Scottsdale Home Selling Tips

Scottsdale home selling can often take time and try a homeowner’s patience. To successfully accomplish the goal of selling your home, planning ahead is vitally important. One of the best plans a prospective seller can have is to hire the right real estate agent. 

Scottsdale Home Selling – Ask an Agent

It’s important to select a real estate agent who’s able to gain your trust and confidence, inform and educate you as a homeowner, and effectively promote your home for sale. A good agent will be expected to be responsible for all aspects of selling your home – from hosting open houses to working with potential buyers and/or their agents.

Prior to hiring an agent, we suggest asking the following five questions to make sure you make the best choice.

Questions to ask any agent when Scottsdale home selling is your goal.

What is your experience and local market expertise?

While experience doesn’t necessarily equate to skill, most real estate agents with years of experience, impressive recommendations and a good education will likely be very qualified. Don’t be bashful in your interview. Ask your prospective agent if they work full time or part time. Find out how many homes they’ve sold in the past year, two years and three years. Ask how many other sellers they are currently representing.

Are you a member of a real estate agent organization?

Agents who are members of a professional organization usually have pledged to conduct themselves according to the organization’s bylaws and code of ethics. In addition, find out what additional training or certifications they may have that could give them an advantage over others in the Scottsdale home selling market. As an example, an agent designated as a "Certified Residential Specialist" has attended a series of training classes in residential real estate. Additionally, many agents in recent years have become certified in short sales, foreclosures, and other specialties.

What is your marketing plan to sell my home?

A knowledgeable agent knows that a combination of effective marketing efforts is necessary in today’s market to successfully sell a home. Because online marketing is so important in the Scottsdale home selling arena, ask your prospective agent how many photos of your home will be taken. Will they be taken by a professional real estate photographer? Because it’s such a popular feature on the Internet and social media channels, will the sales efforts include video? Ask your potential agent about additional marketing materials, other advertising, home staging, open houses and listing your home on various real estate websites such as Trulia, Zillow, and more.

In today’s real estate marketplace, a larger number of home shoppers than ever start their search online. Therefore, professional photography, videography and home staging can give your home the Internet equivalent of “curb appeal” before prospects actually visit it in person.

Discuss your prospective agent’s plans and strategy. Listen for concise, comprehensive and aggressive ideas.

Do you have any recommended service providers we should work with?

Seasoned, experienced Scottsdale home selling experts are usually well known in their community and they have a network of sources within the real estate industry. So, when you conduct an interview with a prospective agent, inquire about other professionals such as mortgage lenders, home inspectors, or contractors. Using the resources your agent may be able to bring to the table will give you an advantage in the long run. It will not only save time, but once you're satisfied with the agent you select, you should have an equally high degree of confidence in the third parties he/she may recommend for various aspects of your home sale.

Can you provide me with three previous client references?

It’s not unusual, of course, for a prospective employer to ask for references as part of a job interview. In much the same way, since you’re considering “hiring” a real estate agent, don’t hesitate to ask them for client references. Contact the references by phone or email and ask them to share their experiences in working with the prospective agent. In addition, ask your potential agent about customer reviews and client testimonials.

After you’ve conducted interviews and asked these questions of your prospective real estate agents, you'll have a pretty good idea about who to select and why. Choose the agent that best meets the criteria you expect from a Scottsdale home selling expert. Remember, the “partnership” you form with your real estate professional is vitally important to its success. Make sure you and your real estate agent are on the same page in every aspect of the sales process – from the listing to the closing table.

Most importantly, make sure you understand the comparable sales in your neighborhood when it comes time to discuss your home’s listing price. If you’re far apart from each other, that’s probably an early sign of potential problems down the road. However, keep in mind – no matter what emotional or personal connection you have to your home – your agent is the expert. They can recommend the best sales price to ask for your home. More importantly, the price will be based on what the current real estate market will bear. A good listing agent wants to sell your home for as much money as the market can support. Anything more and your home may stay on the market longer than you want. Anything less and you may end up leaving money on the proverbial table.

See more articles pertaining to selling a home in Scottsdale in the Scottsdale Home Selling Tips section of our site below Scottsdale Real Estate Categories in the column to your right.

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Selling a home in Scottsdale  is both an art and a science. Most real estate professionals say the most stressful conversations with their clients involve the asking price and the way the home is presented for sale. This article will focus more on the factors that make the biggest impact on prospective purchasers.

Selling a Home in Scottsdale – Following “Stage Coaches”

Selling a home in Scottsdale can happen twice as fast if you use a stage coach to help with the presentation.

