Why sell your property with United Country Real Estate? Simple. No one can locate buyers better, bringing to bear more than 90 years of marketing experience, to get you the best price in the shortest time possible.
To sell property in the country, you need more than a “For Sale” sign and a local newspaper ad. Buyers have a harder time finding your property. That’s why you need the benefit of United Country’s professionalism and exclusive, proven marketing tools. We expose your property locally, regionally, nationally (and even internationally) from the first day.
Leverage the largest integrated traditional and auction real estate network.
United Country specializes and is organized to serve its clients in over 20 core market segments or property types, including: small city and town residential and commercial, ranches, farms, timberland, land, resort, vacation, second home, mountain, coastal, vineyard, recreational, horse, hunting and fishing, waterfront, ski, golf and other “lifestyle” properties.
When you put your property on the market, you want to achieve the best sales price you can get, and do so within the time-frame that meets your needs. Nothing is more important to most buyers than the first impressions they receive.
PAINTING —At the top of the list for creating good impressions. Inspect interior walls as well as the exterior including trim, gutters, downspouts, mailbox, etc.
YARD —In addition to proper cutting and edging of the lawn, trim landscaping and weed flower beds. Also check for dead branches in trees and shrubbery debris. Store all outdoor lawn equipment and toys.
SPRINKLER SYSTEM —Check for defective heads and for proper water coverage over entire lawn.
FENCE —Repair where necessary and paint or stain if needed to give your yard that well-maintained appearance.
GARAGE —Check garage doors and opener to see if they are in good working order. Inspect doors for painting or staining. Remove and reorganize garage items.
DRIVEWAY —Check for grease and oil spots. When showing the property, it’s best not to have vehicles parked in the driveway.
PATIO/DECK —Clean patio and arrange outdoor furniture.
POOL —Have pool sparking clean. Store equipment and chemicals out of the way.
ROOF —Check for loose shingles or broken tiles. Make sure eaves are cleared of leaves. If mildew has occurred, consider professional cleaning.
FRONT ENTRANCE —Front door should be clean and all trim painted or stained. Check doorbell and outside light to see if they are operating properly.
AIR -CONDITIONING—Certainly, the air-conditioning system must be functioning at top performance, but also check for proper draining, install a new filter, and clean exterior unit.
WALLS —When checking for cleaning and possible painting of interior walls, look closely at wallpaper for repair or replacement, if needed.
DOORS —All interior and exterior doors should be cleaned, hardware tightened and oiled for smooth opening and closing.
CARPETING AND TILE —Steam cleaning is the best answer for most carpets. While it’s a hassle to rearrange furniture and be disrupted, this is one item that can’t wait until after the sale. Also, repair or replace damaged tile.
WINDOWS —Repair or replace all broken windows or screens. All windows must be cleaned to show the home at its best. Check blinds and draperies for cleanliness.
ELECTRICAL —Repair all switches and outlets that are not working. Good lighting through adequate wattage in garage, hallways, and closets will brighten up your home.
PLUMBING —Leaking faucets always raise questions about plumbing. Clean stains from stainless steel sinks and check enamel for repair.
APPLIANCES —All appliances should be in good working order and CLEAN. In particular, oven and stove top, refrigerator, dishwasher and microwave.
KITCHEN —A bright, cheerful kitchen is a must. Clean all surfaces, check for loose knobs or sticky drawers, clean exhaust hood and organize drawers and cabinets.
BATHROOMS —Clean mirrors, shower doors, curtains, tub caulking, and flooring. Just when you decide to clean the bathroom “later” is when the prospective buyer rings your doorbell.
It is important to gather information pertinent to your property. It will take time to coordinate this information from old bills, tax statements, work receipts, service contracts, and warranty documents, but it pays off when you sell your home. Prospective buyers ask questions about your home and property. The following questions can be expected and you should have the file of information to answer them:
Want to sell your property quickly? Certainly! When you decide to sell it, you want it done as soon and as painlessly as possible, but at the same time, you want to receive as much cash equity from the sale of your property as you think it’s worth. You bought your property at its base price. You added some things immediately to provide the comforts that you were looking for; items such as blinds and custom drapes, paddle fans, a microwave and a garage door opener. These all add to the value. How about that swimming pool the family convinced you to put in? How much was it: $15,000…or was it $16,000 when you added that extra decking? Did that wallpaper in the bedrooms and kitchen cost $1,300, or did that include the blinds? Other improvements include upgraded landscaping, more trees, shrubbery and flowers, a sprinkler system, fence and a unique mailbox up front. Now that you’ve itemized all of your improvements, you’re thinking, “How much is a new home like mine selling for now on the current market? Well, I’ll take what I paid and add in all of the above improvements, include appreciation for each year and that’s what I’ll ask for my price.”
