Putting your home in the market can be a difficult and life-changing decision. Receive great offers and make a profit by following time-tested tips for selling your home. This guide discusses the process of selling a house in Wisconsin, one step at a time.
I. Deciding to Sell
Timing is essential to a quick and successful sale. If you are in a seller’s market, you should strike while the iron is hot.
Most sellers put up the For Sale sign in spring, which is peak house hunting season. Spring or early summer weather permits more buyers to attend showings and makes it easier to move house. It’s also a great time to take real estate photos, since natural lighting is optimal, and vegetation is lush.
Zillow found that the first half of May is the prime sales time nationwide, while Saturday is the best day to list.
Other factors to consider include whether or not you have built equity in your home, found a new home, and feel ready to let go of the property.
II. Preparing to Sell
An experienced real estate agent will show you how to get your home ready to sell. You can start with a master list of things to do. Putting everything on record will help you stay on track.
- Declutter. Sweep up, put away the dishes, and empty the trash bins. If you need to remove a large amount of personal effects and furniture, but have yet to buy a new home, consider renting a storage unit.
- Depersonalize. Help buyers picture themselves moving in with their things. Remove personal effects and stick to neutral décor.
- Do minor repairs and upgrades. Make obvious repairs and cosmetic improvements to make the home more attractive to buyers. Fix leaks, repaint the walls if necessary, and replace cracked or stained tiles. Install up-to-date counters and cabinetry if needed. Choose low-cost upgrades in order to recoup costs faster.
- Maximize curb appeal. You only have a few seconds to create a positive first impression. Mow the lawn, clean the gutters, and make sure the roof is in good condition.
- Stage your home. Best plan is to use a staging professional. They can bring in furniture or artwork and add natural features to make your home interior more inviting.
Indicate the timeline of the sale and a schedule of showings on your master list in order to stay organized.
Gain an advantage when selling your home. Windseeker Realty will help you make top dollar from the sale of your property. Get in touch by calling (715)779-5000 or sending an email to Agent(at)WindseekerRealty(dotted)com.
III. Pricing Your Home
Choosing the right listing price is one of the most important steps in selling a home. Here are tips for setting an accurate asking price:
- Have a local real estate agent conduct a competitive market analysis (CMA). Look at comparable properties (comps) and recent sales around the area. Look at the difference between the last asking price and the sales price, as well as the number of days on the market. When doing a Wisconsin property search, focus on homes with roughly the same square footage, same general area and have been listed and sold within the last year to two years.
- Have an appraisal and inspection done by a professional. If you are struggling with value or where to draw the line for upgrades, a thorough and unbiased assessment of the home’s market value and condition will help set realistic expectations.
- Listen to your agent. They can give you an objective assessment of the home’s value based on data, market knowledge, and experience.
Overpricing your home will cause it to sit in the market for long periods, forcing you to slash prices and arouse suspicion among buyers or encourage low-ball offers.
IV. Marketing Your Home
In addition to preparing your home for a sale, an agent will:
- Put the listing on the MLS
- Create a clear and thorough marketing plan with a realistic timeline
- Determine the best time to “launch” your home in the market
- Attractqualified buyers
A great listing includes a detailed description of your home and the area, quality photos, virtual tours or aerial shots, asking price, and contact details for your agent.
V. Choosing Offers
Your agent will help you vet offers and choose the right one. Keep in mind that the best offer is not necessarily the highest. The buyer can waive contingencies, show proof of financial capacity, and demonstrate that they can close the sale quickly to encourage you to accept their offer.
If you find the terms lacking, trust your agent to negotiate on your behalf and protect your interests.
VI. Escrow, Inspections, and Appraisals
During escrow, a neutral third party, such as a real estate attorney or title company will do a title search and attend to paperwork for closing.
You are required by Wisconsin law to provide buyers with a standardized disclosure form, also called a real estate condition report (RECR). The form must be appended to the contract and signed by the buyer.
The sale of homes that were constructed prior to 1978 requires a specific disclosure pertaining to EPA-mandated lead paint. Using this disclosure, you must attest that toxic lead paint had not been used in the home to the best of your knowledge.
During escrow, allow the buyer to conduct inspections on your home within the agreed-upon timeframe. In Wisconsin, licensed inspectors will do a general inspection, in addition to specialized inspections, including:
- Lead-paint inspection
- Mold inspection
- Pest inspection
- Radon inspection
If the buyer is obtaining financing, the property must be appraised at either the sales price or higher.
If contingencies and other terms of the contract are not satisfied and within the approved timeframe, buyers can walk away from the deal and reclaim their deposit money.
VII. Closing the Deal
You and the buyer will agree on the closing date in the purchase contract. By this date, you and the buyer must accomplish the following:
- Sign all final documents
- Pay closing costs
- Transfer ownership of the home to the buyer
The buyer can also do a final walk-through of the property prior to closing to ensure that it is in the same condition as when they agreed to purchase it.
The last step, called possession, is when the buyer receives the keys to the home and moves in with their belongings.
Check these articles for more tips on selling a home in Wisconsin:
Sell your home quickly with Windseeker Realty. We serve the Lake Superior area and surrounding communities.
Find a buyer who is deserving of your home. Windseeker Realty is here to help you. Call us (715)779-5000 or send an email to Agent(at)WindseekerRealty(dotted)com for a smooth, stress-free transaction.
Selling a home can be a long and arduous process, with numerous steps you need to take depending on your situation and real estate goals. First, you have to find a listing agent. Then, you have to take a good and proper look at your home to identify areas of improvement. You also have to gauge its market value through a combination of research and consultation. After that, you can take on the challenge of improving your property in hopes of raising its price then having it staged for sale. It’s a long list of things to do!
How to avoid taxes on capital gains when you sell your home
Every homeowner aims to earn as much as they can from their initial investment when they eventually sell their property. The appreciation of land over time, strategic home improvement projects, and effective representation at the negotiation table can all add up to a profitable sale. But you should also be aware that what you earn – or simply your capital gains – can be subject to taxes. If this is your first time to encounter the concept of the capital gains tax, this guide will help you understand what it is and what you can do to avoid or minimize its impact on your profit.