Seller Resources

Thank you for taking the time to allow me to introduce myself.  My name is Alicia, Realtor with Berkshire Hathaway Home Services.   My vision is to streamline the buying and selling process for you, weed through the unnecessary and do everything in my power to promote your best interest to help you achieve your goals.  Below you will find insightful information on everything from what to look for in an agent to what to look for in a home inspection to lender advice.  Click the video to view a welcome email from me.

 

 

I can help with any real estate questions that may come up. Send me a message at aliciafisher@bhhsmi.com and I would be happy to help.


What is Market Watch and How Can it Help Me?

 

Market Watch is an amazing tool exclusive to Berkshire Hathaway Home Services and allows you the opportunity to be what I like to call a Nosy Neighbor.

Okay, it's not that nosy, but gives you great information and insight into what's going on in your neighborhood.

Market Watch is broken down into three different parts: 

#1.  What is the average sale price in your neighborhood. 

#2.  How many homes are currently on the market in different price points. 

#3.  How many homes have sold recently in your area. 

As you think about selling your home, this is just a great insight to help set realistic expectations and know if NOW is the right time to sell your home.  (See sample below.)

 

 

Interested in signing up for Market Watch?  Visit www.grdreamhomes.com and at the top of the website, you can register or just CLICK HERE.


 

What to Expect from Your Agent

Often times, buyers and sellers are unsure of what to expect from their agent leading to confusion and frustration.  Here is a quick video to help you understand how an agent should be representing you as their client.  Just click the video to get started!

 


Getting Your Home Market Ready

Have you ever heard the phrase, "You need to spend money to make money?"

I get asked a lot by my friends and clients about how or if they should spend their money on home renovations before they list their home. "Do I repaint the house or recarpet the living room?" "Do I fix the front door or replace the water heater?"

Here's me two cents on renovating before selling: When planning on selling a house, it's best to put your money into the LEAST expensive things that are going to make the BIGGEST difference. Repainting a room will only cost the amount of paint, brushes, and any splatter cloths you purchase, so this is a great first thing to do that almost every buyer will notice and appreciate (and it shouldn't break the bank). Re-grouting and re-caulking are also good (inexpensive) ideas, as many buyers notice dirty grout and eroding caulk in bathrooms and kitchens.

The exact opposite applies for things to hold off on. Remember, anything that is costly and time consuming (like installing a new pool, reshingling the roof, or tearing down walls to open up space) is better to put off. These may be good ideas, but in the long run they could cost you more in time and money than they'll ever return.

Remember, at the end of the day, it's about getting the most out of your investment.


What Happens When You Overprice Your Home

Many sellers have questions surrounding how to price their home.  Most often, many feel that they should list higher to offer "negotiating room" and an ability to come down in price.  Here's what overpricing your home does and how it can impact in a very negative way.   Click the video for the full breakdown.


 

That's it!  Those are the dangers of overpricing your home.  Looking to discuss your home's value?  Give me a call: 616-588-3625


 

 

Should You Offer Buyers a Home Warranty?

As a seller, I'm sure you've heard of the term Home Warranty.  Maybe other agents have even told you this is something you should offer when selling your home.  But what exactly is it and will it draw more buyers to your home?  Ultimately, your goal is to sell your home for the highest possible price in the shortest period of time.  Personally, offering a home warranty can be a great idea.  Especially if your home is more than ten years old.  Here's why and a breakdown of what a home warranty is.

A home warranty can provide peace of mind. The last thing a home buyer wants to worry about after closing is what could possibly break or malfunction in their new home. Since that can cover a multitude of items and systems, for peace of mind, it's a good idea to get a home protection plan.

How Much Does a Home Warranty Cost?

They are fairly inexpensive, typically ranging from $300 to $500, depending on coverage. Home warranty companies sometimes run special sales and either discount policy prices or offer additional coverage for the same price. The policies are prepaid for a year in advance, at which time they expire and can be renewed by the homeowner at a slightly higher fee.

How Do They Work?

Although specific plans provide for specific types of coverage, most operate in a similar manner and contain common verbiage.

So you see, as a seller, it's a relatively inexpensive offer for buyers to feel confident in having major appliances and home systems covered giving them more confidence that your home is the RIGHT home for them.


You Have an Accepted Offer, Now What?

Congratulations!  You have a binding contract between you and the buyer.  You've agreed to all the contingencies, but may feel a bit lost after the celebration feeling wears off.  This is to help put your mind at ease as your thinking about selling your home and offer you confidence knowing what the next steps AFTER an offer look like.  Here it goes:

Well, in short, everything that has been contractually agreed upon between buyer and seller now begins playing out. First, the home is withdrawn from the open real estate market and enters “escrow” when the buyer deposits “good faith” money into an escrow account. These funds, managed by an escrow company selected by the buyer, will eventually be applied to the home’s purchase price unless certain contractual contingencies fail to be satisfied.

These contingencies, negotiated up-front between buyer and seller, include the following points:

FINANCING

The buyer must secure mortgage approval. This can be a time-consuming process and the buyer should start shopping for a loan immediately after a purchase contract is signed. Getting pre-approved from a lending institution before looking for a new home is always best.

PROPERTY APPRAISAL

If a loan is to be considered for approval, the lending institution usually wants to see the property appraised at the sale price or higher.

PROPERTY INSPECTION

The house must be examined by a licensed property inspector. An inspection is assurance for the buyer that there are no serious defects in the home that would keep them from purchasing the property.

TITLE

The property must have a clear title for a clean exchange of ownership. Experts strongly recommend consulting with an escrow officer or real estate attorney who can explain the title report to you.  If these contingencies (or any others listed in the purchase contract) are not met, the deal can be nullified and the good faith money returned to the buyer.

TIE UP LOOSE ENDS

During the escrow period, the buyer should be busy tying up loose ends that might stall or prevent the transfer of property. Homeowners insurance, required by the lending institution, must be purchased, local and state regulations pertaining to property transfer must be met and a final property “walk-through” needs to be arranged.

This walk-through, assuring the buyer that the property is in the condition contractually agreed upon, comes just prior to the “closing date.” The closing date, mutually decided between buyer and seller in the purchase contract, is when all final documents are signed, closing costs paid and ownership of the home legally changed. The final step, “possession”, is when the buyer actually moves into the home.