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How to Start the Selling Process

So you know you’re moving, but have the overwhelming fear of where to start in the selling process?  Following Lynn Kim’s step-by-step list of micro-information from preparing to sell your home to the move out date will set your mind at ease.  Lynn explains methods and strategies that go beyond the ‘For Sale’ sign in the front yard, that when followed will guarantee results.

  1. Interview Realtors: Referrals are a great way to find a good realtor which is crucial to selling your home quickly.  Lynn suggests asking a friend, reading reviews on local realtors, or visiting Open Houses as a place to start.
  2. Interview Questions to Consider:
    1. What is your marketing specialty?
    2. What does your brokerage firm offer that is different from the competition?
    3. What do you do individually to market my property?
    4. What is your list price to sales price average in my area? 
    5. What is your pricing strategy?
    6. What is your ratio of buyers to sellers?
      1. Lynn Kim’s Tip: You want an agent that knows how to handle the minutiae of selling. The most desirable ratio is approximately 70% Seller / 30% Buyer.
      2. Look for an agent known more as a listing agent because they handle significantly different task than a buyers agent.
  3. Realtor is Selected: Once you’ve selected your Realtor, the Seller will sign a contract with the Realtor for exclusivity. (Click here for a sample contract)
  4. Declutter & Stage: Prepare the home for photos and open houses by decluttering and depersonalizing the space.   Determine if will you will need to stage the home. 
    1. Lynn Kim’s Tips on Staging: See our Blog on Staging for more information.    (
  5. The Agent Gets to Work: At this point the agent takes over and begins marketing.
  6. What a Good Agent Should Do:
    1. Schedule:  Broker Open, Open Houses, Mega Open Houses
    2. Door Knock
    3. Place the listing on the MLS
    4. Create a custom Marketing Package that potentially includes direct mail, flyers, mailchimp and often a dedicated website exclusively for the property.  
  7. Offers: After the Open House if the home is priced and marketed correctly you should receive offers.
  8. Review Offers: Set an appointed date after the open house with your Agent to review all of your offers. 
  9. Responding to Offers:  The realtor represents you, therefore they will respond to the buyers as per the seller’s response.
  10. Negotiation: The right realtor will negotiate contingencies on behalf of the seller.
  11. Select the Right Buyer: Often, especially in the South Bay, a seller will receive multiple offers.  Therefore, choosing a buyer can often be based on the following:
    1.  Price, or simply the family or individual you like.
    2. Who has the best terms for you that works with your situation. 
    3. Are you finding a replacement home and need a flexible escrow or need to rent back so you have time to remodel your new home?
  12. Three Percent Deposit: After you select the perfect buyer, the buyer has three days to place their 3% deposit into escrow. 
  13. Disclosures: The seller then has seven days to provide any disclosures about the property.
  14. Contingencies Removed: Once the buyer removes their contingencies, the seller can begin to change the utilities out of their name, schedule movers and relax knowing your buyers are committed to purchasing your home.
  15. Escrow, Loan, Lender: During this time the Escrow and Lender are communicating regularly on the loan documents.  Once the documents reach escrow the loan is official!
  16. New Party to the County Recorder: Once the buyers loan docs go back to the lender, it’s approximately 2-3 days until your home is officially sold and title is transferred to your buyer.
  17. Money Arrives: The next day the money will reach the sellers bank account. 
    1. Seller BEWARE: Lynn Kim’s Tip: When escrow wires your money, have them let you know when the transaction is made to beware of wire fraud.  Never do anything over email as hackers are known to pretend to be your agent via email.
    2. Only Communicate with Escrow Directly by phone to avoid hackers and wire fraud.
  18. Congratulations: Once monies are received, you’ve sold your home quickly and seamlessly.

For more information or help in answering questions about selling your home, please give Lynn Kim a call at 310-741-2642.