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How Do I Sell My House Fast?

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Even in a hot market, where houses don’t seem to last long on the market, it takes 45 to 90 days, at best, to get from listing to close.

You need to factor in the mortgage house buying process. The typical homebuyer requires lender approval, and the home loan process usually takes 30 to 45 days. It can take longer if the lender has requests, which usually means asking you, the seller, to make repairs or improvements.

But maybe you do not have that kind of time. Maybe you’re relocating for a new job, or you’re getting a divorce, or facing foreclosure or bankruptcy. Whatever the reason, whatever your situation, you want your house sold fast and stress free!

How Fast Do You Need to Sell Your House?

Depending on how fast you need to sell your house, you may have more or fewer options. It often comes down to, can you wait for the lengthy mortgage process or not?

After the home loan is approved, closing can happen within the week. Keep in mind, however, that the buyer decides the closing date. Some savvy buyers request the following month to avoid that month’s taxes and/or to delay the first mortgage payment.

Need to Sell My Home Fast in Less than a Month

If you do not have time to wait – you need to sell fast, like yesterday, and you cannot spare even a day to list or market or make improvements, cash buyers are exactly what you’re looking for because they buy houses fast without a loan.

Option 1: Sell Fast for Cash to an Investor

If you have the need for speed, this is likely your best option. Selling fast for a cash offer to a real estate investor means you can close as quickly as 7 to 10 days, depending on your situation, and get paid in 24 to 48 hours.

A real estate investor buys houses “as-is”. You do not need to worry about improvements or curb appeal or cleaning. The cost of repairs and renovations are then deducted from the final amount you receive. “But I want to sell my house for more money,” we hear a lot of homeowners say. But here’s the thing: what you lose in the offer price is actually money back in your pocket. The cash buyer invests their own money in fixing up and improving the property, saving you money, time, and effort.

When there is an underlying reason for selling the house fast, who you sell to matters more. For example, if the house has been foreclosed, and the auction date set, you want to sell it to an investor who can take on the paperwork and legal matters. Oftentimes, the investor can speak with your lender, negotiate an extension, and even the final debt to be paid, if you have a flexible servicer.

The Advantages of Selling to an Investor include:

  • No realtor or service commissions
  • Guaranteed cash offer
  • They cover closing costs and additional sale fees
  • They’ll take care of paperwork
  • Fast closing – you choose your own closing date
  • Get paid in cash in as little as 24 hours
  • Experienced and specialized investors can negotiate tough situations with third parties, like your mortgage lender, title company, etc.

The ONLY Downside of Selling to an Investor is this:

  • You don’t know how much you might have gotten for your property by selling it on the open market. But, if selling quickly is the priority, you need to be willing to trade potentially higher profits in favor of speed and a predictable closing date.

Option 2: Sell to an iBuyer

An iBuyer is a company that will purchase the house directly, usually also for cash. Unlike the previous option, where you are dealing with a small business, or sometimes one person, iBuyers can be massive companies and often have strict requirements.

With an investor, you pay no fees, but with an iBuyer, they get a commission, ranging from 5% to 12%. Oftentimes, they appear to give higher offers, but when you factor in that there is a commission, it may actually be less than what an investor would pay.

iBuyers also promise speed, and closing dates are negotiable within the desired timeframe.

The Advantages of Selling to an iBuyer include:

  • No realtor commissions
  • They take care of the paperwork
  • Fast closing, in as little as 10 days, or negotiable
  • You get paid in 24 to 48 hours

The Downsides of Selling to an iBuyer include:

  • Service commissions of 5% to 12%, which can be higher than working with a realtor
  • You may still pay closing costs
  • Most iBuyers prefer easy transactions, so if the reason for selling involves legal matters, like foreclosure, liens, or title problems, they tend to shy away from getting involved
  • You don’t know how much you might have gotten by selling it on the open market, that is, if you had more time to wait

Need to Sell My House Fast But Can Wait Up to 90 Days

Option 1: Hire a Top Listing Real Estate Agent to Speed Things Up

According to the National Association of Realtors (NAR), 2020 sellers who enlisted the help of an agent sold their properties for 100% of the listing price, and only 35% reported reducing the asking price at least once.

Hiring an experienced agent can relieve a lot of stress. They’ll take care of big to-do items, like listing, marketing, walkthroughs, paperwork, and negotiating with buyers. Of course, this all comes at a cost, which is taken from the home sale price in commissions, split between your listing agent and the buyer’s agent. Rockstar agents may cost more – 8% in commission, but they are also more likely to help you expedite the sale for your house. Be sure to interview and ask references to ensure an agent is really a superstar.

The Advantages of Selling with a Realtor include:

  • They take care of marketing;
  • List house for sale on local MLS;
  • Filter buyers;
  • Schedule and organize walkthroughs; and
  • Take care of the paperwork

The Downsides of Selling with a Realtor include:

  • Commissions averaging 6% of the final sale price
  • You pay all closing costs
  • Even if you get and accept an offer on the first day your house gets listed, you still need to wait another 45 days for it to close, and that includes the buyer’s mortgage approval, title arrangement, and the effective date of closing
  • Sometimes offers fall through, or lenders don’t approve loans, or they ask for too many requirements, making it unpredictable as to how long it may take to sell your house

Option 2: Sell Your House By Yourself (FSBO)

A lot of homeowners consider the FSBO route mainly to avoid paying the realtor commission and fees. However, it can be lengthy and time consuming, unless you already have a buyer lined up to purchase your house.

