As Realtors®, we are highly trained professionals who are experienced in the listing, marketing and selling of real estate, and who add value to the sales transaction by providing real and valuable services. Here is what we do:
The pre-listing phase establishes the foundation for the entire marketing plan and includes public records research, comparative market analysis (CMA) and marketing plan development, all in preparation for a successful sale. We will:
- Obtain Your Property Profile Overview
- Research Comparable Properties listed for sale
- Research Comparable Properties that have sold
- Prepare Comparable Market Analysis (CMA) of your home
- Present CMA to you, Review Comps (Sold, Current & Expired Listings )
- Discuss Marketing Plan with you
- Discuss Preparation of your home for maximum marketability
- Educate you about current market conditions
- Help you determine a realistic list price
- Prepare Listing Forms for Long Island MLS
- Walk through Your Home and Note Property Inclusions and Amenities
- Review all Listing Info with you
- Explain Agency Disclosure Form (Required by NYS law)
- Explain Property Condition Disclosure (Required by NYS law)
- Review Lead Based Paint Disclosure (Required by NYS law)
Listing and Marketing
- Disclosure Forms Signed by Agent and You (Required by NYS law)
- Lead Based Paint Disclosure Signed by You (Required by NYS law)
- Listing Contract & Data Forms Signed by Agent and You
- Copy of By-Laws Secured (if applicable))
- Photograph Home (Digital Color Photo(s))
- Prepare Digital Pictures for the Internet (Crop, enhance, reduce, etc.)
- Input Listing and Photos to Long Island MLS System
- Input Listing and Photos to DougNorthRealty.com
- Input Listing and Photos to other Real Estate Portals
- Proof all Listing Info on Multiple Listing and Internet Services
- Write Ad for Internet Advertising
- Host Open Houses
- Arrange showings of your home
- Accompany showings by other Realtors if necessary
- Pre-Qualify all Buyers whenever Possible
- Review Feedback with You
- Discuss Marketing and Pricing Strategy with You on a Regular Basis
From Offer to Closing
- Review Purchaser’s Qualifications & Offer
- Review Offer with You
- Negotiate Price and Terms of the Sale with Buyer until you are satisfied with the deal
- Submit Sales Info to Your Attorney
- Submit Sales Info to Buyer’s Attorney
- Schedule an Inspection of the Property
- Meet Home Inspector at Property
- Coordinate with Attorneys
- Coordinate with Selling Agent
- Coordinate with Lender
- Coordinate with Appraiser
- Coordinate with Coop/Condo/HOA Management (if applicable)
- Coordinate with Coop Board (if applicable)
- Assist Buyer in Obtaining Application Package for Coop Board (if applicable)
- Assist Buyer in Coordinating Application Package for Coop Board (if applicable)
- Schedule Appraisal
- Provide Comparable Sales to Appraiser
- Follow Loan Processing
- Maintain contact with all parties to the transaction
- Monitor time frames and completion of all contractual obligations
- Keep you informed throughout the process
- Schedule Final Walk Through for Buyer
- Attend Closing
Before you enter into a discussion with a real estate agent regarding a real estate transaction, you should understand what type of agency relationship you wish to have with that agent.
New York State law requires real estate licensees who are acting as agents of buyers or sellers of property to advise the potential buyers or sellers with whom they work of the nature of their agency relationship and the rights and obligations it creates.
SELLER’S OR LANDLORD’S AGENT
If you are interested in selling or leasing real property, you can engage a real estate agent as a seller’s agent. A seller’s agent, including a listing agent under a listing agreement with the seller, acts solely on behalf of the seller. You can authorize a seller’s or landlord’s agent to do other things including hire subagents, broker’s agents or work with other agents such as buyer’s agents on a cooperative basis. A subagent, is one who has agreed to work with the seller’s agent, often through a multiple listing service. A subagent may work in a different real estate office.
A seller’s agent has, without limitation, the following fiduciary duties to the seller: reasonable care, undivided loyalty, confidentiality, full disclosure, obedience and a duty to account.
The obligations of a seller’s agent are also subject to any specific provisions set forth in an agreement between the agent and the seller.
In dealings with the buyer, a seller’s agent should (a) exercise reasonable skill and care in performance of the agent’s duties; (b) deal honestly, fairly and in good faith; and (c) disclose all facts known to the agent materially affecting the value or desirability of property, except as otherwise provided by law.
BUYER’S OR TENANT’S AGENT
If you are interested in buying or leasing real property, you can engage a real estate agent as a buyer’s or tenant’s agent. A buyer’s agent acts solely on behalf of the buyer. You can authorize a buyer’s agent to do other things including hire subagents, broker’s agents or work with other agents such as seller’s agents on a cooperative basis.
A buyer’s agent has, without limitation, the following fiduciary duties to the buyer: reasonable care, undivided loyalty, confidentiality, full disclosure, obedience and a duty to account.
The obligations of a buyer’s agent are also subject to any specific provisions set forth in an agreement between the agent and the buyer.
