If you’re thinking about selling your Cape house this spring, you can do some legwork this winter to make the experience more pleasant and profitable.

Physical

Organize, clean, and repair your property from the outside in. Prioritize your focus like so:

  1. Lawn and landscape
  2. Exterior of the home
  3. Kitchen and baths
  4. Bedrooms and common areas
  5. Basement/attic/garage.

Pro tip: Have a pre-sale home inspection. For any defects either repair or prepare to disclose them to potential buyers

Financial: 

  1. Know what you owe: Call your lender/bank and get your payoff. Don’t forget any equity lines or other liens.
  2. It costs money to sell a house, so make sure you budget for it. Some of our local expenses:
    1. Septic inspection about $500
    2. County tax of 0.648% is paid at close. (About $1900 on a $300k sale)
    3. Attorney fee, of about $1,000. The attorney will review listing contract, draft and negotiate P&S, draw up deed, manage the money (mortgage payoff, paying realtors, etc.). It’s a flat fee, so don’t be afraid to pick up the phone if you have additional questions.
    4. Unforeseen repairs

Pro tip: If you think you’re going to buy another property, get an equity/swing line in place before you sell, so you are ready to buy.

Emotional:

  1. Paint a crystal clear picture of the finish line; one that is compelling and worth working and waiting for.
  2. Make sure all the stakeholders (including kids) understand what is about to happen.
  3. Before you list the house say ‘goodbye’ to each room as you prepare it for market.

Pro Tip: Buy the new house before you sell the old one. Talk to your lender about how this can be done.

This content is not the product of the National Association of REALTORS®, and may not reflect NAR's viewpoint or position on these topics and NAR does not verify the accuracy of the content.