The step-by-step guide to selling your home

Sep 19, 2019
We've put together this simple step-by-step guide to selling your home, covering everything from choosing the neighbourhood you want to move to, to selecting the most lucrative method of sale for your property. Source: Getty.

If you have made the decision to downsize and sell your family home, it can be difficult to know exactly where to start. From finding the right real estate agent to suit your needs, to making any necessary repairs or renovations, there is no shortage of things to consider once you have decided to list your property for sale.

Not to mention the endless factors outside of your control that may affect your home sale, such as the current state of the housing market in Australia, which is why it’s vital to ensure that you are prepared and ready to part with your property, and that it is the right time, both financially and personally, for you to do so.

To make things simpler, we’ve put together this simple step-by-step guide to selling your home, covering everything from choosing the neighbourhood you want to move to, to selecting the most lucrative method of sale for your property.

Step one: Is your house ready to sell?

Once you’ve made the decision to sell your property, you’ll need to prepare your home for sale by cleaning and decluttering it and taking care of any maintenance and repairs, such as oiling creaky doors, repairing leaky taps, replacing chipped or cracked tiles, patching up holes and painting over old walls and marks.

Fixing small inexpensive repairs and cleaning the property thoroughly can make a massive difference when it comes to making your house more marketable and appealing. If you’re not sure where to start, talk with your real estate agent.

Step two: Find the right real estate agent

Whether you’re downsizing or simply looking to move to a different area, choosing a good real estate agent is very important as it can affect your final sale result. You want someone with experience, who knows what they are doing and is familiar with your local area.

When it comes to picking an agent, do your research. You may consider asking a handful of agents from different firms to assess your home before choosing. It could also be worthwhile heading to a few open house inspections and seeing an agent in action.

Meanwhile, it’s also worth noting that many Aussies are moving away from the traditional estate agent experience and opting to use zero commission companies based primarily online to lower the outgoing costs of their property sale.

Step three: How do you want to sell your home?

The next step is figuring out how you want to sell your property. Think about what you feel comfortable with, as there are a few different types of sale methods including auction, which is a popular way to sell a property, as well as expressions of interest and private treaties. You and your agent will also need to work out a plan to list the property as well as showing it.

Step four: Set the asking price

The next step is to find out how much your property is worth. Your property’s location, size, date of construction and other features will be assessed.

Additionally, the number of local schools in your area, employment opportunities and proximity to shopping, entertainment and recreational centres will also play a role in determining the price you can get for your property. Meanwhile, renovations and upgrades can also add value to your property, especially in older homes.

Step five: Prepare the vendor’s statement

Now it’s time for you to prepare a vendor’s statement – also known as a section 32 – for your property. A vendor’s statement explains to potential buyers certain things about the property they should know before signing a contract to purchase, such as mortgages, council zoning, any covenants which would restrict what you can do with it, easements and outgoings (for example, rates).

Step six: Put your house on the market

It’s time to tell the world you’re selling and market your property! This generally involves photographing your property, writing up snazzy online ads and drawing up a floor plan. Luckily, when it comes to organising all of the advertising, your real estate agent will most likely do the hard work for you – all you have to worry about is keeping the house in pristine condition, oin case any potential buyers should wish to pop in for a viewing.

Step seven: Sell your property

Hopefully after all of your hard work, you’ll find yourself a willing buyer to take your property off your hands. Your real estate agent will take care of all of the negotiations with potential buyers and go between you and them until an appropriate price is reached.

The buyer will then be required to pay a deposit and, once this has happened, the property will officially be under contract. This means that you, the homeowner, have entered into a legally binding agreement with the buyer and cannot agree to sell your home to anyone else. While the house is under contract, the lawyers and banks for both parties will confirms that you and the buyer meet all legal and financial requirements.

Step eight: Say goodbye to your former home

Congratulations, you have sold your home! Now the only thing left to do is complete the settlement process. This is where you relinquish ownership of your home and hand over the keys in exchange for the transfer of the final sum from the buyer.

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Are you considering downsizing? Does the idea of selling your family home overwhelm you?

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