The Advantages of Selling a House by Owner (FSBO) include:

  • More control over the process
  • You can negotiate directly with the buyer
  • 2020 Data from the NAR shows that FSBO houses sold in less than 2 weeks (but the owner knew the buyer)

The Downsides of Selling a House by Owner (FSBO) include:

  • You may still have to pay 3% commission, if there’s a buyer’s agent
  • All the marketing and visibility on your property depends on you
  • You’re responsible for filtering buyers
  • You’ll schedule and do all the showings
  • You’re responsible for the paperwork. Depending on the location of the property, you may need to hire a real estate attorney
  • Studies by the NAR show that fast FSBO sales only happen when the buyer is an acquaintance who got a “friends and family” price, rather than the market value

FSBO homes still need to appear nice during walkthroughs. In addition to clearing clutter and staging rooms, consider improving your curb appeal, since the home’s exterior is the first thing buyers see when they pull up. Trim hedges, plant fresh flowers, pressure wash and add a fresh coat of paint to the house, and spruce up the front porch.

The biggest mistake made with FSBO homes is overpricing. Potential buyers often pass over listings with a high asking price, and the longer a house sits on the market, it gives the impression there’s something wrong with it. You’ll need to lower the price, and you’ll need to lower it at the right time, or else take down the listing and relist it later.

Tips to Sell My House Fast

Here are some tips to help you sell your house quickly, thus increasing your chances of more, and better quality offers, that is, if you have the time to work on the house.

Price It Right

If the price is too high, buyers will walk away. BUT if it’s too low, you may be leaving money on the table. Pricing a house just right is tricky. If you have a realtor, they can help you with this by pulling comparable listings and market data, otherwise you will have to do it yourself.

Declutter and Spruce Up Curb Appeal

How would you feel if you were shopping the market, and you pulled up to a house with dirty windows, chipped paint, and a brown yard? What if you walked inside, and there was a mess? You would be put off by the property’s overall appearance, right?

Put a little elbow grease into making your house presentable, so when buyers visit, they are left impressed and can imagine themselves living there.

Make Speedy Repairs

If you hire a good team of contractors and repairmen, you can get a lot of work done in a few short days. Most buyers are going to want repairs done, so if you get them done ahead of inspection, you’ll save time.

If Possible, Pick the Right Time to List

Some seasons fare better than others. Spring and summer are popular, but fall and winter have their merits. Study the market with your realtor and pick a time to sell, that is, if you’re not hard-pressed to sell right now.

Offer Incentives

Financial incentives, like lowering the asking price to make up the difference in repairs, or covering the closing costs, or one year of the homeowners warranty, encourage buyers to make an offer.

How SolidOffers Can Help You Sell Your House Fast

When you need to sell your house fast, you want as few issues as possible to avoid delays, especially if there are legal reasons for wanting to sell quickly. We work exclusively with a trusted network of real estate investors located throughout the country. These investors come with a proven track record and are thoroughly vetted to ensure they are experienced, professional, and the right fit for you.

There are some bad apples in the real estate investing industry. We save you the hassle of dealing with them by vetting every investor and only recommend investors you can trust.

SolidOffers is not an iBuyer. We do not charge commissions, so our service comes at no extra charge to you.

Our goal is to streamline the home selling process. We make it easy to sell your house faster, with less stress and less money. You choose when to close, so you can move when you’re ready to, and skip the cost of a storage unit. Contact us today, and let’s talk about how we can help you sell your house fast.

House For Sale Sign My House Isn’t Selling, What Can I Do

My House Isn’t Selling, What Can I Do?

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Depending on where you’re located, the average days on market varies. A good listing, with a fair price, for a house that’s in good condition and in a good location will attract buyers quickly enough, especially in a hot market. But maybe that’s not your house selling experience.

Has your house been sitting on the market for a while? Are you still waiting for the right offer, or any offer? There are many reasons a house does not sell, but then the big question is: what can you do about it? What can you do to get your house sold faster? Let’s discuss reasons your house may not be selling, and then what you can do about it.

Reasons Why Your Home Isn’t Selling

There are many steps in the home selling process, so it’s not uncommon to make mistakes. Even in a hot real estate market, mistakes will cost you more money. So what makes a house unsellable?

The Asking Price is Too High

A huge mistake that a lot of sellers make is asking too much for their property. A high pricing causes prospective buyers to pass over your listing because it’s out of their price range.

Zillow, Redfin, and the like are not always reliable for estimating the value of your property. They are missing key information and updates, like damages and improvements, and do not account for location issues.

Learn the 4 signs that indicate you need a price drop.

Your House has Location Problems

Location matters! It isn’t just about being in the city, the suburbs, or rural areas, but also about what’s around you.

Most buyers do not want to live near a source of loud noise or a busy street, or where the property taxes are too high, or in a high-risk disaster area, or where there are too many registered sex offenders.

