Here’s Some
Selling Tips for You


Are You Thinking About Selling?

Selling a home is not as easy as it looks! You need a professional real estate agent (not your best friend’s brother-in-law) who knows how to price, stage, market, and sell your home in a timely manner while getting you the highest price the market will bear.

Some of the key issues that you need to think about include:

  1. Pricing your home to sell
  2. Staging your home to get top-dollar
  3. Maximizing online curb appeal with great photos
  4. Providing virtual tours for out-of-town buyers
  5. Marketing your home on social media

You can read about these issues, and the services that I provide to home sellers, below…


Pricing Your Home To Sell

I will make sure that we price your home effectively so it doesn’t languish on the market…and make buyers wonder “What’s wrong with it?” Statistics prove that your best chance for getting top-dollar happens within the first month of a new listing…usually within the first two weeks.

sell_home_pricing_strategy 

Instead of throwing darts at a board or playing “wadda ya take for it”…I will analyze the current market conditions in your neighborhood and create a detailed Competitive Market Analysis (CMA) based on actual sales data and market performance. This will help us to price your home to sell…not just sit on the market.

 

 


Staging Your Home to Get Top-Dollar

If your home doesn’t look it’s best, you may not get top-dollar for it. However, a little elbow-grease and some effective furniture arrangement and staging will go a long way to get your home in top “show condition.” I am an expert in getting your home in show-worthy condition, and will help you with a detailed staging plan.

BEFOREs                                                                                               AFTERs

    

 

    

    

    

    

    

*The staging service is free unless you use my props, art, and furniture. Then there is a $300 service charge (or more) depending on the size of the home and the furniture used. 

 


Maximizing Online Curb Appeal With Great Photos

Studies show that over 90 percent of home buyers search the Internet for a home. That means they are looking at online photos and videos of your home first. So the new “curb appeal” of a home is the collection of photos and videos posted online with your home listing.

If your agent isn’t able and willing to post awesome photos and videos of your home, detailing all of the home’s best features, then you may not attract buyers to tour the home. If buyers don’t tour the home, then you can’t sell it for a good price.

The more people you can attract to tour the home, the more likely you are to receive an excellent offer to purchase. But how many times have you, in your own home search, seen photos…

Like this:                                                              Instead of this:

       

Are they selling the furniture?                                    Or are the selling the room?

 

Or how many times do you click to enlarge a picture and it doesn’t get bigger (a personal pet-peeve of mine).

I spend a great deal of effort photographing your home to show off its best features. I also take the time necessary to write detailed descriptions of each photo so that potential buyers know what they are looking out and notice all the best features of your home. I try to “sell” your home before a buyer even walks through the door! Here is an example…

sample2

When they click one of the small gallery photos (above) they see a large, detailed photo (below).

 

sample3

 

ADVICE: Before you hire a Realtor, check as many of his or her past and current listings online to see how well he or she photographs, describes, and markets the home.

 


Letting Them Walk Your Home Virtually with Video Tours

I also videotape a real, walk-through video of your home (not just a slideshow of photos) and post it on YouTube. This means that even people in other areas can tour your home! In the Sugar Land area, there are many people who are relocating from another state (or country) and there is often a spouse still “back home” who can’t actually tour the home. A video makes that possible. It also minimizes the inconvenience of unnecessary showings. If your home’s floor plan or layout is not going to work for a buyer, why not let them know ahead of time instead of wasting your time with a showing appointment? Leaving your home for showings is a hassle…video tours can minimize this waste of time.

Here’s a sample of one of my video tours…

 

Social Marketing to the Max

It’s a SmartPhone world that we live in! To take advantage of that, I provide a free texting service to selling clients. So when a prospective home buyer drives by your house, they can immediately send a coded text message to my service and receive all the detailed info, photos, and videos on your home…right there on their phone! No need to write down a phone number and call…and we never run out of paper flyers. Potential buyers can get all the info they want at the exact time they are driving by.

Not only is it a SmartPhone world that we now live in…it is also a social marketing world. With that in mind, I will spread the word and advertise your home for sale on social media sites like Google+, FaceBook, Twitter, and YouTube. I will encourage you to do so as well. 

facebookpost

 

Plus, once I post your listing on the Houston MLS, it will automatically go out to other national real estate sites automatically. Within a week of posting your home on the MLS, you will be able to “google” your address and see it on 1000s of pages.

listingdestinations2

This is important for two reasons: First, over 90 percent of home buyers search the Internet for a home, so it needs to be listed all over the Internet to be found. Second, the Sugar Land area is a hot area for people who are relocating to Houston. They may not know about HAR.com yet, so they need to see your home on one of the national home Websites. 

 


Dealing with Contracts and Signatures Online

Let’s face it…there is a lot of paperwork involved in selling a home in Texas! Why hassle with fax machines and scanners? Our office has the most innovative online paperwork solution available. So you can eSign your paperwork easily online…and so can your buyer! This is especially useful for all those sellers who have already moved out of town. But even if you are still nearby, it’s nice to know you can sign your contracts from the comfort and privacy of your own home any time you want…wearing your pajamas if you want!

