Selling With Kathy

A Step-by-Step First Time Seller's Guide

Putting your home on the market can be a stressful process, especially when you don’t know what to expect. Fortunately, with the help of an experienced agent and this easy to follow guide, you can smoothly complete the process. Following these steps will help you prepare so you can get organized and sell your home for the best price possible.​​​​​​​

Finding a Real Estate Agent

The best way to find a Real Estate Agent is word of mouth. Ask friends and
relatives about agents that they’ve had good experiences with. A good
recommendation goes a long way.
Getting a good feeling from a Real Estate Agent is important, if you interview the
highest ranking Real Estate Agent in town but you don’t click, go with your gut and
move on. You’re going to be involved in a rather intimate relationship
with this person for 3 t0 12 months. They will end up knowing things
about you that no one else does, and like any other relationship, mutual
trust and honesty will make it work. Some of my best friends have started
as my clients.
Ask the Real Estate Agent what hours they work and if their cell number will be on
the yard sign. If a buyer calls on the sign after business hours or on a
Sunday afternoon (when most buyers are out looking for a home) will
anyone be answering the phone? Keep in mind, that if you had a hard time
trying to reach the Real Estate Agent, it’s a good indication that buyers and other
Real Estate Agent will have the same problem.
Ask for a Marketing plan or list of places where the Real Estate Agent advertises.
Most sellers assume that if they sign a listing agreement with a Real Estate Agent to
sell their home that the Real Estate Agent will be doing more than sticking a sign up
in their front yard. Don’t ever you, buyers start their search
on the internet, so make sure your Real Estate Agent has a website. Google them to
see how easy they are to find and check out their reviews.

Pricing Your Home

The Real Estate Market changes constantly, your Real Estate Agent will know your
home’s value as it sits, and what the value will be if you make changes.
They will also know what kind of buyers are searching in your area and
what the buyers are looking for. What we see buyers wanting on TV,
many from Canada or back East are not always the same as what the
buyers are looking for in Kingman AZ.

Price your home to sell, not to sit. Some sellers believe that buyers will look
at homes priced higher than they can afford, and then they’ll come in with
a lower offer. Most buyers only look at homes in their price range, they’re
very savvy, they’ve been searching on the internet and know when a house
is overpriced. You want to have a very small gap between the list price
and the sales price, if a lower offer comes in, you just say no.

Getting Your Home Ready to Sell

Before making any changes to your home, have your Real Estate Agent come over
and preview your home. Let them tell you what should to be done, so that
you don’t spend thousands on something that may not be needed.
First Impression
Buyers walk into a home and start counting all the repairs and changes
they’ll need to make. They may be scared off if they have to start adding it
up before they even step in the door. Make sure your yard is clean & tidy
and weed free. Changing a worn doorknob and tarnished light fixtures is
inexpensive and can make a huge difference when buyers are seeing the
house for the first time.

Clean Up

Clean, clean and clean some more, and get it smelling good too. No matter
what type of home you have, updated or not, when a buyer walks into a
clean home, they are at ease. Spend time cleaning baseboards, windows
and sills, light fixtures, light switches, etc., make everything shine. In a
buyer’s eyes dirt means money out of their pocket. I’ve seen buyers drop
their offer $10,000.00 to compensate for a dirty home.
Light up
Maximize the light in your home. Take down the heavy drapes, clean the
windows, change the lampshades, increase the wattage of your light bulbs
or even change out the fixtures. Cut back the bushes outside and move
anything that may be obscuring natural light from coming in.


Clutter gives the perception that the house is smaller than it is and that
there's not enough storage. Make sure and clean everything off the kitchen
counter tops. People fight me about this all the time, but the more prep
space a buyer sees, the bigger the kitchen looks to them. If you’ve made a
pantry out of any space that’s not in the kitchen, clear it out. A buyers first
thought will be that the kitchen is not big enough. Buyers are also looking
for storage space, so clean and organize your closets to show off all the
space you have. Boxing things up and putting them in the garage is ok,
buyers know you’re moving and expect you to have a full garage.


Good furniture placement can help show off a room and makes a huge
impact as a buyer walks through. To make a room look bigger, pull the
furniture off the wall, this allows buyers to see the perimeter of the room
and it creates the illusion of a larger space. For large rooms, you may
want to break them up into two or more sitting areas. Buyers will see
themselves doing more than one thing in that room, making it feel like
double the space. If you have a fireplace, even if you never use it, move
furniture to face it, making it a focal point. If there is not an actual dining
room, make sure and define a dining area, buyers will search for one. If
you have extra-large bedroom furniture it can make the bedroom look
small and the ceiling look low. You may want to consider moving it out.
Kingman has a huge car culture and we love our garages, the bigger the
better. Cleaning the garage, putting everything in its place and adding
shelving or cabinets is a big plus, you may even want to paint the floor.

