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The 7 Steps to Selling a Home

There's a lot to think about when you sell a house. Whether it's your first time selling or it's just been a while, you want to make sure everything is set up for success.


I looked onine for something that would help understand the selling process, but I couldn't find anything I liked. There were some that were very basic and had pictures and visual flowcharts but they left out so many important items.


Since there was nothing available that I liked, I created one myself! This outline gives sellers a great overview of all the steps to selling a home, from start to finish. Click the icon below to download a PDF of the document. Looking to buy?

Step 1: Before you put the house on the market

  • Meet with your realtor to discuss timeline, expectations, & marketing of the home sale.

  • Review comparable market activity in the area to determine pricing strategy.

  • Gather all necessary information and documents including current mortgage account information, HOA documents, and utilities accounts.

  • Go over the estimated net proceeds sheet with all charges/fees and total net amount.

  • Complete the required property disclosure form.

  • Sign a listing agreement with your realtor.

  • Consider ordering a pre-inspection to find possible issues with the house.

  • Prepare the house for the sale. Clean, de-clutter, paint, make necessary repairs, etc.

  • Have pictures and/or video taken of the home and property. Pictures and videos, especially those online, are the first impression for interested buyers.


Step 2: Putting the house on the market

  • Put a for sale sign in the yard and a lockbox on the door.

  • List the house on the local BLC and all other home listing resources.

  • Keep the house as clean as possible for all showings. This is very important.

  • Be as flexible as you can with showing schedules. You want people to see the house.

  • Determine if your location is good to host an open house.


Step 3: Receiving an offer

  • Review the entire offer including purchase price and any seller concessions.

  • Remember that the offer is ultimately one big pot of money.

  • Make sure the buyer is qualified with a pre-qualification letter or proof of funds.

  • Look at comparable market activity in the area to determine value.

  • You have 3 options – accept, counter, or reject. Negotiate with buyer as needed.

  • With an accepted agreement the buyer will submit earnest money - typically 1%.


Step 4: Directly following accepted offer

  • Earnest money check delivered to the listing agent’s office and held until closing.

  • The buyer will schedule an inspection and/or survey for the house, if applicable.

  • Determine the desired closing date.


Step 5: Before closing

  • Review buyer’s inspection response and negotiate any requested repairs as needed.

  • The mortgage lender will schedule an appraisal on the house, if applicable.

  • Schedule the time and location of the closing.

  • Make any repairs agreed to for the buyer’s inspection response.

  • Make sure finances are in order if you will be bringing money to the closing.

  • Call the utility companies to take the utilities out of your name effective the closing date.

  • Secure certified check or money wire for total amount needed to close.

  • Get everything out of the house before the date of closing/possession.

  • Buyers will schedule a final walk through the day/week before closing to verify repairs.

  • Verify the closing documents for the correct charges/credits for closing.


Step 6: At closing

  • Bring all funds needed for closing, if applicable.

  • Bring a valid driver’s license or legal ID.

  • Bring any keys, garage door openers, etc for the buyer.

  • Congratulations! Your house is sold!


Step 7: After closing

  • The title company will send the amount owed to your current mortgage company.

  • After receiving the payment, your mortgage lender will send you a release of mortgage.

  • Keep all closing documents for tax information.

Out-of-pocket costs to consider

  • Home repairs from inspection. These will be different for every house. Sometimes the items are very minor and the seller can fix them personally. Other times there are major issues that can be $1,000+. Most common items can be taken care of by a handyman.

  • Realtor commission. In real estate transactions, the seller pays the commission fees for both the seller’s and the buyer’s agents. This fee is determined in the initial listing agreement before the house is put on the market.

  • Buyer’s closing costs. The buyer may request that you pay a certain amount to help with their closing costs. Common amounts can range from $500-3,500.

  • Home warranty. The buyer may request that you pay for a home warranty for them. Price varies by company and policy but most are around $400-500.

  • Survey. The buyer may also request that you pay for a survey of the property to determine the boundaries of the property. Price varies but can be up to $450.

  • Title closing costs. This varies by transaction but often times will be split equally between buyer and seller or paid for if seller is paying buyer’s closing costs.

  • Property tax. This varies by county, home size, and filed exemptions. You will need to pay the prorated property tax owed on the property until the date of closing.



Thank you for the opportunity to work with you and represent you as your agent! I look forward to working together to help you sell your home. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to call, text, or email any time.


If you know anyone else who is looking to buy, sell, or build a home I would love to have an opportunity to work with them as well.



Dan O'Brien

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