Another issue is bad neighbors. Their yard is unkept, or they have aggressive, barking dogs, or they are loud during showings. In fact, bad neighbors can lower the market value of a house up to 10%. If that is the problem you are facing, read this article on what to do when you want to sell your house but have bad neighbors.

Your House is Old, Outdated, or Damaged

Home buyers frown on a house with extensive problems. They’re already pouring their savings into buying the property; they don’t want to pay to fix it or do extensive renovations too.

Outdated or unusual features also take longer to sell. Sometimes they make the house unsellable to the common buyer. This is one of the reasons why, oftentimes, these houses are purchased by investors with capital to invest in in-depth renovations, repairs, and/or modernizing the house.

Old Listing

If your house has been listed on the market for over 30 days, especially during a Seller’s Market, buyers assume there is something wrong with it, even if that’s not the case. They’ll intentionally avoid it, and after 3 to 6 months, the listing is a failure.

You’ll want to pull the listing, revamp and relist it. If you hire a realtor, it’s actually their job to draw up the listing and post it in the multiple listing service (MLS) and other home selling sites.

Bad Listing Photos

The pandemic forced a number of industries into the digital age, and chief among them was real estate. Home sales became virtual. Safety precautions encouraged against open houses, and instead buyers surfed online listings.

Though we have returned to normalcy, potential buyers still search homes online. You know what they say: a picture is worth a 1,000 words. The National Association of Realtors report 89% of buyers find photos to be among the most useful features of a house listing. Family photos do not cut it, and the camera on your mobile device is not good enough. You need sharp, quality photos; otherwise, buyers cannot envision themselves living in the house.

Bad Advice

Really? Yes. Often we get input from friends or family members whose home sold, or we turn to real estate professionals. In all honesty though, most of the issues listed above could have been avoided by working with an experienced agent. Your realtor should make recommendations to improve your property, including repairs and staging, and even advise on the pricing. They are also responsible for organizing open houses, marketing, listing, and sharing feedback from potential buyers.

Some realtors fall short of perfect though and give bad advice. Some realtors fall short of perfect though and give bad advice. If that’s the case, they’re not worth your time or the 3% to 6% commission. Or sometimes, a home seller ignores good advice. A good listing agent knows what interested buyers are looking for, and they may advise a seller to make a change, but the seller refuses. Why hire a professional, if you’re not going to listen to them?

What You Can Do If Your House Isn’t Selling

There are a few things you can do to improve your chances of a sale.

1. Make Improvements

If your house needs TLC to make an impact, you must be willing to make repairs and renovations. But maybe you can’t afford restorations. If that’s the case, a price reduction is necessary to make up the difference. When extensive work is needed, oftentimes it’s best to sell “as-is” directly to a real estate investor and avoid losing money on contractor fees.

If it’s just minor details, in addition to fixing obvious issues, be sure to improve your curb appeal. Potential buyers start evaluating the property when they pull up. That first impression matters, so spruce up the yard, clean windows, and give the house a fresh coat of paint.

2. Strengthen the Listing

Depending on the market, there’ll be a shortage of buyers or a shortage of houses for sale. Either way, your house must stand out from other real estate listings.

Listing your home online requires a few things…

Take Good Photos

Always take photos in the spring and summer, when the outside of your house is green and beautiful. Inside photos should be staged to show off space, and important aspects and best features. You also need to take enough photos, at different angles, to show the flow from one room to another.

Listing photos must be high quality enough to grab buyer attention. A study by Realtor.com shows that 9 out of 10 buyers, under the age of 55, value photos as the most important part of a listing. The best thing you can do is hire a professional photographer – or your realtor can hire one. Below is an example of a good listing photo.

living room and dining room professional staging photo real estate

Add a Video or Virtual Walkthrough

Consider adding a video walkthrough to your listing. This way, buyers get a better idea of the layout if they prefer to view it virtually, or they are out-of-state buyers. This trend reached its peak during the pandemic and will likely remain long after.

Add Highlights

Even minor renovations, like a new coat of paint, power washing, and improved landscaping, can be enough to spark interest, if highlighted properly in the listing description. Location appeal can also increase interest, like proximity to shopping areas and awarded schools or popular recreation.

3. Improve Your Marketing Outreach if FSBO

When you try to sell your House By Owner (FSBO), perhaps your biggest challenge is visibility. You need to market your home for sale through all possible channels.

Many buyers search MLS listings. Even if you choose to sell your house alone, you can still pay an agent a small fee to list it in the MLS, so it appears on Zillow and similar sites. Be sure to promote it through social media too. Ask friends and family to share, and post to your local neighborhood / market pages.

Here are more tips on how to sell your house by owner (FSBO).

4. Cut Your Price

You cannot afford pricing mishaps. To get a better idea of an ideal asking price, (1) evaluate comparable homes and the market, (2) consider buyer search parameters, and (3) deduct repair costs plus ugly house effect, if you do not plan to improve the property.

5. Offer Financial Incentives

If you’re not willing to budge on the price, you can always offer financial incentives.

Incentives include covering the first year of the home warranty, the closing costs, or including the furniture and appliances with the house. You are essentially sweetening the deal.