 


Receiving Frequent Updates and Communication

commission-discountOne of the things that makes a real estate transaction more stressful than it has to be is lack of communication. I set up my showing service to provide you with instant buyer feedback as soon as we receive it after a showing. In addition, I provide weekly Internet reports to let you know how many people have viewed your listing on HAR.com. Plus, I will email and call you at least once a week to keep you posted on what’s been going on with your home. You will not be left wondering, “What happened to Sheila?” after you hire me to sell your home!

 


Obtaining Help with Home Inspections & Repairs

No house is perfect. Even the most well-cared for house may have hidden maintenance or repairs issues that will be uncovered during the home inspection process. To minimize those costs as much as possible, it is important to have a residential service contract (aka, home warranty) in place. I will help you sign up for such a service if you don’t already have one. Not only will this help cover future repair costs, it is a great selling feature for prospective buyers…since you will transfer it to the new owner upon Closing.

 


Getting Other Helpful Selling Tools

There are other helpful selling tools that I provide my selling clients:

  1. Home Seller’s Checklist to keep you on track in the process.
  2. A 35+ page Home Sellers Marketing Kit with helpful checklists and tips for selling your home quickly.
  3. A custom Market Watch Website that will keep you posted on the real estate activity in your neighborhood…so you can see how your competition is doing when your home is on the market.
  4. Access to the Centralized Showing Service to make it easy to set showing appointments. This service provides weekly showing reports, as well as feedback received from showing agents, and an electronic record of agents who have showed your home.

 


Summary

To sell your home, hire an agent who will:

Do this…

Not this…

Price your home correctly based on current market conditions and the condition of the home.

Over price the home so that it never sells or under price the home so that you don’t get every dollar that you deserve.

Help you stage your home so it outshines your competition.

Ignore the basics of real estate and tell you that it’s okay to let your house smell like a vet clinic.

Take and post as many large, high-quality photos of your beautiful home as possible.

Post only a few low-quality photos of your home that are too small to see.

Write descriptions of the rooms presented in each photo pointing out all the special features the home has to offer.

Leave photo descriptions blank…so what if the buyer can’t figure out whether a bedroom is upstairs or down or has hardwood floors or carpet.

Create a real video tour of the home so that potential buyers can “walk” the home ahead of time and get an idea of the floor plan and layout before setting an appointment.

Skip the videos…who cares if the Seller has to waste time and leave the house for appointments with buyers who will not ever buy the home because the floor plan doesn’t work. 

Bonus: Out-of-town spouses can view video tours even when they are not available to view the home in person. (This is common in Sugar Land where we have a high number of relocations.)

 

Advertise your home throughout his/her social network including Google+, FaceBook, Twitter, YouTube, etc.–and help you do the same. 

Post your home only on the MLS and ignore all other forms of Internet advertising (where over 90% buyers look). But does have a newspaper ad that only other agents will see.

Enable you to sign contracts and documents for the transaction online and in the privacy of your home–at midnight and in your pajamas if you so choose.

Ask you to sign, scan, and email pages and pages of documents over and over again when your scanner only does one page at a time.

Set you up for automatic feedback after every showing, weekly Internet reports (to know how many people viewed your listing), and frequent emails and phone calls so you always know what’s going on with your home’s market activity.

Ignore you for weeks at a time and only contacts you to ask you to reduce the home’s price.

Helps you negotiate the inevitable home inspection and repair requests…setting you up with a Seller’s Home Warranty Policy ahead of time to cover you as much as possible.

Tells not to worry about obvious repairs and lets your deal fall through due to unreasonable denial of small repair requests.

Ensures that you meet all your contractual, legal obligations (survey, disclosures, resale certificate, etc.) in a timely manner.

Expects you to keep up with your own legal obligations and forgets to order things like surveys and resale certificates.

Has the strength of a large legal team “back home” at the Brokerage’s corporate office…just in case the buyer decides to become difficult after the sale.
» See Texas Deceptive Trade Practices

Works at a small mom-and-pop real estate “boutique” shop who doesn’t even carry Errors & Omissions insurance.

ADVICE: Before you hire a Realtor, check as many of his or her past and current listings online to see how well he or she photographs, describes, and markets the home.

» See more about Sheila Cox

 

 

Here’s What Else You Need To Know…

Prior Foundation Repairs

Will Prior Foundation Repairs Effect a Home’s Resale Value? In Texas, there is a saying that all houses here either have foundation repairs or will need them in the future. That’s because the soil in most parts of Texas is an “expansive soil” that significantly expands and contracts based on the level of moisture in it. And since Texas is known for either droughts or floods…our soil tends to expand and contract a lot. Here is a must read for Texas home buyers: Buyer’s Guide to Slab-On-Ground Foundations by R. Michael Gray, P.E. and Matthew T. Gray, EIT. That is why it is very important for homeowners to keep the soil around their home evenly watered. Water in the soil provides pressure to support the home. During a drought, the lack of moisture may cause a foundation to sag. Simply watering the soil can often push a slightly sagging foundation back up…no kidding! Does having a prior foundation repair on a home effect the resale value? That’s a controversial question with no “scientific” data to prove one opinion or another. Some say that as long as the repair is done by a reputable foundation company and has a transferable lifetime warranty…no problem. It may even be considered a positive feature of the home, since the cost of the repair has been covered by a prior owner. NOTE: If you need some brick or mortar repair in the Sugar Land area, contact JQ Brick at 713-253-5092…they do excellent work at very reasonable prices. These kinds of cracks do not necessarily mean there are foundation issues…bricks and mortar crack very easily.... read more

