General Facts and Questions

Why am I not getting showings?

If you are not getting showings it is likely you home is priced higher the than the current market will bear, for a home of your size, location and condition. Of course this assume you are in an area with a robust real estate market, if you home is in a very rural area or is priced in a range that limits the number of potential buyers it may take a little longer to get your home sold. Assuming you are listed in your local MLS with photos that accurately depict your home and there are no blocks on your showing schedule you should be getting showings and offers if you home is priced correctly.

Why do I have showings but no one is making an offer?

You are likely priced to high.

What should I know about inspections?

It is recommended that buyer have a home inspection done at their expense during the option period. We require our buyer to indicate that  they choose not to get the inspection done on the Buyer Final Walk Thru, if they do not have one done.

What does a home inspection cover?

  • Foundations
  • Electrical
  • Plumbing
  • Doors
  • Frame
  • Ceiling, walls and floors
  • Roof
  • Any hazardous materials
  • Heating and HVAC
  • Insulation
  • Ventilation
  • Get your house ready for inspection.

Do I need a septic report?

If you have a septic system you will need to fill out a on site sewer form you will also need to provide documentation of service if you have an aerobic system.

Do I need a termite inspection report?

Some loan types require a WDI report typically the buyer will purchase a WDI inspection at the time they purchase a home inspection. Some loan types prohibit the buyer from paying for a WDI report, this will be reflected as a seller charge on the closing statement issued by the title company.

My house was built before 1978, do I need lead paint disclosure notice?

If your home was built before 1978 yes, you will need to provide the notice to the buyer.

What else should I disclose about my home?

You will need to fill out a sellers disclosure notice on this form you will disclose any pertinent information about your home. Full disclosure is always best.

What is the time frame for accepting an offer?

There is typical no set time frame for responding to an offer unless the buyers agent wrote one into the offer. We usually get a response the same day or the following day.

What is the home warranty?

A home warranty is a service contract that covers the repair or replacement of important home system components and appliances that break down over time due to normal wear and tear. The home warranty covers things that a typical home insurance policy will not.

Should I be paying for a home warranty?

Yes, the seller usually provides a home warranty. A mid-priced policy is typically around $450.

What is included in the sale of my property?

The 1-4 family residential contract defines the property together with its improvements and accessories as: The house, garage and all other fixtures and improvements attached to the above-described real property, including without limitation, the following permanently installed and built-in items, if any: all equipment and appliances, valances, screens, shutters, awnings, wall-to-wall carpeting, mirrors, ceiling fans, attic fans, mail boxes, television antennas, mounts and brackets for televisions and speakers, heating and air-conditioning units, security and fire detection equipment, wiring, plumbing and lighting fixtures, chandeliers, water softener system, kitchen equipment, garage door openers, cleaning equipment, shrubbery, landscaping, outdoor cooking equipment, and all other property owned by Seller and attached to the above described real property. The following described related accessories, if any: window air conditioning units, stove, fireplace screens, curtains and rods, blinds, window shades, draperies and rods, door keys, mailbox keys, above ground pool, swimming pool equipment and maintenance accessories, artificial fireplace logs, and controls for: (i) garage doors, (ii) entry gates, and (iii) other improvements and accessories. This should all go to the buyer at closing.

What can I have excluded in the sale of my property?

Items you wish to exclude need to be written into the contract and should be mentioned in your MLS listing.

What is a contingency?

The practice of placing on offer on a new home while still needing to sell a current home is commonly referred to as a contingency.

Should I accept a contingency?

That depends on several factors. Is the home your buyers need to sell on the market? Is it already under contract and out of the option period? A contingency offer will need to be examined for the likelihood of getting to closing.

What is a backup offer on my house?

Once you are under contract to sell your home other buyers may still be interested in buying it. They can place a backup offer on your home. If something happens and the first contract does not continue to closing, you already have another buyer lined up.

What is the option period?

The Option period is a set number of days determined by the contract during which the buyer can have inspections done on the house. During this time they have the option to exit the contract and not purchase the home, in exchange the seller will keep the fee the buyer paid for the option period.

What is Earnest Money?

Earnest money is money that the buyer places at the title company to assure you that they are willing to demonstrate good faith in completely the terms of the contract.

How much should I ask for?

1% of the price the home is recommended.

Do I need a survey?

If you have a existing survey and have not added pool, room addition, deck or other major improvements then the title company and lender will often times accept the existing survey along with a T-47. Be sure to watch the dates in the contract for getting that information to the title company to avoid costly mistakes.

If you do not have an existing survey or the lender will not accept your current survey, then the buyer will need a new one in order to get a loan on the property. Who pays for the survey is a negotiable term in the contract.

