Christine Natale | Real Estate, Lowell Real Estate, Melrose Real Estate, Essex County


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All home sellers understand that there are some costs to selling a home, but not everyone realizes what they're expected to pay for (and how much the total will be). We'll look at the most common expenses and how they might affect your budget. 

Real Estate Agent Fees 

This is probably the first thing that comes to mind if you're selling a home. The standard rule is anywhere between 5 to 6% of the final sale price. Not all sellers will shoulder this cost, but the majority will. So if your home sells for $300,000, you should expect to hand over at least $15,000 to be split between the buyer and seller real estate agents. Please note that commissions can be negotiable, especially if you're selling in a popular neighborhood. 

Prep Work 

While none of these costs are strictly necessary, they can help you get your home ready:

  • Repairs: If you're not planning to sell the house as-is, it's a good idea to spruce up the interior and exterior of the property. Even if you're only buying a few cans of paint and a roller, the costs can add up quickly. 
  • Home inspection: Buyers will typically do their own home inspection, but sellers who go above and beyond can give themselves an edge in a competitive market. If you're going out of your way to buy a home inspection, it can show you have nothing to hide. These inspections cost a few hundred dollars and may reveal structural problems that you were unaware of. 
  • Staging: Arranging your furniture to show off the best of the home can really inspire buyers to view its potential. Whether you dress up your home with cozy touches (e.g., cashmere throws, small bouquets, etc.) or more modern decorations, it can help attract the perfect buyer. 

Additional Fees 

If you're moving out before you sell the house, you'll need to continue paying the utilities. You'll also need to check with your lender as to exactly how much you owe when you pay off the loan. Some lenders will charge prepayment fees upon early termination. You may also be asked to either pay or split the closing costs, especially if you're selling in a buyer's market. This can include anything from the title inspector fees to transfer costs. Finally, you may need to pay capital gains tax if your home skyrocketed in value or any lingering property taxes.

Some sellers end up paying closer to 10% of the total sale price of their home, a figure that can be difficult to swallow for many sellers. It's worth clarifying each cost so you always know what you're paying for.


Let's face it – determining how to price a home is rarely simple for a seller. In some instances, your home may be worth less than you originally paid for it.

Ultimately, if you failed to maintain your house over the years, various home problems may crop up when you decide to list your residence. If these issues go unaddressed, it may be tough for you to maximize your house sale earnings.

With the right approach to preparing your house for the real estate market, you could upgrade your residence in no time at all. Now, let's take a look at three tips to help you improve your residence and ensure you can obtain the optimal price for your house.

1. Enhance Your Home's Curb Appeal

How your residence looks in the eyes of potential buyers is key. Because if a buyer falls in love with your house the moment he or she sees it for the first time, you could benefit from a fast, profitable house selling experience.

Improving your home's curb appeal can be quick and simple. For instance, mowing the lawn and trimming the hedges can help you transform an ordinary front lawn into a pristine one. And if you have any damaged or cracked home siding, you should repair it as well.

2. Upgrade Your House's Interior

Ensure your home's heating and cooling system and other internal systems are working properly. If you find there are issues with any of these systems, contact a professional to repair them.

Don't forget to clear clutter from your house, too. If you find your home is filled with assorted knick-knacks and items you no longer need, you can sell these items. Or, you can always donate the items you no longer need to a local charity or give them to family members or friends.

If you maintain a neat, tidy house, buyers are sure to be impressed as soon as they walk through your front door.

3. Conduct a Home Inspection and Appraisal

A home inspection usually is completed before a buyer finalizes their house purchase. Yet a seller who conducts an inspection may identify myriad house problems. They can then take steps to address such issues before listing his or her residence.

Additionally, a home appraisal may be crucial for a seller. During an appraisal, a property expert will examine a home and offer a property valuation. Next, a seller can use this valuation to determine how to price their house.

As you get set to add your home to the real estate market, you also may want to hire a real estate agent. This housing market professional will craft a custom home selling strategy for you. Plus, he or she will do whatever it takes to help you achieve your desired house selling results.

Ready to list your home? Take advantage of these tips, and you may be able to obtain an offer to purchase that matches or exceeds what you originally paid for your house.


When it comes to selling a house, it is important to prepare as much as you can. That way, you can identify potential home selling hurdles and overcome these issues before they escalate.

Now, let's take a look at three tips to help you prep for the house selling journey.

1. Analyze All Areas of Your Home

You might believe your home is virtually perfect, but there may be problems that need to be addressed. Because if you fail to resolve various house issues, it may be tough to optimize your home sale earnings.

Oftentimes, it helps to conduct a home inspection before you list a residence. With an inspection report in hand, you can assess home flaws and correct these issues right away.

You may want to perform a home appraisal as well. After an appraisal, you can obtain an appraisal report to help you establish a competitive initial asking price for your residence.

2. Review the Local Housing Sector

The housing market fluctuates, and a buyer's market today could shift into sellers' favor without delay. Thus, you should analyze the local housing sector closely so you can determine whether you are about to enter a buyer's or seller's market.

A buyer's market generally features a high volume of available houses. Comparatively, there is a shortage of available homes in a seller's market, and new houses that become available may sell quickly.

