Decided to put a ‘for sale’ sign in your lawn?
This seller’s guide prepares you to close the best deals in the market.
Your home is the largest financial asset you own and selling it is a big deal. The process is hectic and sometimes, it’s confusing too. This seller’s handbook helps you to prepare yourself to list your Port Washington homes for sale to close the deal using a simple step-by-step approach.
Feature Your Home for Showing
Home showings are one of the biggest aspects of the home-selling process and people will not make such a large purchase without first seeing the home in person. So, choose the right seller agent in New York to prep your house for sale and set a price, you’re ready for the public to see your home.
What is a house showing?
A house showing is a professionally scheduled appointment to give a potential buyer an opportunity to tour your home when it’s listed for sale. It takes place either at an open house, when anyone can come by without an appointment, or during an appointment scheduled with you or your listing agent.
What should I do to prepare my house for a showing?
Here are a few tips to prepare your house for a showing. You can also talk with your seller agent to get advice on preparing your house or apartments for sale in Port Washington for a showing.
- Deep clean your home or apartment for sale to make the best impression on the buyers.
- Paint both the interior and exterior of your home or condo.
- Do minor repairs such as caulking tubs and windows.
- If your budget permits, do the major repairs too. This includes replacing counters, failed electronic appliances, and more.
- Stage your furniture to showcase the best features of your home.
- Don’t hang family photos or other personal items when you are preparing your home for a showing.
- De-clutter all the storage spaces.
- Pack excess items and re-organize closets.
- Clean the fireplace, carpets, and rugs to eliminate any odors that are lingering in your home.
- Warm up your home by adding a color scheme.
- Make the rooms look bigger and brighter by upgrading your lighting and light bulbs.
- Perfect your landscapes.
- Power wash decks and sidewalks.
What should I do during a home showing?
During showing your 2 family houses for sale in Port Washington NY, follow the given three points to get your homes sold faster.
- When showing your home to the buyers, leave the place giving them the freedom to move around freely.
- Make your house available for showing even at the odd times of the day. You don’t want to disappoint buyers who are eager to see a property on weekends or at dinnertime.
- Pay attention to the feedback given by the potential buyers and use it to make your home more appealing.
Did you hear from your seller agent that you have an offer for your condos for sale Port Washington NY? Congratulations! But, make sure that you don’t get carried away by the mantra, “The first offer is always the best offer.” Take your time to review the offer together with your seller agent and decide on how to respond to the offer.
What is an offer?
An offer is a purchase agreement signed by the potential buyer to buy a home and features of the following:
- The price they are willing to offer for your home.
- An explanation on how the payment for your home will be done through cash or a pre-approval on financing.
- The terms and conditions that includes request for closing cost help or contingencies such as the sale of the buyers’ house, a final mortgage approval, and more.
- A closing date.
- Ernest Money Deposit
- Offer time limit
How to evaluate an offer?
Once you receive an offer for your home, sit with your seller agent to review it and decide on whether you can accept the offer or reject it. If you are receiving more than one offer, focus on the following:
- The price offered by the potential buyer for your home.
- What are the contingencies included and waived by the potential buyer.
- Whether the funds are coming as cash or from a reputable local lender, a well-known online lender, or an unknown out-of-town lender.
- The closing date and the date of possession of the house. Check whether the date is convenient for your or aligns with your needs.
- Any special requests.
What should I do if I am receiving multiple offers?
Your selling agent will advise you on the following if you are receiving multiple offers for your listed Port Washington homes for sale.
- If you find an offer that stands out from the rest, then accept it right away. But, don’t get carried away by the extremely high offer, if the financing seems uncertain or if the buyer hasn’t explained a plan for a possible low appraisal.
- Counter all the offers and ask the buyers to give you their best offer by a certain deadline. This helps you to obtain a better price and terms.
- If you find an offer that’s close to your deal, then you can counter on that one offer. You can send them a counteroffer to adjust on some or all terms to see if they will accept it.