How do I order HOA Documents?

Many title companies will take care of this for you, be sure to check with yours and see if they do.

If not then you contact your HOA, after the option period is over and place the order for the documents and resale certificate.

Why are they needed?

The HOA often times require a re-sale certificate when the property title is transferred. The buyer will most likely want to know what the rules, regulations and restriction are within the HOA will pay for the appraisal.

Are FHA and VA loans hurtful to the seller?

These loan programs do have certain closing cost that the buyer is prohibited from paying. Those cost are passed on to the seller’s side of the transaction.

Both VA and FHA loans do protect the buyer from purchasing a property that does not appraise for the selling price. The buyer will not be required to complete the sale if the appraisal is below selling price and they will not be penalized for not completing the purchase.

What repairs do I need to pay for vs what repairs are required?

Some loan programs have a minimum condition standard for homes they will lend money on.

If you are going to be selling to buyers using those loan programs then your home will at least need to meet the minimum standards. The majority of homes meet these standards.

What is normally paid for a Buyer Agent Commission?

We suggest home sellers offer whatever the market bares in your area for  buyers agent services in many areas this is 2.5 to 3% to the agent you brings you a buyer.

Should I offer Agent Bonuses?

Buyers agents have a fiduciary duty to their clients. They will be searching for the best home in their clients price range that provides for the client’s needs. They should not search for homes for their clients based on whether or not they will get a bonus. You may be better off reducing the price of your home to attached more buyers.

Should I offer to pay closing costs?

That depends on the market, and the buyers ability to pay them themselves. If you have a buyer who is qualified for a loan but simply does not have the cash to pay for the closing cost then it may be worth it to agree to pay the closing cost. Also, as mention previously some loan programs require that certain fees be paid by the seller, so you may as well agree to pay it in section 12 of the contract. This is all part of the negotiation process and a great example of the benefit of having a Solid Professional negotiating on your behalf being well worth the small price paid for that additional service.

Do I have to get an appraisal done?

The appraisal is typically ordered by the buyers lender. It can be helpful for a seller to get one before listing if the home is located in a rural area or is not typical for the area it is in. If the buyer is paying cash then it would be up to the buyer whether they wanted to purchase an appraisal or not.

Are Guaranteed sales programs a scam?

Well, all I can say about guaranteed sales programs is….if those agent really went around buying every overpriced home they listed after it didn’t sell for 60 to 90 days they wouldn’t be in business long.

Let me tell you how they usually work.

You agree to list your home on a guaranteed sales program. The program requires you to make certain repairs and upgrades before you list your home.

In fact, often times they will require that you buy a home inspection and fix everything that is deficient.

Then you will agree to a listing price. Your home will then automatically drop in price to predetermined prices every 30 days or two weeks whatever the agent decides.

Then if your house doesn’t sell they will buy it from you at the lowest price or below.

You usually pay a higher commission for these programs sometimes 9%.

At the end of the day, if the agent ends up buying your house, they get a the full commission both the buyers side and the sellers side plus the additional rate commission because you are in the guaranteed program, and the house they buy is fully repaired and updated and ready to be listed as a rental right away.

Seems like a pretty good deal for them, maybe not so much for you.

Flat Rate Facts and Questions

What is a Flat Fee brokerage service?

Flat rate brokerage service is concept where the services available by a brokerage are unbundled completely or bundled into packages offering a wider variety of options to you, the home seller. You pay for the services you need or want without having to purchase the services you do not want (unless required by TREC). In traditional brokerage service the home seller will pay a percentage at closing for the brokerage services whether they used all of the services the broker can provide or not.

How does the MLS works?

The MLS was created by real estate professionals as a method to share information about available properties with one another as well as information about the commission that is being offered to the buyers broker. It is the most power tool for marketing residential properties available. The public is unable to list property in the MLS without the assistance of a Real Estate professional who has access to the MLS through their professional licensing.

The definition of MLS according to wikipedia is “A multiple listing service (MLS, also multiple listing system or multiple listings service) is a suite of services that enables real estate brokers to establish contractual offers of compensation (among brokers), facilitates cooperation with other broker participants, accumulates and disseminates information to enable appraisals, and is a facility for the orderly correlation and dissemination of listing information to better serve broker's clients, customers and the public. A multiple listing service's database and software is used by real estate brokers in real estate, representing sellers under a listing contract to widely share information about properties with other brokers who may represent potential buyers or wish to cooperate with a seller's broker in finding a buyer for the property or asset. The listing data stored in a multiple listing service's database is the proprietary information of the broker who has obtained a listing agreement with a property's seller.”