For most home sellers, personal possessions are important parts of who they are and what their home means to them. To potential buyers, however, they mean virtually nothing. They’re not interested in your children’s photos, your bowling trophies or the handmade quilt your late grandmother gave you several Christmases ago. Real estate agents worth their salt advise their sellers to tidy up, clean out and pack up most personal items. The reason? Prospective home owners need to clearly imagine themselves and their family in every room in your house. If they look around and see nothing but constant reminders of the seller and their family, they may quickly lose interest. In addition, people’s tastes vary – what you like may not necessarily represent the likes of potential buyers.

That's one reason selling a home in Scottsdale often includes staging the home for the best presentation possible. Today, home staging is more popular than ever – even in a seller’s market. According to a leading national real estate sales firm, staged homes spend half as much time on the market than non-staged homes. In addition, homes that are staged sell for over 6% above the asking price.

Staging can also help the buyers envision how the house will appear once they move in, even though the majority of people don’t have professional decorators at their disposal. Savvy agents refer to staging as being responsible for “aspirational selling.” Buyers imagine living in the house the way it’s set up and decorated for the best sales presentation.

One real estate agent – who is obviously bullish on home staging – says staging homes for sale is a key to her success. “When I put a house on the market, it’s going to look nice. It benefits both me and the seller. They refer me to other people, so it’s an investment I make in my business.” The investment in home staging can range anywhere from $1,000 to $5,000 depending on the home’s size and whether or not furniture needs to be replaced. Renovation and staging websites often include rental items like furniture, furnishings, rugs, paint, window treatments, accessories and other props.

Selling a Home in Scottsdale – Online Staging

Real estate agents who coach their sellers into staging their homes readily admit one of the advantages of selling a home in Scottsdale by staging is for taking photographs as much as anything else. Even though there will be dozens of people walking through the home, an even larger number of prospects routinely search online, viewing interior photos of the homes they plan to visit. Attractive photos will draw more buyers.

Most real estate professionals say a common problem in trying to stage a home the seller is currently occupying is getting them to understand the philosophy and purpose of staging. Diplomacy is an important attribute of agents dealing with sellers during the “hand-holding” phase. In addition, a key to staging is to give small rooms the appearance of being larger than they really are. That way, buyers start the mental process of envisioning where their furniture – or new furniture –  can be placed to best showcase the rooms in the home.

As an example, an eat-in kitchen would naturally have a table in it. A smaller-sized bedroom that appears to be too small for a bed should have a bed in the room. Professional stagers work to position the home to sell to the prospective purchaser. A young couple with children, for example, needs to be able to imagine the rooms as they will best appeal to them, using the type furnishings they can envision. That often involves removing antiques or artwork from an older seller’s home. It may also mean depersonalizing the home so the potential buyers don’t identify too much with the existing homeowners.

Some home stagers go so far as to re-organize closets and kitchen cabinets in an effort to remove any items that may dissuade prospective buyers. While not all rooms require staging, it’s always best to keep all rooms clean and uncluttered. Sometimes giving the potential home buyers an “empty canvas” to use their imagination is a good idea.

One last thing about selling a home in Scottsdale : There are no formal or steadfast rules for what should and shouldn’t occur during the home staging. However, as in most personal or business relationships, first impressions are important. As an example, the front porch, doorway, foyer or entryway are all equally important. Make sure they are appealing to visitors that enter the home with a passing interest and leave it with the home high on their list.

See more articles pertaining to Selling a home in Scottsdale in the Scottsdale Home Selling Tips section of our site below Scottsdale Real Estate Categories in the column to your right.

Remember, we also post tips daily on Twitter and Facebook. Check us out there, too.

The Scottsdale real estate market is like that of other parts of the country. No doubt you’ve heard that home inventory is low and people choosing to sell are in the proverbial “catbird seat.” The basic economic principle of supply and demand is never more true than in a seller’s market – where supply is low and demand remains relatively high. However, is it the right time for you to sell? This article will examine that question and help you avoid seller’s remorse. Although we never work for sellers or list property for sale and always represent home buyers only, we know and can find the very best listing agents anywhere to help you with selling your home.

Scottsdale Real Estate: Should You Sell?

The Scottsdale real estate market can, from time to time, turn into a market where there are multiple offers being submitted for the limited homes for sale.

