Information for Sellers
So you have decided to sell your property. Before anything else, it is a good idea to sit down and clarify your motivations and draw up a basic time frame for the selling process.
Why do you want to sell your property? Do you intend to simply find a larger property, or do you plan on moving to another neighborhood, school district, city or state? You might think your reasons are obvious, but it would do well to consider the implications of each option for your lifestyle, opportunities, and finances. Being clear about your intentions for selling will make it easier for us to determine the most appropriate option for your specified financial, lifestyle, and real estate goals.
When Should I Sell?
You should immediately establish your time frame for selling. If you need to sell quickly, I will speed up the process by giving you a complete market analysis and action plan to obtain all of your goals. If there is no pressing need to sell immediately, you can sit down with me or one of my expert real estate team members to thoroughly review the current market conditions and find the most favorable time to sell.
What Is The Market Like?
When you work with my team, you can be sure that you will have our knowledge, expertise and negotiating skills at work for you to arrive at the best market prices and terms. We will keep you up-to-date on what is happening in the marketplace with the price, financing, terms and conditions of competing properties. With us, you will know exactly how to price and when to sell your property.
How Do I Optimize My Finances?
Deciding to sell your property demands a serious consideration of your current financial situation and future possibilities. With my help, you will be able to effectively assess the cumulative impact of these changes, estimate potential proceeds of selling your property, and plan effective tax savings and estate planning strategies. Ican refer experts who will ensure that you not only take control of your finances, but use them to their fullest potential.
Why Should You Choose Doug Azarian?
You may opt to sell your property independently. There are many excellent reasons, however, why you should choose me to assist you in this important undertaking. I will ensure that you maximize your opportunities in the current real estate market. With extensive contact networks that I have developed through the many national and international organizations, of which I am a member, as well as my current and past clients, I, along with my company, will employ the most effective marketing and advertising strategies for your property. We will also guide you through the complicated paperwork involved, from the initial agreement to the final documents.
What To Look For In An Agent.
The following are a couple of factors to keep in mind when looking for a listing agent:
1. Education. The most important factor in choosing a real estate professional is their education in the real estate industry. I have advanced trainingand education (MBA);have served in leadership positions at the Cape Cod and Islands Association of Realtors (President 2001), the Massachusetts Association of Realtors (President 2007) and the National Association of Realtors (New England VP 2012) all of which allow me to provide expertise on factors that impact the marketing and sale of your property in the Cape Cod real estate market.
2. Experience and Expertise. You want a full-time agent who is familiar with your area and with the type of property you intend to sell. Does he or she employ a diverse range of marketing and advertising strategies? How tech-savvy is your agent? How many similar properties has he or she been able to sell in the past? Doug Azarian has been a full time real estate agent/REALTOR since 1987 responsible for thousands of transactions and has been a major contributor to real estate technology for both the Cape Cod and Massachusetts Associations of REALTORS.
3. Availability and Commitment. Your agent should be capable of prompt and decisive action during the course of selling your property. Does your agent make it a point to keep in touch with you constantly? Can your agent easily be contacted in case of emergencies or even for the simplest questions? Is your agent available on the weekends or in the evenings when most buyers are out looking?
4. Rapport. Does your agent take the time to listen to your goals and clarify your needs? Can your agent understand your unique situation and be genuinely concerned about the outcome of the process? Your listing agent will be your guide and partner in this crucial decision, so it is important to find one with whom you can get along.
What Is Your Property Worth?
Without a professional agent, most independent property sellers tend to overestimate the value of their property. You can avoid this pitfall by consulting with an experienced real estate listing agent. Realize the difference in the analysis that Doug Azarian provides when looking at the value of a property. I take the time and effort to look at a property’s value in many ways, using active for sale properties, recent sales, assessor’s data, feature adjustments, automated valuation models, and trend analysis. All of this helps to price a property appropriately. Those properties that are not competitively priced tend to require multiple price reductions and chase the market down resulting in longer times on the market with lower selling prices while at the same time requiring additional expenses (taxes, insurance, maintenance, mortgage payments, etc.).
Having the resources of the #1 real estate company on Cape Cod along with those that I can provide are an important factor in the sale of your home. A balanced combination of print, internet, and personal marketing to local, national, and international markets is provided. Many agents may indicate that they provide similar services but it is important to understand there are many different levels offered. I subscribe to enhanced services, luxury services, buyer and seller networks, for all facets of marketing to help you achieve your goals.
You can do a lot to increase the appeal of your property and to create a lasting impact on potential buyers.
What To Do To Prepare:
The following are a couple of factors to keep in mind when listing your property for sale:
1. Curb Appeal. Keeping your landscape pristine, and adding creative touches to your yard, such as colorful annuals, will create an immediate impact on passers-by and potential buyers.
2. Property Repairs. Simple upgrades such as window repairs, polishing the doorknobs, and a fresh coat of paint in the most frequently used rooms will instantly brighten up the property.
3. Cleanliness and Staging. Keep your property uncluttered, sweet-smelling and well-lit from top-to-bottom. Pay attention to details: put away the kitty litter, place a vase of fresh flowers near the entryway, pop a batch of cinnamon rolls in the oven, have your carpets cleaned. I will scan the property before it is listed for sale to see how you can improve the staging of your property.
4. Disclosures and Inspections. I am very familiar with the legal procedures involved in disclosures. It is important to understand Agency Disclosure, Lead Paint Disclosure, and other property disclosures as required by law or used in your market. It is important to understand items that are included or excluded from the sale; such as appliances, window treatments, chandeliers, etc. I can advise you about items being included/excluded, should you have questions. I will also suggest home improvement measures before placing your property on the market (such as home, termite, and pest inspections) to help ensure a smooth transaction resulting in the best price and terms for the seller.
