You now have your property being marketed by Realstar Realty one of the area’s fastest growing real estate companies. We want you to know that we appreciate your patronage and look forward to exceeding your expectations like we have done for 1000+ clients.
In order to make your selling process smooth and trouble free we have created this Welcome page. Here you will find a variety of information that will help you with everything from showing your home to closing the sale. You can always come back to the ‘Resources’ tab above for more help. Please take a few minutes to review the following information and contact your agent with any questions.
Attorney, Association & More
Attorney: You do not need an attorney before you have a contract. Until an offer is signed by all parties it remains just that, an offer. Only after it is signed by buyers and sellers does it become a ‘contract’. Realtors use board approved sales contracts which usually have have built in periods for attorney review. An attorney will use this time to examine the contracts and make necessary modifications (i.e. post possession, etc.). With the most up-to-date contracts (ie 7.0) both the buyer and seller attorneys have 5-10 business days to make appropriate modifications to the contract and addendums. Since this period is ‘built-in’ both parties can feel comfortable signing a contract prior to delivery to their attorney.
Homeowner Association: If you are a member of a HOA or any co-op provide us the name of the management company as well as a phone number and website. Track down the association Declarations (Rules) and Bylaws and get a copy to your agent. This information will always be requested by a buyer before they make an offer.
Just about every buyer will want to know what your average utility bill is (ie electric and gas). Look over those bills and forward your agent the numbers.
Once you show up ‘on the market’ you will get many solicitations in the mail from moving companies, attorney’s offering outrageously low fees, lenders etc. Those mailings come from companies that monitor real estate sites and cross reference with records they buy from your cell carrier and more. Realstar respects your privacy and does not give anyone your information nor provide it to the MLS.
How Showings work
Realstar uses Showing Time www.ShowingTime.com to notify you of showings. When a Realtor schedules a showing through ShowingTime the service will contact you for approval. If you are set up for texts the requests will come as a simple Yes or No question. Most often there will be at least a 2 hour notice. Whether you are getting showing notifications via text, cell call or a land line it is important to check messages regularly and get back to ShowingTime a soon as you can. Also, it is OK for appointment times to overlap. We want agents to see there are other buyers looking at your place. With vacant properties ShowingTime approvals are automatic and notification to you are just FYI. There is no need to reply.
How Feedback works
After every showing ShowingTime sends the buyer agent a simple ‘showing survey’. Each agent will get a request for feedback four times.
Within the next few days you will receive a password from ShowingTime. You will be emailed all feedback responses but you can also log in to ShowingTime Login anytime with your password to review feedback. You will receive an email of each feedback response we receive.
Give the agents time to respond to our inquiries. It usually takes buyers a few days to get back to their agent and for that agent to get back to us. We will stay on top of them. When we know, you will know. If an agent fails to give us any feedback it probably means your place did not spark any interest and did not ‘make the cut’.
Be responsive to an offer
When we receive an offer on a property we will first contact the buyer agent to confirm details then contact the buyer’s lender to confirm the buyer’s qualifications. Soon after we will contact you and present the offer.
It is important to be responsive to any offer. Today’s buyers expect a prompt response therefore it is important to talk to your Realstar associate and reply the same day. We have seen too many good buyers and good offers walk away for lack of a prompt reply.
It may take several back and forth negotiations before we come to an agreement between parties. Once an agreement is reached it is important to sign the contract and addendums as soon as possible. We have seen too many buyers ‘withdraw’ offers when sellers take too long to sign and return the contract.
Preparing your property
Use the following guidelines to help maximize your property’s first impressions to potential buyers.
- DE-Personalize: Keep artwork, paintings, photos and knick knacks to a minimum. Clear tables and shelves too. We want buyers to focus on the property not your belongings.
- Give your property a thorough cleaning. Make sure to do a good job in the kitchen and baths.
- Break out a brush and paint to touch up any marks on the doors, walls and corners.
- Thoroughly clean the carpet. A professional service can make an older carpet appear newer.
- Keep the property clean and tidy. Vacuum often. Remove unneeded articles from the floor and counters.
- Pack everything you won’t absolutely need until you are settled in your new home. Clutter can make even a big room appear too small.
- Keep the property light and bright. Open drapes & blinds and turn on lights. Include any outside lights as well. A bright house feels warm and welcoming and may also help show off special features.
- Keep the kitchen bright and clean. It is the most important room in the house. Keep counter appliances to a minimum.
- Leave the premises during a showing. An open house feels more inviting. The longer a buyer spends in the house the more comfortable they become. Take a walk or a drive. Otherwise, greet the agent at the door and go out into the yard. Close the door behind you and don’t follow them around. Let the agent do his or her sales job.
- Keep pets under control. Small pets get under foot and large pets turn off the hardiest buyer.
- Be accommodating. Often times a buyer gives an agent (and you) little warning even asking to view the property ‘right away’. Other times an agent may be running a few minutes late or even early. Allow a 15 minute ‘window’ of time on either side of an appointment. Give the agent every chance to show your property and plenty time to do so. This might be your buyer!
- Most Important: Keep paying your assessments and keep all utilities ‘On’. Electric, gas and water need to be ‘on’ for showings, inspections and final walk through. It’s your responsibility. We have seen clients get charged hundreds of dollars to get something re-initiated and turned back on. Down is fine, Off is not.
A note from the Managing Broker
Today’s buyers expect a lot. There are numerous cable channels showing sellers spending tens of thousands of dollars before they market a property. Right or wrong today’s buyers will often expect the same and be disappointed when they determine a property needs a lot of updates or repairs.
Our goal is to get you as much money for your property as possible. Of course sometimes what a buyer is willing to pay may fall short of what you ‘want’. Don’t take offense to a low offer. Give your Realstar Sales Professional a chance to use their skills to get a buyer up in price.
In today’s changing real estate environment there are no winners and losers. The object is to get to a point where neither party feels ‘ripped off’. That being said, give us a chance to use our negotiating expertise. We often get sellers more money than they expected.
If you have any concerns or questions please contact your Realstar Sales Professional or me directly.
We look forward to working with you.
John Wilt, Managing Broker/Owner