As is the case in most seller’s markets, it’s not unusual for homes in some areas to sell for more than the asking price. Anxious buyers with little to choose from often provide sellers with multiple offers – and a few prospective buyers may even get in a bidding war to get the home they want. Because home prices are so high, some real estate agents are trying to get potential sellers to list their homes for sale now.

Sure, it seems like a wonderful time to sell… but how do you know if it’s really a good time for you to sell? We’re all familiar with the phrase “buyer’s remorse,” the feeling that you may experience after you’ve bought something and are having second thoughts or sensing you made a mistake in judgment. In the case of homes under contract for sale, a prospective buyer can usually get out of the deal by using contingencies or other clauses that may provide him an “out.” “Seller’s remorse” is just as prevalent, but in most cases there aren;t contingencies that protect the seller. So, it’s important that you’re ready and committed to sell before you sign the sales contract – actually, before you list your home for sale.

To help you avoid seller’s remorse and enable the sales transaction to be as seamless as possible, remember the following Scottsdale real estate strategies.

Devise a Good Pricing Strategy

Naturally, a good real estate agent will encourage their sellers to list their homes competitively to ensure it’s received favorably in the marketplace. While some skeptical sellers may look at their agent’s recommendation as pricing their home low for a quicker sale, the agent is really looking out for the seller’s best interest.

Regardless of what the situation holds, a discussion about pricing strategy should be the most important part of the relationship between seller and agent. If there are issues on the asking price, it could set the tone for a rocky relationship. As a seller, should you find yourself in the position of disagreeing with your agent’s recommended price, you should discuss the options or, if necessary, get a second opinion on pricing.

You could list your home at first with a higher asking price. It may be against your agent’s advice, but if it makes you feel better it may be worth a try. However, be smart… if there’s little or no activity in the first two weeks, reduce the asking price. Our best advice is to listen to – and trust – your listing agent. After all, they’re the professional, not you. Either way, remember this:  If you aren’t prepared to have a good long discussion on price with your Scottsdale real estate agent or if you’re wavering on the listing price, follow your instincts and realize you may not actually be ready to sell yet.

Plan for What do to After the Sale

We recently heard a story regarding the sellers of a home who decided to sell because their local market was enjoying higher than normal sales prices. They had previously tried to sell their home just six months earlier, but with no success. As they prepared to list their home for a second time they performed a variety of work. They had the home painted, they made necessary repairs, and had even put some of their excess belongings in storage to make their home more presentable to prospective buyers. Going on the Scottsdale real estate market, for them, was easy.

What the sellers of the home didn’t expect, however, was three offers within a matter of hours following the first open house showing. All three offers were more than the asking price. The buyers the sellers chose wanted to close the sale in thirty days. Ordinarily that’s a great combination – a sales price higher than the asking price, and a closing date in a matter of a few weeks. However, there was just one small problem:  The sellers, once they moved, had nowhere to go. Due to poor planning – or a lack of a plan altogether – these sellers achieved what they set out to do, but failed miserably on the next step of what to do after the sale. Let’s continue to read what happened next.

Prepare to Negotiate

The new purchasers decided to try to see if they could arrange terms that would better suit their situation. The listing agent was able to negotiate a quick close including a 30-day-free rent-back arrangement, and an additional 30 days rent in which the sellers agreed to pay the buyer’s PITI payment. With the aid of quick thinking and good negotiating, the sellers and their agent were able to come up with an arrangement that was a “win-win” for both parties.

The lesson here is to be prepared to negotiate what you – and the other party – may want or need to have a successful sale.

In Doubt? Stay Out!

Homes can sell fairly quickly in the Scottsdale real estate market. Of course, that’s good news for the housing market. However, sellers should plan for their sale several months in advance. It should rarely, if ever, be a spur of the moment decision.

Utilizing a knowledgeable real estate agent early in the planning process is a good first step. Your agent can walk you through what you should do and what to expect. Lastly, here’s one simple, but vital piece of advice. If you are in doubt about whether to sell, if you have concerns about your physical, emotional or financial abilities in preparing to sell, or if you have any hesitation at all – don’t list your home yet. You can always enter the Scottsdale real estate market at a later date when and if the time is right for you.

You can find more articles pertaining to home selling tips in the Scottsdale Home Selling Tips section of our site below Scottsdale Real Estate Categories in the column to your right.

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Scottsdale home selling tips are a valuable commodity. Knowing what will help sell your home faster and for the best price gives you a distinct advantage over sellers who don't pay attention to market indicators. Sellers who allow themselves to get caught up in the emotional value of their homes while ignoring the real value based on recent comparable sales are likely not to sell as quickly – if at all. 

