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Selling a mobile home often requires less work than a regular home, but the process can still be complicated. In order to get the highest return for your investment it's important to follow a few steps that can make things go more smoothly, and to keep in mind the financing differences between these and traditional homes.
Because mobile homes are worth less than regular homes, many sellers try to recoup as much of their investment as possible by selling without the assistance of a real estate professional, in a process commonly known as "for sale by owner." This method allows the seller to keep all the profits from the sale, instead of spending five per cent or more on a Realtor's commission, but it includes a few risks. For example, without the help of a real estate professional it may be difficult to find financing for your buyer (often a more difficult process than with a regular home), and it may take longer to price the unit correctly. If you do decide to sell FSBO it's best to give yourself about nine months before the home must be sold, so there's still time to work with a real estate agent if necessary. Also remember to advertise the home in local print publications, as well as on the Internet.
Preparing a mobile home for sale is less difficult than a regular home, since these homes are much smaller and easier to maintain. Your main concern when getting ready to sell should be introducing the home as is, so buyers can easily see its condition. Buyers do not invest in mobile homes for the upgrade potential – in general, they want to be able to use the home as quickly as possible, without having to worry about structural problems.
It's important to keep in mind that people buy mobile homes not just because they are cheaper, but because monthly mortgage payments on them also tend to be lower. If you're in a position to help the buyer with financing (if you have full equity in the home, for example) you may be able to attract a higher price by offering a creative financing solution, such as lower monthly payments, or by offering a "seller second" on a percentage of the mortgage, if a buyer can not qualify for the full amount. In these cases, it's often worth it to work with a real estate professional who can draw up a custom contract – you may lose a little extra on commission, but you'll also be making more on the final sale.
Another market to consider for your mobile home is the corporate sector. Many companies buy and re-furbish mobile homes for a wide variety of uses like temporary office space, or in planned developments. You may sell for a little bit less this way, but it may be worth it for the time and effort you save on marketing to individual buyers.
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If millions of people sell their homes each year through an agent then that might suggest that private selling of real estate is not the way to go. Of course it's not that simple and the promise that a person needs an agent is a false one.
It could be argued that even if an agent is actually required to sell a home, that the agent will at least make the sale easier or more likely. I have to say that there is no evidence to support either that an agent will get you more money or a quicker sale.
There are no industry figures comparing the two methods and even if there were the results would be at best ambiguous. So for better or worse we can only reason through the topic and make an educated guess.
The pro agent people (mostly agents) would argue that only an agent has the marketing clout and inherent skill to achieve the highest possible price in the shortest timeframe. But is that claim accurate or indeed verifiable? A cursory look at the question would tell you that there are to many variables eg, is the agent a good one?
Is he acting in your best interests or his own best interests ie a commission.
All agents freely admit that price is the ultimate determinant of saleability, not the salesman's ability.
Agents when talking amongst them always say that if a house is being marketed and remains unsold it's the price that's the main problem.
If one accepts that price is the problem then one would also have to accept that a lower price (through not paying thousands in agents commission) would help the home to sell faster.
Houses sell homes and the very best agents are the ones that show up. They oil the wheels and sometimes make the process a little easier. Some may in fact make it harder to sell.
At the end of the day it's only pricing and exposure that sells anything … and that goes for houses or hot dogs. Ah I hear you say … but what about the hot dog buyer is hungry? That sure is a factor? Yes it is and so is the taste of the hot dog. But all things being equal if two hot dog stands have similar food and are side by side the cheaper one will get more custom. Likewise if one hot dog maker has a superior tasting product it will not mean a thing unless people hear about its superior hot dogs and that is known as (exposure)
So you see price and marketing exposure are all that really matters and up until recent times the real estate agents did have a huge advantage in that area. But now the playing field is far more level and FSBO's can now get as much or greater exposure than some agents. How can this be? Simple really. The average, For Sale by Owner, person has just one house he needs to promote and he can spend more time and resources on that one product as opposed to the agent who may have a hundred properties that he is trying to do justice to.
Funnily enough it's that very fact that most agents will point to as proof that you need them. They will use the analogy of having a supermarket to attract buyers with, while you have not even got a corner store to promote your one product product ie your house. Now I think that was probably true to some degree years ago but now thanks to the Internet, the private seller can arrange his do it yourself house sale like the big boys. Using a private selling FSBO company and either his own sign or that of the company the average diy seller can get the marketing reach that eluded him in years gone by.