5. Showtime. Presenting your property to potential buyers is a job that I will take care of for you. Buyers feel more comfortable discussing the property with the agent, if you are not there. Moreover, your agent will know what information will be most useful in representing your interests when speaking with prospective buyers.
The Price Is Not Always Right.
“The higher the price, the better the offer.” Do not let yourself be fooled by this popular misconception. Price is not always the determining factor when accepting an offer for several important reasons: the initial offer is usually not final, and there are a number of terms and conditions that may influence the final outcome of a price. You can trust me to help you thoroughly evaluate every proposal without compromising your marketing position.
Negotiating The Right Way.
I take the ethical responsibility of fairly negotiating contractual terms very seriously. It is my job to find a win-win agreement that is beneficial to all parties involved. You may even have to deal with multiple offers before ratifying the one you judge to be the most suitable for you – and as your agent, I will guarantee a thorough and objective assessment of each offer to help you make the right choice.
The Initial Agreement and Deposit.
An effective agreement is a legal arrangement between a potential purchaser and the property’s seller. Laws vary from state to state, but in order to be a legally, binding agreement, the agreement may require consideration. This consideration (initial and additional deposit) is to be held in the closing agent’s escrow account pending the fulfillment of conditions or contingencies in the effective agreement.
Some important tips to keep in mind to streamline the process even further:
- Keep written records of everything.
For the sake of clarity, it will be extremely useful to transcribe all verbal agreements including counter-offers and addendums, and convert them to written agreements to be signed by both parties. I will assist you in drafting all the paperwork for your sale and make sure that you have copies of everything.
- Stick to the schedule.
Now that you have chosen your offer, you and the buyer will be given a timeline to mark every stage in the process of closing the real estate contract. Meeting the requirements on time ensures a smoother flow of negotiations and also ensures that each party involved is not in breach of their agreements. During the process I will keep you updated so you will always be prepared for the next step.
Inspection and Appraisals
Most buyers will have the property inspected by a licensed property inspector within the timeframe that was agreed upon in the effective contract to purchase. Some buyers will have several different inspectors inspect the property, if they wish to obtain professional opinions from inspectors who specialize in a specific area (e.g. roof, HVAC, structure). If the agreement is conditional upon financing, then the property will be appraised by a licensed appraiser to determine the value for the lending institution via third party. This is done so that the lending institution can confirm their investment in your property is accurate. A buyer of a commercial property may also have a complete environmental audit performed and/or soil test, if required by the lending institution.
The Closing Agent.
Either a title company or an attorney will be selected as the closing agent, whose job is to examine and insure clear title to real estate. After researching the complete recorded history of your property, they will certify that 1) your title is free and clear of encumbrances (e.g. mortgages, leases, or restrictions, liens) by the date of closing; and 2) all new encumbrances are duly included in the title.
A contingency is a condition that must be met before a contract becomes legally binding. For instance, a buyer will usually include a contingency stating that their contract is binding only when there is a satisfactory home inspection report from a qualified inspector.
Before completing his or her purchase of your property, the buyer goes over every aspect of the property, as provided for by purchase agreements and any applicable addendums. These include:
- Obtaining financing and insurance;
- Reviewing all pertinent documents, such as preliminary title reports and disclosure documents; and
- Inspecting the property. The buyer has the right to determine the condition of your property by subjecting it to a wide range of inspections, such as roof, termite/pest, chimney/fireplace, property boundary survey, well, septic, pool/spa, arborist, mold, lead based paint, HVAC, etc.
Depending on the outcome of these inspections, one of two things may happen:
1. Either each milestone is successfully closed and the contingencies will be removed, bringing you one step closer to the closing; or
2. The buyer, after reviewing the property and the papers, requests a renegotiation of the terms of contract (usually the price).
How do you respond objectively and fairly to the buyer when a renegotiation is demanded, while acting in your best interests? This is when a professional listing agent can make a real difference in the outcome of the transaction. Having dealt with various property sales in the past, I have expertise and total commitment to every client, no matter what their situation is.
Loan Approval and Appraisal.
I suggest that you accept buyers who have a lender’s pre-approval, approval letter, or written loan commitment, which is a better guarantee of loan approval than a pre-qualification or no documentation from a lending institute. While not all buyers have a pre-approval at the time of the offer, we may be able to incorporate terms that display their diligence and probability of getting a lender’s commitment. Expect an appraiser from the lender’s company to review your property and verify that the sales price is appropriate.
If you have come this far, this means that it is almost time for a congratulations, but not yet. Do not forget to tie up these loose ends:
Final Walk-Through Inspection
More of a formality than anything else, the final inspection takes place the day before, or the day of the closing. The buyer visits the property to verify that all is in working order, everything is the same as when the buyer last viewed the property, that it is broom clean, and that there are no extra items left behind.
Cancel Home Services and Utilities
I will provide a list of useful numbers for the termination of home services and utilities after the closing occurs.
I am ready to assist you should an unforeseen glitch pop up, even at this last stage. If something at the property breaks down or the buyers’ loan does not pull through on time, there is no need to worry. I have encountered these problems before so I know how to handle them efficiently and in as a stress-free manner as possible.
The closing agent will furnish all parties involved with a settlement statement, which summarizes and details the financial transactions enacted in the process. The buyer(s) will sign this statement and then you will sign as well as the closing agent, certifying its accuracy. If you are unable to attend the scheduled closing, then arrangements can be made depending on the circumstances and the notice that we receive. If you are receiving funds from the transaction, you can elect to either have the funds wired electronically to an account at your financial institution, or have a check issued to you at the closing. The seller should arrange to have all property keys, garage door openers, and any other important information for the new purchaser at the closing, so that the purchaser may receive these items at this time.