Selling a home is a multifaceted process with many steps, each step requiring a great amount of time, expertise, and diligence. As a real estate brokerage, our work is to guide you through every step of the process so that you can sell your property with confidence.


Step 1: Choose An Agent

There is a lot at stake when selling a home, and many things need to go right in order to have the best possible outcome. An experienced real estate agent will guide you through the entire process so that you can maximize your return on investment, while minimizing your liabilities and reducing the amount of time and stress to you.

10 Questions to Ask An Agent

1. Are you a full time Realtor, and for how long?

2. How many homes have you sold in the last year?

3. What is your strategy for pricing my home?

4. What is your marketing plan for my home?

5. How and when (days/hours) can I reach you?

6. Will I be communicating with you or someone else?

7. What is your commission and are there other fees?

8. What if I want to cancel my agreement with you?

9. Why should I choose you over any other Realtor?

10. Do you have any references?


Download Our Agent Interview Guide


Step 2: Decide What You Want

It may seem obvious, but it’s important that you get crystal clear about the outcomes you want when selling your home.

4 questions to ask yourself

1. What is the most important priority to you when selling?

2. What is your desired timeline and closing date?

3. Do you have any concerns about selling the property?

4. Do you have an ideal price range in mind?

Step 3: Prepare the Property

Nothing impacts the value of your home more than the condition. Your agent will walk through the property with you to suggest ways that you can increase your home’s value. As an exercise, walk through your home as if you were a buyer and note what changes you would like to make your home more appealing.

Home Preparation

  • Clean: Clean carpets, floors, windows, and surfaces.
  • Declutter: Minimize personal items and thin out spaces.
  • Lighting: Ensure all light bulbs are working and fans are balanced.
  • Staging: Consider adding or removing furniture to make the property show ready!
  • Plumbing: Fix/tighten leaky faucets and running toilets.
  • Details: Tighten loose door knobs, sagging cabinet doors.
  • Landscaping: Freshen up the lawn and landscaping.
  • Paint: Touch up walls, door jambs, and trim.




Step 4: Pricing Strategy

Pricing your property correctly is a critical step to maximizing your return on investment. Price the home too high and you’ll sit longer, which is proven to not only take more time, but lower your sale price. Price the home too low and well... you know what happens. Pricing your property correctly is critical to maximizing your sale price.


Five Factors that Determine Market Value


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  • Comparable Sales
    • Similar Home Comps
    • Neighborhood Comps
  • Amenities & Updates
    • Finishes
    • Features
    • Curb Appeal
  • The Market
    • Interest Rates
    • Supply and Demand
    • Rate of Appreciation
  • Location
    • City
    • Schools
    • Convenience
    • Surroundings
  • Condition
    • Presentation
    • Cleanliness
    • Maintenance


Tips for Pricing

1. Value is not fixed: You can improve the value of your home by improving the quality or lowering the price.

2. Trust the data: Numbers don’t lie. Let the numbers guide you to a realistic assessment of your home’s value, even if you don’t choose to price it that way.

3. Be the buyer: Put yourself in the buyer’s shoes and ask how your property compares with the other homes that are available.


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Step 5: Marketing Strategy

One of the most important factors in maximizing the sale price of your home is implementing an effective marketing strategy. A powerful marketing strategy will help you create an appealing presentation of the property and generate maximum exposure to potential buyers in order to receive the highest possible offer.

Marketing tools

  • Photos: Create high quality photos.
  • Video: Use video to increase exposure.
  • Website: List the property on MLS and murney.com.
  • Social Media: Leverage social media to increase exposure.
  • Syndication: Syndicate property to all available websites.
  • Email: Share the property to my past clients and sphere.
  • Brochure: Create a print piece to share.
  • Signage: Increase exposure with signage.
  • Print: When appropriate, utilize local ads in periodicals.
  • Agent-to-Agent: Market the property to other agents.
  • Open Houses: Host open houses to generate traffic.
  • You: Share the property to your social networks.

Step 6: Showing The Property

Making your property accessible and presentable for showings is a key step toward getting more interested buyers, and ultimately, more offers.

How the Property is Shown

  • Appointments: Depending on how the property is listed in the MLS, an agent will contact you or your agent in order to schedule showings.
  • Access: Your agent will provide a lockbox that allows other agents to access the property. Your agent will be notified anytime the lockbox is accessed.
  • Etiquette: Agents should give you at least an hour's notice to show the property. Expect to be gone for an hour when your home is shown.
  • Feedback: After each showing your agent will contact the showing agent to get feedback regarding price, condition, and the level of buyer interest.

