Friday, November 4, 2011

Are you confused yet?

If you are one of probably 3 readers of this here blog you may be saying whaaa?
She went from all those staging posts and little tweaks to "we are in a rent house" with absolutely no mention of the house being sold.

Well guess what?  I can finally say it (or show it)..
We Sold our House!

I have been more than apprehensive about posting about it.  Why?....Oh my is it a long story! It ended up dragging on and on and I could tell you the saga but I don't want to be a negative Nancy nor do I want to re-live it because I was on the verge of a panic attack and we don't wan't to spur that on now do we?
It got to the point where friends would ask if we sold the house and I would just shrug my shoulders and say I don't know because there was so much up in the air from the buyers side of the transaction.

I just knew as soon as I posted that we sold our house it would fall through and bite me.  So I couldn't do post about it due to sheer fear of bad luck.
That being said I wanted to mention the "positive side" of the house selling story.  We did have to spend some dough and lose some dough to sell it but the getting it out there and getting people interested was smooth as butter!

So here goes...
Once we felt we had de-cluttered as much as possible(this included renting a storage embarrassed that we have that much stuff) then we got down to business.  I hired someone to wash our windows(two story house = not easy task) and clean all the carpet upstairs.
While getting all of that arranged and scheduled I started researching real estate photographers in the area.  As I'm sure you know..."pictures are worth a thousand dollars"oh that's not the real saying but you get where I'm going right?

You've seen those horrible pictures of homes on the MLS where all you notice is the overflowing trashcan or the half made bed with dirty clothes under it.
Wanna see a whole slew of funny pics that people put on the MLS?
Go visit Julia @ Hooked on Houses!  Crazy stuff I tell ya! Those pics kill me.

  Today pictures are the "first impression" when attempting to sale.  Most people find their own homes online and then contact their realtor to let them view the ones they are interested in.  It is an easier way to eliminate the hassle of driving all over town to be disappointed. So we were A O.K. with spending some dough for some awesome pics and we weren't disappointed!

I would not only look around your area for a good real estate photog but I would make sure they do HDR photos as well.  What is HDR photography?  I didn't know either but I did know that they looked richer, fancier, had more depth and shadows than a normal picture.  HDR is
 High Dynamic Range and to me an amateur it is just a better pic.  I attempted to learn more about it and try to do it myself but it was beyond my skills, patience and equipment to do so and more than worth it to just hire it out.

Non HDR from a girl that knows little to nothing about photography

 HDR image with better angle from a guy that knows a lot;)

Not only did they take the pics but they put them in this slideshow too!  From the slideshow we could even make our own fliers.

"Why would you wanna do that yourself" you might ask?   Well because we wanted to sell our home ourselves of course!  Of course we want to DIY it all and try to save every penny.   Or in this case not lose as many by having to paying a listing agent.  
So we put it out there.  We had the For Sale by Owner sign, the flyers, the add on craigslist and didn't get much traffic.  There is something to be said for the MLS of course.  It gets it out there but we just had to give the FSBO route a shot.  

We set a goal of 2 weeks and if we hadn't had much interest we would list it. That's where good ol' word of mouth comes in.  An acquaintance of mine had mentioned selling their home in a for sale by owner manor but being able to get it on the MLS and provide the lockbox, sign and all. That's how we found Marshall @

This was the "smooth as butter" part of our house selling story.  I contacted him about what we were looking to do.  We paid him a flat fee, I entered some info about our house into the site, downloaded our professional pics and viola by the next day we had a listing on the MLS, a sign in the yard, and a lockbox so buyers realtors would have access.  
You can decide what you are willing to pay a buyers agent as you work up your listing.  We added a flyer holder to the sign and printed up some flyers on our own.  I would highly suggest this!  Especially if you have good pics!  Choose your pics wisely and make the buyer want to see what else is inside your lovely home! 
We had three people look at it within the first 7 days and on day 7 had a contract and another interested party.  Some had a buyers realtor and some did not so you never know who will find your house but they definitely put it out there.
And.....(insert several paragraphs of things not working as they should through a real estate transaction) 3 months later we close on the property!  Hallelujah!
Did I mention we moved out of the pending property in late august?
The stress of paying rent and a mortgage all while trying to maintain the lawn on the pending house, raise three kiddos, and work was cardiac infarction producing or could have been anyway;)

I kept mentioning to Marshall that the whole process was almost too easy and that I expected some bumps to crop up...Call it woman's intuition;)
So!  All that being said..we did it, we sold the house and can move on with building our house!  I am sure that too will be a journey.  We are prepared and excited to learn a ton and can't wait to see how it all turns out!

A little side do not have to be in central texas to to use Homes by Owner

Just click above to look for someone in your area that will list your home this way.  

We were not paid to recommend this site.  Just really happy with how professional Marshall was!