Inheriting a house is both a blessing and curse, especially when sentimental value involved. And as grateful as you might be for getting the property, there’s a responsibility that comes with it.
For example, if you aren’t going to use it, and you don’t want to risk renting it out for fear of potential damage and loss of value, the most obvious solution would be to sell the house. Because if you don’t, you need to maintain the house inside and out, which can start costing money you might not have.
But how exactly do you get the house sold? Given that people don’t just buy houses at the drop of a hat, there are certain things that need to happen if any type of offer is going to materialize. And luckily you came across this complete guide on selling an inherited house.
Assess The House
The best place to start is to assess the house, and you should do it in detail. Seeing as you don’t live in the house, you can’t say for sure what condition the wiring might be in or whether there might be water damage in the ceiling.
Take the time to really look for special elements of the home you can use as selling points. For instance, does it have a nice patio or sunroom? Anything that makes the house a little better than another property should be pointed out to potential buyers.
But you should also be looking for damages. And repairing the little things like light fixtures, leaking taps, or even the kitchen counter can go a long way in terms of making a good first impression. In fact, you’ll be amazed at what some fresh paint can do to a room.
The point is that you want to make the house appealing while ensuring all the inspections have been done. And you don’t have to break the bank doing it. Remember, small and smart repairs can do exactly what you need them to, especially when you work according to a budget.
Also, if potential buyers pick on anything that might be wrong, they could try to negotiate a better price. You don’t want this, so be prepared. Lastly, when the house looks fresh and visually appealing, there’s a much better chance of closing a sale sooner.
Make The Exterior Visually Appealing
Real estate call it “curb appeal”, and they put a lot of focus on the exterior of a property before they start advertising the list. Why? Because the first pictures potential buyers are going to see will be the outside of the house. And if the exterior doesn’t impress them, they are not going to get excited about what’s inside.
The tactic here is fairly simple. Hire a professional landscaping service if you have to and get the yard in the best possible shape. Yes, it will cost you a few bucks, but it can mean the difference between selling the house or being forced to maintain it for the rest of your natural life.
The same can be said about the exterior condition of the house itself. As mentioned earlier, a coat of paint can do wonders to give the property new life.
Settle On The Best Asking Price
It’s usually recommended to ask a professional for advice when it comes to property estimations. This is because they take into account several variables, like the age of the house, the neighborhood, and the average market price the house would normally go for.
As for you, the owner, there is a chance that you’ll add sentimental value to the house, which can scare off potential buyers. Naturally, this is not the reaction you are looking for, hence the reason for getting an accurate estimation by a professional.
Now you have to start attracting buyers, and the best way to do this is by marketing the property. This can be done online, through your local newspaper or with Foreclosuresdaily, it doesn’t really matter. What’s important is that you create awareness that the house is in the market.
The more people you are able to attract, the better the chance of moving the property. Keeping in mind that you still have to maintain it while waiting for a buyer to sign off, time is not on your side. So use every effective channel you can get.
Stage An Open House
Giving potential buyers a taste of life inside the house has always been a good strategy for realtors. And take note of the word “strategy” in the last sentence. Realtors will apply certain rules, like removing all personal items from the house. They will also keep the minimal amount of furniture, just enough to help the buyer get comfortable quickly.
Essentially, you want to make the most of the open house showing, so familiarize yourself with some professional strategies.
Negotiate And Close The Deal
Lastly, after you’ve done all the work, all that is left is to negotiate the price and close the deal. Unfortunately, it sounds simpler than it really is.
When a property gets sold there is a lot of paperwork involved. Plus, you are dealing with a fairly large amount of money. Certain things need to be established and discussed, like who will be covering the extra costs and to what extent.
Contact A Few Local Agents
It is a little strange that the last step would have been more appropriate at the beginning of the article. But most people have a tendency to underestimate the value an agent can bring to the process. Given that this guide is based on common and effective realtor practices, doesn’t it make more sense just to consult with a few local agents and see what they can do?
All that paperwork you dread dealing with and all those people have to impress, just with the hope that one of them will take the property – is it really worth saving a reasonable commission fee that would go to the agent once the sale is closed? It doesn’t seem worth it, does it?