This negotiation can be continued until you and the buyer agree on a final contract.
Generally, home inspection will be included in the offer by the buyers as a condition. A home inspector will help you find out any structural or appliance issues in your home.
What should I know about home inspection?
A home inspection is a thorough review of your home’s structure and systems by a professional and the report generated can be used by the buyer negotiate the offer. They may rescind their offer if a major issue is uncovered or request repairs if the contract is contingent on a satisfactory report. In most cases, home inspection is purely for buyers and you can’t negotiate on it.
What to expect during a home inspection?
During a home inspection, a home inspector will look for the following:
- Check the structural condition of your home.
- The condition of the roof.
- The condition of the mechanical and electrical systems in your home.
- Any damages or repairs in the appliances.
- Plumbing issues including leaks, rust, and water pressure.
- Electrical issues.
- Safety issues including chimney maintenance, hand rails, and more.
What are the items that home inspectors will not look at?
The home inspectors will not look at the following items:
- Septic systems
- Underground pipes and sprinkler systems
- Swimming pools and spas
- Playground equipment
What should I do before a home inspection?
Before performing a home inspection, make sure to do the following:
- Deep clean your single family house for rent in Port Washington NY.
- Move your pets or crate them.
- Make sure all the lighting fixtures and light bulbs are in proper working condition.
- Make crawlspace, attic, garage, sheds, and other areas accessible.
- If there are any items that aren’t working, leave a note on them and inform that you are getting them fixed soon.
- Provide the maintenance and repair records.
- Leave the house.
What happens after home inspection?
After the home inspection, the home inspection will provide you with a detailed inspection report. Based on the report, you and your seller agent can discuss how to handle any possible issues the buyers mention. You can,
- Negotiate with the buyers
- Decide to fix an item
- Provide money for the buyers to fix it themselves or
- Provide documentation that the problem has already been addressed
Prepare for Home Appraisal
Home appraisal is done when you are nearing the end of your home sale journey. Your seller agent will helps you in gathering materials and prepare your home for the appraiser’s visit.
What is a home appraisal?
A home appraisal is a valuation of your property that serves as a safeguard for the buyer and the buyer’s lender. The appraiser works for the lender while the buyers pay for the appraisal. The appraiser may look at some of the same things as a home inspector, the result is an appraised value of your property rather than a condition report.
How a home appraisal is done?
The home appraiser uses the following information to determine the accurate value of your home.
- Comparable properties in your area that are of similar size, age and condition
- The condition of your home’s systems and structure
- The square feet of your property
- The number of bedrooms and bathrooms
- Your location
- The quality of your flooring, plumbing and electrical systems
The home appraisers also includes research about other properties and neighborhood values, as well as an in-person visit for their evaluation of your home.
How to prepare for a home appraisal?
- You must follow the below steps to prepare for a home appraisal.
- Give a detailed information about major improvements to the home and the age and condition of your roof, heating and air conditioning system, and appliances.
- Provide the permits required for home improvements.
- Clean your house.
- Provide full access to all rooms and spaces, including the garage, sheds, attic and crawlspace
- Remove or crate your pets.
- Leave the house, or at least stay out of the appraiser’s way.
Will a home appraisal affect the sales of my home?
- If you feel that the appraisal value is much lesser than the property value, you can ask for a renegotiation. The appraised value dictates the maximum amount the lender will allow the buyers to borrow, minus their down payment. If the appraisal is low, you can,
- Ask the buyer to come up with extra cash to make up the difference between the loan amount and the purchase price.
- Reduce your price to the appraised value.
- Split the difference with the buyer.
- Cancel the contract.
Closing is the final stage of your selling process and you have some final responsibilities as a seller until the closing is over.
How should I prepare for closing?
- Perform all the repairs required by the contract.
- Keep all receipts and invoices and before-and-after photos of repairs.
- Gather all appliance manuals and warranties for your buyers.
