Home Seller’s Frequently Asked Questions FAQ

We receive a number of home seller’s frequently asked questions. We wanted to highlight a few of these in order to shed some light on the home selling process. With some of these answers in hand you will be best positioned in order to make knowledgable decisions when selling your home.

Home Seller’s Frequently Asked Questions: How much is my home worth?

A photo of the exterior of a home illustrating home seller's frequently asked questions

One of the most common Home Seller’s Frequently Asked Questions is how much their home is worth. Homes in Northern Colorado are probably worth between $2 and $2,000,000. We will complete current market analysis or CMA in order to give you a snapshot of what your home could sell for if it was on the market today. You can use this information to make an informed choice about selling your property.

How do you determine what my home is worth?

We visit your home to gather as much information as she can about your home including square footage, number of bedrooms, bathrooms, recent improvements, upgrades, condition and more. We compare this information to other similar homes that have recently sold and homes that are currently on the market. No two homes are exactly alike but we try to find homes that are most similar. Then we use this information to arrive at a value for your home.

What is the difference between the assessed value and what you told me my home is worth?

The assessed value of your home is what the county assessor believes your home to be worth for tax purposes. This amount is almost always lower than the true value of your home. The amount we have told you that your home is worth is based on a current market analysis of properties similar to your home. This provides you a market snapshot which indicates what your home would likely sell for if it were on the market today.

Home Seller’s Frequently Asked Questions: What is the difference between list price and sales price?

Another photo of a home listed for sale to depict home seller's frequently asked questions

The list price is what we believe you should list your home for in order to net you the most on the sale of your home. The sales price is an estimate of what we believe your home would sell for if it was put on the market at the list price. Pricing your home correctly is vital to attracting the largest number of buyers. Attracting the largest number of buyers is key for getting multiple offers on your property.

Are the values that Zillow have accurate for my home?

Zillow CEO Spencer Rascoff says that Zestimates are a Good starting point. However, nationwide Zestimates have a “Median error rate of about 8%.” It can be much higher. Why are they so wrong? They have not been in your home for one thing. You need a professional agent to come in and see your home. Then they must account for all the parts of your home that contribute to its value. Only then can a value estimation provide insights for your particular property.

What are the benefits of working with you?

Lestel has been a full time Realtor since 1998. Real estate is her career. Put her Experience, Enthusiasm, Education and Energy to work for you! Contact us to get started today.

Questions to Ask When Hiring a Real Estate Agent

If you are looking to either buy or sell a home there are a few questions to ask when hiring a real estate agent. First, you want to concern yourself with the agent’s level of experience. You want to find out how long they have been in business. It is also important to know how often an agent works in the area your area if interest. After all, an agent can have a lot of experience in one locale but not have much local knowledge in the area you want to move to.

Experience means that you need to find an agent who sells a lot of homes in your price range. Experience also means finding the right agent for your area of need. This means finding a residential real estate agent if you are looking for or to sell a home, someone who specializes in land if you want to purchase or sell a vacant parcel, or a commercial agent for commercial space.

Questions to Ask When Hiring a Real Estate Agent: For Buyers

When you are looking to buy you want to find out how well your agent can represent you. This means asking questions about some of the agent’s negotiation strategies. How can they present your offer in the best light? In a competitive market this is a lot more than simply offering the largest amount of money. There are a variety of ways to make any buyers offer stand above the rest. Additionally, once you are under contract how will your potential agent support you? Will they continue to advocate on your behalf through inspection and appraisal, or will the next time they speak to you be at the closing table?

For Sellers

As a seller your needs and desires are different than that of a buyer. This likely boils down to two things. You want someone who can sell your home in a timely fashion and for the greatest amount of money. Sellers need to find out how well a potential agent knows their market, and their area. It is also important to understand what methods an agent uses to arrive at a price to list your home at. Money is just one aspect, time is also a vital factor.

For you this could mean a quick sale, or maybe you need a longer amount of time to determine your next move. When it comes to questions to ask when hiring a real estate agent you want to find out how they will remove road blocks during the under contract process to prevent delays. An experienced agent brings with them a specialized team of people, from inspectors to contractors to make repairs. Sometimes we can even negotiate to have the buyer use our preferred local lender to avoid the fly by night online operations which always result in delays. Find out if the agent you are interviewing has access to these types of professionals.