In today's environmentally-conscious society, one of the more popular topics among home sellers is how their home's "green" features affect their ability to sell. Let's take a look at some of the pros and cons.

Scottsdale home selling tips are valuable to sell your home faster and for more money.

Scottsdale Home Selling – Will Green Make More Green?

Regardless of whether they are active environmentalists, a greater number of home buyers are familiar with and appreciate energy efficient homes. They've read about Energy Star-rated appliances, LEED certification and sustainable homes. They've heard about solar panels, home geothermal systems and smart home technology.

Builders of homes with energy efficient features in the Scottsdale home selling market usually go to great lengths to make their prospects aware of what green homes offer. Simply put, they've invested a large amount of money installing the features in hopes of recouping their costs when they sell. However, the big questions are, "Do most buyers really care?" "Will they pay a higher sales price for green features?" "Does 'going green' help sell a home?" The answer – as is the case with most subjective topics – is, it depends.

Features, fixtures and finishes are fickle.
Home buyers are attracted to and are likely to pay more for features they can actually touch and feel. Tangible features that increase the home owning experience may include extras like a spa-like or whirlpool bath tub, a media room, a chef's kitchen, or an exercise room. They are less likely to pay more for improvements to the home they can't see like the roof, new plumbing, new electrical, or a new heating and air conditioning system.

Energy efficient homes with green features rank somewhere in the middle of the tangibles versus intangibles. Younger buyers may be more attracted to the "hip factor" provided by rooftop solar panels or energy saving smart home technology that can be controlled from their smartphone or tablet. Often the hip factor is enough for a home buyer to pay more, but not always.

So, what about my wallet?
Chances are, environmentally friendly features won't motivate a buyer enough to pay more than a home is worth. However, if a green home includes money-saving features from which the buyer may benefit, his interest may be piqued.

In the Scottsdale home selling market, it's even more difficult for sellers to recoup the costs they paid for solar panels, a high-tech thermostat or other energy efficient features. While the expense to buy and install the green features are usually included in the home's sales price, it's less likely the sellers will recover the costs, dollar-for-dollar. A remodeled kitchen with new appliances stands a better chance of producing a return on the seller's time, money and effort.

New construction: to green or not to green?
When it comes to new home construction, home buyers are the ones that ultimately decide the cost versus benefit. For example, a successful single family home builder in New York recently built a variety of similarly sized homes to sell. They were able to sell many of the homes on the strength of the floor plans and other features, then added custom-built features based on each buyer's individual needs and tastes.

The home builder gave buyers the option of installing a complete home geothermal heating and cooling system. While the cost was roughly $50,000 extra, the buyers were given an immediate $30,000 federal government tax credit. In addition, the cost of the system was already built into the mortgage, requiring no additional outlay of cash by the buyer.

The program was set up whereby the buyers would realize the savings through lower energy bills of several hundred dollars a month. It was projected to pay for itself in roughly five years. As attractive as the prospect of recouping their investment in just five years was, only half the buyers chose the system. The other half just didn't want it or feel the need to "pay" for it.

So why are some home buyers more interested in green features and their benefits than others? It all boils down to two factors: personal preference and financial wherewithal. If a buyer doesn't plan to stay in a home longer than a few years, they're less likely to have time to benefit from the additional cost. In addition, when they're ready to enter the Scottsdale home selling arena their future buyer probably won't be motivated to pay more – especially if the market has become depressed. Therefore, home buyers who plan to own the home for a longer time period, or those with a personal commitment to protecting the environment are definitely the target audience.

The market's small, but growing.
There is a small but increasing segment of today's home buying market that's genuinely concerned about the environment. These people want sustainable homes. They want to contribute to improving our surroundings and saving energy. They are less concerned about the costs of green home features. They will pay more for those features – regardless of the hip factor. The cost savings they enjoy is a plus, but it's not the most important issue in their decision-making process.

One thing's for sure: green features and energy efficiency is here to stay. More consumers will see them and learn about them in the Scottsdale home selling market. So, it may not be a big consideration for buyers or sellers today, but that will change in the near future.

See more articles pertaining to Scottsdale home selling in the Scottsdale Home Selling Tips section of our site below Scottsdale Real Estate Categories in the column to your right.

Remember, we also post tips daily on Twitter and Facebook. Check us out there too.

The Scottsdale home selling market continues to improve and, as prices steadily rise more homeowners are considering selling their homes. Informed sellers are aware there are a number of considerations prior to putting their homes on the market. Let's examine a few factors to consider if you're planning to sell.