- Hire a mover.
- Cancel the utilities before the day you leave.
- Change your address.
- Review the documents and settlement statement.
- Prepare the house for final walk-through.
What to consider during a closing?
You can consult your seller agent to determine whether you can be present at the closing of your 2 family houses for sale in Port Washington NY. Before the official closing, you can sign all the documents.
Planning to buy your dream home?
A Complete Guide for First-time Home Buyer
With its rich history, great schools, and an incredible sense of community, Port Washington is considered to be one among the best towns to live. From apartments to multi-family homes in Port Washington NY, the town is attracting new residents like never before. The town is magnificent with a massive golf course, great restaurants, shopping centers, and more. The waterfront location is the pride of Port Washington and is considered to be a great town to live and work. From boating to golf and tennis, there are numerous recreational activities to help you unwind on weekends.
So, if you are looking for Port Washington homes for sale, this handbook guides you through the process of home buying.
Scheduling a Home Visit
Whether you are looking for 2 family houses for sale in Port Washington NY or single family house for rent in Port Washington NY, you must perform a house visit to review the property and get a clear picture of it. You must ensure that you are not committing to a property without a house visit.
How can I ensure a successful home visit?
- While making a home visit, always make sure to gather the essential details of your property including the price range, monthly payment estimate, pre-approval letter, and more. When you have all these details in your hand, the sellers would consider you seriously for making an offer.
- Work with a buyer agent in New York to figure out your wants and needs. They play a wonderful role in letting you know the expectations you have on a property and help you to find out whether you focus on the property or the location.
- The buyer agent will avoid you the hassle of visiting a property by letting you preview homes via their mobile app or website.
What should I do when making a home visit?
- Always plan to make home visits together with your buyer agent so you can clear any doubts that are lingering in your mind.
- You will be free to spend little or more time in the home as homeowners will not be around for home visits.
- Remember the cliché, ‘first impression is the best impression?’ It’s not far from the truth. You can always count on your gut reaction to a home, but consult the buyer agent to determine the value of the property and re-evaluate your priorities.
Is there any limit on the numbers of home visits?
No, there are no restrictions or limit on the number of home visits. Some people find their dream home in their first visit or some may look at more than 50 homes to make an informed decision. But, it’s recommended to visit more than one or two homes to choose the perfect town where you will spend the rest of your life.
But when working with Real Estate By Elida, we will listen to your needs and provide you with the perfect list of homes that hit your needs and goal, so we don’t waste your time of seeing 50 homes.
What are the guidelines for home visits?
- When making a home visit, look more than the staging and decorations and shift your focus on the features and fixtures.
- Inspect the condition of the home.
- Take photos and take notes about the property so that you can refer later.
- Note all the possible home improvements you might want to make if you are buying the home to figure out the costs you may spend on it.
- While you are more tempted to check the house interior, you must also pay attention to the home exterior and the neighborhood.
- Take a brief look on all the amenities that are available including the commuter route, schools, shops, restaurants, parks, and more.
- If you are looking for a coop/condo, collect the details of the cost and rules of the homeowners association to determine whether you can live with it.
Make an Offer for the House
Finding your dream home where you will spend the rest of your life is an exciting process but it isn’t a simple ride. From making an offer to the transfer of title, there are contracts involved that costs time and effort.
Making an offer is the second step after finding your dream single family or 2 family houses for sale in Port Washington NY, and your buyer agent will help you with this.
What are the details that must be included in the offer?
The following are the details that must be listed in a home offer form that comply with state and local laws.
- The price of the property for sale.
- Terms and conditions that includes closing cost, financing, and home inspection.
- Closing date.
- Deposit – This would be determined based on your current mortgage.
- Final walk-through request.
- Offer time limit.
What are the contingencies that must be mentioned in an offer?
The following contingencies should be listed in the offer:
You are required to write an offer with contingency clause to help you save if you can’t arrange or finalize the mortgage within a given number of days. Writing an offer with a contingency clause is important even if you have a pre-approval for a loan.