If you need help interviewing a great agent anywhere in the world we would be happy to find a great fit for you. Contact Us and let us ask the important questions so that your interests can be best represented.

Signs You Shouldn’t Sell Your Home Right Now

If you have watched the news even a little lately you know just how wild and crazy the real estate market is. This includes both broadly across the U.S. as well as locally here in Northern Colorado. This being the case you might be thinking it is a great time to sell your home. However, there are a few signs that you shouldn’t sell your home right now. For those people who check enough of these boxes you likely want to wait at least a little bit before you decide to list your home with us.

Purchasing Another Home

One area that might give you pause is if you need to buy another home in a competitive price range in an equally competitive market. This is a bit of a toss up as there are risks both ways. The first is that it is difficult to be competitive when you have a contingent offer. This is one that requires the sale of your current home in order to close.

The other is that you might sell your home before closing on another one. This situation might essentially leave you homeless. Living in temporary housing, or an apartment prior to being able to move into your new home. We have experience getting buyers under contract when they have homes to sell. To do so we use techniques such as bridge loans. It is important to run through the scenarios prior to listing your home for sale. We are happy to undertake this effort with you before rushing to put your home on the market.

You Still Love Your Home

Another time to reconsider selling is when you still love your home. You have likey seen a ridiculous amount of appreciation on your property over the last few years. However, you don’t want to miss out on a great sellers market and leave potential cash on the table. If you still love your home and don’t really want to move you don’t necessarily need to sell in order to realize the benefits of all of this market appreciation.

What you might be interested in is a cash out refinance instead. This allows you to set new loan terms with a lender. The lender will then close the loan with you, allowing you to pull out some of the cash value of your home while you continue to live in and own it.

Let Us Help

Of course these are just a couple of potential scenarios where selling might not be your best option. Every situation is different and we encourage you to Contact Us to talk you through the pros and cons of selling your particular home. We promise not to pressure you into any decision, rather we will provide the facts and let you decide for yourself if there are signs you shouldn’t sell your home right now.

What Are The Next Steps That Occur When You List Your Home For Sale?

We have discussed the report I provided you with information regarding the value of your home in today’s market and how long it might take to sell. You are comfortable with what I have told you and feel ready to get your home on the market. You would like to have it on the market as soon as possible. The next step is to sign all of the listing paperwork. This includes signing all disclosures that will be provided to the buyer, the closing instructions, loan payoff and closing information and the Exclusive Right to Sell Listing Contract. We also discuss showing instructions for your home.

Next we will go through your home room by room and I will provide you with staging advice. The way that we live in our home is not the way that our home should look when our home is on the market. I will provide you with suggestions to make your home appeal to the highest number of buyers and provide you with the best chance of multiple offers. When walking through your home I will also be making a list of décor items that I can bring to dress up your home. This may mean new towels for the bathroom to be used for showings, it may mean pictures for the wall, a lamp for the bedside table or any number of other things. I will schedule a time to come back for the final staging. I will bring all of the décor and place it where it should go. At this point you will be ready for pictures.

Pictures of your home are taken by a professional photographer. He will come at the scheduled time. I usually am present for this appointment. We will turn all lights on and he will go room by room photographing your home. Outside front pictures and back are also taken. This process usually takes an hour or more. He may also take the time for a video. You do not have to be present for the pictures, in fact it is much easier if you are not home. This allows the photographer to focus on showing your home in the best light, rather than answering questions and trying to work around you. Once pictures are taken the photographer will do his thing and make the pictures look their best. I will receive the photos within a few hours to a day. Once staging and photos are done you are ready to go in MLS. This process of staging and photography can be a quick as you need it, all occurring in 24 to 48 hours or can take longer if
needed. We are working together to make this happen. If you need the home on the market ASAP, we can make it happen. If we have some time, we can stretch the process.

Necessary paperwork has been signed. We have photos, your home is staged and ready. The next step is entering your home into the realtor’s MLS system. This can take a couple of hours. Brochures are made, sign is ordered and put up with brochures in the box. From the realtor’s MLS system the listing information is populated to over 600 websites across the country for buyers to find and look at. Showings calls can begin right away. Make sure that when you have a showing set up that you are not home, but you leave the lights on and ready to welcome that buyer for your home.