Now that's not to say that selling your own home is easy without an agent but then who would be willing to bet that it is going to be easy with an agent?
Whether it's easier or harder is debatable but what's not debatable is the savings you can make by selling for yourself. The typical seller would save many thousands of dollars in going the diy selling route and those are often tax free thousands as well.
The key in all of this is that if one is going to sell their own home then they must attend to it in a way that gets professional level exposure. The best way to do this is to spend a small amount of the saved money on quality marketing.
We are not talking rocket science here. Simply set your price as accurately as possible and then tell everyone you can about your real estate …. and that means more than just a For sale sign in your front yard.
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Something held in common by all home sellers is the desire to sell in the least amount of time and for the most amount of money. To achieve that goal you must first price your house appropriately. If you price too high your house will not sell. On the other hand, if you price too low you stand to lose a reasonable amount of money. Therefore it is essential that you determine the fair market value of your home.
There are two general factors to consider when determining the sales price of your home:
What is the fair market value of your real estate?
There are a couple of methods by which you can arrive at a fair market value for your property on your own. In an agent-assisted real estate transaction, the agent can help you set an asking price by looking up recent comparable home sales in the local multiple listing service (MLS) database. Most likely, you do not have access to the local MLS system for this information.
For this reason, it may be beneficial to pay for a professional appraisal of your property. Appraisers also have access to recent comparable home sales and use up to three methods of arriving at a fair market value for your home. When a buyer seeks financing to purchase your property, they will need an appraisal to establish value in the eyes of the lender. So it does not hurt to have that value established in the beginning. Showing a buyer a professional appraisal of the property can give the buyer added comfort that your asking price is reasonable.
You can expect to pay $ 300- $ 500 for a professional appraisal. Due to the cost, many home sellers try to establish a fair value on their own. If this is your preferred method, consider the following.
What are similar homes selling for?
Other homes that are for sale in your neighborhood are probably your best resource for determining value. Visit these houses and gather as much information as you can about the homes and then compare those homes with your home. Compare square foot, number of bedrooms, number of bathrooms, lot size, and any unique features. Seeing what similar homes are selling for will give you a good idea of a price range you can expect for your home.
Search the Internet
Most states require that property transfers be published in a local newspaper, so you can easily search the online archives of recent home sales in your area. You can also search real estate websites for homes that are comparable to yours to see what they are listed for, but remember, this does not give you knowledge of what the properties actually sold for.
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Perfect Phrases for Real Esate Agents and Brokers Helps seize the attention of prospective clients and slam the lid on sales. This phrasebook contains hundreds of words and phrases readers can depend on to deliver their messages quickly and to the point. It helps agents and brokers to deliver listing presentations, write and negotiate contracts, and manage client concerns better than ever before. Full description
Home auction by owner may be the alternative if your property has been on the market for a while. If you have tried the conventional methods of real estate sales as a For Sale by Owner or with the assistance of a real estate agent and still your home remains on the market, consider an auction by owner, including online bidding.
The For Sale by Owner "FSBO" usually has limited equity and limited ability to market its property the way a professional real estate agent or auction company would. Yet adequate exposure for the property is essential to get the highest price. There are many reasons to consider an auction company; however, now there is an auction system for FSBOs. It is a 16 page booklet, explaining in detail "How to Auction Your FSBO in 14 days", written by an Auctioneer and Real Estate Broker. It comes with a CD for your computer with templates and forms on the level with top performing real estate agents and auction companies. Online bidding and MLS are components of the intense marketing campaign. It is everything you need to auction your home in 14 days in the most economical ways possible.
Auction Sales are Growing
Auction is the new "buzz" word in the real estate industry as market conditions require more intense marketing and specific timelines in order to sell properties quicker. The National Auctioneers Association (NAA) has documented a 40% increase in residential real estate sales by auction. In December, 2007, the National Association of Realtors (NAR) predicted by the year 2010, 30% of all real estate sold will be by auction.
Current Market Value
A real estate auction is the purest way to determine the current market value of your home. Once a competitive bidding environment has been created, buyers will bid up to what they are willing to pay. Auctions are attractive to buyers because they are always looking for the "deal". However, competitive bidding will drive the price up. Sellers look to the Auction method when they are highly motivated to sell, wish to sell quickly because of circumstances or wish to liquid to re-enter the market as buyers. Whenever a short sale is desired, auctions should be considered.
