With all of the complexities of the current Spanish property market, this guide aims to help you at each step of your sale process. Our real estate agents have worked hard to study every part of the home-selling process to find out what can help you sell your Marbella and Costa del Sol home faster, for more money and with fewer risks. Once you have decided to sell, these are the main steps you should consider to follow:
Get a general idea of how much your house is worth. In case you owe money to a mortgage lender, find out how big your outstanding mortgage is, then calculate how much money you will be left with after you have paid off the mortgage. You should also notify your mortgage lender that you are planning to sell your home to find out if there are any early redemption penalties.
Remember that first impressions are crucial! Overall, homebuyers and real estate investors seek for the best property they can afford at the cheapest prices. That's why home improvements, particularly if they address the anticipated needs of buyers, can boost your home's saleability and the sale price. So, before you determine marketing your home, it's essential some improvements take place.
Depending on your home's condition, there are three kinds of improvements that can impress buyers and help you sell for top market value: renovations, upgrades and repairs, reorganization and maintenance. We believe that at the right time, a small investment can give you a big edge over your competition and generate a faster sale at a higher price. Just don't over-improve! Remember that it may not be recovered from the sale!
Pricing a home is like art, there’s no magic formula. The “art” part comes in with the agent’s perception and knowledge of the local real estate market, down to your neighbourhood. Things like, is your area in high demand? What have other houses sold for within a mile of your property? What are comparable properties selling?
Smart Xcape can help you to determine the best asking price for your home, as it is one of the most challenging aspects of selling it. That´s why we encourage you not to set a price too high that could be rejected immediately by prospective buyers or either set a price that’s too low, since it can attract interest from a lot of prospective buyers who will make offers and negotiations lower than the real market price.
So, what's your home really worth?
Your home's value is not just determined by you. It is more determined by the fair market value which is the value a prospective buyer is willing to pay for your property at a given time. To reasonably price your home, you should do plenty of research and seek for experienced advisor´s opinion to determine what the fair market value of your home is.
Get a Comparative Market Analysis
Before putting a home on the market or listing with a real estate agent, savvy home sellers obtain a comparative market analysis. A comparative market analysis should include recently sold similar nearby homes, active listings currently for sale and properties that are under contract. Looking and analysing these three factors will help you price your home closer to the real fair market price. Although reports can vary, from a one-page list of comparable home sales to a 10-page comprehensive guide, the length and complexity of the report depends on the agent’s business practice.
Price your home to sell
The single most important factor to consider when selling a house is pricing the house correctly. The dynamics of attracting qualified and motivated buyers who will pay top market value for your home is a little complex. Timing is crucial. You’re more likely to get top market value if you sell during a certain moment, called the "golden window of opportunity". So, determining your home’s listing price should be done in consultation with an experienced estate agent. It is critical to price your home correctly from the beginning and get it sold quickly and at the best price.
The consequences of overpricing
Overpricing your home above its fair market value, might think to make sense at first glance. However, prospective buyers and real estate investors will compare your home unfavourably against recent similar sales and listings. The consequence is you can end up getting a lower price than if you´d priced your home correctly from the beginning. This happens because, among other things, the right buyers for your home may never see it due to its high price. Besides, some real estate agents may never show your home knowing it´s overpriced. Research shows that overpricing your home and then dropping the price several times while it languishes on the market usually leads to selling it at a much lower price than what you originally should have asked for it.
Once you’ve established a list price, it’s time to market your property so it sells as quickly as possible. The successful marketing of a home is a process that includes every activity involved in getting it sold: home preparation, pricing, presentation, strategic advertising, etc. Don’t forget your main goal will be selling for the top market value, so it’s essential that you maximize the exposure of your home. Find an expert on real estate business and ask them to implement a plan that will effectively coordinate all of these activities. Use all the channels that are at your disposal and market your house in multiple ways.
Negotiating is one of the most complex part of selling a property, if not the most. You are negotiating to reach an agreement in principle on the key issues such as price, contents, and dates of completion. You must keep in mind your situation, priorities and needs, trying to understand and respect the priorities of the buyer, but without giving away your own needs and desires. When a buyer makes an offer, you should review every detail of it and make a decision. You can either accept the offer, reject it, or counter it to initiate the negotiation process. You must have in mind that every situation is different, but every time, both buyer and seller want to feel that the outcome favours them.
A sale is formally completed in Spain when the public title deeds of purchase are signed. Completion for a property sale is undertaken at the Public Notary offices. On the completion day the buyer takes legal possession of the property you´re selling, so legal ownership of your property will be transferred to them. The notary reviews the sales agreement and receives the funds for the sale from the buyer to provide you with a statement of adjustments. Don’t forget this fund will be used to discharge your mortgage, if applicable, with any remaining proceeds transferred to you in the form of a bank draft. After signing at completion, a copy of the deeds are given to the buyer or their legal representative by the Notary. The originals are sent to land registry to be registered. We advise to all our clients, buyers and sellers, to appoint a Spanish lawyer to make sure the buying and selling process goes smoothly.