How to sell a house fast in a slow market ? Life can throw you some curveballs that shake up your plans and force you to take actions you aren’t prepared to handle. One of those challenges could be having to sell your house fast for cash in a pinch. Although it could be for good reasons such as a new job offer or moving in with a partner it could also be because of upheaval such as impending bankruptcy, foreclosure, the unexpected death of a loved one or divorce. When the time comes to sell, there are many options to get things moving more quickly, so you can reduce stress and get on with the next stage of your life.
Contact a Real Estate Agent
Most people will speak to a real estate agent as the first step to sell a house fast for cash. This makes sense in most cases, as they provide the expertise required to price your home right, list it, prepare it for sale, show the home and negotiate offers. However, it is not necessarily the fastest or even one of the fastest ways to go.
While an agent will probably get you the best price, it won’t be a fast sale and they also take 5 to 6% of your profits in commission. Once the listing finally hits the MLS, even if you get an offer right away, there is a lot of paperwork involved when you choose to list with an agent. The offer alone can slow things down as most buyers will request contingencies that can not only delay the closing but also open the potential for the sale to fall through.
There are some benefits to listing with an agent including:
You will have their expertise to prep and price the home for a quick sale
They will list your home on MLS, so buyers’ agents are alerted the home is available
They will negotiate on your behalf to get the best price and avoid terms that can slow down the sale
So, in a nutshell, while working with an agent is not fast, it certainly is the safer option.
Local Cash Investors
How to sell a house in a bad market ? or how to sell a house in a bad market ? Selling your home for cash is another option if time is of the essence. Local cash investors come in many different shapes and sizes, but all have the same goals: Acquire properties and sell them quickly for a profit. Some are focused on homes in good condition, while others are happy to buy fixer-uppers to tear down or upgrade. They remain competitive with their offers, made even more attractive as they are strictly cash.
The benefits to local cash investors are:
Avoid traditional challenges such as staging, viewings, financing and inspections
The key to working with cash investors is finding the right one for your needs. For example, if your home is in excellent condition, you can benefit from a company that specializes in buying and selling high-quality homes (this does not mean luxury, just homes in good condition). Other companies might specialize in fixer-uppers, making them an excellent choice if your home lacks curb appeal, has a leaky roof or outdated décor.
There is a growing number of “iBuyers” entering the real estate market. These instant homebuyers are willing and able to make quick home sales for very fair prices. This is an exciting option, as everything is done online.
The benefits to iBuyers are pretty much the same as working with cash investors, with the main difference being the transaction is managed mostly, or entirely online. Although these companies save you time and also help find the best cash offer there are some cons. You have to watch for things such as administrative fees that can take as much as 10% of your profits, as well as fees they might charge to cover repairs. In these cases, although the sale might be faster, the share of the home equity you get can be reduced quite a bit.
For Sale By Owner
This is the choice many sellers make because they want to save the 5-6% that goes towards real estate agent commission. The problem is, this is rarely a good choice, even in markets where houses are selling like hotcakes. If you need a fast sale, the last thing you want to do is try to sell your home yourself. Why? There’s quite a list of cons including:
You will have to invest money in marketing, as FSBO listings don’t go on the MLS where buyers’ real estate agents will learn of the sale
You might price yourself out because you ask for too much money
Traditionally FSBO homes sell drastically lower than those sold with an agent’s assistance
You won’t be effective in working with the buyer’s agent as their interests lie with making their clients happy, not in meeting your needs
Your lack of knowledge will often slow down the process
You won’t have the skills to prep your home for a fast sale
You won’t understand the closing process and can put yourself at risk
You’ll have to find your own representatives with title companies, escrow companies and lawyers
In general, this is just a bad idea. Your lack of knowledge, your inability to network with agents looking for listings and dealing with buyers’ agents not overly concerned with your need to sell quickly all point to things taking longer, costing more and getting you less money for your home.
This is actually not a fast sale option at all, but we want to list it so you understand what it means. Many people think the term “short” refers to it taking a shorter amount of time to sell. However, the short refers strictly to the short on the sale price as your lender is working to sell your home for less than you owe. This option only makes sense if you are in dire straits and need to sell your house to avoid foreclosure.
How to Find a Trustworthy Option
Your best bet is to be thorough and research your options before proceeding. You can make a shortlist of companies or individuals you wish to speak to about what they offer. Then begin your research considering the following:
Credibility: Check out their credentials to make sure they are accredited to provide the services they list.
Check Online Reviews: Read up on reviews and testimonials to make sure the company has good ratings and people are raving about how easy it was, how good of a price they got, and how quick it was.
Location: Look for a company in your area who is more familiar with the market, and not some anonymous online service without local ties. This helps instill trust and also shows they know more about fair pricing in your neighborhood.
Experience: Make sure the company has a proven track record and has a long list of past transactions under their belt. For individuals make sure they’ve been in the industry for more than a decade, so they bring more knowledge to the table and have had time to build a reputation.
Ask Questions: Ask them to explain the process so you aren’t taken by surprise. Some good questions to ask would include: