In many ways, selling a home in a seller’s market is pretty much the opposite of selling a home in a buyer’s market. If you are currently in the commanding position of being in a seller’s market in your area, it is certainly an opportune time to put your home on the market if you have been planning to do so in the near future anyway. Your days on the market will likely be few, and you might also get multiple offers, which can potentially raise the price.
Prepare the Property for Sale
Home staging may or may not be a part of preparing your home for sale. However, it definitely includes a thorough cleaning of the property. In a seller’s market, buyers might overlook minor defects as there are not enough properties to choose from, but your home still needs to be clean and free of any major flaws.
Set Listings to go Live on Friday
In general, Friday is the best weekday for home selling. It’s a good idea to set your listing to “go live” on Thursday night at midnight to allow prospective buyers to check them out among the new listings when they wake up on Friday morning. Make sure that all pictures are color-corrected and show your home in the best possible light to ensure a sizzling online presence.
Upload a virtual tour of the property and release digital advertisements on Facebook and other online platforms.
Don’t Set a Time for Offer Presentation
If you allow buyers to know that you will review all offers on a specific day at a certain time, you will lose some prospective buyers as buyers might not want to wait around to find out if their offer will be accepted. This is less of an issue as demand for housing increases, but it is still something to keep in mind.
Review Seller’s Market Offers
Once you receive all the offers, make notes on each offer to allow you to easily compare them. Do not look solely at the price offered, but other aspects as well, including:
- The amount of earnest money deposit.
- Whether the offer is all cash, or if financed, the proposed form of financing.
- The amount of the down payment.
- Standard buyer inspections or contingency waivers.
- Seller expenses, including a possible proposal to pay the closing costs of the buyer.
- Unusual allowances or requests.
Why Work with a Real Estate Lawyer in a Seller’s Market
Upon planning to sell real estate in Alabama, it would be best to have a real estate closing attorney who is available to help when a problem arises.
Alabama is among the few states that require a licensed real estate lawyer to draft and prepare all legal paperwork involved in a real estate transaction, whether selling or buying. “Legal documents” include titles, deeds, Termite Letters, Powers of Attorney, etc.
Apart from remaining compliant with state law, there are many good reasons to work with a lawyer throughout the entire real estate process. The following are some examples of when it’s very helpful to have an experienced attorney on your side:
- During negotiations over who pays for repairs after a home inspection reveals expensive repairs.
- When a property has an illegal in-law unit with an existing tenant whom you want to evict.
- When you want to enter a rent-to-buy agreement.
- When you are concerned about specific language in your purchase agreement.
When selling a property, having a real estate attorney reduces your probability of being sued by the opposing party for failure to disclose specific details, as a lawyer must review the home inspection and disclose pertinent facts about the property to the other party.
For instance, if the other party is a partnership or corporation and the transaction is improperly completed, they might sue you for not clearing the property title, failing to disclose specific defects, violating a corporate charter, or another issue.
Working with a seasoned attorney will not insulate you completely from such litigation; but acquiring strong legal counsel will definitely reduce your risk significantly.
Complete Disclosure Lowers Seller Risk
Alabama, unlike many other states, employs a rule called “caveat emptor” for the sale of used residential property. In Latin, caveat emptor means that the seller has no real duty to advise the buyer of issues with the physical condition of the property during the sale.
But as a risk-management tool, smart sellers will disclose material defects. In doing so, the buyer will avoid potential danger and the possibility of being embroiled in a lawsuit. One way of doing this is to complete a property disclosure form and provide it to the buyer during the transaction.
Hire a Seasoned Alabama Real Estate Attorney
Identifying the right law firm to manage your real estate transaction is one of the most vital decisions you will make. The real estate lawyers at Davis, Bingham, Hudson, & Buckner, P.C., can help you save time and money and avoid any complications and disputes during your home sale. For a no-obligation consultation, call today at (334) 821-1908.