Listing the House

Once you’ve chosen your Real Estate Agent and gotten your home ready to show to
potential buyers, you’ll be signing a Residential Listing Agreement with
the facts that you and your Real Estate Agent have agreed to. This agreement will
have the list price, the length of time the listing lasts (start and end dates)
and the amount of commission you will be paying. You will also be filling
out a Sellers Property Disclosers Statement “SPDS”, listing everything you

know about your property, anything you have repaired, replaced or built
and other important information.

Going Live on the Internet

Your Real Estate Agent will use all the information you give them and everything
they researched on the property to build the write up. They will take that
and the photos they took of the property and put it all in our local Multiple
Listing Service “MLS”. The MLS was formed by Real Estate Agents who
wanted to let other Agents know what they had for sale, and to enlist their
help to sell the property, this expanded the buyer base by hundreds. As
soon as we post on our MLS, Zillow, and other large sites pull
the information to their sites.

Home Showings

You will set up with your Real Estate Agent the best way to show your home. The
smart thing to do when buyers are coming to see your home is to leave
and take your pets with you. If you must stay home, answer the door and
tell the buyer’s agent that if they have questions, you’ll be on the back patio
with your pets. Sellers quite often feel like they need to tell the buyers all
about the home, but this can be distracting and we want to make sure that
buyers stay on task, looking at the structure, flooring, etc.. Buyers need
the freedom to explore, open cabinets and closets without feeling like
they’re intruding. I’ve had buyers who get into lively conversations with
the sellers and when we leave, they’ll say “Did I even see the kitchen?”.
Before a showing, be sure to remove your pet’s food bowls, toys, dog beds,
cat trees, litter boxes etc.
Buyers Real Estate Agent will usually let the listing agent know how the showing
went and give us feedback, that will then be shared with you, the seller.

We Have An Offer

When your Real Estate Agent comes to you with an offer on the house, they will go
through it with you line by line and you will either accept the offer or you
can counter offer. Once you and the buyer have come to an agreement,
your Real Estate Agent will send the signed and accepted contract to your escrow
officer at the title company and they will start escrow. The buyer’s agent

will take the buyer’s earnest deposit (Good Faith Deposit) to the title
company and send the contract to the buyer’s lender so they can start on
the new loan. Your Real Estate Agent will stay in contact with the buyers lender and
keep you updated on the progress.


The next step will be the inspection. Most buyers hire a professional
inspector, but they have the choice of doing their own inspection or
waving the inspection. Arizona contracts state that the buyer has 10 days
(unless otherwise stated) to get inspections done and get the Buyers
Inspection Sellers Response “BINSR” to you. The buyers Real Estate Agent will send
your Real Estate Agent a copy of the inspection, along with the BINSR requesting
repairs. You, as the seller, have the choice to make all repairs the buyer
asks for, make some repairs, or make no repairs. Your Real Estate Agent will send
the BINSR back to the buyers Real Estate Agent with your response. If you are not
making all the repairs requested, the buyers will then respond on the
BINSR saying they will either accept your response or they can cancel the
contract and their earnest deposit will be refunded to them. A few days
before close of escrow the buyer will do a final walk through to make sure
the home is in the same condition that it was when they wrote the offer
and that all repairs agreed upon have been made.


If your buyer is getting a loan, the lender will send an appraiser out to
your home and that appraiser will report back to the lender with their
findings. The only time you will be told what the appraised value is, is if
the property comes in lower than the sales price. The lender will only loan
up to the amount of the appraisal, so if this happens, the buyer will ask
you to lower the sales price of the home to the appraised value. If you
refuse to lower the price, the buyer has the option to either stay with the
sale and pay the difference between the appraised value and the agreed
upon sales price, or they can cancel the contract and their earnest deposit
will be refunded to them.

Closing Escrow

The contract usually asks for a 4 to 6 week close of escrow, so the lender
has time to get the appraisal in and their paperwork done. When the
escrow officer has paperwork signed by all parties, the lender’s funds have
arrived and the buyer has delivered their portion of the funds needed, they
will then have the deed recorded from your name, into the buyer’s name.
Once we have confirmation that the deed has been recorded with the
Mohave County Recorder’s Office, Escrow is Closed. You will receive your
funds and give your house keys to your Real Estate Agent, who will make sure the
buyers receive them, and your home will then belong to the new owner.
This is a quick overview of the process. If you have any questions, please
feel free to contact me any time ~ (928) 536-5360


Once you have sold your home, you’re free to take the next step on your journey. Whether this is relocating to a new city, moving into a larger home, or downsizing and enjoying your life as empty-nesters, knowing all your selling responsibilities have been taken care of will help you achieve peace of mind for your new path.

Work With Kathy

Get assistance in determining current property value, crafting a competitive offer, writing and negotiating a contract, and much more. Contact me today.