Information for Sellers
- Our Comprehensive Marketing Plan
- Frequently Asked Questions for Sellers
- Estimating Net Proceeds
- Free Buyer Reports from the National Association of REALTORS®
Sky Realty - Comprehensive Marketing Plan - Get Your Property Sold Quickly!
Whether you're selling a single family home, condo or commercial property - Sky Realty understands and implements marketing strategies second to none. Scroll through our comprehensive marketing plan and you'll see what we mean. When people are looking for Austin Real Estate they look to Sky Realty.
Frequently Asked Questions from Sellers
Are you considering selling your Condominium, Loft or Townhouse in the Austin area? We're sure you have a lot of questions. We've assembled some of the most frequently asked questions from our sellers, and answered them below. If you have a question that you don't see an answer for, feel free to contact us and we will get you a speedy answer.
- Should I use a professional Realtor?
- Will my property sell for the same amount as my neighbors?
- What should I do to prepare my property for sale?
- What is the process for selling my property?
- Should I list my property at more than I think its worth?
Should I use a professional Realtor?
If you want to get the most money for your property in the least amount of time, the answer is a resounding “Yes”. A professional Realtor will help you determine a competitive market price for your property, develop a customized marketing plan, use the latest techniques to attract buyers, assist you in preparing your property for sale, coordinate with vendors and contractors, and make sure the transaction closes smoothly.
Current figures show that 87% of buyers start their search on the internet, and that 98% of buyers use a Realtor. The Multiple Listing System (MLS) is the property search tool that is used most frequently by buyers and their Realtors. Only Realtors can enter listings into this repository. In fact, without Realtors, there wouldn’t even be an MLS.
Some people feel that all Realtors do is stick a sign in the yard and then go play golf. We wish it were that easy! A lot of what Realtors do is based on experience, a good understanding of current market conditions, and use of a proven marketing plan. Contact us today to talk about how we can market your Austin Condominium, Loft or Townhouse.
Will my property sell for the same amount as my neighbor’s??
Maybe yes, and maybe no. First of all, do you know what your neighbor’s property actually sold for? It may have been listed at one amount, but after negotiations the seller could have lowered the price, paid for repairs, or contributed to the buyer’s closing costs. If the property was priced well and showed well, there could have been multiple offers and it could have sold for more than it was listed for.
The best way to determine what your property will sell for is to ask a Realtor for a Comparative Market Analysis (CMA). The market is constantly changing and the condition of properties can also make a difference in the listing and sales price. Realtors have the expertise and information to help you determine the most realistic sales price. If you are interested in finding out what your property would sell for in today’s market, ask us to perform a CMA for you. It’s fast. It’s friendly. And it’s free!
What should I do to prepare my property for sale?
The three most important things to do are: de-clutter, de-personalize and freshen up.
De-cluttering involves getting rid of “stuff” that could be distracting or unappealing to potential buyers (hey, not everyone is going to love your velvet Elvis or Beanie Baby collection) or that fills up the space and makes it appear smaller. You might have to have a garage sale, or put some of your possessions in storage, but it will be well worth it. It also means making sure everything is clean, clean, clean. You should consider having the carpets and windows professionally cleaned.
De-personalizing means packing away personal items that say “I live here – this is my space”. Those types of items may make potential buyers feel that it’s someone else’s home – and isn’t right for them. Personal items include a proliferation of family photos, refrigerator “art” and kid’s names painted on walls.
Freshening up is more than cleaning. It’s applying a fresh coat of paint if needed, and planting new flowers at the entry way, and making sure everything is in good repair. Pets can be an issue as well, so sometimes provisions have to be made for them to be put in a safe, out-of-the-way place. When buyers view a property that looks “used”, they typically think it hasn’t been well maintained. This causes them to either move on to another property – or offer a lower price for yours.
Your Realtor will be able to tell you what needs to be done, and what doesn’t.
What is the process for selling my property?
First, there’s the preparation stage. While you are de-cluttering, de-personalizing and freshening up, your Realtor will be preparing marketing materials, helping you “stage” the property for sale, taking photographs, getting virtual tours made and making sure all the required paperwork is in place. It’s important to have all marketing materials prepared and ready so that you get most the most exposure and interest the day the property is listed for sale.
Second, there’s the showing stage. If you’re living in the property, it can be frustrating and inconvenient. That’s why it’s important to make sure this stage doesn’t last too long. During this stage, Realtors will be calling to make appointments for their clients to see your property. It’s best if you leave while potential buyers are there, and allow them the freedom to view the property in privacy.