In dealings with the seller, a buyer’s agent should (a) exercise reasonable skill and care in performance of the agent’s duties; (b) deal honestly, fairly and in good faith; and (c) disclose all facts known to the agent materially affecting the buyer’s ability and/or willingness to perform a contract to acquire seller’s property that are not inconsistent with the agent’s fiduciary duties to the buyer.
As part of your negotiations with a real estate agent, you may authorize your agent to engage other agents whether you are a buyer/tenant or seller/landlord. As a general rule, those agents owe fiduciary duties to your agent and to you. You are not vicariously liable for their conduct.
AGENT REPRESENTING BOTH SELLER AND BUYER
A real estate agent acting directly or through an associated licensee, can be the agent of both the seller/landlord and the buyer/tenant in a transaction, but only with the knowledge and informed consent, in writing, of both the seller/landlord and the buyer/tenant.
In such a dual agency situation, the agent will not be able to provide the full range of fiduciary duties to the buyer/tenant and seller/landlord.
The obligations of an agent are also subject to any specific provisions set forth in an agreement between the agent and the buyer/tenant and seller/landlord.
An agent acting as a dual agent must explain carefully to both the buyer/tenant and seller/landlord that the agent is acting for the other party as well. The agent should also explain the possible effects of dual representation, including that by consenting to the dual agency relationship the buyer/tenant and seller/landlord are giving up their right to undivided loyalty.
A BUYER/TENANT OR SELLER/LANDLORD SHOULD CAREFULLY CONSIDER THE POSSIBLE CONSEQUENCES OF A DUAL AGENCY RELATIONSHIP BEFORE AGREEING TO SUCH REPRESENTATION.
You should carefully read all agreements to ensure that they adequately express your understanding of the transaction. A real estate agent is a person qualified to advise about real estate. If legal, tax or other advice is desired, consult a competent professional in that field.
Throughout the transaction you may receive more than one disclosure form. The law requires each agent assisting in the transaction to present you with this disclosure form. You should read its contents each time it is presented to you, considering the relationship between you and the real estate agent in your specific transaction.
There are a variety of listing contracts, but very few of them are used. The most common is the “Exclusive Right to Sell,” but there is also the “open listing,” the “exclusive agency listing,” and the “one-time show.”
Typically, the “open listing” is used by people trying to sell their home on their own, but are also willing to work with real estate agents. The real estate agent brings potential buyers to the home, and if the customer buys it, the agent has earned a commission.
A seller can give an open listing to every agent who comes around.
For that reason, agents are not going to market your home or put it in the Multiple Listing Service. An agent will probably only show your home if your home fits the criteria for one of their customers.
A “one-time show” is similar to an open listing because it is most often used by real estate agents who are showing a FSBO (for sale by owner) to one of their customers. A home seller signs the agreement, which identifies a potential buyer and guarantees the agent a commission if the buyer purchases the home. This prevents the buyer and seller from negotiating afterward or trying to avoid paying the agent’s commission.
Just as with an open listing, agents are not going to spend money on marketing your home, and it will not be placed in the Multiple Listing System.
Exclusive Agency Listing
An “exclusive agency” listing permits an agent to list and market your home. The agent is guaranteed a commission if the house sells through any real estate agent or company. It also permits the seller to seek out buyers on their own.
This is not a popular type of listing agreement because there is not much incentive for agents to spend money marketing your home. If you find your own buyer, they have spent money they cannot earn back through the real estate commission. Also, it is too easy for a greedy buyer to work around the agent and negotiate directly with the seller.
Exclusive Right to Sell
Permitting a real estate agent the “exclusive right to sell” your home does not mean that there will not be other agents involved. Because your agent is the listing agent, part of his or her job is to market your home to other agents who work with buyers. It will be those agents who will show your home to their customers. But no matter who sells the home, even if you sell it yourself to a friend, your listing agent will earn a commission.
An exclusive right to sell should be the only type of listing an effective real estate agent will accept. This is simply because they have a reasonable expectation of getting back the money they will spend on promoting and marketing your property. The listing contract should specify whether or not your house will be listed with the local MLS (multiple listing service). It is absolutely in your best interest to have the house listed, since your sales force is automatically multiplied by however many agents are members of the local MLS. If your house is not listed, then only one agency will be working for you instead of many.
Other than the name of the seller and the address of the property, there will be many other things included in the listing contract, and you should be aware of them.
The price will be the main concern when setting the terms of sale. By keeping track of other sales in the neighborhood, you should have a basic idea of what your home is worth. Be cautious in determining your asking price, making sure not to set it too high or too low.
Other than the price, you will disclose what personal property, if any, will be included with the house when you sell it. Personal property is anything that is not attached or affixed to the home, such as refrigerators, washers, dryers, etc. You may have an item that you consider “real property” and do not intend to include in the sale. Real property is anything that is attached to the home. A good example would be a chandelier that has been in your family for generations. You take it from home to home when you move. The chandelier is attached to the house, so it is considered “real property” and a reasonable buyer would normally expect it to come with the house. The listing contract should make clear that it does not, and it is your agent’s job to enter this information with the Multiple Listing Service.
