Author Topic: Selling A Condo  (Read 1258 times)

mistershankly

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Selling A Condo
« on: June 15, 2017, 05:04:44 PM »
I am preparing our condo (DW and I) to list in about 3 weeks.  The condo was remodeled about 5 years ago and has been rented to people we know and they have taken good care of it.  I'm only aware of a couple of minor issues that will be repaired before listing.  We'll also be painting and patching everything (holes in walls from hanging paintings, etc) so that the place presents well.  I have some questions for those who have sold real estate and can shed some light on my concerns...

1. Once everything is painted/patched/repaired/deep-cleaned, should we pay for an inspection so that we are aware of (and can address) any issues a buyer's inspector could flag?
2. We have a solid real estate agent who will be pricing the condo for us... is there any need for us to pay for an appraisal so we get a better idea of what the property will sell and finance (bank's appraisal) for?
3. In preparing for escrow, what kinds of things should we have ready to go so that there are no delays in the escrow process?  For example, there is a mortgage on the condo so will we need the mortgage account number and bank information to submit into escrow?  Any other pieces of information that will be needed?  Should we notify property management of a pending sale as a courtesy to anticipate requests from escrow/title/lender or should we let the folks in escrow initiate this process?
4. We've been encouraged to stage the condo while it is listed.  Is this worth it in a market and location where most properties are getting offers within 1-2 weeks of being listed?  The condo and building are clean and appealing visually, and I'm not sure that staging is going to be worth the time and money spent.  I'm open to all perspectives on this.
5. Any other points to consider so that the process goes as smoothly as can be predicted?

The condo is in the Los Angeles area and the market is strong for sellers.  The cost of a typical mortgage payment combined with HOA dues will be roughly equal to rent paid on an apartment in the same are.  Nevertheless, I want to make sure that there are no obstacles in place to hinder the process or turn buyers away.

Thanks in advance for any insights and advice!

Another Reader

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Re: Selling A Condo
« Reply #1 on: June 15, 2017, 05:32:54 PM »
1. Don't bother with an inspection.  Let the buyer do that.  Their inspector will have a different list of problems than yours.

2. No on the appraisal.  In a rising market, appraisals are stretched.  You may also get a cash buyer.

3. The title company will get the information from you when escrow is opened.  Have it available so they can contact the lender.  The buyer selects the title company.

4. What's the price point of the condo and what's the cost to stage?  I would probably not bother with a lower priced unit.

Before I signed a contract with a listing agent, I would interview at least three.  Each should give you comparable sales, a list of things they want you to do to market the unit for top dollar, and their list price recommendation.  You will hear things that have not occurred to you.  You also should be able to negotiate the commission down, as there is competition for listings.

mistershankly

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Re: Selling A Condo
« Reply #2 on: June 15, 2017, 05:41:54 PM »

4. What's the price point of the condo and what's the cost to stage?  I would probably not bother with a lower priced unit.


Thank you for the info.  The cost to stage will be around $2700 (for a total, minimum commitment of 3 months... $900/month.  I'm sure this is negotiable).  The average sale price of a similar condo in the area is about $320k. 

birdiegirl

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Re: Selling A Condo
« Reply #3 on: June 15, 2017, 05:45:21 PM »
Agree with the previous poster - don't do your own inspection & appraisal.  The buyer will want their own regardless and if you find out about any problems you may be required to disclose them to potential buyers.   I could go either way on the staging...it does look nicer in the pictures online but may not be worth it in a hot market. 

Only thing I would add is to talk to the property manager or whomever runs your HOA to understand their process.  In MN, we have to provide a certain set of HOA documents (by laws, covenants, etc) to buyers when they make an offer.  HOA's normally charge for this package and if they aren't timely it can slow down the process.  Definitely a good idea to talk to them and your agent in advance so you understand what is required and what to expect with regards to the HOA. 

Another Reader

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Re: Selling A Condo
« Reply #4 on: June 15, 2017, 06:14:25 PM »
I would not spend 1 percent of the selling price to stage a $320k condo.  A few items that suggest the use of space from your house might help.  Nothing valuable.

anonymouscow

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Re: Selling A Condo
« Reply #5 on: June 16, 2017, 12:57:17 PM »
You probably do not have this issue so much with a condo, but it might to help stage a single area if it is not well defined.

Maybe you have a small room that is not big enough for a bedroom but bigger than a closet, you could stage it as a home office. Or a basement room that you can't technically call a bedroom, but staged with a futon a dresser and a TV... I don't think I would pay anyone for any of that though. $2,700 could go toward cosmetic upgrades that will stay with the house, new faucets, lighting, bath fixtures, thermostat, etc.

mistershankly

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Re: Selling A Condo
« Reply #6 on: June 16, 2017, 01:20:46 PM »
I would not spend 1 percent of the selling price to stage a $320k condo.  A few items that suggest the use of space from your house might help.  Nothing valuable.

This is what I'm thinking as well.  If staging the condo would ensure a 10% higher offer, then I would do it but at this point, it's purely speculative and not necessarily worth it.