How to Prepare for Showings

1. Clean the property.

2. Turn the lights on and open the blinds.

3. Take pets with you or lock them up.

4. Put away valuables, firearms, medication, and jewelry.

Step 7: Contract Negotiations

Selling a home requires negotiation. The first negotiation occurs when an offer is submitted by a buyer. Once an offer is agreed upon by all parties, the second point of potential negotiations are repairs from the buyer’s inspection notice. Our goal in all negotiations is to help you achieve the best possible results acceptable to the buyer and seller in order to proceed to closing.

Key Contract Terms to be Negotiated

1. Sale Price
2. Concessions
3. Closing Date
4. Contingencies
5. Inclusions/Exclusions

Key Terms

Earnest Money

An amount of money pledged by the buyer to the seller, usually held by a title company, that shows the buyer’s good faith in the transaction.


Closing costs and lender fees that you pay on behalf of the buyer. It’s a way for them to finance their closing costs.


Terms that have to be met in order for the purchase to proceed or be finalized. The most common contingencies are for loans, inspections, and appraisals.

Step 8: Home Inspections

Depending upon the terms of the contract, the buyer has the right to inspect the property (at their cost), within the contract defined time frames, to look for problems and defects. Inspections are paid for by the buyer.

Types of Inspections

General Home Inspection

A general home inspection evaluates the condition of the roof, mechanical, structural, plumbing, windows and doors, insulation, appliances, fireplaces, exterior surfaces, yard grading and the crawl space or basement.

Termite Inspection

A termite inspection looks for past or present termite activity and any damage that may have been caused.


Water tests may be conducted to determine the presence of E. coli (often in wells or private water systems). Wells may also be tested to determine functionality of the well and pressure tanks.


Sewer and septic inspections may be conducted to ensure that sewage lines are clear and septic tanks and lateral fields (when present) are operating property.


A radon test may be conducted (typically in basement homes) to determine the level of radon in the air. EPA suggests radon levels be below 4.0 pCi/L.


Mold tests may be conducted by an environmental specialist to determine the level of mold on surfaces or in the air of the home.

Other Specialists

Other specialists may be hired by the buyer to conduct more detailed inspections on the property.

Do I have to make all requested repairs?

You are not required to make all requested repairs, but depending on the terms of the contract, the buyer may have the right to be released from the contract if you do not correct defective items on the property.

Step 9: Home Appraisal

Depending upon the terms of the contract, the purchase may be contingent upon an appraisal. An appraisal is an unbiased professional opinion of the value of the home, typically required by the lender, to determine the market value of the property.

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Appraisal Required Repairs

If the bank requires an appraisal, an appraiser may also require that certain conditions be met or repairs be completed in order for the bank to make a loan on the property prior to closing.

Step 10: Title Work

As the property owner, you are required to provide proof of a clear and marketable title to the property. A clear and marketable title means that there are no outstanding liens, claims or interests on the property claimed by someone other than the seller. The title company performs a title search to ensure the title is clear, and then provides the buyer a Title Commitment to insure the title after closing. The Title Company is also where the property transaction is typically closed.

What does a title search look for?

  • Chain of Title
  • Outstanding Mortgages
  • Other Loans/Liens
  • Unpaid HOA Dues
  • Unpaid Judgments
  • Unpaid Property Taxes
  • Property Restrictions
  • Property Easements

Depending upon the terms of the contract, the buyer or seller may pay for the title company and/or policy, including a lender policy if applicable.

Step 11: Prepare For Closing

We’re almost there! To prepare for closing day there are several steps you’ll need to take to ensure everything goes smoothly.

Pre-Closing Checklist

1. Schedule Closing Date: We will work with the buyer and their agent to determine a closing time that works for all parties.

2. Review Settlement Statement: The Settlement Statement provides a breakdown of your net proceeds that you will receive at closing.

3. Schedule Utility Shut-off: Call utility companies to schedule to have the utilities cut off or transferred on the day after closing.

4. Schedule Address Change: Go to usps.com and schedule to have your mail forwarded.

5. Locate Keys, Remotes, and Codes: Put all the keys, remotes, and any codes in an envelope or bag to give to the buyer at closing.

6. Complete Final Clean: Remove all personal property and debris from the property prior to closing.

7. Buyer Final Walk-Thru: The buyer will do a final walk-thru prior to closing to verify the condition of the property before taking ownership.

Step 12: Closing Day

Closing day is the predetermined date, written in your contract, when all closing documents are signed by both parties and all funds exchange hands to transfer ownership of the property. After all documents are signed by the buyer(s) and seller(s), and all funds have been submitted to the closing company by the buyer and lender, you’ll be given a check for the net proceeds of your sale. Your net proceeds should match the amount on the Settlement Statement.

What to Bring

  • All persons listed on the contract should be present to sign.
  • Bring photo identification, such as a driver’s license or passport.
  • Bring all keys, remotes, and codes to give the buyer.