Auction does not necessarily mean losing money. Consider what it cost to hold the property, (mortgage, maintenance, taxes and insurance) for say six (6) months vs. auctioning your home for slightly less right now. Consider the selling cost to sell it the conventional way, using a real estate brokerage (typically a 6% commission, repair costs, your closing cost and, in a buyer's market as we are in today, the seller would most likely pay the buyer's closing cost also). With auction, you may not pay any commission. More than likely, you, as the seller, will pay the expense of marketing your property and your selling cost would consist of only your closing costs.
Auctioned properties are generally sold, "as is," and without any contingencies, such as inspections which can result in repairs the seller would have been expected to pay for. "As is" does not mean you do not have to dislose all things known about the property to the buyer. In fact, the buyer should get inspections and / or appraisals before the auction in order to know what he / she is buying, "as-is." Since there are no contingencies, including the buyer's ability to get financing, usually auctions close within 30 days with cash or financing already in place. Auctions bring "ready" buyers.
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Here is the truth about selling your home FSBO. Indeed you can save money from other traditional selling solutions but selling your home on you own is not for everyone and should not be used in every situation. Below you will find the basic steps in selling your home by yourself.
Selling You Home Steps: Attend Your Local FSBO Seminar: In every major metro city there are FSBO companies that operate the local FSBO advertising market. These companies can be helpful but in my experiences they give you vague information and charge you for everything. FSBO seminars are not for everyone and will cost a few dollars, usually between $ 25- $ 45 per person. It is a 30-60 minute presentation by a FSBO company employee on how to sell your home. Most of the presentation is directed on how their company can help you and the products / services they provide. If you want to save some time and a little money do your own research or finish reading this post and you will know all the steps involved in selling your home on your own.
Determine Market Value: For this step I am a firm believer you should spend a little time or money. It is not as easy as driving through your neighborhood and seeing what your neighbors home is selling for. Determining market value is much more complex and should be done very carefully. Market value of your home should consider all the details about your home including but not limited to; square footage (above grade and below grade square footage have different values), floor plan, upgrades, neighborhood, school districts, curble, surrounding amenities, age of home … and the list goes on. Because this is a very important task I recommend to avenues in determining the market value of you home.
Use a Real Estate Agent: If you have already made up your mind that you will be selling your home FSBO I would recommend not wasting a realtor time and taking advantage of their resources. Realtors work hard and I'm sure you would not like it if someone asked you to work for free. If you are open to the possibility of listing your home with a realtor then I would suggest asking a local realtor for a listing presentation. Real estate agents have some massive advantages over us when determining market value of a home. For one, real estate agents are in the business of selling homes. The do not get a pay check without their listings selling. They also have access to the Multiple Listing Service (MLS). This is a database that contains all the homes currently on the market and all the recently sold homes. If you are open to the possibility of listing your home with a real estate agent ask one to give you a listing presentation. Their presentation should include the market value of your home. They will also explain their services they offer. If after listing your presentation you like the idea of using them for their services, then great. Hire them and let them take over the work. If after listing your presentation you still want to sell your home FSBO, well now to you know the market value of your home.
Have An Appraisal: I recommend hiring a professional home appraiser and having your home appraised. This appraisal will cost you between $ 200-400 depending on your location and your home, but it is worth every penny. Beside you will have to pay for an appraisal anyway when you get an offer on you home. Note that you can not always use your initial appraisal as the appraisal needed when you get an offer. It is law that the buyers lender order the appraisal so they know it is legit. If the appraisal company you used is also used by your buyers lender then you can use the same appraisal. An appraisal is a report that will give you your home value and include a minimum of three comparable properties in your area. These comparables are the homes the appraiser used to determine your homes market value. I always get an appraisal for the homes I sell. Then I market my homes a little below appraisal and I have proof of my claim.
Get a Home Inspection: I think it is always best to get a home inspection before actually marketing your home. A home inspection will cost you between $ 200-450 depending on the size of your home. A licensed home inspector will check everything in your home from the electrical outlets on the walls to the crawlspace. I always get a home inspection before I market my properties so I can see what items I need to fix. Some times there is a not so good surprise like moisture in your attic or things you may have not been consistent on like having your HVAC serviced on a regular basis. Once you get your home inspection back (2-5 days after the home inspector is complete), fix as many of the items as you can. This will ensure a clean home inspection when your buyer has your home inspected.
