by having those fixes taken care of right away before the home is put on the market.
When was the Home Last Updated?
While the shag carpeting and wood paneled walls might be a sign that the home was not remodeled since the 1970s, there is a good reason to know when the home was last updated.
Outdated appearances are a turn off for prospective buyers, and can also be a sign of other parts of the home being old and needed maintenance. Old decoration styles may come with old appliances, furnaces, hot water heaters, and other buyer turnoffs.
Be sure to talk through both the visual and internal cost to the sale price they may have in store.
Do You Have an Upgrade Budget?
Before you can fix anything, you need to have a way to pay for it. While your contract may allow upgrades and repairs to come out of the closing money transfer, make sure your client isn’t in for a big surprise.
Talk through any needed repairs, their costs, and what your client has in mind for a repair budget. If you work together, you will be on track for a speedy, successful sale you can both be proud of.