This contingency helps you if the inspection uncovers expensive necessary repairs, and it can be made dependent on a satisfactory home inspection report within a certain number of days.
How to deal the competition against other buyers?
Real estate is a competitive market and it’s common that you will find yourself battling against other buyers. During this situations, you can get help from your buyer agent to strategize your offer in such a way that it impresses the seller. They will make this happen with real-time access to real-time market data. They will know how to best position your offer. Here are the three things a seller may do in cases they are receiving more than one offer.
- Accept the best among all the offers
- They will counter the offers to get a better price
- They counter one offer that’s close to their quote
You can work with your buyer agent to find out the expectations of the sellers including the moving date, waiving contingencies, adjusting the quote, and more.
What should I know about counteroffer?
A counteroffer is an offer made by the seller to your existing offer to make a few adjustments to some or all of your terms. You can make your own counteroffer, or accept or reject the counteroffer you receive from the seller. Only after you and the sellers have agreed to all the terms, the contract will be finalized.
Let’s remember one major point, Do the math, if the home is your dream home, and the seller wants a certain amount more than you offered. This is a long-term investment, 20 to 30 years, divide that extra amount by 20 or 30 and ask yourself, how much a year extra is it? I bet you will see for a minor amount a year; you can have your dream home.
Executing the Contract
Executing the contract is a crucial step between making an offer and finalizing a contract. During this process, you must be in close contact with you buyer agent & attorney to stay in the know of all the information you need to make smart decisions.
What can I see in the contract?
The following are the keys that are mentioned in your multi-page contract:
- Accurate personal information and property address.
- The effective date of contract because the contingencies you have issued have time limit.
- A contingency list that encompasses financing, home inspection, appraisal, the sale of your current home, and more.
- Disclosure information of the property from the seller. This depends on your local state law.
- A list of features that conveys with the property.
- An inspection list that includes all the inspections that must be performed on the property and it includes home inspection, pest inspection, and more.
- Move in information.
- A ‘kick-out’ class from the seller which states that the seller is entitled to accept another offer before your home is sold. This clause is made only if your offer is contingent on the sale of your home.
When should I negotiate the contract and when I shouldn’t?
Your agent & real estate attorney will help you in figuring out when to negotiate and when to remain silent. But, this purely depends on how much you want the listed townhouse for sale in New York and what you are willing to accept to get it. You should not negotiate when,
- The bidding price is too high.
- The appraised value of the home is below your offer.
- There are defects that are expensive to repair in your home inspection.
- They refuse to make reasonable repair before selling the property to you.
- You cannot stand the homeowners association rules that won’t work for you.
What are the don’ts while preparing a contract?
- Don’t enter unrealistic deadlines because you’ll need time to arrange a home inspection and receive the report, as well as arrange financing and moving from your current home.
- Don’t miss the deadlines, you will lose your chance to end the contract and keep your deposit.
- Watch out for items that don’t convey with the property.
The National Association of REALTORS® states that the most common reasons for contracts to fail or to be delayed are home inspection problems, financing problems or an appraisal issue.
Scheduling your home inspection as soon as your offer is accepted is essential to determine the damages that require minor or major repairs. If you couldn’t find a reliable home inspector, your buying agent will help you find one.
What should I know about home inspection?
A home inspection is done to find out the possible damages that can be caused to your home and must be immediately addressed. Your home inspector will check a massive list of systems, appliances and structures in your home to evaluate its condition. After the inspection, your home inspector will give you a report that identifies potential problems and future maintenance issues. Based on the home inspection report, you can decide whether to buy or move onto another home for sale in Port Washington. In some cases, you can also have an “information only” inspection, which means you’re buying the house as is, but want to know its condition.
What are the factors involved in a home inspection?
The home inspector will check for the following factors:
- Structural condition of the home you are buying and it includes the foundation, beams, and floors.