Or, You Can Sell to a Real Estate Investor

Wait, what? Yes, you can skip the last five steps we mentioned and sell to a real estate investor. This is a great option if you want to sell your house fast and for a guaranteed cash offer. Most investors will buy a house “as-is,” with damages – no repairs or improvements necessary. And because they pay with cash, you avoid the long mortgage approval.

Investors do not require traditional sale warranties or inspections, and they’ll cover closing costs and additional sale fees. If you’re in a tough situation, like foreclosure or bankruptcy, you can short sale to an investor and save your credit history. What’s more, you choose when to close, which can be in 30 days or less, giving you time to pack up and move.

SolidOffers Simplifies Your Home Sale

If your home isn’t selling, and you’re not sure how to find the right investor, good news: we’ve already done it for you! SolidOffers is not an iBuyer. Rather we are the middle man between you and our network of certified investors. We screen our investors to verify experience and professionalism, and we’ll pair you with an investor in your market who can make you a solid cash offer.

Steps to Sell a Multi-Family Property

7 Steps to Sell a Multi-Family Property

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Selling a multi-family home is more difficult than a single-family because it involves more people. A multi-family property can be a multi-generational home, where families live together and share expenses and responsibilities, or it can be a dwelling with multiple units, each one with a family. We will discuss selling the former.

Step 1: Get Everyone on Board with the Sale

If you share your house with your parents, grandparents, sister or brother and their family, it’s not just your best interests at stake. Everyone has a voice in what happens to where they live. Will your extended family move with you into your new home? Will they move someplace else? Or maybe they’d like to buy the house from you – if that’s an option.

Discussing the house sale together is also a necessity if more than one person’s name is on the title. All owners must agree to the sale.

Step 2: Research the Market and Best Time to Sell

Market conditions often change. Determine if you’re in a buyer’s or seller’s market, and inquire with your real estate agent if it would be better to wait for a seller’s market.

Also, if you have the option and are not pressed to move right away, decide when you want to sell. Most people are of the opinion that spring is the best time for a house sale. But every season has its benefits and drawbacks.

We are still in the fall season, and though the market tends to cool down this time of year, that does not mean you’ll miss out on an opportunity. Buyers are actually more serious, and there’s less competition at the turn of winter.

Step 3: Get an Inspection and Make Repairs (Optional)

This step is optional because you can make repairs now, or negotiate them with a buyer later, after the inspection. The good news is you have more contributors living under your roof to help with repairs.

Step 4: Price Competitively

Pricing your property is important but tricky. Price it too high, and buyers won’t even make you an offer. Price it too low, and they suspect something is wrong with the property, or you’ll miss out on thousands of dollars.

You can do the following to help price your house:

  • Research comparable properties
  • Hire an appraiser
  • Talk with your real estate agent

Sites like Zillow or Redfin do not always provide accurate estimates because they lack information on your property. However, we can give you a fair market offer, based on the information you provide us. Just click below to request your free offer.

Step 5: Clean and Stage the House

When buyers visit for walkthroughs, they want to picture their lives in the house. Too much clutter impedes the vision and makes rooms appear smaller.

Working together, you and your family can pack and move belongings into storage. Whatever’s left you can donate or throw away to make your eventual move less of a hassle.

Be sure to do a mass cleaning inside and outside of the house and stage rooms to encourage the buyer’s vision.

Step 6: Market Effectively

If you sell your house For Sale By Owner (FSBO), you’ll have to list the property and market its availability all on your own. Potential buyers are found online nowadays, through property listing sites and social media. It requires constant attention, updating details and answering inquiries. If you have a good real estate agent, they will do all the work for you.

Step 7: Clear Out During Walkthroughs

The best thing you can do to get an offer is clear out of the house during showings. Let your realtor show off the house, while you and your family go out for the day.

Sell Your Multi-Family Property without Stress

If you want to sell your multi-family property without cleanings, showings, or inspections, consider accepting an offer from a real estate investor. Most investors pay cash for a property “as-is,” be it damaged, neglected, or have a great big mess inside. Investors will even buy a house with discarded belongings, if you want to lighten your move.

Investors do not require traditional sale warranties or inspections, and if you don’t have a realtor, there’s no commission fee. You can even sell the house virtually, without the investor ever visiting the property. All you have to be concerned with is the closing day, which is up to your discretion and can be in several months, 30 days or less.

Common House Selling Mistakes

8 Common House Selling Mistakes

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A house is the most expensive item you’ll ever sell, and mistakes are costly. There are so many hurdles to jump, and one misstep can bomb your finances and house sale. Here are eight common house selling oversights you’ll want to avoid.

Mistake #1: Pricing It Wrong

Pricing a property is tricky. If the price is too high, buyers will not touch it because it’s out of their budget. If the price is too low, they’ll think something’s wrong with the house, or you’ll miss out on thousands of dollars.

Do not trust online sites, like Zillow or Redfin, to accurately value your property. These sites lack the information necessary to estimate its value. Instead, ask your real estate agent for a comparative market analysis that shows how much properties like yours are going for in your area.

Your realtor should be able to suggest a fair price. It may be a good idea, though, to get an inspection and deduct repair costs.

