Your home selling team
If you’ve lived in your house for many years, the idea of selling may be quite overwhelming. Perhaps you haven’t tackled those loose shingles you meant to fix last spring and you aren’t sure what else needs work. Maybe you don’t know what the houses in your area are selling for so you don’t know how much money you’d make on yours—and how much you’d have available to finance a move to a retirement community. Whatever your circumstances, the prospect of selling the home you’ve lived in for years is a large and emotionally charged task.
If you’re not sure where to start, the best plan is to get a team of experts together. You may have used only a real estate agent and a lawyer when you originally bought your house, but times have changed. Of course you will need a lawyer but there is so much more you need to know about seniors and real estate.
Here are the 10 people you many want on your home-selling team:
- Home inspector:The home inspector checks out the structure and mechanics of your house before you list it and points out potential problems that need to be addressed before an offer comes in. Even if you think the house is sound, it is a very good idea to get a home inspection; you don’t want any surprises later on when the buyer’s building inspector does his walk through.
- Real estate agent: There are many real estate agents out there, but few of them are Accredited Seniors' Agents. Real estate agents accredited by the Pivotal Master Accredited Senor Agent (ASA) Program have a wealth of experience and specialized knowledge to offer you the best help, an understanding of family dynamics, the unique situation of seniors, a network of other experts, and more. Read more about this critical accreditation.
- Handyman: The handyman will make any small repairs and touch-ups so that your home looks great inside and outside. You may also require a plumber, carpenter or an electrician depending on what work needs to be done.
- Home stager: The home stager will ‘stage’ your home by removing clutter, rearranging, removing or adding furniture, removing or adding décor items and possibly painting it as well. A good first impression is critical and by staging your home it will be easier for potential buyers to imagine living there. Staging can also help to increase the market value of your home. Some of your furniture and other items may be placed in temporary storage during this time. Stagers often have interior design backgrounds. Your real estate agent can tell you if you should use a home stager and may pay for some or all of the staging costs.
- Real estate appraiser: If a certified appraisal is required the appraiser will give you a detailed and unbiased market value assessment of your property’s value. The appraisal is usually valid for a set period of time only so don’t get one done unless you are sure you are ready to sell your house. The service can cost a few hundred dollars but is well worth it so that you know how best to price your home.
- Real estate attorney: This is the lawyer who will oversee title searches, property surveys and all other legal aspects of the sale.
- Banker/lender: If you need a loan in order to make any repairs to your property that were discovered by the building inspector or any cosmetic enhancements, contact your banker or lender.
- Movers: You may ask family and friends to help you move or you may find it easier to leave all the coordination, time and physical labour to the professionals and hire a fully insured moving company. They know how to move fragile and valuable items such as your china cabinet and they are also liable for any damage that may happen. If you manage the move and something breaks, repairs and losses will be your responsibility.
- Piano movers: If you are moving a piano you may want to hire a piano moving company rather than a regular moving company. They will bring the correct piano moving skids, ramps and slings, they will know how to dismantle the piano if necessary and they will ensure that the piano is not damaged in any way during the move.
- Packers: You or your family members may take on the task of packing but it could take you several days. Professional packers work in teams with proper tools and packing equipment and they know how to efficiently pack all of your valuables which ultimately saves you space, money and time.