Sellers Handbook

“The Guide to Selling


Dear Home Seller:

The decision to place you home on the market can involve a number of stresses and strains. Many home sales are motivated by circumstances outside of your control: Job relocation, family problems, financial issues, divorce, and more. Others are related to family issues: the need or desire for a bigger home, a better neighborhood, etc.

Regardless of the reasons for selling, your goal is to sell your home for the most money, in the shortest amount of time, and for the least amount of hassle or problems. Unfortunately, the way many sellers go about selling their home leaves them wide open to the very problems they’re trying to avoid.

When you’re getting ready to put your property on the market, there are a myriad of things to think about, to prepare for, and to organize. Here’s a list of seven mistakes to watch out for!

Mistake #1: Failing To Dress Your Property.

Buyers look for HOMES, not houses. They buy homes in which they feel they would like to live in. One of the major factors in getting your home to sell quickly is very simple: Make it attractive.

Most buyers select their home based on emotions, then they justify their purchase decision on facts and features. In other words, the home has to “feel“ like home to them. So it’s most important to make your home inviting and pleasant. Your property is not the only home the buyers will see. You are competing with other homes in the market–some which have been professionally


The Way You Live In A Home, And The Way You Sell A Home Are TWO Very Different Things.

When you’re showcasing your home for sale, it’s going to look very different from the way it looks day to day when you’re living there. Here are a few tips for showcasing your home for sale:

* Examine the outside area of your home. How does it look? Are shrubs away from the home? Oil in the driveway? How does the grass or landscaping look? Cluttered looks detract from the architecture of a home. A clean, polished landscape says your home is valuable!

* Now take a look at your actual home. Is the paint fading or chipping? Is the color outdated or impersonal? How does the roof look? As you drive up to or away from your home, note what you see first. What is your first impression?

* Now go inside. You want to be aware of 4 senses: Smell, touch, visual, and hearing. Go through room by room and test all 4 senses. Check flooring and carpets for stains and odors. Most importantly: Pack away all appliances, get rid of excess furniture, put away useless dishes and make your home very neat and orderly, Go to the garage and make sure it’s neat. (Remember, there are many situations in which leaving the garage a mess is OK…especially if you are downsizing or dealing with inheritance. Sometimes it’s more important to get the house on the market and worry about the junk in the garage later.)

* Pets should be out of sight and so should their smell. Get rid of pet odors for showings. Remember the 4 senses. Also, some people are uneasy around animals and they may distract your prospect’s attention.

* Hire someone to professionally clean your home: Top to bottom! This may cost a little money, but you’ll get it back in your sales price. Most importantly, make sure your bathrooms and kitchen are spotless, including all the appliances, shelving, and other hard-to-see areas.

* Pay attention to lighting. During the day, open all your blinds and curtains. If it’s cloudy out, turn on all your lights for showing. At dusk, leave your drapes open and turn on all lamps. At night, do the same, but close your blinds and curtains. When showing your home, turn off all appliances, television, radio, and anything that will distract from the home. You might want to play a little light music to enhance the experience for the buyer.

Mistake #2: Pricing Your Home Incorrectly

Every seller wants to realize as much money as possible when selling their home. The natural inclination is to price the home high, thinking you can always come down in the future. But a listing price that is too high frequently nets the seller less money than a price at market value. If your house is not priced competitively up front, people looking in your price range will reject you home in favor of other, larger homes for the same price.

And agents who could show your home know the value of the market because it’s their job to know. When they see an overpriced listing, they automatically cross it off their showing list. They’re only motivated to show homes with the highest probability of selling. They don’t like wasting their time on overpriced homes. It costs them money too.

At the same time, people who should be looking at your house will not see it because it’s priced over their heads! Overpricing almost always increases time to sell, and that adds to carrying costs.

If you desire, I will provide a complete, no obligation evaluation of your home, including a comparable market analysis, physical condition inspection, and pricing recommendation. I’ll be straight with you and tell you precisely why it’s worth what it’s worth. I’ll show you how to net more money in your home sale. Here are a few more areas I can help you with in setting the price of your home.

* How to set the asking price that maximizes exposure and a profitable sale;

* What’s the difference between costs and improvements in your home, and the

selling price?

* How do you really define and compare market value between homes?

* Why “trying it” at a high price is a formula for disaster?

Once you understand these important principles, you’ll know how to price your home for the fastest, most profitable sale. Not only that, you’ll know how to avoid paying too much for any home you buy for the rest of your life. Just call my office and I’ll get this information to you at once.

