The Columbus housing market is changing as we approach the new school year. New “For Sale” signs are popping up every day.

​Last week I met with 4 homeowners who are planning to sell. They wanted to find out how I will market their homes to get top dollar. ​One of the most common questions I get asked is, “How long will it take?”

​There’s no simple answer as different circumstances and people impact the transaction. Read on to learn about the 5 phases of a real estate sale …

1. Getting Your House Ready

The first step is to get your house ready for sale. Depending on the condition of your house and your personal situation this may take just take a few days or a few months.

During this phase you may have to do some or all of the following:

  • Remodeling or upgrading bathrooms and kitchen
  • Painting the interior and installing new flooring
  • General cleaning
  • Depersonalizing your home

It’s best if we meet before you get started. This way I can give you tips on which upgrades have the most impact.

I often meet with clients, months before they actually intend to sell. We go through the house, discuss what’s most important to them when they sell, and I give them room by room suggestions on what to do to get top dollar for their house. I can also recommend contractors to do the work.

This phase depends on how long you need for cleaning, packing and installing the upgrades.

2. Before the Listing Goes on the MLS

When you are ready to put your house on the market we sign the listing agreement. I will explain exactly what to expect when your house hits the MLS.

During this phase we sometimes stage the house (this is important for vacant properties if you already moved out) or just make some minor adjustments to decorations.

​I will hire a professional photographer to take pictures, videos and 3D scans of your home, and I will prepare all marketing materials.

​This phase usually takes 1 to 2 weeks. If you are on a short timeline to move it can be accomplished in just a few days.

3. How Soon Will You Get an Offer?

I usually list homes on Wednesdays at midnight and run my 4-Day Marketing Blitz. Buyers will be able to see the house as early as Thursday. Depending on location and price point we may not accept offers until Sunday after the open house.

During this spring’s sellers’ market, we often received offers within days. The market has changed. You should not expect to sell your house during the first weekend.

If the listing is priced correctly, and we had more than 10 showings in the first few days there’s a good chance we will get an offer. Otherwise, we will review the feedback from buyers and adjust the house or price accordingly.

This phase can take between 4 days and a few months. The best estimate is to look at the average days on market (DOM) in your specific neighborhood. I will supply this information for you.

4. The Long Wait from Offer to Closing

Once you accept a contract it typically takes between 30 and 45 days to close. This depends on your buyer’s financing.

I will prepare an exact timeline of all contract milestones.

During this phase the buyer will schedule a home inspection, usually within 10 days after contract acceptance. We may negotiate remedies and perform repairs.

The lender will schedule an appraisal.

Once we know the outcome of the inspection and required repairs, you can start packing and get ready for your move.

5. How Much Time to Move Out?

When you close the sale of your home you are no longer the owner. Most of the time we can negotiate a few more days of possession, so you can complete your move.

In a hot sellers’ market (like we had this spring), I was able to negotiate longer possession periods after closing. One of my clients got possession for 2 additional months, so he had enough time to look for and buy a new condo without interim housing.

​As you can see, selling your house takes time and planning. It’s not happening overnight.

I do understand how stressful this process can be for sellers. That’s why you hire me to manage the transaction and handle all the negotiations for you.

​If you are planning on selling anytime in the next 12 months, call me now and let’s meet. I can help you plan the sale long before we list your house on the MLS, so you are not overwhelmed and rushed into selling.

​Call or text me at (614) 975-9650 for a free listing planning meeting.