Unfortunately, pricing your property in this manner may give it an inflated value. Your property that you’re so proud of and which is worth so much to you, may just sit with a “For Sale” sign for a long period of time, with a lot of lookers but no buyers. Then, by the time seven or eight months go by, you realize that your price is too high and drop it accordingly. But now the buyers that may have been interested have bought elsewhere, the agents stop bringing prospects, it has been on the market so long it has lost its appeal, there must be something wrong with it for it not to have sold by now. You then get to the point where you’re going to have to price it for less than it should sell for just to move it and get on with your life at your new location.
This can all be eliminated by logical thinking as opposed to emotional thinking. You’ve put blood, sweat and tears into your property. You’ve treated it with TLC (tender loving care) and it’s been great for you and your family. Logical thoughts include: 1) The benefits and pleasures your family has already derived from these improvements for which you will not recover full value. 2) Check out the properties presently on the market in your area that you’re going to compete with for sale, and their price. 3) Check the price of properties comparable to yours that sold within the last six months and determine how long they were on the market. 4) Remember, we may not have been enjoying the appreciation rate you expected over the entire period that you’ve owned the property.
This logical, statistical approach is used by appraisers and agents when arriving at a fair market value price for your home. Your agent should prepare the Competitive Market Analysis (CMA) using this logical approach. In doing so, you’ll receive a professional estimate of value to help price your property in a sale range that will best meet your overall objectives.
The most saleable properties are those that show pride of ownership, with attention given to every detail. If you are looking to sell your home in the near future, we hope this checklist will be of assistance. Even if you’re not planning to sell, it may be helpful as a checklist for spring cleaning or file away under “house papers” for future reference.
TEMPERATURE —Keep your home at a comfortable temperature. Air-conditioning is a must on warm days.
FRESH AIR —Keep air smelling fresh. Air freshener, candles or fresh flowers are nice, but don’t over - do it.
LIGHT —Have sufficient lighting. If it’s daytime, have draperies drawn open. In the evening, turn on the lights prior to showing. Light makes rooms look larger and more appealing.
MUSIC —Soft music can be nice, but loud radios, stereos, or television should be off during the buyers’ inspection.
VALUABLES —Having valuable possessions displayed in your home is only inviting trouble. They’re best placed out of sign, or out of the home.
CLOSETS —Clothes hung properly; and if used for a storage area, clean out. Of most buyers’ requirements, closet space is high on their list.
LAUNDRY —Keep fresh towels and washcloths displayed. Laundry should be done often to keep laundry area clean and fresh.
EXCLUSIONS —Remove or replace items you do not intend to include in the sale. Sure enough, the one item that you wanted to take with you (such as a certain lighting fixture) is just the item the buyers want to include – causing a delay in the negotiation process.
TRASH REMOVAL —All trash and garbage should be removed from the home and garage. Open containers are unsightly as well as giving off odors.
PETS —Try to keep pets outside during a home inspection.
AGENTS —Turn your house over to the agent for showings. Trust their professional abilities. All showings should be scheduled and documented through the listing agent/office.
PEOPLE —While all prospective buyers must be accompanied through the home, family and guests should leave when possible to allow the agent to show the home without the buyer feeling hurried. Should you be present during the showing, remain in the background. The agent should know your property and the needs of the prospective buyer and be able to answer any questions.
DON’T APOLOGIZE —Remember not to apologize for the appearance of your home. If you’ve done the best you can, buyers understand that they may be viewing the home at a time that may be inconvenient to you.
PICK UP EVERYWHERE —Keep clutter off counter tops, disregard old newspapers and magazines, remove excess furniture.
Discuss with our agent what items you’ll need to bring to the closing. While certain items will be helpful to the agent to have when putting your property up for sale, prior to closing, confirm any additional items necessary for you to bring to the closing.
KEYS —Gather all keys for the house, garage, doors, etc. Soon you will need to turn these over to the new owner.
OPERATING INSTRUCTIONS —All manuals and warranties should be kept in one place. These include instructions for the air-conditioning and heating equipment, all appliances, water heater, garage door opener, pool equipment, etc.
UTILITY BILLS —Have copies made of the previous 12 months of utility bills and a monthly average of each utility estimated for the prospective buyer.
HAZARD INSURANCE —Keep fire and extended coverage insurance on the property through the closing date or date of possession, whichever is specified in the contract. Please note that the “contents” portion of your policy may be inadequate during transit of household goods to the new home. Moving companies’ liability could be inadequate. You could make the cancellation date of your previous policy the same as the effective date of your new policy.
EXISTING MORTGAGE —Have existing loan information and payment book available.
TAXES —Copy of most recent tax statement.
HOMEOWNERS ASSOCIATION —Provide information regarding Homeowners Association and/or Restrictive Covenants.
FLOOR PLAN/SURVEY —Check real estate papers for availability of house floor plan and copy of previous survey.
LEASES —Provide the agent with a copy of any existing lease agreements currently in effect.
Even if your move is within the same general area, there are several actions that can expedite the procedure.