When selling your home, you want to be sure you’ve got a smart and effective plan in place to get a buyer to swoop it off the market as quickly as possible. But, the housing market is ever changing: it’s likely that things aren’t the same as they were when you bought your last home. Whether you’re an experienced homeowner trying to get an old property off the market, or this is the first house you’re trying to sell, we’ve got your back with tips on how to sell your home the smart way. 

First Things First: List It! 

The first step of selling your home is to list on MLS. MLS stands for Multiple Listing Service, and is an online database that realtors and brokers use to list homes for sale, as well as find new home listings for potential buyers. The MLS isn’t just one singular database: it’s actually composed of over 600 local MLS databases that are broken up by region. You’ll want to list your home on the MLS database dedicated to your home’s location, so you can easily find buyers that are interested in properties in your area. 

Get Real About Whether You Need A Realtor

Homeowners don’t have the ability to list on MLS on their own. Up until recently, you’ve needed to find a realtor to list your home on the MLS for you. Hiring a realtor can be great, but they require a hefty commission fee (usually around 6%) at the time of the house closing. This means that you’ll need to subtract the realtor’s fee from the equity you’ll receive from your home’s sale. 

Fancy a Flat Rate? 

Given the rising cost of the housing market, as well as large realtor fees, many people looking to sell their homes are choosing to list them on their local MLS via a flat rate MLS listing company. Flat rate MLS listing companies are registered with various MLS databases, and will list your home for you for a flat fee that is lower than a realtor’s commission. These fees are typically paid either upfront before the house is listed, or after the house sells. Choosing to list your home via a flat rate MLS listing company can give you more control over how your home is sold: you get to determine the price of the home, how it will be staged and marketed, and can make your own counteroffers without having go back and forth with a realtor about what you think the appropriate selling price is. 

Next Up: Staging and Marketing!

Once you’ve listed on MLS, you’ll want to stage your home for showings and open houses. After you’ve staged your home, you’ll want to hire a photographer to take photos of your home looking its best.  It takes a lot of work to stage and photograph a house to make it look sellable, and can also cost a pretty penny, so you’ll want to factor the cost of hiring a stager and photographer into your home selling budget. 

Flat rate MLS listing companies often provide staging consultations and professional photograph sessions for an additional a la carte fee. If you’re thinking this is something you’ll need help with, it’s definitely worth it to explore the different service packages your MLS listing company offers, so you can find one that suits your needs. 

Additionally, you’ll need to market your home so people can see how amazing it is, and come tour it. Yes, when you list your home on the MLS, it will be syndicated to popular housing marketplace sites like Zillow and Redfin. But there’s no better marketing tactic than word of mouth! Homes can be marketed via flyers (that include those lovely professional photos you had taken), as well as social media posts and email blasts. You can choose to market your home on your own, or recruit the help of the MLS listing company that helped list your home (again, for a small additional fee). Good marketing ensures that your home is seen by as many people as possible, and will help you get more offers so you can sell it faster!

Finally: Sell That House!

Once you’ve found a buyer for your home, you’ll want to consider their offer. If it’s lower than you’d like, you’ll want to go back to them with a counteroffer. Once you’ve negotiated a price, it’s time to seal the deal. Congrats, you’ve sold your home!

Selling your home is a huge undertaking, and you want to have a plan that guarantees your home will sell quickly, and for the best price. The first step of effectively selling your home is to list on MLS, via either a realtor, or a flat rate MLS listing company that removes the hefty commission fees realtors require. From there, you’ll stage and market your home to potential buyers until you find the perfect person to hand the keys over to. Would you list your home with the help of a flat rate MLS listing company?