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Seller FAQs

Frequently Asked Questions:

How should I choose a real estate agent for selling?

Selling your home can be one of the most challenging events in your lifetime. When interviewing real estate agents to help you with the selling process, be sure to ask these important questions:

1. Are you a licensed REALTORⓇ?

2. What do you think my home is worth?

3. How will you market my home?

4. What can I do to increase the value of my home?

5. How many homes have you sold in the past 12 months?

6. On average, how long does it take you to sell a house? 

 

How long does it take to sell a house?

We’ve been known to sell homes in two days or less. However, the selling timeline is really market driven and depends on the condition—and pricing—of your property. This is why it’s crucial to hire an experienced, top-performing REALTOR who’s in the mix! 

How do I sell a home and buy one at the same time?

There are a few different ways to sell your property and purchase a new home at the same time. Your financial situation will determine which route you take to make it happen. The first scenario would be to buy your new home before selling the old property. Depending on your risk tolerance and desired outcome, we would come up with an aggressive strategy to help you sell your property and buy a new home in the same timeline.

If there aren’t enough comps in my neighborhood, how will you set a competitive price for my property? 

We combine our proven methodology and insider tips to determine the worth of your home in the current market. This is one of the many advantages of choosing an experienced realtor with insider knowledge to sell your home in The Woodlands. 

How should I stage my home for sale?

We work with top-rated interior designers in The Woodlands to professionally stage your home for sale. Our design partners will assess the interior and exterior of your home and stage it in a way that showcases its features in the best light. Staging your home is a wise way to attract potential buyers and command the highest possible price.  

How much does staging a home for sale cost?

The cost of staging a home really depends on the size of your home, your budget and timeline. Staging a home can cost anywhere from $500 to $10,000; however, when you sell your property with the Haley Garcia Group, we offer home staging support as part of our concierge-level services. 

How much value does staging add to the sale price of my home?   

According to the Real Estate Staging Association (RESA), 85% of staged homes received offers between 5–23% over the list price.  

What is MLS? 

Multiple Listing Services (MLS) is a private database of listings used by real estate agents to help their clients buy and sell property with ease and efficiency. 

Once we list your property on the MLS, HAR immediately syndicates with other high-traffic websites like Zillow, Realtor.com, Compass and more to maximize your property’s exposure.   

How much does it cost to sell a house?

On average, you can expect to pay roughly 10% of the sale price. Your costs as a seller will generally cover things like pre-inspection, staging, home repairs, landscaping, professional cleaning, moving costs, title insurance, taxes and the remaining mortgage balance.

What is a home warranty when selling a house?

A home warranty is a service contract that covers the cost of repairs for major appliances and systems in your new home. Most home warranties are valid for one year and generally cover repairs for the following:

  • Washer and dryer 
  • Refrigerator, oven, stove, built-in microwave and garbage disposal
  • Plumbing and electrical systems 
  • Heating and cooling systems 

We always advise sellers to include a home warranty. A home warranty offers the mutual benefit of protecting you from liability and provides coverage for the buyer in the event of unforeseen repairs. Throwing in a home warranty is a perk that can motivate a buyer to purchase your home over another. Home warranty fees are usually included in closing costs, which are negotiable between you and the buyer. 

What is escrow? 

For sellers, escrow is a legal arrangement that requires a third party (such as a mortgage servicer or escrow company) to hold the buyer’s earnest money deposit on your home. 

What is an escrow deposit? 

An escrow deposit, also known as an earnest money deposit, are funds deposited into an escrow account by the buyer after you’ve accepted their offer. 

How does escrow work when selling a home?

After you’ve accepted an offer, your home officially goes into escrow until the buyer receives the keys. After both parties have signed the purchase agreement, an earnest money check is deposited into the escrow account. The buyer will then have your home appraised by a bank or lender. If all goes according to plan, the buyer is then officially approved for the mortgage. 

You are responsible for providing seller disclosures that the buyer will review before the home inspection. The seller disclosure is a written statement of any known issues that the buyer should be aware of. If any additional issues are identified during the inspection, this is the time to make any mandatory repairs or renegotiate terms of the contract. The buyer may also request a title report to verify that you’re the sole owner of the home and no one else will try to claim it in the future.

The last step is to close escrow by signing the property over to the buyer. Once this happens, you’ll be paid in full.  

What does “contingent” mean in real estate terms?

In real estate, “contingent” or “pending” means that a seller has accepted an offer from a buyer that includes contingencies, or specific terms or conditions that must be met for the deal to close. 

How does selling a home affect your taxes?

How should I prepare for the home inspection?

To ensure that the home inspection goes as smoothly as possible, we recommend following these steps to prepare for your home inspection: 

  • Provide the inspector with full access to the interior of your home
  • Clear any trash, debris or clutter outside of your home 
  • Check your roof and take care of any damages 
  • Give your home a thorough cleaning 
  • Replace any old light bulbs 
  • Make sure you toilet and sinks are working properly
  • Repair any leaks or water damage  
  • Replace your furnace filter 
  • Check all pilot lights 
  • Label your fuse box 
  • Check all doors and locks 
  • Fix any faulty cabinetry 
  • Take care of any pest issues 

What should I expect from a home inspection as a seller?

Here’s what you should expect the inspector to look for during the home inspection:

  • HVAC issues (i.e., gas or carbon monoxide leaks) 
  • Electrical hazards 
  • Plumbing issues (i.e., leaky toilets) 
  • Attic insulation and ventilation 
  • Mold, mildew and spores 
  • Roof issues (i.e., missing shingles, shoddy gutters) 
  • Structural damage in walls and ceilings (i.e., cracks in the drywall) 
  • Foundational issues (i.e., lopsided flooring) 

How do I prepare for a home appraisal? 

Here are 5 easy steps to prepare for the appraisal and increase the value of your home:

  • Review past appraisals and look for any past issues that you can fix now 
  • Show the appraiser any important documentation (i.e., land surveys, proof of last sale amount, home improvement invoices and receipts)  
  • Invest in your home’s curb appeal (i.e., spruce up your landscaping) 
  • Make cosmetic repairs to enhance the aesthetic of your home 
  • Clean your home and clear any clutter 

What is sweat equity?

Sweat equity is essentially work that you put in yourself—without paying any contractors—to increase the value of your home. Some examples would be re-painting all the rooms or DIY construction work to renovate your home.   

How do I calculate closing costs when selling a home?

As a rule of thumb, keep in mind that the average closing costs for a seller can range from 8–10% of the sale price. Seller closing costs typically include the following: agent commission, escrow and closing fees, HOA fees, title insurance, transfer and property taxes, attorney fees and any credits.