Mistake #2: Not Expecting House Selling Costs

It is a big mistake to assume that selling a house does not cost you money. There are all sorts of fees that you, as the seller, are responsible for, including:

And, of course, the cost of your next home is a factor too. If you are not prepared to pay these expenses, you’ll have trouble making a profit or even breaking even with your sale.

Mistake #3: Selling It by Yourself

Going the For Sale By Owner (FSBO) route is not impossible, but it’s a lot of work. You may do it to avoid paying commission, but the truth is, a good realtor is worth their weight in gold.

A good real estate agent handles all sorts of responsibilities, including:

  • Performing real estate market analysis;
  • Helping price the property;
  • Listing it on the MLS;
  • Running advertising campaigns;
  • Answering phone calls and emails;
  • Scheduling appointments;
  • Hosting showings; and
  • Managing communications with buyers

If you sell FSBO, in addition to these tasks, you’ll be dealing with buyer-requested repairs, possibly shopping for your next house, packing and moving. Spreading yourself too thin can jeopardize your sale.

Mistake #4: Bad Listing and Advertising

Buyers today shop for houses online. In fact, more than half of last year’s shoppers found their new home through online listings.

A bad listing, improperly worded and featuring bad photos, will lose buyer interest right away. Moreover, if you do not take advantage of online and offline advertising, you miss the opportunity to reach more potential buyers, and thus miss out on a better offer.

Mistake #5: Failing to Winterize and Perform Maintenance

The worst thing a homeowner can do is neglect to care for their property. As long as you own it, and that includes while it’s listed for sale, you need to perform weekly, monthly, and annual maintenance to keep the property functioning and safe.

Winter care is especially important. Perhaps one of the most common incidents is frozen pipes bursting and flooding the house. So make sure your property, whatever the season, is ready and will pass a home inspection.

Mistake #6: Skimping on Staging

Buyers want to envision themselves living in the house. Too much clutter impedes that vision.

Staging has a dramatic impact during walkthroughs. If done right, it can showcase how spacious rooms are and give buyers an idea of what it’d be like if they lived there.

Whatever you do, do not show an empty house. If you’ve already moved, rent furniture or hire a professional stager to model the home.

Mistake #7: Failing to Clean

How would you feel if you went to an open house, and the bathrooms had soap scum, dishes were piled in the kitchen sink, and belongings were strewn about the rooms? You’d no doubt be put off, right?

Keep the house clean to make a great first impression every time.

Mistake #8: Signing a Bad Contract

You must be well-informed of the details in your real estate contract. Know your rights and responsibilities before signing, and do not be afraid to go over it with your realtor or a lawyer. If you blindly sign, you may be agreeing to a bad deal that costs you thousands of dollars.

Selling to an Investor, aka The Best Decision You’ll Ever Make

If you want to sell fast and avoid all house selling issues, consider selling it to a real estate investor. Most investors offer cash for a property “as-is,” be it damaged, neglected, or vacant. They do not deal in traditional sale warranties or inspections, but pay all closing costs and additional sale fees, actually saving you money.

Moreover, you choose the closing date, which can be in several months, 30 days or less. You’ll enjoy a quick closing and maybe use your cash proceeds to buy a new home.

turkey Tips to Sell Your House Around Thanksgiving

6 Tips to Sell Your House Around Thanksgiving

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Contrary to popular belief, selling a house between Thanksgiving and the New Year is not a bust. Buyers are serious during the winter holidays, and competition thins with fewer houses for sale. If you’re listing your property in November, here is what you can do to improve your chances of selling around Turkey Day.

Tip #1: Avoid Clutter and Keep the House Clean

When buyers visit, they want to picture themselves living in the house. Too many belongings disrupt their vision and limit the perceived size of rooms and the house overall.

Family visiting during Thanksgiving can add to the clutter. Encourage your relatives to keep spaces clean, and consider hiring professional cleaning services to tidy up before showings. You can also move your own belongings (that you can spare) into storage.

Tip #2: Price Property to Sell

The right price makes buyers merry, or in this case thankful. Your real estate agent should recommend a good price, based on your property’s current condition, age, issues, and comps in the area.

If you do not have a realtor, you can still price the property yourself by:

  • Pulling comparable listings;
  • Researching the market; and
  • Getting an inspection and deducting repairs

If you need to sell fast, lowering your price may be necessary.

Tip #3: Spruce Up House Listing

More people are searching for houses online, so make your listing attractive and word it properly. Any photos you show should be during the warmer seasons, when curb appeal is at its best. Be sure to also stage the interior for photos.

Tip #4: Do Not Go Overboard on Decorations

While it’s fine to get in the spirit of the holiday, you never want to over decorate. Decorations are distracting and can clutter spaces. Focus instead on creating a warm atmosphere that encourages buyers to envision themselves celebrating the holidays in the house.

Tip #5: Send Family Out During Showings

There’s nothing more distracting than a bunch of bodies, making noise and being disruptive. The best thing you can do is let your realtor handle showings, while you and your family go out.

Should you not have a realtor, though, you can show the house yourself. Treat your family to tickets to a museum, movie, or something else entertaining, while you host an open house.

If it’s easier, consider putting your family up in a hotel, so the house is free of bodies and messes at all times.

Tip #6: Enjoy Your Thanksgiving

Do not stress out about selling your house on Thanksgiving Day. Buyers will not be shopping then, nor is it likely that they’ll be searching on Black Friday. So enjoy your Turkey Day with your family.

