The Safari Guide to Listing Your Home
This is the first installment in our weekly blog series to help you prepare your home for listing in today’s market. If you follow this 8-week guide, you’ll be able to break up all those to-do’s into manageable steps that will leave you in the position to present your home in the best light!
Week One – Paperwork
It’s that time of year when you may be starting to get your documents together for taxes. While you are wading through your filing cabinets, use the opportunity to find and collect any paperwork relating to your home. Not all documents referenced in the checklist below are mandatory, but each one has value if you have them – whether in terms of giving your agent the most accurate information possible for pricing and marketing, negotiating leverage, or just plain courtesy to potential buyers!
First, look for any documents you have from your purchase of the home. This can include anything passed on from the last owner, the purchase contract, appraisal report, and any documentation if you refinanced the home. Proof of homeowner’s insurance, property tax information, and HOA information are also very helpful to have on hand.
Next, look for any receipts or reports for any work that has been completed on your home. These can be from the builder, the previous owner, or any work you commissioned or did yourself. For example, have you had any updates or remodeling done to the house? Did you finish the basement? Did you have new carpet installed? What about new appliances? Has your roof recently been replaced through insurance? Your future buyer would love to have these documents, not to mention the great ‘bragging rights’ and possible increase in list price these documents could support!
There are many things you can provide as a courtesy to buyers. Providing your most recent utility bills (make sure to black out any personal information!) can help buyers in budgeting, and getting manuals and warranties for appliances in one place is thoughtful, too. Want to really make someone’s day? Another idea (if available) is to collect the paint colors and brands for interior and exterior paint.
Collecting these documents is also important as you can share and reference this information in our meetings together!