Set Your Selling Price: Depending on the condition of your home, the current market value, and your selling situation you should now set your selling price. Do not forget to take into account selling fees; typically 1.5% closing fees, assessment fees, negotiation room, and realtor fees. Why realtor fees you ask. Because sellers pay realtors and buyer do not you can expect your buyer will most likely be represented by a realtor. Depending on your location in the US typical realtor fees are 3% of selling price.
Stage Your Home: There is an art to staging a home and many people have professional jobs just staging home for sale. If you list your home with a good realtor they will help you with this task. If you are selling you home by yourself then your main task will be to clean, clean, clean. Also use some of the tips from the pros like removing all family photos around the house. This helps potential home buyer see their family living in the home. Do not forget to move your staging outside the home and into the front and back yard. Put new bark in the flower beds, plant some fresh vibrant colored flowers, trim the bushes growing above the front windows, and basically give your home some great curve appealing.
Market Your Property: Now that your home is in great condition and will impress the masses it is time to spend a little money and get the word out that you are selling your home. In my opinion this is where many FSBO's hit a brick wall. Marketing is the most important step in selling your home. Some people would say sale price but I am a firm believer that marketing is much more important. If you have a great sale price and no one knows your home is for sale, you will not receive one offer. There are many ways you can market you home for sale. Marketing is much to large of a subject to describe in detail so I will list a few, just remember do not be stingy when using your money for marketing. I would suggest budgeting a minimum of 2% of your selling price for marketing. Some great avenues to get the word out that your home is for sale; signs, classified ads, bulletin boards, community magazines, Internet, and do not forget the never absent home flyer.
Show Your Home To Potential Buyers: This is the part many home owner do not like doing. After you have spend many hours and a great sum of money getting your home ready to sell now you have to show your property to potential home buyers. Receiving phone calls, scheduling views, answering the same questions over and over to potential buyers, talking with unmotivated people, and listening to complaints about your home are just a few of the tasks you will be faced with. This is also the test for your previous work. If you set your selling price well and have good marketing your phone will ring.
Receive Offers: If your buyer is represented by a realtor then you will not have to worry much about how the paperwork is completed. The buyers realtor will ask where and when to deliver the offers and you will receive them. You will need to read through the offer and understand the agreement / contract completely before being able to make a decision. If your buyer does not have a realtor you will have to help them put the offer together and walk them through the paperwork. You can also receive offers from local real estate investors like ExpertHomeOffers.com for free.
Counter Offer or Accept: Depending on the offer you received from your potential home buyer you will need to counter offer or accept their offer. In a high buyers market it is typical to receive 3% lower than your asking price. Once an agreed upon price and terms is on paper and signed by both parties it is time for some more work.
More Paperwork: It is federal and State law to have a Seller Disclosure Form and a Lead Base Paint Disclosure form completed for all transactions.
Title & Escrow: Contact your local title and escrow company and get your home scheduled to close. A title company will check for liens on title and organize the closing. Fees for title and escrow vary depending on your home location and your relationship with your title agent.
Fix Buyer Requests: Once your buyer has completed their home inspection you can bet they will have a few items they will ask to be fixed / completed before the close date. Because you previously had a home inspection completed there should be no big surprises on the buyers home inspection report.
Close and Receive Your Check: Well the process is almost over. Many times there are hick-ups with closings. It could be your buyer does not qualify to purchase your home and can not get financing, then you have to start the process all over again. Or you could be one of the lucky ones and have a smooth transaction from start to finish. If the closing does proceed as planned you can expect to receive your orders from closing in 1-3 business days after closing. Congratulations! you have just sold your home.
Summary of Cost:
Assuming a $ 100,000 sale price the typical cost to sell a home FSBO would be between $ 10,650 and $ 14,440. This is definitely not cheep and this money does not include your time and effort, particularly the money you could have made while at work and not dealing with the sale of your home. As you can see selling your home on your own can be quite a challenge, take valuable time away from other tasks like family or work, and cost a substantial amount of money. For this reason real estate agents and professional home buyers exist. Many people hire a real estate agent to help them through the gigantic task of selling their home. Even with a real estate agent the task of selling your home can be daunting. This is why selling your home to a real estate investor can make a great deal of sense. When you sell your home to a real estate investor you do not have to worry about any of the details and usually do not have to worry about the condition of your home. You can contact a real estate investor like http://www.ExpertHomeOffers.com and within 48 hours have a signed offer on your home. If you really need to close fast because of your selling situation some real estate investors can pay cash and close on your home within days. No fixing up your home, no dealing with non-motivated buyers, no worrying about your buyer getting financing to close, and the list goes on.
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