The holiday is also a good time to relax and recover before you start hosting open houses again or continue with buyer negotiations.

Sell Before or by Thanksgiving

If you need to sell before or by the holiday, consider selling it to a real estate investor. Most investors pay cash for a house “as-is,” without repairs or renovations. There are also no warranties or inspections, and no commissions like a traditional sale.

Investors often cover all closing costs and additional sale fees, saving you money. You pick the closing date, which can be in less than 30 days or in several months. This way, you enjoy a quick closing and can celebrate Turkey Day with family, maybe even in your new home.

little girl selling a house with kids

How to Sell a House with Kids

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Selling a house is enough of a juggling act without adding kids to the bustle. We love our children, but they do not understand a house sale, or why strangers (i.e., your buyers) are walking through their home.

Believe it or not, your children could drag out a house sale. Every child’s superpower is to make a mess, get underfoot, and take up your time and energy. You’re exhausted keeping up with them, and you’ve no energy left to clean and stage for walkthroughs.

67% of all home sellers have at least one child living at home, so you’re not alone. Here are 8 steps you can take to get to closing day faster in spite of your kids.

Step 1: Deep Clean

Send the kids to a friend’s house and spend the day cleaning. Hire a professional cleaning service, if you can afford it. Otherwise, you are responsible for crayon on the walls, juice spills on carpets, handprints on windows, etc.

Clear the toys in the hallway and put all belongings in their proper place. You’ll have an easier time staging rooms if the messes are cleared away.

Step 2: Get Rid of Clutter

Kids are really good at spreading their toys throughout the house. Toys seem to accumulate everywhere, and it’s too much. The same happens with adults – we all collect and hoard.

It’s time to get rid of the clutter! With your child’s help, fill a box with toys they can part with, and fill some boxes of your own. Donate these, and then get a head start on packing.

Be mindful of eyesores, like the Barbie Playhouse or the Play Kitchen, and put these out of sight.

Step 3: Paint Over Kid-Themed Walls

Buyers want to envision their own lives in your house. Your child’s room, with its brightly painted colors or cutesy wallpaper with the animal prints, can overwhelm visitors.

Best thing you can do is paint over the walls in plain white or with a color that is not so loud. This way, buyers can picture the room to be anything they want, and they don’t need to worry about painting over the walls themselves.

Step 4: Take Photos of the Staged House

While the kids are away, and the house is clean, take photos of its staged rooms for its listing. This way, buyers know what the house looks like when it’s at its best.

Step 5: Remove Yourself and the Kids from Showings

If you have a realtor, let them manage the walkthroughs, while you take the kiddos out for the day. If you are selling FSBO, ask a friend or family member to watch the children while you entertain buyers.

Sell the House “AS-IS” to an Investor

If you want to forgo all this work and sell in less than 30 days, consider selling to a real estate investor. Most investors make a cash offer on a property, no matter what condition it’s in, be it damaged, neglected, or outdated. They do not require traditional sale warranties or inspections and will pay all closing costs and additional sale fees, saving you money.

Investors most times do not even need a walkthrough. You can show them the house virtually, over a webcam, or send them photos and videos of the property in its current condition.

home seller nightmares frustration

8 Home Seller Nightmares and How to Avoid Them

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Every house sale has bumps in the road. Some are unavoidable, while others can be prevented or resolved by the right means and with the right resources. Here are 8 possible issues that can quickly turn selling your house into a nightmare, and what you can do to prevent them.

1. Structural Issues

Structure damage to the foundation or underlying structure of the house, mold, termites, flood, or fire damage, all deter buyers from making an offer. The bones of your house should not be compromised.

Have an inspector come through, then resolve all issues before listing the property.

2. Lender Drops the Ball

Though rare, it is not impossible for a buyer to get a bad lender. Lenders are responsible for paperwork, necessary filing, and approval of the loan. If they misplace documents or miswrite information, your house sale can drag on and cost you more money.

Since the buyer chooses their lender, there’s not much you can do. But your realtor can nudge things along and keep an open channel of communication between you, the buyer, and their lender.

3. Buyer was Pre-Qualified, but Not Pre-Approved

It happens more often than you think: a buyer gets pre-qualified for a loan, but not pre-approved. The reason is pre-approval requires a more rigorous screening process, and a bad credit score or outstanding debt is often met with rejection.

To avoid this situation, require your buyers to submit a letter of approval from the lender when they put in an offer.

4. Faulty Appraisal

The lender requires an appraisal of your property to confirm it’s worth the loan amount. If you live in a hot market, and properties in your area are selling for more than the asking price, your house may not appraise well. A bad appraisal can result in the buyer not getting their loan.

To combat this, your realtor should gather property appreciation values in the area to argue the appraised value, or negotiate adjustments to the purchase agreement.

5. Repairs are Not Made in a Timely Manner

When a home inspection finds issues, buyers ask for repairs. You hope repairs will be fast, easy, and affordable, but sometimes you get a bad crew, or they uncover additional problems. Either way, the longer repairs take, the more money you lose, and the buyer may find a more attractive deal elsewhere.

