You've decided that it's time to sell your home, found an awesome real estate agent to represent you throughout the process, and are ready to get things started. One of the first things you will want to do is sign a Listing Agreement with your realtor. This will outline your obligations a well as those of your agent and will list a number of other important things, such as the commission paid to the realtor and type of properties that will be shown to you.
But once you've gotten all the formal stuff out of the way and your home has been listed, what happens next? The selling process can go by pretty quickly, especially if you've got the goods that buyers are looking for and the market is moving along. As such, you should probably be prepared for what's to come, as well as what will be expected of you while your home is on the market.
So, what happens once you've signed your contract and your home is listed for sale for all to see?
Your Home Will Be Staged
OK, so this might need to happen before the listing is officially up, but there are always things you can do to make sure your home is show-ready at all times. Having your home professionally staged will do wonders for how your home will show to prospective buyers. And the more you can attract buyers, the better your chances of selling quickly and for the maximum price that you command in the current market.
Aside from that, you will want to make sure that all necessary repairs have been made and that your home is free of clutter. You should also keep up with the cleaning and tidying up, as you just never know when an interested buyer will book a showing at the last minute.
A Lockbox Will Be Fastened Somewhere Outside of Your Home
In order to make it easy to give access to buyer real estate agents and their clients, you will need to affix a lockbox somewhere outside your property which will contain a key to your home. If you don't have one, your listing agent will always have to be available to show your home to buyers, which is nearly impossible given the busy schedule they tend to keep. It also eliminates the need for you to be home to let buyers in to see your home. A lockbox will certainly help increase the number of visits your home actually gets.
Don't worry about having your key sitting outside your home - the lock box comes with a combination, so only realtors who your own agent has spoken with and verified will have access to it. And the lockbox itself will be locked to a part of your home, so it would be incredibly difficult to steal.
A For Sale Sign Will Be Placed in Your Front Yard
One of the most basic ways to advertise your home for sale is to simply have a For Sale sign planted out front. This will notify passersby that your home is on the market. Some sellers prefer not to have a sign placed on their front lawn because they might not necessarily want their immediate neighbours to know they are moving, but this sign is definitely very helpful at getting the word out there that your home is on the market.
These signs will usually have your agent's name and contact information on them so that if anyone who passes by is interested, they can simply jot down that information and give your agent a call to inquire.
You'll Want to Be Out of the House When a Buyer Visits
It's usually not recommended for sellers to be home when buyers visit their home for a showing, and there are good reasons for this. Buyers want to be comfortable opening and closing all doors and drawers and peeking in every nook and cranny when they are scoping out their potential future home. But they will likely feel uncomfortable doing so in front of the owners.
Also, buyers will also want to feel free to make comments on the house, and many of these remarks will likely be negative in nature. Again, buyers do not want to feel restricted in what they should and shouldn't say with the sellers present. As such, sellers should be prepared to leave the house for an hour to allow buyers to check out the home on their own.
Selling your home is a big deal, so you want to make sure you are fully prepared for the process. Knowing what to expect is an important part of selling, so you don't come across any unpleasant surprises along the way. For more information on the listing and selling process, check out our detailed seller experience page.