Buying real estate is an emotional decision, but when selling real estate you need to remove emotion from the situation. It is important to think of your house as a marketable commodity. Your aim is to get others to visualize it as their potential home, not yours. Buyers buy on emotion, not logic. You want lots of people to say or think… “Wow! I could live here!”
Homebuyers like to see space when they visit a home. They will open all your closets, cabinets and drawers to make sure there is enough room for their “stuff.” Remove clutter from kitchen cabinets, counters and drawers, closets, basement and garage to show as much “empty space” as possible. After years of living in the same home, you, the homeowner, may not see the clutter but a buyer will.
Make sure you’ve done everything you can – inside and out – to make your home as attractive as possible in the eyes of the buyer. First impressions last. And homes that look their best tend to sell faster and command every dollar they’re worth. Use this checklist when preparing and showing your home for sale:
- A fresh coat of paint for your home (inside and out), garage, and fences – may be the one improvement that creates the most positive first impression and pay dividends far beyond the time, effort and expense involved.
- Keeping your lawn trimmed and clear of debris increases your “curb appeal”.
- A tidy front entrance and new doormat says “Welcome” to the prospective buyer.
- Clean windows, storms and screens and let the sun shine in!!
- Tend to the “little things” – oil squeaky doors, tighten loose cabinet knobs, fasten loose stair treads, take out removable stains, replace damaged floor tiles and clean soiled carpeting.
- Make sure that all windows, doors and drawers open and close easily.
- The kitchen is the one place in the home that buyers look at closely. Tighten leaky faucets, repair faulty wall switches, outlets, light fixtures and any appliances that will “go with the home.”
- The bathroom gets close scrutiny too. Keep it spotless. Keep tiles clean and shiny, clean grout, polish faucets, put toiletries and medicines away. Put laundry in a closed hamper.
Make sure your home looks, feels and smells it’s best… let your home be the cleanest, freshest and cheeriest home on the market and you’ll have a much faster sale. . at a higher price.
Once you decide to sell your home, it is time to choose a Realtor. It is common to interview a couple of Realtors before choosing one. Realtors will come prepared with a “Comparable Market Analysis” which is how they arrive at a suggested listing price.
You may find that some of the Realtors suggest a price which may be less than you expected. And, although they have the most recent information about comparable home sales to back up their recommendation, you may believe your home is worth more. Then there is the “other” Realtor. This Realtor’s “opinion” may be more of what you were expecting, possibly even higher. This agent may seem willing to listen to your input and work with you, willing to start out at your price and if you need to drop the price later, you can do that easily, right? Yes and no…
If you price your house too high you may have just added to your stress level, and home selling is stressful enough. It isn’t only the listing agent that attempts to sell your home to a homebuyer. The listing agent markets and promotes your home to all of the other local agents who are part of the Multiple Listing Service. During the first couple of weeks you should be showered with activity from agents coming to show your home…. if the price is right.
If you and your listing agent have overpriced your house, fewer agents will come to show it. After all, they are Realtors, and it is their job to know what the local market conditions and home values are. If your house is dramatically higher than the rest of the market, why waste time? It would be smarter for them to try to sell homes that are priced realistically, and your home is going to help them do just that.
Even if you are able to sell at an above market price, your buyer will most likely need a mortgage. The mortgage lender will require an appraisal. If the current market conditions and comparable sales for the last six months do not support your sales price, the house won’t appraise and your deal will fall apart.
Later, when you decide to drop your price, your house will be considered “old news.” You will never be able to recapture that initial activity you would have had with a realistic price. Selling your house could now take longer.
It is harder to get a good offer once your home comes back on the market or has been on the market for an extended period of time. Potential buyers may think there is something wrong and therefore make lower bids than they would have if you had priced your house correctly at the beginning of the listing.
It is natural for you to want the highest price for your home. However, if you choose an agent who promises what you want to hear, it can often lead to stress and frustration. To put it plainly, you may have ended up with an agent who was good at selling you, but not necessarily good at selling your house.
As the seller of residential real property, you are required by law to complete and sign a Property Condition Disclosure Statement as prescribed by Real Property Law §462(2) and cause it, or a copy thereof, to be delivered to a buyer or buyer’s agent prior to the signing by the buyer of a binding contract of sale.
A copy of the Property Condition Disclosure Statement containing the signatures of both the buyer and the seller must be attached to the real estate purchase contract. If you acquire knowledge which renders materially inaccurate a Property Condition Disclosure Statement previously provided, you must deliver a revised Property Condition Disclosure Statement to the buyer as soon as practicable. In no event, however, will you be required to provide a revised Property Condition Disclosure Statement after the transfer of title from you to the buyer or after the buyer has commenced occupancy of the property.
If you fail to deliver a Property Condition Disclosure Statement to the buyer prior to the buyer signing a binding contract of sale, the buyer will be entitled to a credit in the amount of $500.00 against the purchase price of the property upon the transfer of title.
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