Again, the best thing you can do is get your property inspected before listing. You can then calculate costs and project a timeframe for repairs, and screen professionals to make repairs.

6. Bad Realtor

Your real estate agent can make or break a deal. A good agent should do everything in their power to find buyers, gather offers, and expedite the sale process. They should also care about getting you a great offer since they take a 3% to 6% commission fee.

Do your research. Screen realtors carefully and check online reviews. Ask friends or family if they recommend a realtor. Look for someone who is knowledgeable and experienced, but also likable and tech-savvy.

7. Property Sits on Market, But No Attention

You can do all the right things, but the longer your house sits on the market, the less attractive it becomes. Buyers think a house that sits too long must have something wrong with it.

You can offer financial incentives and/or price it below the market value to spark new interest.

8. Bad Neighbors and Other Put-Offs

You cannot help where you live or who lives next door to you. Bad neighbors run off buyers with their eyesore lawns and loud, nosy personalities.

But maybe it’s not your neighbors. Maybe your property sits near an airport or busy highway or is in a bad part of town. If it’s outdated, cluttered, or in desperate need of maintenance – these are all issues that make a house unsellable.

Some things you cannot fix. The best you can hope for is to sell to a desperate buyer or a real estate investor.

Sell Your Nightmares to an Investor, aka The Dream Sale

Real estate investors will buy properties, with cash, in any location in any condition. The house can be damaged, rundown, or a hoarding space – they will buy it “as-is.” Investors also void traditional sale warranties and inspections and pay all closing costs and additional sale fees.

You can walk away from your problem property in less than 30 days, forgo home seller nightmares, and use the cash proceeds for a down payment on your new dream home.

autumn house fallen leaves

Top 7 Tips to Sell a House in Autumn

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Selling a house in autumn can be difficult with fewer buyers and less inventory, not to mention fast-approaching holidays, but it’s not impossible. There are some things you can do to improve your chances of a sale in the fall.

1. Price It Right

Analyze your local market to determine its condition in the fall. Most times the number of houses for sale dips, and there are fewer buyers, but they are eager to purchase. Rather than overprice, ask for less to encourage more showings.

Be aware that the longer a house sits on the market, the less likely it’ll sell, because buyers will think there’s something wrong with it.

2. Be Prepared to Move

A fast sale goes better with a fast closing. Holidays are coming up quick. If you manage to sell before school starts, you’ll want to move into your new place before it does. So be ready to move out of your old house when the closing papers are signed.

3. Check the HVAC

Your HVAC is one of the most important components of your house. When the weather turns colder in autumn, it needs to be in working order. Get it inspected and perform necessary maintenance so that it keeps your house comfortable when buyers visit.

4. Perform Seasonal Maintenance

Be prepared for the buyer’s home inspector to give your house a thorough once-over. A house in working order sells faster, so you’ll want to perform seasonal maintenance, as necessary. Here are some essential fall house maintenance items:

  • Clean gutters and downspouts
  • Check heating system, fireplace and chimney
  • Prepare plumbing and drainage systems for cold weather
  • Inspect insulation and ventilation

Additional items include inspecting the windows and doors, weatherstripping and trim, and protecting the house against pests.

5. Clean Up the Exterior

Fall foliage falls. You need to maintain your curb appeal by raking leaves, removing sticks, weeding flower beds, and trimming shrubbery. You can also enhance it by using autumn accents, like pumpkins and potted mums.

6. Improve Lighting

Shorter, darker days after the time change make a house look less inviting. Open the blinds, turn on lights inside the house, and consider replacing your outdoor lights. The more warm light you offer, the more appealing your property appears.

7. Keep It Cozy

Autumn tends to get colder, and buyers are easily distracted in a cold house. Keep the thermostat at a comfortable temperature, and consider lighting the fireplace, if you have one. Turn on the lights, and add accents, like pillows and a nice, fall-colored throw to staged rooms.

Sell to an Investor

Fall is a busy season. School starts, and the holidays are around the corner. If you want to sell fast and move into your new house sooner rather than later, consider selling to a real estate investor.

Most investors pay cash for a property “as-is,” and they save you time by forgoing mortgage approval, traditional sale warranties and inspections. They also let you pick the closing date, which can be in a month, 15 days or less. You can enjoy a quick closing and be in your new house in time for autumn (and later winter) happenings.

autumn house Pros and Cons of Selling a House in the Fall

The Pros and Cons of Selling a House in the Fall

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You may have heard spring and summer are the peak times to sell a house. Real estate is busy during those seasons, and the housing market cools down in the fall and winter. Still, this is not a bad time to list your property. Here are the pros and cons of selling a house in autumn.

Advantages

1. Buyers Are Serious

Buyers who missed out in the spring and summer are highly motivated to find a place in the fall. Whatever their reason – corporate relocation or the start of school – they are eager to buy and move in quickly.

2. Less Inventory

A lot of properties sell in the spring and summer, so the number of houses for sale dips in the fall. Your property, then, may stand out amidst the competition.

3. Weather is Nice

Touring houses and moving in the summer is a hot venture, sweaty too. The weather cools down in the fall, making buyers more comfortable during walkthroughs. Moving is also less taxing, and road conditions are still safe before the winter snow and ice.

