Selling your home in Spring? Find and hire your agent over the holidays!

Hire your agent over the holidays and hit the ground running in January - business man in front of fireplace fireIt’s mid-November, and it may not be intuitive, but if you want to sell your home next Spring, I’d encourage you to find and hire your agent over the holidays.

Why hire your agent over the holidays?

Thanksgiving is late next week, and you may want to shelve the whole idea of anything related to home selling until sometime after January first, or maybe after Super Bowl. Many home owners determine that in the new year they’ll start decluttering, fixing up the home and yard, and stat thinking about contacting a real estate agent or two (or three).

But that’s backwards from the ideal!

If you can take a few hours now to select and hire (yes, sign the listing contract) your real estate professional, that person can help you make key decisions that will impact your return on investment.

It does not cost more to bring her or him into the process early, and it may save you some money and keep you from making improvements that are counter productive to your goals.

Not only that, but Realtors often have trusted vendors for yardwork, painting, hauling, and even for help with sorting out what stays, what goes, and what gets donated or tossed.  Hire your agent over the holidays, get in touch with those vendors in December, and schedule the help you need for that first week in January and get the job done right the first time.

 

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Silicon Valley Holiday Home Selling: Good or Bad Idea?

Christmas TreeShould you market your home for sale through the holidays?  It’s now early November, and if your property has been listed for sale but not gotten an acceptable purchase offer, you may be thinking of taking your house or condo off the market until sometime in the new year. Or you may be ready to sell but thinking that holding out until the new year will benefit you more. Is that a good idea?  Below, please find some considerations for you as you decide what to do.

Pricing: will the home sell for more now, or in the new year or spring?

No one can tell you whether prices will be better or worse in the first quarter of 2013 than they are now.  Prices are rising overall right now, in most areas of Santa Clara County.  But we do not know what will happen with the “fiscal cliff”.  We don’t know if the wonderful gains that 2012 brought will roll back in 2013 – we don’t expect them to, the economists believe that prices will continue going up, but no one can guarantee anything.  The market is never 100% uniform; even if the San Jose area as a whole appreciates or depreciates, it could be different from one price point to the next or one area to the next, with different markets in Almaden, Cambrian, or Los Gatos, or in your subdivision or school area.  But bottom line: we really don’t know what pricing will do, we only know the probable buyer’s value – a range of likely sales prices – right now.  Inventory is critically low, so there’s a far better chance of problem homes selling right now than when there’s a lot of competition.  Even homes with no issues will find that less competition is a big boon for selling.

Being disturbed during the holidays

Many home owners really don’t want a lot of traffic coming through the home from Thanksgiving through the New Year due to visiting relatives, events planned such as parties at the home, the presence of gifts and concerns over theft, etc.  They may also be worried about rainy weather and carpets getting soiled.

At the same time, though, during the holidays many of us make our homes warm, bright and inviting, particularly if we decorate for Christmas, Thanksgiving, Hanukkah, etc.  Even the smells can do wonders: gingerbread cookies, Christmas trees, hot mulled wine…. With family and friends coming to visit, we tend to “deck the halls” and make our houses really feel like homes.  For many condos, townhouses and houses, during the holidays these homes really show at their best. (more…)