Brick Repairs in Sugar Land Area

Before a home owner puts a brick home on the market to sell in the Sugar Land TX area, a thorough inspection on the exterior of the home should be performed. All the walls should be checked for cracks along mortar lines and brick. The lintels above windows and doors should be checked for rust. Make sure that you look behind hard-to-see areas covered with bushes as well. These kinds of cracks do not necessarily mean there are foundation issues…bricks and mortar crack very easily. They do need to be resealed, however, with mortar (not caulk) to prevent water penetration into the side walls. Call JQ Brick at 713-253-5092.  If you find any cracked brick or mortar, or rusted lintels, requiring brick repairs, then call a brick restoration company to have them repaired before you put the house on the market.  If a potential home buyer sees these kinds of cracks, it may scare him away before he takes a serious look at the home. Or, if the cracks are found during an inspection, it can kill the deal. These brick repairs are relatively inexpensive (usually around $500 or less) and need to be done whether you sell or not…to prevent water penetration into the side walls. Cracks in bricks and mortar may indicate foundation issues, but they definitely do not mean that the foundation definitely has problems. I’ve seen homes with cracks running the entire length of the home that did not require foundation repairs even after inspections by several foundation repair companies. However, most home buyers are not foundation experts and automatically think there are foundation problems... read more

Checklist for Showing Your Home to Buyers

Checklist for Showing Your Home to Buyers When a REALTOR wants to show your home to a client, she will contact the Centralized Showing Service. They will, in turn, contact you to confirm the day and time. If the requested appointment is not a good time for you, offer an alternate time that is…but keep it as close to the requested time as possible. Keep in mind that showing appointments are unpredictable. Most agents will set a window to show your home between, for example, 1:00 to 2:30 p.m. This means you should be out of the home by 12:55 and don’t return until 2:45. Due to the day’s showing schedule, the REALTOR and clients may not arrive at the home until 2:15 p.m.—which is why an appointment “window” is set. Unfortunately, sometimes the REALTOR will have to cancel the appointment at the last minute…or sometimes they don’t show up at all. Remember that this is may be because the clients (potential Buyers) have either changed their mind or already decided on another home. About 15 to 30 minutes before you need to leave your home for a showing appointment, do the following:   1. Make sure the temperature of the house is comfortable: cool in summer and warm in winter.   2. Many people are allergic to certain scents and deodorizers, so don’t spray the air or plug-in air fresheners.   3. Open all the window coverings to let in light.   4. For windows that show undesirable outdoor scenery, such as a dilapidated fence or a nearby structure that obstructs views, keep blinds partially closed.   5. Turn... read more
Are you ready to tour some homes?
Need help finding the right home?
Thinking About Selling?
First-Time Home Buyer

Sheila Cox has won the Five-Star Real Estate Agent award
for the past 5 years in a row because
her clients have this to say about her

clienttestimonials2

 

“Sheila is very knowledgeable and up to date on the realty market. She is very tech savy and used different types of media to promote our property. She kept us up to date on trends and offered suggestions that might expedite the sale of our property. She was never pushy. Sheila is very personable and a pleasure to work with. If the need arose for a realtor in the future, we would not hesitate to use her services.”

--McNary

“In an age when good customer service is hard to find, Shiela is a gem. She handled both the sale of our old house and the purchase of our new one, and I was completely pleased with both transactions.”

--Compton

“Sheila was OUTSTANDING!!!! Well beyond the call of duty!!!! I could not recommend any service provider higher, in any industry, that I have ever experienced.”

 

--Post

Share this information with your friends…

Share on Google+    Share on Facebook

Socialize with me…

               


 

Sheila Cox RealtorAgent: Sheila Cox, Realtor

Broker: Keller Williams Southwest
1650 Highway 6, #350 (Map)
Sugar Land , TX 77478
Phone: (832) 779-2890

IMPORTANT: Please read Consumer Financial Protection Bureau regarding the new laws and procedures that lenders must follow. You should also read Information About Brokerage Services and the Consumer Protection Notice.

PRIVACY POLICY: It’s simple…I will not sell or share your info with third-parties. I don’t want to bug you…I’m here to help. I may email you useful Sugar Land-specific emails from time-to-time to help you, but you can easily unsubscribe from these emails at any time. I am a real estate agent and I may contact you ONLY IF you have requested me to do so via a Sugar Land Custom Home Search, a What’s My Sugar Land Home Worth, or one of my other free, no obligation services. If I am unavailable to meet your needs in a timely manner, I may ask you if I can have a respected colleague contact you instead.

Ask a Question - Get An Answer

Use the Comment Section Below...

Tell me what you think...

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *