Have you ever noticed that information and advice for first-time home-buyers is plentiful across the internet?
What happens when you look for that same information and advice for first-time home-sellers?
While buying a home for the first time is somewhat confusing until the process is explained, selling one for the first time is even more so. This is a huge investment you’re selling. How much will you make, and when?
I believe that knowledge is power and I am always happy to share my knowledge with my clients. You should be aware of every step in the process so that you never have to wonder what happens next.
It starts with listing your home. When you actually know the answer to “What happens after I sign the listing agreement?” as well as what is expected of you during this time period, nothing will fall through the cracks and you can relax into the process.
Although you won’t see me, behind the scenes, I will have my hands full with a flurry of activity, from getting the home into the Multiple Listing Service database to implementing my tried-and-true marketing plan.
So, for anyone thinking of selling a home and wondering, “What happens after I sign the listing agreement?” I’ve created this blog for you!
The Pre-Showing Period
Immediately after signing the listing agreement, I will suggest ways to improve the home’s curb appeal and, if needed, give you some tips on how to stage the interior to appeal to the greatest number of potential buyers. For some pointers, read my blog Sell Your Home With Kitchen Staging!
I will also walk you through any repairs I feel will help the home sell quicker and for more money.
While you get busy making improvements and needed repairs, I have my own tasks to complete. Here is just a handful of what I do just after you sign the listing agreement:
- Ensure that I have all the pertinent information about the HOA, if applicable.
- Collect a key from you for the lockbox.
- Talk to you about your current mortgage – is it assumable? Are you considering owner-financing? Do you have a VA loan?
- Walk you through the broker’s open process (sort of an open house for real estate agents) and showings to potential buyers.
- Advise you how to guard your valuable, what to do with your pets, and I’ll ask you if there are any restrictions on showing the home (times that you absolutely cannot leave the home).
After I leave your house with the listing agreement I’ll head back to the office and get to work.
First, I’ll call my sign company and order a sign for your yard, arrange to have the lockbox attached to your home and set an appointment with my photographer to take professional photos of the home.
These photos will not only be used in the MLS listing but also on sites like Zillow and Trulia, and in all other marketing materials, so I make sure to give you some notice to get the home in tip-top shape before the photographer arrives. I will also determine a good day to hold the broker’s open house.
Then, I will verify the square footage of your house and lot via tax records and enter all the information about your home into the Multiple Listing database.
Once the photos and information are in the MLS, your home is officially on the market and all other real estate agents in the area will have access to the information and can begin showing your home!
As I follow my marketing plan to maximize exposure to buyers, I will schedule showings with interested buyers and I’ll also ask buyers and agents for first impressions and feedback on the home.
What to Expect While the Home is on the Market
“What happens after I sign the listing agreement, on my end?” You are probably wondering. While the home is on the market you’ll be called on periodically to sign various forms. From contingency releases to other acknowledgements, I ensure that you fully understand what you are signing.
Most sellers must fill out various disclosures – forms that tell the buyer anything the sellers know about the home that may bear on their decision to purchase.
The Seller’s Disclosure Statement is one that all sellers must complete. Although I cannot fill out the form for you, I am happy to assist you if you have any questions.
Seller disclosures are serious business; it is your most important duty when you sell your home. It may seem that by being brutally honest about known problems you may be sabotaging the sale, but you are actually protecting yourself from future legal liability. Disclose, disclose, disclose.
While the home is on the market you will need to keep it tidy and keep your valuables locked away. Leaving the home while it’s being shown is a nuisance, but it is necessary if you hope to sell the home quickly.
I hope my overview has provided insight on the home-selling process, so you no longer have to wonder, “What happens after I sign the listing agreement?!” Please don’t hesitate to contact me if you have any questions, or to schedule a complimentary home valuation.
While I’ve got your listing under control, why don’t you get started on your new California home search? Tip: save your favorite properties to give me an idea of what you’re looking for in your new home!