Mistake #3: Limiting The Marketing Exposure Of The Property

The most obvious marketing tools everyone uses (Open Houses and classified ads) are really only moderately effective. Successful marketing of your home, (getting the highest price, at the right time, and with no hassles or problems) requires much more.

Surprisingly, less than 1 percent of homes are sold at an open house! Agents use open houses to attract buying prospects, not to sell your home. And advertising studies show that less than 3 percent of people purchased their home because they saw it in an ad.

That’s why the most competent Realtor will have a broad spectrum of marketing activities, emphasizing the specific strategies that will work best for your particular property or area. In fact, if you like, I will be glad to share my many marketing strategies with you at your convenience, and at no obligation whatsoever. I have a FULL marketing presentation that includes my personal marketing materials, postcards, newsletters, etc., also multiple websites and links. My sellers receive is a FULL Personalized Marketing Plan.

Mistake #4: Thinking Your Appraisal Is The Market Value Of Your Home

An appraisal is an opinion of value for an entirely different purpose than selling your home. Usually an appraisal is to provide a bank or mortgage institution information to fund a loan. Banks have a tendency to appraiser lower than market value, especially for refinancing. They are extremely cautious after this last market crash.

When a buyer looks at a home, they look at all the factors: foreclosures, distressed sales, area value fluctuations, etc. Don’t make the mistake of thinking the value of your home when re-financing is what a diligent buyer would pay.

If you would like, I will provide you with ALL of the information you need to make a competent, reliable market value for your home. I’ll research your area, gather the specifics on homes that have sold recently, discuss trends, and answer questions you have about the value of your home–with market facts, not opinions.

Mistake #5: Not Understanding Your Rights And Obligations

Real estate law can be very complex. When you sign a contract for sale on your property, it’s a legal binding document. An improperly written contract can create many problems for you: a sale could fall through, cost you thousands in forced repairs, inspections, and remedies for items included or excluded in the purchase offer.

You must understand which repairs and closing costs you are responsible for in the contract. And you must know whether the property can legally be sold “as is” or how deed restrictions or local zoning will affect the transaction.

You also need competent review of your title, and if your property is in conflict with local restrictions or laws. If you have to remedy these yourself, you can spend thousands on legal bills, fines, or other costs. Using a Realtor up front can help avoid these problems before they mean problems.

Mistake #6: Signing A Listing Contract With NO WAY OUT!

Just about every agent has good intentions about helping you sell your home. But situations and circumstances change. The agent might have personal problems, a death in the family, or simply decide to retire or get out of the real estate business. Or other situations may arise where the agent isn’t doing his or her job as you expected. The home may not be getting the exposure you desire, or you haven’t heard from the agent for 2 weeks! What do you do now?

When this happens, you should have the right to fire your agent. But in some companies, the listing agreement is a binding contract with the broker, not the agent. If you’re unhappy, the broker may assign your home to another agent–someone you neither personally selected, nor do you want. But you’re stuck with him or her.

Always protect yourself by getting a guarantee of performance with the right to cancel your listing agreement.

That’s why I offer a Complete 100% Guarantee of my services. If you ever decide to change agents, to take your property off the market, or change your situation for any reason, you can do so with 48 hours notice! No questions asked. I also provide this guarantee in writing, and will share it with you if you like.

Mistake #7: Selecting The Wrong Realtor And Brokerage

Selling or buying your home is probably the most important financial transaction you will ever make. The person you select can make it a profitable, rewarding experience, or it could cost you time, money, and seemingly endless hassles. Ask yourself these questions:

1. Do you like personal service?

2. Are you looking for someone who will deal with you honestly and with integrity?

3. Do you want an office with no hidden fees, ties to an escrow or title company?

4. Are you looking for someone who is going to get the job done in a timely fashion and HASSLE FREE?

Then think of listing your home with me, Philleen Meskin, from Re/Max Elite. I am someone who will keep your best interests in hand. I promise to schedule showings around your schedule and to respect your personal and family time. This requires special planning and forethought most other agents do not consider.

I will do my best to educate you throughout the entire process, so that you will feel as comfortable and confident as possible. I would truly enjoy meeting you, discussing your home selling needs, and demonstrating personally why my services would be the best choice you could make for selling your home.

I may be reached by calling my direct line at 818-557-8593 or my cell at 818-241-8375. If this is the only contact we’ll have between now and when you sell your home, thank you for allowing me this opportunity to discuss home selling issues with you. I hope this report gave you a few ideas that will help in the process.

Let’s set-up an appointment to meet, with no obligation whatsoever and go over your want list and your property. I promise to give you an objective opinion about all aspects of selling your home and guarantee my services 100 percent.