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Selling Tips >   Why Use a Realtor

Selling Your Home With A REALTOR®

selling your home, selling your home with a realtor, realtorAll 18 of Breckenridge Associates Real Estate brokers/partners are certified REALTORS®. They play a critical role in providing full, comprehensive services when selling your home and representing you as a seller.

This process is typically a long one, but Breckenridge Associates Real Estate REALTORS® are here to guide you through each of the steps: pre-listing, listing appointment, listing agreement, entering property in the MLS database, marketing the listing, offer and contract, tracking the loan process, home inspection, appraisal, closing, follow-up after closing.

We suggest you take some time to familiarize yourself a bit with the ins and outs of the home-selling process and contact any of us with your questions or if you'd like some help selling your home from one of our REALTORS®. You can also read more about the REALTOR® designation below. 

Pre-Listing Activities:

  • Make appointment with seller for listing presentation
  • Research all comparable currently listed properties
  • Research sales activity for past 18 months from MLS and public records databases
  • Research "Average Days on Market" for this property of this type, price range and location
  • Download and review property tax roll information
  • Prepare "Comparable Market Analysis" (CM plat/complex lay-out
  • Research property's ownership and deedA) to establish fair market value
  • Obtain copy of subdivision type
  • Research property's public record information for lot size and dimensions
  • Research and verify legal description
  • Research property's land use coding and deed restrictions
  • Research property's current use and zoning
  • Perform exterior "Curb Appeal Assessment" of subject property
  • Confirm current public schools and analyze impact of schools on market value 

Listing Appointment: 

  • Give seller an overview of current market conditions and projections
  • Review agent's and company's credentials and accomplishments in the market
  • Present CMA results to seller, including comparables, solds, current listings and expired listings
  • Offer pricing strategy based on professional judgment and interpretation of current market conditions
  • Discuss marketing goals and marketing plan with seller
  • Explain market power and benefits of Multiple Listing Service (MLS)
  • Explain market power of web marketing, IDX and
  • Explain the work the brokerage and agent do "behind the scenes" and agent's availability/seller expectations
  • Explain agent's role in taking calls to screen for qualified buyers and protect seller from curiosity seekers
  • Review and explain all clauses in Listing Contract and Addendum, formalizing agreement 

Once Property is Under Listing Agreement:

  • Review current title information
  • Measure overall and heated square footage
  • Measure interior room sizes
  • Confirm lot size via owner's copy of certified survey if available
  • Note any and all unrecorded property lines, agreements, easements
  • Obtain and review house plans, if applicable and available
  • Order plat map for retention in property's listing file
  • Prepare showing instructions for buyers' agents and agree on showing time window with seller
  • Obtain current mortgage loan(s) information: companies and loan account numbers
  • Verify current loan information with lender(s)
  • Check assumability of loan(s) and any special requirements
  • Discuss possible buyer financing alternatives and options with seller
  • Review current appraisal if available
  • Identify Home Owner Association manager if applicable
  • Verify Home Owner Association Fees with manager – mandatory or optional and current annual fee
  • Order copy of Homeowner Association bylaws if applicable
  • Research electricity availability and supplier's name and phone number
  • Calculate average utility usage from last 12 months of bills
  • Research and verify city sewer/septic tank system
  • Water System: Calculate average water fees or rates from last 12 months of bills 
  • Well Water: Confirm well status, depth and output from Well Report
  • Natural Gas: Research/verify availability and supplier's name and phone number
  • Verify security system, current term of service and whether owned or leased
  • Verify if seller has transferable Termite Bond
  • Ascertain need for lead-based paint disclosure
  • Prepare detailed list of property amenities and assess market impact
  • Prepare detailed list of property's "Inclusions and Conveyances with Sale"
  • Compile list of completed repairs and maintenance items
  • Send "Vacancy Checklist" to seller if property is vacant
  • Explain benefits of Home Owner Warranty to seller
  • Assist sellers with completion and submission of Home Owner Warranty Application
  • Verify if property has rental units involved – if so verify all leases, rents, deposits and inform/discuss showings with tenants
  • Arrange for installation of yard sign
  • Assist seller with completion of Seller's Disclosure Form
  • Review results of Curb Appeal Assessment with seller and provide suggestions to  improve salability
  • Review results of Interior Décor Assessment and suggest changes in an effort to shorten days on market

Entering Property in Multiple Listing Service Database:

  • Prepare MLS Profile Sheet – REALTOR® is responsible for "quality control" and accuracy of listing data
  • Enter property data from Profile Sheet into MLS Listing Database
  • Add property to company's Active Listings list
  • Provide seller with signed copies of Listing Agreement and MLS Profile Sheet Data Form 
  • Take professional real estate photos for upload into MLS and use in flyers 

Marketing The Listing:

  • Implement marketing campaign – create print, collateral, direct mail, web ads, emails with seller's input
  • Coordinate showings with owners, tenants and other REALTORS®. 
  • Install electronic lock box if authorized by owner
  • Review comparable MLS listings regularly to ensure property remains competitive in price, terms, conditions and availability
  • Mail out "Just Listed" notice to all neighborhood residents
  • Advise Network Referral Program of listing
  • Provide marketing data to buyers coming through international relocation and referral networks
  • Submit ads to company's participating Internet real estate sites
  • Price changes conveyed promptly to all databases and Internet groups
  • Loan information reviewed and updated in MLS as required
  • Feedback e-mails/faxes sent to buyers’ agents after showings
  • Discuss feedback from showing agents with seller to determine if changes will accelerate the sale
  • Place regular update calls to seller to discuss marketing and pricing 

The Offer and Contract:

  • Receive and review all Offer to Purchase contracts submitted by buyers or buyers' agents
  • Evaluate offer(s) and prepare a "net sheet" on each for the owner for comparison purposes
  • Counsel seller on offers with merits and weakness of each component of each offer
  • Work with buyers' agents to review buyer's qualifications and discuss offer and/or seller’s disclosure
  • Confirm buyer is pre-qualified by calling Loan Officer
  • Negotiate and/or finalize all offers on seller's behalf, setting time limit for loan approval and closing date
  • Prepare and convey any counteroffers, acceptance or amendments to buyer's agent
  • Coordination of contract and all addendums to closing attorney or title company
  • Record and promptly deposit buyer's earnest money in escrow account
  • Disseminate "Under-Contract Showing Restrictions" as seller requests
  • Deliver copies of fully signed Offer to Purchase contract to seller
  • Coordinate Offer to Purchase contract with lender 
  • Advise seller in handling additional offers to purchase submitted between contract and closing
  • Change status in MLS to "Sale Pending"
  • Review buyer's credit report results – advise seller of worst and best case scenarios
  • Provide credit report information to seller if property will be seller-financed
  • Order septic system inspection, if applicable
  • Receive and review septic system report and assess any possible impact on sale
  • Deliver copy of septic system inspection report lender and buyers’ agent
  • Deliver Well Flow Test Report copies to lender and buyers’ agent
  • Verify termite inspection ordered
  • Verify mold inspection ordered if required

Tracking the Loan Process:

  • Confirm Verifications Of Deposit and buyers’ employment have been returned
  • Follow Loan Processing Through the buyers’ agent
  • Contact Buyers’ agent weekly to ensure processing is on track
  • Relay final approval of buyer's loan application to seller

Home Inspection:

  • Coordinate buyer's professional home inspection with seller
  • Review home inspector's report
  • Explain seller's responsibilities with respect to loan limits and interpret any clauses in the contract
  • Ensure seller's compliance with Home Inspection Clause requirements
  • Recommend or assist seller with identifying and negotiating with trustworthy contractors to perform any required repairs
  • Negotiate payment and oversee completion of all required repairs on seller's behalf, if needed

The Appraisal:

  • Coordinate appraisal with buyers’ agent
  • Assist seller in questioning appraisal report if it seems too low

Closing Preparations and Duties:

  • Contract is signed by all parties
  • Coordinate closing process with buyer's agent and lender
  • Ensure all parties have all forms and information needed to close the sale
  • Select location where closing will be held
  • Confirm closing date and time and notify all parties
  • Assist in solving any title problems (boundary disputes, easements, etc.) or in obtaining Death Certificates
  • Work with buyer's agent in scheduling and conducting buyer's final walk-thru prior to closing
  • Research all tax, HOA, utility and other applicable prorations
  • Request final closing figures from closing agent (attorney or title company)
  • Receive and carefully review closing figures to ensure accuracy of preparation
  • Forward verified closing figures to buyer's agent
  • Request copy of closing documents from closing agent
  • Confirm buyer and buyer's agent have received title insurance commitment
  • Provide "Home Owners Warranty" for availability at closing
  • Review all closing documents carefully for errors
  • Forward closing documents to absentee seller as requested
  • Review documents with closing agent (attorney)
  • Provide earnest money deposit check from escrow account to closing agent
  • Coordinate this closing with seller's next purchase and resolve any timing problems
  • Have a "no surprises" closing so that seller receives a net proceeds check at closing
  • Refer sellers to one of the best agents at their destination, if applicable
  • Change MLS status to sold – enter sale date, price, selling broker and agent's ID numbers, etc.

Follow-Up After Closing:

  • Answer questions about filing claims with Home Owner Warranty company if requested
  • Attempt to clarify and resolve any conflicts about repairs if buyer is not satisfied 

What REALTOR® Means To You:

Before selecting a broker to represent you as a seller, you should know not every real estate agent or broker is a REALTOR®. This term and the familiar Block “R” logo are trademarked by the National Association of REALTORS® and can only be used by those are REALTOR® members through their local association of REALTORS®.

All REALTORS® are state-issued licensees as agents or brokers, but the major difference between a “real estate licensee” and a REALTOR® is that REALTORS® have taken an oath to subscribe to a stringent, enforceable Code of Ethics with Standards of Practice that promote the fair, ethical and honest treatment of all parties in a transaction. Non-member licensees have taken no such oath and are not morally bound to the ethical practices and principles set for in the REALTOR® Code.

For that extra measure of peace of mind, ensure the individual seeking to represent you is both a real estate licensee and a REALTOR®. Contact the experts at Breckenridge Associates for some more advice on selling your property!