Being a real estate agent is a little like being a doctor. Even in social situations, when someone finds out that I’m a real estate broker, the questions come fast and furious. While I’m not asked to diagnose a vague set of symptoms at a cocktail party I’m typically asked about the current market. Second on the list is: “How do I get my house sold?” When a homeowner asks me this, there is usually more to the question. Some of them are really asking how to get more of their equity at the end of the sale. Then, there are those that have a home sitting on the market, buyer interest has dried up and their agents don’t seem to be getting the job done.
Getting a home sold in Billings isn’t rocket science for a broker that’s been doing it for a while — or at least it shouldn’t be. It all starts with basic real estate principles and practices.
Timing is everything. It matters if it’s a buyers’ or sellers’ market. Your agent should be able to tell you about the current Billings real estate market. This information gives you an idea of what to expect when your listing hits the market. In a sellers’ market, depending on the condition of your home, it may sell quite fast and for top dollar.
In a buyers’ market, on the other hand, you should expect lots of competition from other sellers and understand that your home may take a bit longer to sell.
Another aspect of timing the sale of your home is the season. Home sales are seasonal and although Billings homes do sell in winter, the pace is far slower than in spring and summer.
The number one reason a home sits on the market longer than others is price. To make matters worse, sellers of overpriced homes typically reject initial offers because they are too low, when, in reality, they are most likely close to the market value of the home. Later offers are typically even lower.
In a buyers‘ market it is even more important to price your home competitively. If you choose the right real estate agent, he or she will suggest a list price close to market value. It’s up to you, then, to either lower it a bit to create more interest or to overprice the home and risk eventually having to drop the price.
Your Realtor can make or break the deal. Keep that in mind when determining who to hire to assist you in the sale of your Billings home.
Choose an agent who has the following credentials:
- A proven track record of selling homes quickly and for top dollar.
- A solid marketing plan for your home that includes Internet marketing and a robust marketing budget to implement the plan.
- Testimonials from past clients attesting to the agent’s professionalism and knowledge.
- Someone who is genuinely likable.
Why is the last one important? Chances are, it will be another real estate agent that brings in the eventual buyer. A listing agent that is well-liked in the Billings real estate community has a better chance of attracting other agents’ interest in your home. The more agents that know about and view your home, the quicker it will sell.
Getting your home sold in Billings requires, overall, patience. Take your time with each step in the process, ensuring that nothing falls through the cracks. Listen to the advice of your real estate agent and follow up to ensure the home is being marketed properly and you’ll soon be on your way to the next phase of your life.