4. House Shows Well

Autumn is a beautiful season. The changing leaves, seasonal flowers, and any fall décor you add enhance the curb appeal of your house. Staging the front door is easy, and aside from raking and bagging leaves, the natural beauty of your front yard will do the rest.

5. Settle into Your New Home Before the Holidays

Eager buyers plus low inventory can add up to less time your house spends on the market. Assuming a buyer makes a fast offer, and you close right away, you’ll be able to move into a new house before the holiday season.

Disadvantages

1. School is Back in Session

Fall is the school season, and moving your kids between school districts is hard enough without it being during school. Showings are also difficult if your children are home schooled.

2. Fewer Buyers

The majority of buyers found their new home in the spring or summertime, so there are not many left shopping the market. Getting their attention may be difficult, and you’ll have to compromise on some things, like the next point. 

3. Lower Your Listing Price

As eager as buyers are to purchase, they know sellers are just as eager to offload their properties. So they look for lower listing prices or negotiate with sellers to pay less.

4. Time is Brief

Besides the start of school, there are the fast-approaching holidays, starting in October with Halloween. Selling a house and moving during the holidays is a nightmare, so you want to sell in the early fall months.

5. Curb Appeal (Can) Diminish

But wait: did I not say fall enhances your curb appeal? I did. To clarify though: this condition depends on where you live. In some parts of the country, the weather shifts rapidly, and foliage loses all its leaves and snow falls early.

Sell to an Investor

If you want to sell fast, before school or the holidays start, consider selling to a real estate investor. Most investors make a cash offer for a property “as-is,” no repairs or renovations necessary.

Investors do not require mortgage approval, or traditional sale warranties and inspections. They pay all closing costs and additional sale fees, actually saving you money. And they let you choose the closing date, which can be in a month, 15 days or less, giving you time to pack and move out.

room with water damage How to Sell a House with Flood or Water Damage

How to Sell a House with Flood or Water Damage

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Hurricanes, flash floods, or burst pipes after a freeze – you never know when water damage will occur. It frustrates the majority of homeowners and leaves them wondering, “What now?”

Selling a house with water damage is intimidating but not impossible. You have options, depending on your budget and timeline to sell.

Here are the essential steps to sell a house with flood or water damage.

Step 1: Call Your Insurance

Water damage claims put home insurance policies to use more than any other claim. Most policies cover overflow, accidental discharge, or sewer and water backup, but not flooding.

The damage has to be accidental; you could not have predicted it. Any water damage as the result of negligence or a lack in maintenance is NOT covered.

The insurance company will send an adjuster to assess damages and estimate costs to repair. You should document the loss of personal belongings and damage to your property, before or while the adjuster is there. Take plenty of photos and guestimate the value of your loss.

Collecting insurance can take several days or weeks. There is no guarantee the insurance will cover the full cost to restore your house.

If you decide to sell the property “as-is”, filing a claim may not be necessary. I recommend you discuss options with your insurance agent.

Step 2: Turn Off Utilities

No doubt you shut off the main water supply valve to stop water flow. But you also need to turn off the power because water and electricity do not mix. Same with your gas lines.

By turning off the utilities, you prevent additional damage and put yourself and professionals out of harm’s way.

Step 3: Start Water Damage Cleanup

Pump out standing water and dry the affected areas. Gather those belongings the water missed and throw out anything that is ruined. You want to do this fast because mold sets in after 24 hours.

Open windows to let in fresh air, and if a professional says it’s safe to restore power, use floor fans and dehumidifiers.

Depending on the extent of damage, and if mold is present, you might consider hiring professional water damage and restoration services. Make sure the company you hire is licensed and insured.

Step 4: Start Restoring the House

Repairs could take several months, depending on the amount of damage. Flooring and sometimes walls need to be replaced. Electrical wiring and corroded parts must be switched out. Bad plumbing needs to be changed and the spaces around them refinished.

Water and mold remediation should be done by licensed professionals. It is not the type of work you do alone, not without risks to your health or the house, or without significant loss of time.

Step 5: Disclose the Truth to Buyers

Even if damages are remediated, you must disclose water damage and mold to buyers. If you never corrected the problem, legal remedies can be pursued against you if, after closing, the buyer discovers the truth.

Disclosure requirements vary between states. Research these and maybe ask a real estate agent to explain them.

Step 6: Alternatively, Sell “As-Is” at a Lower Price or Offer Credit

If you cannot afford repairs, and want to roll the dice on the market, you have two options. You can either lower your asking price or credit the buyer to cover repairs.

The issue here is lenders have strict loan requirements, and buyers cannot secure funding to purchase a property with water damage.

Step 7: Alternatively, Sell “As-Is” to a Cash Buyer

Your best option, if you want to sell fast and without repairs, is to sell to a real estate investor. Investors pay cash for properties in any condition. It can have water damage, mold, and be full of soaked furniture and belongings.

Investors do not need an appraisal or inspection, and they skip traditional sale warranties. All closing costs and additional sale fees are covered by the investor, saving you money. All you have to do is choose the closing date.

You can close in a few months, 15 days or less, giving you plenty of time to pack up anything left untouched by the water. You enjoy a quick closing on a washed up problem property for a sure deal without getting all wet.