To differentiate between a buyer's and seller's market, you should find out how long homes that are currently available in your city or town have been listed. In addition, review the prices of recently sold houses in your area, and you can see if sellers are accepting offers at or above their initial asking prices.

3. Consult with a Real Estate Agent

If you are unsure about how to plan for the home selling journey, you need to remember that you are not alone. But if you hire a real estate agent, you can work with a property selling expert throughout the home selling journey.

A real estate agent understands how to succeed in any housing market, at any time. First, he or she will learn about you and your home and help you map out a house selling plan. A real estate agent next will help you establish an aggressive initial asking price for your residence and add your home to the local housing market. Then, if you receive an offer to purchase your home, a real estate agent will help you assess this proposal and make an informed home selling decision.

Furthermore, a real estate agent is ready to respond to your house selling questions. There is no home selling question too big or too small for a real estate agent, and as such, you can rely on this professional for in-depth responses to any property selling queries.

Take the guesswork out of selling a home – use the aforementioned tips, and you can plan ahead for the house selling journey.


If you plan to sell your home, you should consider how you can stir up interest in your residence. Because if you know how to promote your house to buyers, there may be no shortage of home showing requests as soon as your residence becomes available.

Ultimately, it is important to give buyers lots of reasons to view your home. If you promote your residence to the right groups of buyers, you could reap the benefits of a quick, profitable house selling experience.

To better understand how to achieve the best-possible home selling results, let's take a look at three tips to help you showcase your residence to buyers.

1. Focus on Curb Appeal

Your home only gets one chance to make a positive first impression on buyers. Fortunately, if you allocate time and resources to improve your house's curb appeal, you may be able to differentiate your home from other available residences in your city or town. And as a result, you may receive lots of requests to view your home.

To enhance your house's curb appeal, you can mow the lawn, trim the hedges and perform other lawn care tasks. Don't forget to repair or replace any damaged home siding as well.

Remember, the better your home looks to buyers, the more likely it becomes that buyers will want to check out your house in-person. If you prioritize your home's curb appeal, you could make your house an attractive option to dozens of buyers.

2. Craft an Engaging Home Listing

A home listing often represents a great starting point for buyers to learn about your home. Thus, if you craft an engaging home listing, you may be able to transform your house into a must-see residence for buyers.

As you create a home listing, consider your house's features. Include relevant information about any distinct house features in your listing, and you may be able to help your home stand out from other available residences in your city or town.

Provide accurate information in your home listing, too. If you make it simple for buyers to use a listing to learn about your house, you can help these individuals determine if your residence matches their expectations.

3. Work with a Real Estate Agent

For those who want expert assistance as they promote a home to buyers, it generally is a good idea to hire a real estate agent. In fact, if you have a real estate agent at your side, you can seamlessly navigate the house selling journey.

A real estate agent understands how to generate interest in a house. He or she will help you promote your residence to the right groups of buyers. Plus, a real estate agent will set up home showings and open house events, ensuring you likely won't have to wait long before you receive an offer to purchase your residence.

Take advantage of the aforementioned tips, and you can make it easy for buyers to fall in love with your home.


An engaging home listing can play a key role in your ability to sell your house. If your listing hits the mark with potential buyers, the likelihood increases that buyers will set up showings to view your residence. And as a result, it may be only a matter of time before you receive multiple offers to purchase your house.

Ultimately, creating an engaging home listing can be simple – here are three tips to help you craft an effective listing for your residence.

1. Provide Accurate Information About Your Home

A home listing often introduces a buyer to a house. If a listing includes accurate information about a residence, a buyer may be inclined to check out a particular house sooner rather than later.

Remember, it is your duty as a home seller to help a buyer make an informed decision about whether to pursue your residence. If you include accurate information about your house's age and condition in your listing, you can make it easy for a homebuyer to determine whether your residence is the right choice based on his or her individual needs.

2. Include High-Resolution Photos of Your Home

An engaging home listing includes lots of relevant information about a home. At the same time, this listing should feature plenty of high-resolution photos that showcase the true size and beauty of each room of your residence.

If possible, take photographs that can help buyers envision what it is like to walk through your house. You may want to clean your home from top to bottom and remove clutter before you take these photos as well.

For those who want extra help with real estate photography, you can always hire a professional photographer. Because if you have a real estate photographer at your side, you can reap the benefits of top-notch photographs that can be incorporated into your home listing.

3. Keep Your Home Listing Simple

There is no need to use big words or complex phrases to try to differentiate your home listing from others. Instead, keep things simple, and homebuyers can decide for themselves whether to move forward with a home showing.

Lastly, if you need help crafting an engaging home listing, you can always reach out to a real estate agent for assistance. This housing market professional can provide expert guidance throughout the home selling journey and ensure you can achieve the optimal results.

A real estate agent will learn about your home and help you put together an informative home listing. He or she also will set up home showings and open house events to promote your residence to prospective buyers. And if you receive an offer to purchase your house, a real estate agent can help you review this proposal and determine the best course of action.

Ready to add your house to the real estate market? Use the aforementioned tips, and you can create an engaging listing to help your house stand out to dozens of potential buyers.




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