- The condition of the roof.
- The condition of the mechanical systems including the heat and air-conditioning systems.
- Electronic and electric appliances.
- Plumbing system that encompasses leaks, rust, and water pressure.
- Electrical systems such as grounded outlets and code violations
- Safety issues such as stairs, handrails, mold or chimney maintenance
What should I watch for during home inspection?
You and your buying agent must be present during the home inspection to learn about home maintenance and figure out any potential problems yourself. If you don’t understand or are worried about any particular issue, talk with the home inspector to fix it right away.
What should I do with the home inspection report?
After receiving the home inspection report, you can ask your home inspector the following:
- Are the items flagged are minor or major issues?
- What needs to be done to fix the flagged issues?
- What’s the estimate of the cost of any repairs?
- Should I inspect the home again for electrical or structural issue by hiring an electrician or engineer respectively?
- Are there any home inspections or fixes that I must do after I am moving in to our new home listed for sale or single family house for rent in Port Washington NY.
A home warranty is a contract that agrees to provide you with discounted repair and retainment services. Some sellers pay for a home warranty that covers the damages on the home when their home is still in the market and informs the buyers after the sale. So, talk to your buying agent for advice about negotiating for the sellers to pay for a warranty or buying one yourself.
How does a home warranty work?
A home warranty is a written contract that covers the damages of your home with discounted repair and retainment services. It typically lasts for one year and renewable. The company will cover repair costs and arrange for contractors in return for the annual fee you pay and you’ll pay a deductible fee and possibly service fees if you need to use the warranty.
Can I proceed without a home warranty?
- You can proceed without a home warranty but getting a home warranty would be beneficial if you are buying an existing home listed for sale. A home warranty is must if you are buying a home with appliances that are more than four years old as it can give you peace of mind about paying for unexpected repairs and finding a reliable contractor. It comes to your rescue when you are having a limited saving. If you have plenty of emergency savings, you’re handy or know good contractors, you may not need a warranty. Your buying agent can help you with good recommendations.
Note: If you’re buying a newly built home, structural defects are usually under warranty by the builder for 10 years and other items are typically covered for six months to two years, so you don’t usually need a home warranty.
What to look for in a home warranty?
- The home warranty company’s license with your state’s real estate commission
- The fine print – that’s where you’ll find exclusions and limitations
- What’s covered and what’s not
- The coverage limits – your repairs will only be paid for up to a specific level
- Service fees and deductibles
- How quickly service and claims are handled
- How contractors are vetted and what happens if you use your own
- Coverage differences between a basic warranty and enhanced warranty
- Online reviews
Closing the Deal
Closing date is the day you become the legal owner of your new home. Your buying agent will prepare you for the closing and makes you feel comfortable throughout the process.
What are the steps I should follow before the closing?
- Stay in touch with your buying agent & real estate attorney.
- Maintain a good credit score.
- Resolve contract agencies including home inspection, appraisal, and financing.
- Finalize your insurance policy.
- Gather your down payment and closing cost funds in an accessible account.
- Review your Closing Disclosure form, which you’ll receive three days before your settlement.
- Schedule a walk-through of your new home within 24 hours before your closing to check its condition.
What can I expect during the closing?
- During the closing, you can expect a lot of paperwork to do. Here are the requirements you must bring for the closing:
- A government-issued photo ID
- Proof of homeowner’s insurance
- Your copy of the contract
- All paperwork associated with your loan and the home purchase
- Your cashier’s check or wire transfer confirmation
- Your checkbook for miscellaneous funds that weren’t included on your closing estimate
What are the most important documents I sign during the closing?
- Promissory Note
- Deed of Trust
- What’s covered and what’s not
- Initial Escrow Disclosure
- Right to Cancel form
What are the things to do after the closing?
After the closing keep all the signed documents in a secure town. Avoid making new credit applications that may lower your credit score. Change your address, locks, and security codes on your home. Review the due dates and budget.