How does the Multiple Listing Service help me?

It puts your home in front of buyers who are working with realtors to find a home PLUS buyers who are searching for homes to purchase online without the help a Realtor.

Why do you need MLS?

You will significantly increase the number of people who know your home is available for sale if you list in the MLS: MLS is generally referred to as the real estate market. Being listed in MLS means all the area real estate agents can find your home in their MLS database, and all the buyers can find your home when searching on Zillow ®, Trulia® and thousands of other websites that display MLS listings. The MLS is responsible for over 90% of all home sales.

What is the downfall of doing a For Sale by Owner (FSBO)?

You are limited in the number of buyers you are able to reach, you don't have access to the MLS and you are seen as less serious in your efforts to sell your home. Also, you have less comparative data available to you to help price your home appropriately for the market.

What are the benefits of a Flat Fee Realtor vs Full Rate Realtor?

You save money and you actually get the services you are paying for. Whether you decide to go with our basic package or our top package, there is a menu of services that Solid will provide to you. If you do not see a package that fits your needs CALL US! If your suggestion make sense for both parties, we would be happy to do business with you!

Why will the seller get more activity on their homes when they list with Solid Realty Group?

Let me tell you a little secret about how a typical call from a buyer calling the brokerage about your home goes:

The agent on “phone duty” will answer the phone and tell the buyer they are looking your home up. Why are they looking up your home in the MLS you wonder….well because in all likelihood, the agent answering the phone is not your listing agent and may not have ever meet or even heard of your listing agent. They probably have never seen your home, nor do they know anything about your home, nor do they care if they sell your home. What they care about is picking up this caller as a buyer client!

If they are successful at that, then they are going to be representing that client and finding them a home that best meets their needs, which may be your home…..but probably not. This is not necessarily a bad thing, if you were the buyer you would want to make sure your Realtor® was showing you homes that would best suit your needs and not just the homes that they personally had listed, but we are not discussing you the home buyer, we are discussing you the home seller! As a homeowner trying to sell your home just know that choosing a brokerage based on how big they are and how many agents they have across the country does not increase your chances of getting your home sold. What does increase your chance of selling your home is the price! You will just be paying more money for brokerage services so that your agent can afford to be a part of a big brokerage that offers them the chance to get desk duty and answer phones….so they too hopefully pick up buyer clients that may call.

What information will the MLS require me to have?

When will my sign and key box arrive?

Your sign and lockbox will usually arrive within 2 business days from the date your order is placed and paid for.

Find Out More

When and how long will I be listed in the MLS with a basic package?

Click here for more information about the package

What are the required documents I will need in order to list my home with Solid Realty Group?

What written information will I need to provide Solid Realty?

  • Written description of your property
  • MLS data input form
  • CSS instruction form

Why pictures are necessary on MLS?

At least 3 of photos are required by the MLS. Homes with few photos or photos that do not accurately represent the home get passed over while buyers are doing their online home searches.

Why a lockbox is most beneficial?

Other realtors will use the lockbox to access your home, this is the realtors full time job, they work around the schedule of their client, the buyer, when their client is ready to view homes the homes need to be available, using a lock bock will allow you to make the home available regardless of your schedule.

Should I do my own Home Inspection?

A pre listing home inspection can show you what problems there currently are with your home so you are not hit with surprises after you have negotiated a sales price and the buyer comes back with their inspection wanting items repaired. It is not necessary but it can be helpful.

We always recommend our buyers get a home inspection. In fact, we require our buyers to sign a buyers home inspection form if they do not choose to get a home inspection done. They will also need to sign a buyers final walk through before closing that also indicated they chose not to get the home inspection done.

How can I properly stage my home for sale?

Please see our page on preparing your home for sale. Everything you need to know is listed there.

If you still feel that you need further assistance with staging your home after reading these tips and conducting a virtual consultation with a Solid Realty professional, then we are happy to give you the contact information for a professional home stager in your area.

Can I list my property in more than one MLS?

The short answer is yes it is possible to list your home in more than one MLS system.

How do I set up a showing if I use a flat rate listing service such as the one offered by Solid Realty Group?

If the prospective buyer has a real estate agent representing them the real estate agent will set up the showing usually through CSS who will contact you, to make sure the home is available to be shown.

If the buyer does not have a real estate agent representing them, you can agree to show the buyer yourself or request that they have a real estate agent accompany them in order to view your home.

Should I stay in my house for a showing?

If the buyer is accompanied by a real estate agent NO, you should not. If not, then yes, you should be prepared to show the buyer around your home yourself.