Third, there’s the contract to closing stage. When you get an offer, you will negotiate it with the help of your Realtor. Once an offer is accepted, the buyer will have an “option period” during which a home inspection is performed. Sometimes it’s a good idea to pay for an inspection before putting the property on the market – and fixing any items that could cause concern. Most buyers will want to occupy the property within 30 days of having their offer accepted, so you will have to make plans to move. Before closing the buyer will get final loan approval, an appraisal will be performed, a survey may be required, and all Home Owner’s Association documentation will be delivered to the buyer for review.
There’s a lot that goes on during this stage, and your Realtor will guide you through the process.
Should I list my property for more than I think its worth?
Not if you really want to sell it. Sorry to be blunt, but that’s the truth. Let’s say you do list it for more than it’s worth. The ultimate effect of that will be to help sell the other properties in the neighborhood that are priced fairly. While other properties are selling, yours will sit on the market and become “stale”. After properties have been on the market for longer than average, they tend not to get shown at all because buyers think there must be something wrong.
Ultimately, you will have to reduce the price in order to get it sold. So what will you have gained besides frustration?
Estimating Net Proceeds from a Sale
People are usually surprised by how much it costs to sell a property. These costs average about 8% of the actual sales price, which is approximately how much they appreciate in one year in the Austin market. The general rule of thumb is that you should own a property for at least two years before selling to account for the costs of the purchase and the cost of the sale.
The typical costs associated with the sale of a Condominium, Loft or Townhouse in the Austin area are:
- Brokerage Fees
- These are negotiable between the seller and the Broker and can be anywhere from 4-8% of the sales price. The average in the Austin area is 6% - but that is just an average and not a standard.
- Title Insurance
- This is purchased by the seller and is used to guarantee that the seller has free and clear title with no encumbrances and is in a position to transfer title, and to guarantee to the buyer that any future claims on the title will not result in the loss of the property without compensation. The fees for this are regulated by the State of Texas, and are based on the sales price of the property.
- Pro-rated Taxes
- Since we pay our property taxes at the end of the year, you will owe the Buyer the pro-rated amount of the anticipated annual tax calculated from the first of the year until the day of closing. The buyer will then be responsible for paying the taxes at the end of the year.
- Escrow Fees
- Closings usually occur at a Title Company and these companies charge a fee to coordinate and file all the closing documentation. These fees range from $150-$250.
- Recording Fees
- Sellers will need to record a release of lien (if they had a mortgage that is being paid off). The charge for this is about $42.
- These are only needed for Townhouses, and may not be required if there is an existing survey that is approved by the Title Company. The cost of a survey is approximately $400-$500.
- Buyer’s Home Warranty
- It’s fairly customary for sellers to offer to purchase a Home Warranty for the buyer of their property. This is an “insurance policy” that provides lower-cost repairs for the buyer during the first year of ownership. The cost is between $300 and $400.
- Attorney’s Fees
- Attorneys get involved in preparing the legal documents required for closing. An average cost for this service is $150.
- HOA Resale Certificate
- Homeowner’s Associations also have to do paperwork properties change hands. They will issue a resale certificate at a cost of around $250.
- HOA Transfer Fee
- The HOA will usually also charge an administrative fee for updating their records to reflect the new owner. This could be anywhere from $50 to $300.
- Miscellaneous Charges
- There are a myriad of small charges associated with the sale such as tax certificates, messenger fees, state fees, and wiring fees. These are generally no more than $100.
If you would like us to calculate Net Proceeds for you, just contact us and we’ll be happy to help.
Seller Reports from the National Association of REALTORS®
- 5 Things to Do Before You Sell
- Tips for Holding a Yard Sale
- 10 Ways to Make Your House More Salable
- 5 Ways to Speed Up Your Sale
- 7 Steps to Preparing for an Open House
- 10 Ways to Make Your Home Irresistible at an Open House
- 7 Terms to Watch for in a Purchase Contract
- What You’ll Net at Closing
- Moving Tips for Sellers
- 6 Items to Have on Hand for the New Owners
- 20 Low-Cost Ways to Spruce Up Your Home
- What Is Appraised Value?
- Understanding Capital Gains in Real Estate
- Does Moving Up Make Sense?
- Remodeling That Pays
- 2 Tips for Hiring a Remodeling Contractor