What to Know About Selling through Picket FenceReturn to article list
What to know before you sell your home through Picket Fence
Manage Your Expectations: It’s very easy to sell a home through Picket Fence Preview. Evidence of that is we’ve helped over 12,000 of your neighbors successfully sell in our 19 years in business, and we can help you too. Selling a home is a simple step-by-step process that we’ll guide you through.
First, you need to realize that most of what you’ve heard about real estate originates from real estate agents. Their objective is to mystify and complicate matters so that people are intimidated by the process and don’t even try to sell on their own. The irony is that Picket Fence sellers do much better than these so-called ‘professionals.’ In 2011, 70% of our homesellers who advertised at least 3 months sold. Compare this figure to only 36% of all real estate agent listings in Vermont selling in 2011. Picket Fence sellers are much more likely to sell than are those listed with real estate agents.
Know the average time on the market. How long will it take? In 2011, the average time on the market…until the house went under deposit…was 74 days in Picket Fence. With realtors, of those that did sell, the time it took averaged 184 days – over 2x as long!
So, plan on advertising at least as long as the average time on the market (74 days). If you sell faster, great – you save a little on advertising. If it takes a little longer, you’ll still come way out ahead by avoiding an outrageous commission. The average amount that each Picket Fence seller saved in 2011 was $16,212.
Realize that selling on your own is more convenient and less stressful than using an agent. You’ll actually save yourself lots of time and aggravation by selling through Picket Fence. Why? Because you’ll be in control. Scheduling your showings when it’s mutually convenient for you and your buyer. If you’re listed with an agent EVERY DAY you leave for work the house must be in showable condition because you don’t know if and when the agent might show up. There is absolutely no more ‘work’ involved when selling on your own. You still need get your place ready by doing the common-sense deferred maintenance etc., and having it in showable condition, but you’d do that no matter how it’s sold.
You don’t need to be a professional salesperson to sell your house. Since Picket Fence homesellers greatly outperform ‘professionals’ the facts suggest that being a ‘professional’ is a hindrance. You, as the owner, are the absolute best person to show and sell your home. Since you’ve lived there for a number of years you are the most knowledgeable and qualified person to sell it. Buyers want to speak with YOU. Finally, the secret to selling a home is actually no secret at all: a well-maintained, properly advertised home will SELL ITSELF.
Don’t worry about the legal aspects of selling a home. Selling a home is a legal transaction involving contracts and deeds. You’ll need an attorney whether you sell by owner or use an agent. In this instance, a professional attorney is necessary and will handle all the legal aspects of your sale. The only way you can mess up is by signing something BEFORE your attorney approves it! This should be a big load off your mind!
Regarding the other aspects of selling a home that occur once buyers start to call - showing the home, handling offers, negotiation, etc. – these topics are covered in our How to Sell Your Own Home book.
What Picket Fence does. We provide the advertising and marketing, plus the guidance, necessary to sell your property. The magazine, website and yard signs are all anyone needs to sell their home. You don’t need any additional advertising. You don’t need to be in MLS because all serious buyers read Picket Fence and all the agents do too. So if the agents have a buyer they will see your ad in Picket Fence. We charge only for the advertising. You pay for the ad based on the size and duration shown in the magazine. You owe nothing else.
Real Estate Attorney. Since a real estate transaction is a legal transaction involving contracts and deeds, you'll need the professional services of a real estate attorney. Most attorney's fees are due at closing so there is no upfront cost now. Fees can be structured either on a flat fee or hourly basis. Each attorney may vary, however, most will review your sales contract, hold the deposit, prepare the warranty deed, prepare property transfer tax documents, review your settlement statement as part of standard and usual real estate service. Some may also assist with negotiation and attend the closing as either part of their flat fee or as an optional add-on item. Cost for seller's attorney $500-$1000. A REAL ESTATE ATTORNEY is necessary.
You may remember that the attorney also does a 'title search.' This memory is from when you bought the property. Your buyer's attorney will perform this on behalf of the lender and the buyer pays for it.