Scottsdale Home Selling: Timely Tips

Once you have decided to enter the Scottsdale home selling market, one of the most vital pieces of the puzzle is putting the correct sales price on your home.

Naturally, the first question you need to answer is where you will live or move to next. If you're contemplating purchasing another home, consider entering into a contract contingent on the sale of your existing home. If you're among the fortunate few Americans that don't have to rely on the proceeds from the sale of your home to be able to purchase a new home, timing will not be a major factor. However, you'll still want to be aware of the timetable of closing the sale of your existing home, moving into a temporary residence while you decide to buy or build, or – if you're moving out of the area – searching for a home to purchase in your new location.

In addition, it's important to know the tax implications of selling your primary residence. You may have to pay capital gains taxes if your profit exceeds $250,000 for individual sellers or $500,000 for married couples. To be sure, we recommend checking out IRS Publication 523, "Selling Your Home" for any questions about rules and for a worksheet. Lastly, if you're planning to downsize after the sale of your home, performing a little research may save time, money and future frustration. Often retirees who want to downsize experience "sticker shock" when they price smaller, more recently built homes or condos with many of today's desirable and expected amenities. Having to pay more than expected for a smaller home may put a sizable dent in your budget – and your downsizing plans.

Once you've decided to enter the Scottsdale home selling arena, probably the most vital piece of the puzzle is putting the correct sales price on your home. Real estate agents say the first three weeks a home is on the market are the most important in creating a "buzz," generating buyer interest and attracting potential buyers. A good agent would agree potential buyers often ignore a listing that's been on the market awhile. The perception – and the reality – is the "bloom is off the rose" and it's obvious there's a reason the home hasn't sold. The longer the house stays on the Scottsdale home selling market the higher the probability the sales price will suffer. Simply put, if your home hasn't had a serious inquiry for, say, four weeks, it may be time to reduce the asking price.

When it comes to setting the proper sales price and knowing if and when to reduce it, we strongly suggest enlisting the help of an experienced real estate professional. The selection process of choosing a qualified agent is similar to hiring an employee to work for your business. Make sure the agent has your best interest at the forefront of their desire to sell your home for the best possible price. A good agent should know your neighborhood and be familiar with what similar properties have recently sold for. Don't hesitate to ask for a written marketing plan describing what avenues your prospective agent plans to utilize to sell your home. Give your would-be agent higher marks for their digital and online expertise. Potential buyers shopping in the Scottsdale home selling market use the Internet to see listings, take virtual tours and make comparisons as they shop for the home they want.

After you choose the real estate agent you feel can best serve your needs, it's time to prepare your home for sale. A good agent will identify any items that may need improvement to help your home "show" better. Remember, you only get one chance to make a good first impression, so if there are items that may hamper buyer interest in your home, replace them, repair them, or get rid of them. To prepare for a successful open house, consider sprucing up with a fresh coat of paint – on the exterior if needed – and in the interior to give favorite rooms new life. In addition, clean or replace old carpets, mow the lawn and trim the shrubbery. Don't ignore the seemingly small things. Make sure all the lightbulbs are working, replace any that have dimmed or yellowed. Remove the clutter from laundry rooms, bookcases, the garage or a home office. Make your home as presentable as possible by making a great and memorable first impression.

If you're not up to the task of readying your home with its best foot forward, consider hiring a professional staging company. Home staging experts say giving each room of your home a purpose is an excellent way to create interest and intrigue among buying prospects. If you have a spare bedroom, stage it to be a bedroom – regardless of whether you currently use it for a sewing room, home office or all-purpose room. Staging is a proven technique that helps buyers imagine your home's potential, and envision it the way they want it to fit their lifestyle. Remember, stage your home as if it was an investment opportunity designed to appeal to the general public. Detach yourself from the emotional connection you've no doubt created over the years.

Some Scottsdale home selling participants, especially those selling older homes, often elect to arrange for a home inspection for their own benefit. That enables them to identify any potential shortcomings or problems early in the selling process. The sooner you become aware of an issue that may affect the sale of your home, the sooner you can correct it.

Lastly, as your home begins to pick up buyer traffic and interest, make it as easy and convenient for them and their real estate agents to see your house – more than once if needed. Sellers who are difficult to get in touch with or who put too many restrictions on showing times and appointments run the risk of losing potential buyers to other properties.

With advance planning and careful, thoughtful preparation these Scottsdale home selling tips will assist you in selling your home quickly, efficiently and at the highest price available in the market.