Selling FAQ

Selling your house can seem an overwhelming task. Lets look at some common questions.

  •  How much can I get for my house?  Of course, you can always contact us to find out! Buyers have become more sophisticated and busy, as such many buyers demand a “turn-key, walk-in and live in it now” home.  Now more than ever, preparation is EXTREMELY IMPORTANT.  You will get the most for your home if you are willing to prepare it for sale (see below).  Our statistics indicate that the best initial listing price is the one generated by a real estate professional (not the tax assessor, see below, nor your neighbors and friends). Pricing is an art as much as a science: analysis of what has sold in the last year, comparison between your home and the market, accounting for your land and location, etc. Important considerations include your timeline, the resources you have put into the home before listing, and the carrying costs you incur.


  • How does the tax assessment relate to the selling price? On average, homes sell close to assessment in Lincoln, and in near-by towns, there are clear trends. However the standard deviation from the assessment is huge, and that’s the reason assessment is only one small part of the equation for real estate professionals determining the right price range.
  1. Assessments lag the market by a substantial margin, the prices homes are selling for today impact your assessment next year or later.
  2. Assessments do not recognize market trends and style.
  3. Assessments describe interior condition based on old information and are generalized. For the most part, updates are not reflected in the assessment.


  • When is the best time to put my house on the market? There appears to be a current shortage of inventory on the market – and there are active buyers even in the off-season. While many people feel that the market activity of the spring translates into the highest sales price, remember that the competition is fierce and you’ve got to have more to offer than the competition for the same price. Again, the answer is it depends – we can help you determine the best timeline for you and your home.


  • How long does it take to sell a house? Every home seems to have its own timeline! There are factors that we consider critical to a quick sale, but there is no way to tell for sure. Those critical factors may seem obvious, but we’ll note them here anyway: the original listing price, the condition and staging of the home, and the market at that moment. Of course, an individually crafted marketing strategy, utilizing top notch photos is also crucial! When we prepare a Comparative Market Analysis for your home, we will include the time it took to sell all of the homes that we including in our comparison.


  • What should I do to get my house ready to sell? The first thing to do is take stock – if you were a buyer today, would you want to buy it? Consider your resources – are you going to be limited to a repair here or there? We can help you pick those must-do items out of the would-like-to list. To distinguish between that which must be done before a house is listed and that which can wait, there are two moments we’ll have in mind: the buyers’ first impression and the inspector’s closer look. The buyer’s first impression will be influenced by smell, light, temperature and feel. (Just remember when you sell your used car you have it detailed.) We can’t know exactly what the Inspector’s closer look will reveal, but rot, mold, signs of deterioration, old-fashioned electrical (i.e. knob and tube wiring) and roof age are all easily identifiable and issues of these kinds need to be addressed to maximize sale price. From electrician to Title V inspector to stager, we can help you navigate the process of preparing your house for sale.
  • Should I buy or sell first? “Back in the day” you could access bridge financing – a stop-gap that enabled consumers to buy their next house before selling. Today, that kind of financing is very hard to find (though we hear it still exists). We often shoot for transactions to close on the same day for local moves, whenever possible. In that case you are best advised to list your house first, and pace your home search according to the market’s reception of the home you’re selling. If you have a house in mind to buy before listing your home, rarely will a seller accept a house sale contingency — meaning you may find yourself squeezed if your house takes a while to sell.
  • What if I want to keep my children in the Lincoln Schools? If you are moving out of the Lincoln School District and want to keep your child in the school until the end of the school year, you can do so as long as your closing date is after March 1 (according to the superintendent’s office). Though it generally takes about 6-8 weeks from receiving an offer to closing, you as the seller can often negotiate for a closing date that matches your needs.
  • Why list with us? See above! Selling your home is a time-consuming and challenging process even if offers come in right away. Preparation is critical, and the market is finicky. We can help you get more money for your home.